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I have been having troubles recently, related to vocabulary.

While writing essays or whatever writings in English, I recognized that my sentences were mostly consisted of 'simple' words. Such as 'become better' or 'become longer,' which can be replaced with 'improve' or 'lengthen.' Not sure whether I should call them 'simple' words, but it was the best I could thought of. And since I am living in a country where English is not being spoken as native language, there's a low change of encountering such 'improved' words.

So, my question is that would there be a way to learn and practice better vocabulary?

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    Bad idea. Using words that you understand, and which come "naturally" to you is a vital part of communication (the primary purpose of language). Only on rare occasions is it a useful way of showing off what a wide vocabulary you have, and if you don't actually have a wide "productive" vocabulary, any attempts to include words you don't know very well will probably just make you look ignorant (and you'll often fail to convey your intended meaning, which you could probably have done easily if you'd stuck with the words you do know how to use).
    – FumbleFingers
    May 3 at 14:43
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    Read widely: From Hemmingway to Hawking.
    – James K
    May 3 at 14:55
  • Related question: What is the best way of learning new words (vocab)
    – ColleenV
    May 3 at 15:03
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First of all, don’t feel discouraged as there is more than one way to improve your vocabulary! My advice is to make the most out of the huge quantity of resources that is available to you and expose yourself as much as possible to the English language. In doing so, you can adopt a learning strategy that is structured on two levels:

1. Use well-organized books and materials to support your learning process. There are lots of free resources you can use to enhance your learning process. For example, you can try the Books4Languages textbooks for English vocabulary from beginner A1 to B2 level, Quizlet with its interactive flashcard system and some apps like Drops through which you can also keep track of your progress.

2. Use your interests and passions to immerse yourself in the English language in a natural and enjoyable way. In fact, depending on your hobbies, you can easily integrate English in your daily life and improve your vocabulary without even realizing it. For example, if you like movies and TV series, there are tons of them you can watch in English! (This way you could also improve your listening skills and pronunciation) Another example could be reading books and articles in English (some are especially useful if you want to learn some words related to specific topics like business, technology, science and so on). Moreover, if you are passionate about videogames, again there are lots of them that you can play in English.

In other words, with some time, patience, and dedication you can improve your vocabulary for sure. You just have to find the material that fits best with your needs and daily schedule. Try your best and you will see that your hard work will be rewarded for sure!

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There is a way. Use medias like TV, YouTube, the internet, newspapers, book or e-books. You'll need a quiet place to stay in and read and listen to those materials.

Use English sentences, and become familiar with them. English grammar could help.

When you find a new word, you can use it in a new sentence. You can find the new word in an English dictionary. If you heard the new word, repeat the sentence after the speaker.

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In the mid-to-early stages of learning a language (you may already be past this point though) I've found Clozemaster to be one of the single most effective ways to learn vocabulary. Clozemaster has English courses in a staggering variety of languages, so unless your native language is something extremely esoteric, you'll probably find a course in it, but some are more polished than others. If you are lucky enough to speak a language where there is an English course in that language (it only has a few) you could also look at Lingvist, which is a more refined, slick tool that is more-or-less the same idea; it is paid-only whereas Clozemaster has both free and paid versions.

I would not, however, rely solely on any online tools as your sole learning method.

Once you've gotten to where you are good enough to learn by immersion, immersion is often a more efficient and also better way to learn.

Watch and listen to media in English, and read material in English. Reading can often be one of the most effective ways to learn vocabulary more deeply, especially if you're at the point where you already know how a wide range of words are pronounced and you simply haven't mastered their connotation and usage deeply enough to feel comfortable using them in your own speech or writing.

I also find it helpful to occasionally fixate on a particular word. When you hear or read a word that you kind-of know, but aren't super comfortable with, look it up in a dictionary. Look at multiple different contexts in which it is used. Try to get a grasp of its connotation. Sometimes google image search is helpful for this purpose, as an image can communicate common mental or cultural associations that may not shine through as easily in a dictionary definition.

Also, don't neglect idioms and phrase-level usage. English is packed with idioms and some of them are unintuitive. Again, exposure is key. Once you've heard or read a phrase or expression enough, and you have a sense not only of what it means, but what contexts in which it is used, it'll become more natural to use it.

I also would encourage you to try to interact with native English speakers as much as you can. I'm not sure what your native language is, and you may not be able to find "language partners" readily, but it seems based on the writing in your question that your English is probably already good enough to just dive in and interact with native English speakers online. Try to get both audio and text-based interaction!

You will also find it easier to learn if you focus on your interests, both hobbies and professional or educational interests. This can be a good way to keep motivation up. Over time, you will broaden your vocabulary!

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I'd recommend taking multiple approaches. Try not to force it. I see students all the time keeping little dictionaries of handwritten vocabulary. It's not worth the effort. Build your target language in your life. Watch Netflix and Youtube videos in your target language with target subtitles. Read short stories in your target language(novels are often too long for most people to maintain interest). Use a language learning app. For example, I use LingQ to practice reading authentic materials and building flashcard sets, and I use Ling to solidify overall concepts and new vocabulary. All the best :)

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