English: skills for learning
English: skills for learning

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English: skills for learning

3.3 Word classes

Dictionaries also define words in terms of the class to which they belong. Words that belong to the same class behave in the same way within sentences.

Knowing whether a word is a noun, a verb, an adjective or some other type of word will help you to use it correctly. In particular, it helps university students to understand their tutors’ corrections and explanations.

The table below presents the word classes.

Described image
Figure 4 Word classes

You can also download [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)]   a version of the above diagram.

Activity 8

Allow approximately 10 minutes

The table below defines each word class but it is incomplete. Using the information contained in the mind-map, fill the empty boxes. One has already been filled as an example. You can download a version of the table.

Table 1

Definition Word class Examples
Words that describe what happens, an action or something someone does, or a state of being. verbs

Dictionaries are useful

The student wrote an essay.

It rained all day.

Words that identify: people, things, states, qualities, ideas.

Dictionaries are useful.

The student wrote an essay.

Tiredness can kill.

Words that give information about a noun.

An important point.

A good idea.

Words used to describe an adjective, a verb or an adverb; for example they may explain how, when and where and how action takes place. Private and public spaces differ greatly.
Words that take the place of a noun that has already been mentioned or is known. Sam walked all day. In the evening, she was very tired.
Words that express emotion, such as joy or anger. Wow! I can’t believe it!
Words that are used to connect other words and sentences. I have a dog and a cat.
Words that indicate whether the noun contained in a sentence is general or specific.

I bought a (general) new computer.

This (specific) car is quite powerful.

Answer

Table 2

Definition Word class Examples
Words that describe what happens, an action or something someone does, or a state of being verbs

Dictionaries are useful

The student wrote an essay.

It rained all day.

Words that identify: people, things, states, qualities, ideas. nouns

Dictionaries are useful.

The student wrote an essay.

Tiredness can kill.

Words that give information about a noun. adjectives

An important point.

A good idea.

Words used to describe an adjective, a verb or an adverb; for example it may explain how, when and where and how action takes place. adverbs Private and public spaces differ greatly.
Words that take the place of a noun that has already been mentioned or is known. pronouns Sam walked all day. In the evening, she was very tired.
Words that express emotion, such as joy or anger. exclamations Wow! I can’t believe it!
Words that are used to connect other words and sentences. conjunctions I have a dog and a cat.
Words that indicate whether the noun contained in a sentence is general or specific. determiners

I bought a (general) new computer.

This (specific) car is quite powerful.

SWE_1

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