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ArticlesStudy Tips: Vocabulary
Reliable Tools for Learning Vocab


A dictionary, be it in digital or printed form, is one of the most essential tools for vocabulary building. A good, comprehensive dictionary will be your go-to counsel for all your linguistic conundrums: word definitions, synonyms, homonyms and homophones, different meanings, the pragmatic aspect (context-dependent colorings a word takes when used in conversation) etc. If you have the choice, don't get an "abridged" version because it won't contain all the information you need.


A thesaurus (from the Greek word for "treasure") is a book featuring synonyms and antonyms for words. You can easily find sound thesauruses online, provided by established publishing institutions and companies.
In fact, a thesaurus is truly a treasure, and as necessary as a dictionary. It will give you the information you need to use words precisely; for example, it will help you decide whether you need to use 'belligerent' or 'pugnacious' in a given sentence, since it provides you with all the subtle semantic differences between apparently identical terms. Additionally, a thesaurus allows you to say the same thing in different and often exciting new ways, expanding your vocabulary knowledge by exposing you to semantically related words.

Vocabulary building software

If you're really serious about vocabulary improvement, a vocabulary building software program might be the solution. Choose software that is both integrative and thoroughly systematic, otherwise your money will be wasted.
A vocabulary building program will offer you copious vocabulary learning resources to choose from: interactive exercises, games, word quizzes, progress tests, visual and conventional dictionaries, a thesaurus, and much more. Investing in a good, reliable vocabulary program will be both your motivation and tool for learning.

The wisdom of others

Because everyone has different interests, experience, and areas of expertise, one of the best ways to learn new vocabulary is by talking to as many people as possible on the topics that interest them. If you can find well-spoken, articulate people, you'll be able to learn vocabulary through social interaction.