Jun 15, 2016

Collocations 2: Finding, recording and learning collocations

9 cards
, 33 answers
    » Get into the habit of making a note of any good collocations you come across in any English text you read.

    » When you look up a new word in any learner’s dictionary make a point of noting it down in several different collocations.

    » The best way to record a collocation is in a phrase or a sentence showing how it is used.

    » Learning collocations is not so different from learning any vocabulary item: regularly revise what you want to learn; practise in contexts that are meaningful for you personally; learn collocations in groups to help you fix them in your memory.

  • Find 11 collocations in this text.
    • My friend Beth is desperately worried about her son at the moment. He wants to enroll on a course of some sort but just can’t make a decision about what to study. I gave Beth a ring and we had a log chat about it last night. She said he’d like to study for a degree but is afraid he won’t meet the requirements for university entry. Beth thinks he should do a course in Management because he’d like to set up his own business in the future. I agreed that that would be a wise choice.

      Answers
      All of these phrases are strong collocations:
      1. desperately worried
      2. enroll on a course
      3. make a decision
      4. gave a ring
      5. had a long chat
      6. study for a degree
      7. meet the requirements
      8. university entry
      9. do a course
      10. set up his own business
      11. a wise choice

    • Match the beginning of each sentence with its ending.
      • 1. She’s having
        • her duty.
        • a party.
        • good progress.
        • an exam.
        • a lecture.

      • 2. She’s taking
        • good progress.
        • an exam.
        • a lecture.
        • her duty.
        • a party.

      • 3. She’s giving
        • a lecture.
        • a party.
        • an exam.
        • her duty.
        • good progress.

      • 4. She’s making
        • a party.
        • an exam.
        • good progress.
        • a lecture.
        • her duty.

      • 5. She’s doing
        • her duty.
        • good progress.
        • a lecture.
        • an exam.
        • a party.

    • Choose the right collocations in this text. Use a dictionary to help you if necessary.
      • In the morning I (made, did) some work in the garden, then I (spent, had) a rest for about an hour before going out to (do, have) some shopping in town. It was my sister’s birthday and I wanted to (do, make) a special effort to cook a nice meal for her. I (took, gave) a look at a new Thai cookery book in the bookshop and decided to buy it. It has some (totally, extremely) easy recipes and I managed to (make, do) a good impression with my very first Thai meal. I think my sister (utterly, really) enjoyed her birthday.

      • Look at this entry for the verb lead in the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary. What collocations could you learn from this entry?

        • Clue
          • lead the expedition      • lead the discussion      • leading the inquiry

        • Follow up
          • Use a dictionary to find three or four other good collocations for each of these words:
            desperately      pain      wise      run

            Tip
            Here are some possible good collocations for the words suggested. You may choose to record them in different ways, of course. The important thing is that they are recorded as collocations in a phrase or sentence that will help you to understand their meaning and to remember them.

            desperately ill
            desperately busy desperately keen
            desperately in love with

            an acute pain
            a sudden pain
            to relieve the pain
            to put up with pain

            a wise decision
            to be older and wiser
            to be wise after the event
            a wise guy (informal)

            to run a business
            to run smoothly
            buses run regularly
            to run for political office

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