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Vocabulary Workshop

Vocabulary Workshop

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Published by: ghazalrazvan on May 02, 2010
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Preparation for an American University Program
Vocabulary Workshop
Vocabulary: Roots, Prefixes and Suffixes
 Most words used in the English language today were not originally English. These words wereborrowed (taken) from other languages. The majority of English words have Latin or Greek origins. When taking the TOEFL* (Test of English as a Foreign Language), it is helpful to knowsome of these origins or "roots" of English vocabulary. It may be possible to guess the meaningof an unknown word when one knows the meaning of its root. Knowing prefixes and suffixescan also assist in the process.An English word can consist of three parts: the root,a prefix and a suffix.The root is the part of  the word that contains the basic meaning (definition) of the word. The root is the base element of the word. A prefix is a word element that is placed in front of a root. A prefix changes the word'smeaning or makes a new word. A suffix is a word element that is placed after the root. The suffixchanges the word's meaning as well as its function (use). Prefixes and suffixes are called
 because they are attached to a root.Students can explore this site by using the mouse and clicking on any blue underlined item. Theprimary areas are: roots, prefixes, suffixes, and vocabulary.Old English and vocabulary exercises will be added and updated.
root (act): means "do" or "perform"act (root): "do"definition:verb; to perform, behavenoun; a performance, a thing done
sentence: You
like a child.
 Prefix (re-): means "back" or "again"react (prefix + root): "do back"definition:verb; to act in response to something,to act in opposition to somethingsentence: How will she
when she hears the news?
Suffix (-ion): indicates that the word has become a nounreaction (prefix + root + suffix): something done back definition:noun; a response to something,an opposing actionsentence: Her
to the news was childish.You can learn more about English vocabulary by exploring this website. There are lists of vocabulary, roots, prefixes,and suffixes. Exercises and links to other ESL sites will be added as well as a list of words with Old English roots.The following resources were used in creating this website.
The Oxford English Dictionary.
The ultimate source for English vocabulary and itsetymology (history).
 Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, tenth edition.
Springfield, MA:MerriamWebster, 1993. A complete dictionary containing definitions as well as brief etymologies.
Oxford American Dictionary, Heald Colleges Edition.
New York: Avon Books, 1986. Ahelpful pocket dictionary. Does not contain etymologies.
The American College Dictionary.
New York: Random House, 1962.
 Dictionary of Word Origins
by John Ayto. New York: Arcade Publishing, 1990. Containsetymologies of approximately 8,000 words.
Vocabulary for College and Beyond 
by Rhonda Holt Atkinson and Febbie GuiceLongman. New York: West Publishing Company, 1990. A workbook for vocabularydevelopment.

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