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Types of Vocabulary

 Types of Vocabulary

Vocabulary is an essential component of language learning. As stated above vocabulary is the words which have meanings and functions of a language being learned, thought or used in daily conversation so that they become part of today's living language.

Learning English means learn four language skills namely listening and reading as receptive skills while writing and speaking as productive skills. That is why we classify vocabulary into two types. They are receptive and productive vocabulary. Receptive vocabulary refers to the words which can be recognized and comprehended in the context of listening and reading, while productive vocabulary refers to the words which we recall and use appropriately in writing and speaking.

Vocabulary teaching and learning is central to the theory and particle of ELT, words have a central place in culture and many as the main task in learning another language is learning words. Interest in vocabulary from researcher teachers and research is likely continued to grow apace. The professional teacher active learning will improve the teaching of vocabulary. The following questions are constantly asked by teachers and students when teaching and learning vocabulary.

1)      How many words provide a working vocabulary in foreign language?

2)      What are the best words to learn first?

3)      Are some words more difficult to learn than the others?

Harmer (1991, p. 159) divided vocabulary into types as follows:

1)      Active vocabulary refers to words that students have learned which they expect to be able to use.

2)      Passive vocabulary refers to the words which students will recognize when they meet them but which they will probably not to be able to produce.

While Schail (1967) in Rosmawati (2001, p. 1) states that every person has three types of vocabulary, as follows:

1)      Active. These are words one customarily uses in speaking active vocabulary probably runs from 5.000 to 10.000 words.

2)      Reserve. These are the words knows but rarely if ever use in ordinary speech one uses them in writing a letter. When he has time to consider or when he is searching for a synonym

3)      Passive. The words one recognizes vaguely but is not sure of the meanings. He never uses them in either writing or speech.


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