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Thesis- Vocabulary

Paper type: Thesis
Pages: 8 (1914 words)
Downloads: 42
Views: 491

“The limits of my language are the limits of my mind. All I know is what I have words for.” – Ludwig Wittgenstein

Active communication in English is what counts in today’s globalized world. It is very important to have large deposit of words. O’Connor explained why large vocabularies characterize executives and possibly outstanding men and women in other fields. The final answer seems to be that words are the instruments by means of which men and women grasp the thoughts of others and with which they do much of their own thinking.

They are the “tools of thought.” The benefits of effective communication are many and obvious in many aspects of life.

Vocabulary is the total number of words in a language. It is also the collection of words a person knows and uses in speaking and writing. So, it is a natural desire to expand one’s vocabulary as bigger supply of words increases the chances of succeeding in studies, career and even personal relationships.

It is important to develop the skills of using the right words under different circumstances. And as for ESL students, having a store of vocabulary in mind is already an advantage. In writing or speaking, control over words is often the same as control over ideas the words represent.

Enriching one’s vocabulary leads to understanding a lot of things and improves one’s language skills. Working in this direction, will be able to improve not only our vocabulary but the quality of life as well. The range of our vocabulary is a clue to our education and our impression of our abilities. Background of the Study

The vocabulary of a language is always changing and growing. As life becomes more complex, people devise or borrow new words to describe human activity, and they change the meanings of existing words to fit new circumstances. No one knows the exact number of English words today, but probably there are a lot to learn for. For Americans, the average use of vocabulary is 10,000 words, but the average recognition vocabulary is 30,000 to 40,000 words. A person continually builds a vocabulary. Studies have shown that a child entering school may know only from 3,000 to 4,000 words. But by the completion of college, he or she may have a wider range of vocabulary.

The importance of vocabulary in achieving success in life has been proven over and over. In the 1920’s, Johnson O’Conner found that successful people in all walks of life have powerful vocabularies. He also discovered that vocabulary growth is not tied to any special trait, and anyone, regardless of their present vocabulary, can enrich it. Vocabulary growth cannot be a product of just an incidental learning.

As we think with words, so the limits of our learning are related to the limits of our vocabulary. The researchers first become interested in the vocabulary expansion strategies of the English majors in our college last semester in our Applied Linguistics class where we discussed the vocabulary topic. As one of the future professionals, as our professors always says, especially in the language or teaching field, it is very important to have enough vocabulary living in you. The researchers decided to pursue this study because we are continually reminded of how it would be helpful in our course and in our future careers.

In this research, we would be able to discover the vocabulary range, difficulties most effective ways of vocabulary enrichment of the ABE sophomore students. The challenge is to find a method of teaching or strategy of learning vocabulary that is effective and efficient. Theoretical framework

Dual-coding theory is a theory of cognition, it uses the idea that the formation of mental images aids in learning when developing this theory. Dual-coding theory postulates that both visual and verbal information is used to represent information. (Stemberg, 2003) visual and verbal information processed in each channel. The mental codes corresponding these representation are used to organize incoming information that can be acted upon, stored, and retrieved for subsequent use. This theory states that “Human cognition is unique in that it has become specialized for dealing simultaneously with language and with non-verbal objects and events. Moreover, the language system is peculiar in that deals directly with linguistic input and output (in the form of speech or writing) while at the same time serving a symbolic function with respect to non-verbal objects, events, and behaviors. Any representational theory must accommodate this dual functionality.”

Dual-coding theory complements a dual-route theory of reading. When people read written information, dual-route theory contends that the readers access orthographic and phonological information to recognize words in the writing. The theory assumes that there are two cognitive subsystems, one specialized for the representation and processing of non-verbal objects/events (i.e. imagery), and the other specialized for dealing with language. Dual-coding theory identified three types of processing: (1) representational, the direct activation of verbal or non-verbal representations. (2) referential, the activation of the verbal system by the non-verbal system or vice versa and (3) associative processing, the activation of representations within the same verbal or non-verbal system. A given task may require any or all of the three kinds of processing.

Formalization of the theory of dual-coding is generally attributed to Allan Paivio of the University of Western Ontario. Paivio found that participants when shown a rapid sequence of pictures as well as a rapid sequence of words and later asked recall the words and pictures, in any order, were better at recalling images. Participants, however, more readily recalled the sequential order of the words, rather than the sequence of pictures. These results supported Paivio’s hypothesis that verbal information is processed differently than visual information and that verbal information was superior to visual information when sequential order was also required for the memory task. (Paivio, 1969)

We know that this theory called as dual-coding is somehow true. It is important because it tells and elaborate to us the way how people could effectively learned material. It reveals the two different ways on how people perceived knowledge. The theory accounts the significance of abilities in theories of intelligence.

By means of this theory relating to the study, people may know the two different ways to acquire knowledge. The main connection of this theory to the research is that vocabulary is knowledge and the theory is all about acquiring knowledge. In order to have such vocabulary fluency, people must find out the best strategies for them. Studies might determine the most relevant way on expanding vocabulary, whichever of the two ways that the theory says.

Although goals, objectives and assessments are crucial components, in this paper we will focus on explicit learning strategies as a means for achieving our goals of expanding their vocabulary knowledge, consolidating and elaborating vocabulary knowledge and building fluency with known vocabulary. The aforementioned theory has supported our study for better understanding on the different methods or strategies of the AB English students in expanding their vocabulary knowledge.

Conceptual Framework


The input contains the most significant variable regarding AB English students vocabulary knowledge. It includes the effective strategies of the respondents on how they develop and expand their vocabulary.

The second circle comprises the procedures that the researcher used to analyze the variables is by creating a survey, observation and analysis of the results. Lastly is the output, it includes all the recommendation that the researchers suggested with regards to vocabulary enrichment of the students. The arrow in the system signifies the flow of the study. It associates the process to the output as well as the input to make it as a never stopping cycle of information.

Statement of the Problem

The main objective of this research is to find out the most effective vocabulary expansion strategy of the AB English sophomore students in PUP. Specifically, this study aimed to answer the following:

1. How do the respondents evaluate their vocabulary fluency based on their own knowledge?

2. What are the common strategies that the AB English students used to expand their vocabulary knowledge?

3. Do strategies on how to expand vocabulary and having such vocabulary knowledge have significant connection with each other?

Scope and Limitations

The respondents of the study are composed of AB English sophomore students. The questionnaires will be administered on February, 2013 and retrieved on the day of the survey while the others on the following days. This will be done to have a better understanding as to the level of knowledge, skills, values, ethics, and attitudes they have acquired and the need to qualify as competent linguists.

Significance of the Study

College/ Department of Arts and Letters. This study will be beneficial as it holds what’s the most effective strategy of the AB English students in terms of expanding their vocabulary. Thus, this will make a lifelong notion that they can use in the near future. Teachers/Professors. This study will serve as a means for the vocabulary teaching methods that they use and implement. This will enable them to weigh out if the said methods were effective. The findings will make them aware of whatever problems, possible solutions, and suggestions to further enhance the factors that contribute to achieving strategies for vocabulary expansion. Other Researchers. This study served in great part for the completion of the researchers’ course requirement. This has given them a lot of challenge in meeting new faces and acquaintances and being aware of what’s happening in the environment regarding their study. This developed their vocabulary and can help them to improve their communication skills.

Definition of Terms

For better understanding and interpretation of this study, the following terms are operationally defined.


It is the set of words within a language that are familiar to that person. A vocabulary usually develops with age, and serves as a useful and fundamental tool for communication and acquiring knowledge.


A meaningful speech sound or succession of speech sounds that can be represented by graphic symbols. A written or printed representation of a word.


The act of expanding or spreading out; the condition of being expanded; dilation; enlargement.

Vocabulary Expansion

Vocabulary Expansion is useful to improve communication skills and help develop reading and writing ability. It does not matter at what stage of education, or personal growth you are, vocabulary development can benefit everyone.

Vocabulary expansion is often pursued for a variety of reasons. Individuals may seek to communicate more effectively at work, or college students may be searching for a richer originates from a non-English speaking background and wishes to learn English for work or study purposes.

Vocabulary Skills

These refer to skills of students in vocabulary expansion, especially to the students of College of Arts and Letters (CAL). These are useful to enhance one’s skills in word guessing and getting the correct definition of words afterwards.


A reference source in print or electronic form containing words usually alphabetically arranged along with information about their forms, pronunciations, functions, etymologies, meanings, and syntactical and idiomatic uses. College of Arts and Letters (CAL)


It is one of the colleges of the Polytechnic University of the Philippines. It is the result of the merging of the College of Arts and the College of Languages and Linguistics that was enacted in 2012. It is a college offered by the university, ensuring that students are well educated in areas that are deemed necessary to successfully become professionals in the field of Arts and Languages, by means of innovative curriculum and teaching improvements.

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Thesis- Vocabulary. (2016, Dec 11). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/thesis-vocabulary-essay

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