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What are some useful tips for practicing vocabulary?

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Quick Answer

Some useful tips for practicing vocabulary include reading a lot, learning words in context and practicing new words through repetition. Other useful vocabulary tips include using mnemonics and word association to improve memory and retention and looking up unknown words to gain a better understanding of meaning, usage and context.

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Full Answer

While vocabulary lists and flashcards can be useful starting points for learning new words, most people retain and understand more information by seeing the words in context. Reading a lot is important to developing a wider vocabulary because it allows readers not only to see the vocabulary words themselves, but also to understand how they are used in relation to words they might already know. By gaining an understanding of how and why certain vocabulary words are used, readers have a better sense of the words' meanings.

Repetition, word association and mnemonics are all useful tools for learning vocabulary words. Mnemonic devices are mental tricks or shortcuts for quickly recalling words by developing an associated mental image or phrase: for example, the sentence "Her winsome smile helped her win some guys" is a useful mnemonic device for remembering the word "winsome," since the rest of the sentence helps to define the word.

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