Involved In Knowing A Word

Phrase data performs an essential function in language instructing, it offers the premise for learners to understand 4 language abilities listening, talking, studying and writing. With out a specific amount of phrases, learners can not count on to grasp absolutely the content material of listening and studying and categorical their which means clearly within the strategy of talking and writing. Lexical competence is one in all parts of communicative competence (Meara 1996).nevertheless, figuring out a phrase is difficult and it entails figuring out its kind, which means and use (Nation,2001) .e.g. spelling, pronunciation, grammar, denotative and connotative which means, phrase associations, frequency, collocation and register.

For English Learners in China, resulting from restricted publicity to the goal language, they have difficulties with collocations and collocation errors are sometimes discovered of their writing and talking. To be able to obtain a excessive degree of competence in English, it's higher for college kids to know extra collocations. These days in China, collocation has turn out to be probably the most essential points in English language instructing and studying.

On this paper, firstly, the writer makes an attempt to clarify and exemplify the query of ‘what's concerned in figuring out a phrase’, and a few facets of phrase data are mentioned. Secondly, collocation as one facet of phrase data is chosen to debate in additional element, then some points with respect to collocation are mentioned, together with the definition of collocation, the classification of collocations and the numerous of collocation,. Lastly, it offers with the classroom observe, as an English language instructor, some options are given on the instructing of collocation within the classroom.

What's concerned in figuring out a phrase?

Within the L1 acquisition, it is extremely frequent that learners might know the best way to communicate one phrase in mom tongue however they have no idea the best way to spell this phrase, whereas in L2 acquisition, learners might know the written type of phrase, however they have no idea the best way to pronounce it clearly, or learners might know one which means of a phrase, nevertheless, they have no idea different meanings of this phrase in several contexts. Even learners might know each kind and which means of a phrase, however they have no idea the best way to use this phrase appropriately in several contexts. Subsequently, figuring out a phrase is sort of a posh cognitive course of, and figuring out a phrase entails understanding many facets of phrase data. Nation (2001:23) factors out that ‘phrases will not be remoted models of language’. Subsequently, the query of ‘what's concerned in ‘figuring out a phrase’ has attracted appreciable consideration within the area of vocabulary acquisition. Researchers have recognized several types of phrase data. Richards (1976) and Nation (1990, 2001) checklist totally different facets of phrase data which learners must learn about a phrase. I'll use Nation’s classification of phrase data as the premise for my dialogue. Extra info, see the appendix 2.

In latest many years, Nation is without doubt one of the world’s main authorities on vocabulary acquisition. Based mostly on the sooner phrase framework (Nation, 1990), Nation (2001:27) factors out that figuring out a phrase entails figuring out its kind, which means and use, and every class is damaged down into receptive and productive data. Every of those three classes could be discovered within the dialogue transient under. Extra particulars please see appendix two.

Phrase kind

Understanding one phrase kind contains spoken kind, written kind and phrase components (Nation, 2001). Spoke and written kind are important phrase data which helps learners to maneuver ahead to literacy. The data of phonics, phrase reorganization and spelling offers a foundation for learners to decode phrase which means and use the phrase appropriately in several context. Understanding the spoken kind means having the ability to perceive the spoken kind in listening to this phrase, that is receptive data, in addition to having the ability to pronounce the phrase clearly and make different individuals understood within the dialog, that is productive data. Understanding the written kind means having the ability to acknowledge the written kind when studying, that is receptive data; within the meantime, figuring out the written kind means having the ability to spell appropriately the written kind in writing, that is productive data (Schmitt, 2000).Schmitt factors out that the extra related between the second language and first language in spelling and pronunciation, the better learners to realize these data in second language. For instance, it's simpler for Spanish to study the spoken and written type of English than to study Chinese language and Japanese, resulting from totally different orthographic and pronunciation methods (ibid).

When it comes to phrase components, it entails figuring out the prefix, suffix and stem that make up a phrase in addition to figuring out the phrase household (Nation 2001). It's potential to decode the which means of unknown phrase when figuring out the prefix, suffix or stem of this phrase. Take the phrase unbelievable, for an instance. Prefix un means not, reverse, consider means belief one thing, -able means could be, worthy of, due to this fact the which means of unbelievable is ‘To not be believed’. As well as, Nation (2001) level out that figuring out a phrase entails figuring out the members of phrase household that may improve as proficiency develops. For instance, figuring out the phrase in a position, learners might know unable, disable, to start with, then they'll know allow, capability, talents, disabled incapacity.

Usually, the data of phonics, phrase reorganization and spelling are learnt by specific instruction, akin to repeat workouts, drills and rote memorization. Though this specific instruction helps learners to accumulate this information to some extent, nevertheless, an excessive amount of relying on workouts and rote memorization results in boredom and reduce motivation. The easiest way to develop the phonics, phrase reorganization and spelling ability is to supply extra alternatives to interact in significant studying and writing within the explicit context. As well as, Learners could be educated and inspired to make use of studying methods. Akin to’ discovering analogies, cowl and recall, specializing in tough components and setting common studying objectives’ (Nation: 2001:46).

2.2 Phrase which means:

Nation (2001) factors out that figuring out the which means of a phrase contains connecting kind and which means, idea and referents, and phrase associations. Usually the phrase kind and which means are discovered collectively. it signifies that when learners hear and see the phrase kind, the which means of this phrase will retrieved, within the meantime, after they wish to categorical the which means of phrase, the type of this phrase will retrieved as properly. Daulton (1998) factors out that the identical kind within the goal language and first language makes studying the phrase meanings burden gentle. For instance, English has some mortgage phrases from Japan; this helps Japanese study some English phrases simpler. When it comes to ideas and referents, every phrase has acquired a core idea, whereas different meanings range. It means a phrase has acquired plenty of meanings relying on the totally different contexts. Aitcheson (1987) additionally factors out that there's a fuzzy boundary within the meanings of a phrase. One of many principal causes is that schema is totally different within the totally different contexts (Schmitt, 2000). As well as, Richards (1976:81) claims that ‘phrases don't exist in isolation’ .Understanding a phrase entails figuring out phrase affiliation. Phrase associations are the hyperlinks that phrases are associated to one another in individuals’s thoughts. One phrase is given to a learner; another which can be related or reverse, and associated phrases simply come to thoughts.

e.g. Accident-car, blood, hospital.

College- chair, desk, classroom, college students, academics;

Residence- kitchen, dish, meals.

2.three Phrase use

Nation (2001) factors out that figuring out the best way to use a phrase entails figuring out the phrase grammatical capabilities, collocations and being conscious of constraints on use resulting from many components, akin to register, frequency and totally different cultures. Grammatical perform is without doubt one of the most essential linguistic constraints in selecting a phrase to make use of, and grammatical perform refers to phrase courses and what grammatical patterns one phrase can match into (ibid).e.g. we will say ‘I do know rather a lot, I eat rather a lot, I learn rather a lot’, nevertheless we can not say ‘I data rather a lot, I eaten rather a lot, I studying rather a lot’.

Register and frequency are different explicit sorts of phrase constrains on use. Register is taken into account because the stylistic constraints that ‘make every phrase kind of applicable for sure language conditions or language functions’ (Schmitt, 2000:31).

When it comes to phrase frequency, Excessive frequency phrases (giggle) are heard and seen and used extra often than low frequency phrases (guffaw, giggle, and chuckle). Usually talking, low frequency phrases are used within the explicit self-discipline, e.g. drugs, legislation, engineering, literature and so forth). Subsequently, Excessive frequency phrases are extra simply acknowledged and recalled than low frequency phrases. Subsequently, figuring out using a phrase ought to pay attention to constrains on use of a phrase.

On this part, phrase kind, phrase which means and phrase use are mentioned. Subsequent I'll choose collocation as one sort of phrase data (collocation) to debate in additional element.Firstly, I'll discover the definition of collocation, the sorts of collocation, after which I counsel that the data of collocations is important for learners, lastly, some recommendation on instructing and studying collocations within the classroom are given.

The definition and clarification of collocation

Collocation is outlined in several method by researchers. collocation refers to’ objects whose which means isn't apparent from their components ‘(Palm 1933 in Firth 1957, summarised in Nation, 2001:317).e.g., blonde hair, shrug his shoulders, fizzy drink, chew the mud. In accordance with Schmitt(2000:76),collocation is described as ‘the tendency of two or extra phrases to co-occur in discourse’. Right here co-occurrence is the primary attribute of collocation. Much like Schmitt, Lewis (2000:132) describes it in one other method as ‘collocation is the best way by which phrases co-occur in pure textual content in statistically important methods’, on this definition, the best way phrases naturally co-occur is emphasised. It implies that folks can not put two or extra phrases collectively arbitrarily, as a result of phrases co-occur naturally. In actual fact, it is extremely frequent that some learners in international and second language context are likely to put two or extra phrases collectively arbitrarily due to the primary language interference. For instance, do a call as an alternative of decide, large rain as an alternative of heavy rain. Nation (2001:371) defines collocation as’any typically accepted grouping of phrases into phrases or clauses’. This definition displays the 2 standards of collocation that are ‘frequency happen collectively and have some extent of semantic unpredictability’ (ibid). The above definitions point out that phrases co-occur naturally, it's not straightforward for learners to get the which means of collocation kind its parts, and consequently, it could trigger issues for learners to accumulate the data of collocations. The definition of collocation results in the shift to discover the sorts of collocation.

Collocations are divided into two primary varieties: grammatical/syntactic collocations and Semantic/lexical collocations (Schmitt.2000). The previous refers to at least one phrase combines with different phrases with the grammatical rule. E.g. get used to, be good at .the latter means multi phrases co-occur to contribute the which means. E.g. make a mistake, catch a bus. Lewis (2000) lists several types of collocation, akin to verb+noun, noun+noun, adjective + noun, verb+adjective, fastened phrase, a part of proverb, binomial, trinomial and so forth.

The importance of studying collocations

four.1 The underlying rule of group of lexicon

Sinclair (1991) advances two rules (the open-choice precept and the idiom precept) to clarify the group of the texts. The open-choice precept suggests which you could put any phrase within the slot to make texts so long as you observe the grammar rule. It is called slot-and-filler mannequin. Nonetheless, this precept can not clarify the collocation constrains. The idiom precept highlights that there are some regularities when two or extra phrases mix collectively, and Sinclair claims that there are some constrains on the alternatives phrases in discourse(ibid), in different phrases, the best way phrases co-occur will not be random. Hill (2000) additionally agrees with the concept the lexicon isn't arbitrary. E.g. commit. A comparatively fastened set of phrases can co-occur with it. E.g. suicide, crime, homicide, sin. However not promise, recommendation, plan.

four.2 The scale of collocation

Teams of phrases or phrases are used very often to precise which means within the oral and written texts. Hill (2000) claims that two or greater than two phrases collocations make up an enormous proportion within the textual content. It's estimated that as much as 70% of every little thing we use in oral and written texts are fastened expression. This broadly used collocation implies that if non-native learners have gotten an enormous quantity of collocation, it will likely be useful for them to realize native-like fluency within the goal language. Nation (2001) additionally factors out that figuring out the collocation data of a phrase is without doubt one of the most essential facets of figuring out a phrase.

four.three Native-like fluency

Studying collocation helps learners to talk and write English in a extra pure and correct method (Dell and McCarthy, 2008).if learners retailer an enormous variety of collocations, this permits them to retrieve ready-made language, assume extra shortly and produce language effectively (Hill 2000).as well as, they don't have to make sentences phrase by phrase to precise themselves, and this assists them in utilizing English not solely naturally however precisely. In accordance with my expertise of instructing English in China, because of the first language interference, the direct translate are used to provide language, the wrong use of collocation is quite common within the essay writing, and this is without doubt one of the principal causes which result in the emergence of Chinglish, e.g. eat drugs, make train, obtain the phone e, open/shut the radio, look TV as an alternative of take drugs, do train, reply the phone, activate/flip off radio, watch TV.

four.four language acquisition

Studying collocation enhances language acquisition (Hill, 2000). Nation (2001) factors out that collocation helps learners to retailer data shortly. If learners have gotten an enormous variety of collocations in thoughts, it's simpler for them to retrieve ready-made language from their psychological lexicon and assume extra shortly as a result of they'll acknowledge large chunks of language when studying and listening, and that is very useful for them to grasp the which means within the pace of speech and the lengthy studying texts. In distinction, if learners decode the which means of speech and texts phrase by phrase, possibly they know the which means of every phrase, nevertheless, they have no idea the which means of collocation or chunks within the lengthy discourse. It could be tough for them to get the correct which means of the speech and texts. Based mostly on my instructing experiences as a highschool English instructor, I discovered that a lot of the college students in my class have gotten issue understanding the which means of the whole paragraph resulting from lack of collocation competence. Hill (2000) additionally agree with this rationalization that one of many principal cause for having issue in studying or listening is because of lack of collocation competence, relatively than the load of latest phrases.

E.g. so far as I do know, the outdated sheep comes up with the concept he'll hand over on his dream to take care of little sheep, nevertheless, he can not make this resolution resulting from different individuals. This makes him maintain crying on a regular basis.

Regardless that college students know the which means of every phrase within the above paragraph, it's nonetheless very onerous for them to grasp the whole paragraph as a result of they don't seem to be aware of some collocations inside.

Within the above two sections, the definition, sorts of collocation and the importance of collocation had been mentioned. Within the subsequent part, I wish to give some options on instructing and studying collocations within the classroom.

5. Educating collocations within the classroom

Listed below are some options and actions for English language academics that may assist college students to accumulate the data of collocations within the classroom.

5.1 Elevating consciousness of collocation in classroom

Woolard (2000) factors out that elevating learners’ consciousness of the significance of collocations is an efficient method to assist them discover them. Lecturers ought to clarify the rationale for collocation, the importance of studying collocation in language acquisition, after which make learners know that phrases will not be utilized in isolation, figuring out one phrase additionally means figuring out which phrase is more likely to co-occur with it, Lecturers can emphasize within the classroom instruction that figuring out collocations not solely helps them to obtain (studying and listening) and retailer language shortly but additionally produce language naturally and precisely. E.g. When instructing studying, it's an efficient strategy to ask learners to determine collocations within the texts and allow them to make an inventory of collocations. When instructing talking, academics can ask learners to foretell the collocations of the phrase. If academics encourage learners to note collocations in enter and output instructing actions, this observe will assist learners develop a capability to note and use collocations. It additionally helps learners to develop learner autonomy, after they learn newspaper, take heed to radio, watch TV and discuss to different individuals in English. They may discover the existence of collocations in spoken and written texts.

5.2 Rising language enter and offering output alternatives

Utilizing the genuine studying texts is an efficient strategy to train collocations. Within the classroom, Lewis (2000) additionally means that academics ought to select the correct of texts which incorporates several types of collocations. These texts can be utilized within the intensive studying observe. Nonetheless, this isn't sufficient to accumulate the data of collocations. Krashen(1985 )factors out that sufficient understandable enter is a supply of language acquisition. Collocations are utilized in several types of texts, akin to newspaper, journal, and story books. It's good for learners to do intensive studying to come across collocations in these genuine texts and keep in mind them within the notebooks. As well as, intensive studying offers learners with context to make the understanding of the which means of collocation simpler and deeper, due to this fact. Intensive studying not solely helps them to know the way native audio system use the collocations within the pure method, but additionally strikes studying collocations from quick to long-term reminiscence.

Nonetheless, Swain (1995) claims that although learners are given a wealthy supply of understandable enter within the French immersion programmes in Canada. It's nonetheless onerous for learners to provide the native-like language proficiency. Educating collocations additionally wants to supply alternatives to learners to observe the best way to use collocations. These actions could be some communicative actions when it comes to writing and talking. Hill, Lewis and Lewis (2000) counsel that academics can ask learners to seek out the collocations within the studying texts, after which use these collocations to reconstruct the content material. Some collocation errors could be discovered. Lecturers want to put in writing down these errors within the blackboard and make learners to analyse them. The identical actions could be finished by listening to tapes or tales after which ask learners to talk out the collocations. Some workouts are used to assist learners purchase collocations (Dell and McCarthy, 2008). Akin to Fill in blanks, Match video games True/False.

5.three Utilizing assets: Collocation Dictionaries and corpora and concordances

It's a good strategy to get learners use collocation dictionaries to know extra about collocations. e.g. Oxford Collocations Dictionary for college kids of English. As well as, with the event of web, the modern corpora and concordances have gotten the efficient method for learners to test collocations on-line. They supply nice texts to test collocations and develop dramatically with the replace texts. Corpus has introduced nice insights into linguistics, particularly into the research of collocations.

A corpus collects the written or spoken texts and shops them within the pc. It is rather useful and environment friendly method to make use of the corpus to test how the individuals use collocations in written or spoken texts .Sinclair (1991:32) defines ‘a concordance is a group of the occurrences of a word-form, every in its personal textual setting’. In comparison with collocation dictionary, concordance permits us view extra collocation lists within the corpus. Nonetheless, I feel it's crucial for academics to supply learners with some coaching to assist them use it properly, this additionally encourage learner autonomy.

6. Conclusion

On this paper, I've defined and exemplified the query ‘what's concerned figuring out a phrase’. Phrase kind, phrase which means and phrase use had been mentioned briefly. Akin to spelling, pronunciation, phrase components, phrase meanings, phrase associations, grammatical capabilities, register, collocations, frequency and so forth. In these many facets of phrase data, collocation as one sort of phrase data was chosen to discover. First, the definition and classification of collocation had been mentioned, after which the rationale for selecting collocations was defined. Subsequent, this writer proceeded to discover the best way to train collocations within the classroom. Lastly, this paper presents some options on the best way to assist learners purchase the data of collocations within the classroom.

Appendix 1:

The which means of figuring out a phrase(Richards,1976),


The native speaker of a language continues to increase his vocabulary in maturity, whereas there's comparatively little improvement of syntax in grownup life.


Understanding a phrase means figuring out the diploma of chance of encountering that phrase in speech or print. For a lot of phrases we additionally “know” the kind of phrases probably to be discovered related to the phrase


Understanding a phrase implies figuring out the constraints imposed on using the phrase in keeping with variations of perform and state of affairs.


Understanding a phrase means figuring out the syntactic habits related to that phrase.


Understanding a phrase entails data of the underlying type of a phrase and the derivations that may be constituted of it.


Understanding a phrase entails data of the community of associations between that phrase and different phrases in language.


Understanding a phrase means figuring out the semantic worth of a phrase.


Understanding a phrase means figuring out lots of the totally different meanings related to the phrase.

Appendix 2:

What's concerned in figuring out a phrase? (Nation, 2001)





What does the phrase sound like?

How is the phrase pronounced?




What does the phrase appear to be?

How is the phrase written and spelled?

phrase components



What components are recognizable on this phrase?

What phrase components are wanted to precise the which means?

Which means

Type and which means



What which means does this phrase kind sign?

What phrase kind can be utilized to precise this which means?

Idea and referents



What's included within the idea?

What objects can the idea consult with?




What different phrases does this make us consider?

What different phrases might we use as an alternative of this one?


grammatical capabilities



In what patterns does the phrase happen?

In what patterns should we use this phrase?




What phrases or sorts of phrases happen with this one?

What phrases or sorts of phrases should we use with this one?

constraints on use (register, frequency )



The place, when, and the way typically would we count on to fulfill this phrase?

The place, when, and the way typically can we use this phrase?