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VOCABULARY LEVEL 2 – Package 5 - Collocations

Learning Outcomes

By the end of VOCABULARY LEVEL 2 you should be able to
✔ study vocabulary independently
✔ use different strategies to expand and record vocabulary

Introduction to Independent Learning

Independent learning gives you more choice about what, when and how fast to study. It also prepares you to learn after complete full time education.

In order to study independently you need to be able to set your own aims, choose how you want to study and reflect on the usefulness of studying that you do and on your overall progress.

Since you have chosen to study VOCABULARY LEVEL 2, we can assume that you want to learn more about how to expand and remember words more effectively. The online activities are designed to help you to develop and build the bank of words and expressions that you have at your disposal.

To begin with, there is a vocabulary quiz which will give you some idea of where you strengths and weaknesses lie.

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Package 5 - Collocations

Learning outcomes

By the end of this section you should

✔ have an awareness of the different types of collocation
✔ be able to read a text and identify correct collocations
✔ be able to search for collocations in a newspaper and explain them


When two items occur together, or are used together frequently, they are said to collocate. When learning new words, it is a good idea to learn any typical collocations that go with them. The most common types of collocation are as follows:

Adjective + noun collocations:
heavy traffic; a loud noise; an invigorating shower; a formidable task

Verb + object noun collocations
she bites her nails (not: eats her nails)
to raise a family (not: lift a family)
to take medicine (not: eat medicine)
to surf the Internet (not: play on the Internet)

Verb + adverb collocations
to feel strongly about something (not: powerfully)
to fall badly and hurt oneself (not: wrongly)

Adverb + past participle (used adjectivally) collocations
badly behaved; fully insured; well cooked

There are no ‘rules’ for collocations and it is difficult to group words by their collocational properties. Thus, teachers and learners are more successful when they deal with common collocational problems in isolation or as they arise.

Activity 1
One out of the 4 words in each row does not collocate with the word in the first column. Underline the word.

Activity 2

Sometimes two words go together to form a set phrase. Match the words on the left with a word on the right.

Activity 3

You are going to read a text entitled ‘Flats from Hell’. Read the text and click on the correct collocation.

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