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The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

Oxford 3000

01 Looking at a keyword (1) VT2
02 Looking at a keyword (2) VT4
03 Keywords in definitions VT6
04 Talking about language VT8
05 Word formation VT10
06 Recording vocabulary VT12
07 Choosing the right word VT14
08 Phrasal Verbs VT16
09 Choosing the right collocation VT18
10 Correcting errors VT19
11 Vague language and polite formulae VT20
12 Test yourself on the Oxford 3000 VT21
13 Topic: Work VT22
14 Topic: Entertainment VT24
15 Topic: Science VT26
16 Topic: People and Emotions VT28
Answer key VT30

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d Introduction
Use the information and exercises in the Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer
The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

to help you:
make better use of your dictionary
build on vocabulary you already know
write more fluently
pass your exams

1 Looking at a keyword

Words marked with a key symbol in this dictionary are part of the
Oxford 3000, a list of the 3000 most important words for learners to
know. Look at page R99 for more details about this list.
Why are keywords worth special attention? You will probably know their basic
meanings, but in each entry there is a lot of additional information about the
word and that will help you to expand your vocabulary, building on what you
already know. Look at the entry for condition and find the following

1 Condition can be a noun or a _____________________ .

2 Look at the blue shortcuts ( STATE OF STH, etc.). Read these sentences and
decide which shortcut is likely to lead you to the right meaning.
a The patients condition was described as stable. _______________________________
b It was a condition of the contract that the goods would be delivered
within three months. _______________________________
c The charity shop will take books, as long as they are in good condition.
d A report on prison conditions criticized overcrowding in our jails.

3 Look at the MEDICAL meaning.

a What phrase in bold type is used to mean that someone is very seriously
ill and may die? ________________________________
b What phrase is used to mean physically unfit? _______________________________
c Where can you look at other words that describe types of illness?

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4 Look at the CIRCUMSTANCES meaning and find: d

a an adjective that can go with conditions to mean very bad.

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b three adjectives that can be used to describe weather conditions.
c an expression that refers to the weather on the roads.

5 Look at the RULE meaning and find the verbs that complete these sentences:
a The fund ____________________ strict conditions on the grants.
b The country will only be granted financial aid if it __________________ certain

6 What is the difference between the idioms on no condition and

under no condition? ________________________________

7 What is the difference between condition and state? The meanings are very
similar, but they tend to combine with different words. Fill the gaps in these
sentences with either condition or state, and then check your answers using
the SYNONYMS box.
a Though old, the book was in perfect __________________ .
b The building will never be sold in its present __________________ .
c In the story the stormy weather reflects the characters emotional
__________________ .
d The fence was in poor __________________ and in need of repair.
e In its current __________________ , the website is difficult to navigate it
needs redesigning.

8 Look at the verb condition. Which of these sentences are grammatically

acceptable? Mark them with a tick () or a cross () to show which are right
or wrong.
a The laboratory mice were conditioned for fearing the bell. __________
b People are conditioned to believe an expert. __________
c We are conditioned to failure. __________

9 What expression is used in psychology to describe reactions that are learned,

rather than natural? __________________________________________________________

10 If something conditions your hair, is it a good thing? ___________________

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d 2 Looking at keywords:
You win some, you lose some
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A Look carefully at the entry for win to find the following information.
1 Is the verb win regular or irregular in its past tenses? _______________________
2 What about the noun? Is it regular? ______________________
3 Does the pronunciation of won rhyme with gun or gone? __________________
4 Look at the constructions that are shown in the entry and decide which
of these sentences are grammatically correct. Mark them with a tick ()
or a cross ().
a He always wins in cards. _____________
b They won the seat from the Opposition. _____________
c We were winning at three goals to one at half time. _____________
d The chances of winning in the lottery are very low. _____________
5 What is another way of expressing the idiom you cant win them all?

6 Where is the main stress in the expression win something hands down?
7 Choose the right particle to complete the phrasal verbs in these sentences:
a The duke raised an army to try to win out/back/through the lands
lost in the earlier campaign.
b They tried to win us over/out/back to their way of thinking.
c It is not clear yet which technology will win over/out/round in the
next generation of televisions.


To answer the next two questions, you will need to follow up the cross-
references, marked with see also... or more at... at the end of each
section within the entry, to find the information in other entries:
8 a What expression describes a situation that is a good result for
everyone involved? _____________________________________
b What expression describes a situation that is bound to end badly?
c What expression describes an attractive facial expression?
d What expression means We could be about to produce something
successful? _____________________________________

9 What does the idiom win your spurs mean? __________________________________

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B Now look at the keyword lose. d

10 Find the expressions in bold type in the examples with lose that

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mean the following:
a fall over _________________________________
b be killed __________________________________
c no longer be interested _________________________________
d go bald _________________________________
e do something quickly _________________________________
f slow down _________________________________
g become unemployed _________________________________
h become too nervous to do something _________________________________

11 Finding opposites and synonyms.

What is the opposite of lose in this sentence? My watch loses five
minutes a day. _______________________
What is another word for lose in this sentence? I lost my glasses and
wasted an hour looking for them. _______________________
And in this one? He ran faster, dodging through the crowd in an
attempt to lose the two boys. _______________________

12 Looking at grammar patterns.

Fill in the gaps with the right prepositions:
a The reigning champion lost _______ her young opponent in the
b They lost _______ three goals _______ two.
c The party lost the election _______ 100 votes.

13 Look at the phrasal verbs with lose and decide which fits in each
sentence. Remember that you may have to change the form, tense,
etc. to make the sentence grammatically correct.
a When her daily life gets too much for her, she likes to
______________________ a book.
b Single parents have _______________________ as a result of the
change in tax law.
c Newspapers and television news are both _______________________
the Internet.

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d 3 Keywords in Definitions
The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

Many of the words in the Oxford 3000 list are those that are used to
describe other things. The definitions in the Oxford Advanced Learners
Dictionary are written using only words from the Oxford 3000, so a
thorough knowledge of these words means you will be able to understand
all the dictionary definitions easily and will also be able to use them to
describe what a word means if you dont know how to say it in English.

A Look at these keywords that describe the physical world:

substance material gas liquid mineral

Which of the words describes each of these?

bauxite ___________________
microfibre ___________________
cholesterol ___________________
methane ___________________
coolant ___________________

Now check your answers in the dictionary entries for these words.

B quality, state, process

More abstract words may be described in terms of the keywords quality,
state, or process. Which of these words would you put in each category?

lithography authenticity immunity oblivion

transparency desiccation matrimony osmosis mystique

quality state process

Now check your answers in the dictionary entries for these words.

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C machine, instrument, device, tool d

The differences in the way these words are used are often slight. The best

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way to understand how they are used is to notice the kinds of things they are
applied to. Here are four definitions. Can you match them to these words?
1 circuit breaker 2 loom 3 barometer 4 axe

a a machine for making cloth by twisting threads between other threads

which go in a different direction _________________________________
b an instrument for measuring air pressure to show when the weather
will change _________________________________
c a tool with a wooden handle and a heavy metal blade, used for
chopping wood, cutting down trees, etc. _________________________________
d a device that can automatically stop an electric current if it becomes
dangerous _________________________________

D size, shape, colour and texture

To describe something in more detail, you need to know a number of
adjectives that describe appearance. In the list of adjectives below, find pairs
of contrasting adjectives for each category:
smooth dark
pale rough
narrow tiny
huge broad

E Use the adjectives from the box below once only to complete these
definitions. Then check the entries in the dictionary.
fine hard light pleasant shiny smooth soft
soft soft soft sticky sweet thick white

1 fondant a __________ __________ __________ mixture made from

sugar and water
2 polystyrene a very __________ __________ plastic that is usually __________
3 satin a type of cloth with a __________ __________ surface
4 putty a __________ __________ substance that becomes __________
when it is dry
5 talcum powder a __________ __________ powder, usually with a __________

Now choose four of the following words and write your own definitions, using
adjectives from exercises D and E, before you compare them with the
dictionary entries: a nail file, Cellophane, peanut butter, jam, mercury, a
buttercup, canvas, tar.

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d 4 Talking about language

The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

A Check that you know the meaning of each of these nouns from the
Oxford 3000:
comment complaint criticism description
explanation praise suggestion warning

B Decide which of the nouns best describes the speech acts below:

I always get You spend too

1 Dont eat those 3
the boring jobs. 2 much on clothes.
berries, children!
The weather
5 seems to be
Well done, Jane! improving.
4 You danced brilliantly! Why dont
8 you phone them
The reason why tomorrow?
It was 7 I was late for work today was
6 deliciously sweet. that my car broke down.

C Write down the verb related to each of the nouns.

e.g. 1 complaint complain

D Look carefully at the structures that you can use with these verbs and use
them instead of said to report what each person said. In some cases, there
is more than one possibility.
e.g. 1 She complained that she always got the boring jobs.

E Read the following letter and then choose a word from the box to replace
each of the words in bold type without changing the meaning.
announced forecast highlight indicated
proposal remarks response

I am writing in reply to your correspondent J. Smith who supports the
suggestion to introduce road pricing in the town. Like many other owners of
small businesses I am extremely worried about yet another cost which will
be added to our expenses, as well as the effect it will have on our customers.
The council has signalled its willingness to listen to the concerns of local
people, but the Department of Transport has declared that the decision will
not be reversed. Mr Smiths comments only serve to emphasize the fact that
there is no agreement among the people. I predict a long-drawn out battle.

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F The words from the Oxford 3000 below are all words that you might use in

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a piece of academic writing. At their entries in the dictionaries, you can
find other words with a similar meaning in order to help you build your
vocabulary and improve your writing style. Look at the entries for the words
on the left, to find its synonym on the right.
1 maybe a convince
2 persuade b therefore
3 thus c instance
4 intend d perhaps
5 matter (n) e mean
6 example f problem
7 issue (n) g affair

G Find the related key noun for each of these key verbs:
1 agree ________________________ 6 imply ________________________
2 compare ________________________ 7 interpret ________________________
3 conclude ________________________ 8 propose ________________________
4 decide ________________________ 9 suggest ________________________
5 oppose ________________________ 10 solve ________________________

H Now use one of the nouns in each of these sentences.

1 It is difficult to draw __________________ when the two countries education
systems are so different.
2 Their __________________ was rejected by the committee.
3 If the two sides fail to reach an ___________________ , a strike is inevitable.
4 Our research led us to the ___________________ that younger children
respond to language learning more positively than teenagers.
5 The report blamed the minister, and by ___________________ , the whole
6 The challenge is to find a __________________ to the problem before it is
too late.
7 There is no need to make a __________________ yet. You can think about it
for a bit longer.
8 The wording of the regulations is open to ____________________ .
9 If anyone has any ___________________ , could they let me have them in
writing by Monday?
10 The plan is likely to meet with ___________________ in the local community.

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d 5 Word formation
The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

A Knowing a keyword also involves knowing the other words that can be
formed from it. These words are called derivatives and they appear in many
entries after the symbol j. Knowing related words will give you more
flexibility in how you express yourself. Use the derivatives in the keyword
entries for the words in bold type in the sentences below to rewrite these
sentences without changing the meaning:
e.g. The illustrations in the book were attractive.
The book was attractively illustrated
1 The similarity between the paintings was remarkable.
The paintings were _________________ similar.
2 A sore throat may be a sign of an infection caused by bacteria.
A sore throat may be a sign of a _________________ infection.
3 We must ensure that life-saving drugs are available.
We must ensure the _________________ of life-saving drugs.
4 Please let the hotel know in advance if you have any special
requirements regarding diet.
Please let the hotel know in advance if you have any special
_________________ requirements.
5 The results surprised the people doing the research.
The results surprised the _________________ .
6 There has been a steady improvement in quality over the last few years.
Quality has improved _________________ over the last few years.
7 Her teachers always complained that she was careless.
Her teachers always complained about her _________________ .
8 He hesitated for a moment, then he stepped forward.
After a moments _________________ , he stepped forward.
9 He was taken to hospital because they suspected that hed had a
heart attack.
He was taken to hospital with a _________________ heart attack.
10 For this task you may need help from a specialist.
For this task you may need _________________ help.

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B Fill the gaps in the chart with the other members WORD FAMILY
able adj. ( 6 unable )
of these word families. If you need help, look up ability n. ( 6 inability )
the WORD FAMILY boxes at the entries. disabled adj.

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disability n.

nouns verbs adjectives nouns verbs adjectives

able explain

conceive force


C In many types of exam, for example the Cambridge CAE and Proficiency in
English, you have to be able to fill a gap in a text with a word related to the
one suggested. Use the WORD FAMILY boxes at the entries for the word on the
right to help you choose the correct word in this passage:
The Pirah language spoken by the __________________ of a
remote part of the Brazilian rainforest has been puzzling
linguists for over 20 years. The Pirah language has no words able
for numbers, and when an American researcher, Daniel conceive
Everett, tried to teach the Pirah to count in Portuguese, they
seemed __________________ to understand the __________________ of
number. Some scientists believe that the Pirahs prove
__________________ to count is __________________ of the theory that perceive
language affects our __________________ of the world. Otherwise
it seems __________________ that the Pirah would fail to learn
despite months of ___________________ and practice. repeat

The Pirah language itself is unusual in a number of other

ways. It contains two very rare sounds, and the ________________ pronounce
of several sounds depends on the speakers sex.

Although the __________________ of the rainforest may eventually destroy

__________________ tribes such as the Pirah to adapt to modern force
civilization, at present their culture remains remarkably
resistant to change.

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d 6 Recording Vocabulary
The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

Its very important to keep your own vocabulary records and note down more
than just the translation. When choosing which words to record, you need to
remember that the Oxford 3000 are the most important to learn first, before
you build on them and expand your vocabulary. You probably dont want to
note all the information that is in the dictionary (you can always look it up
again!), but you need to make sure that you have enough to be able to
understand the word if you meet it again, and to be able to use it yourself.
When you make your own vocabulary records, think about what information
you need to know about each word. Some points might be:
the spelling
the part of speech (whether its a noun, verb, etc.)
the meaning
the grammatical information you need to use it
important words it combines with
the context in which you came across it.
How do you record it?
Whether you use a vocabulary notebook, index cards, or a computer
database, you need to decide on the most useful arrangement of words in
your records. It is probably more useful to have your records organized by
some system that makes sense when you are learning and revising the words,
for example, by topic, so that you learn related words at the same time.
When you are designing how to keep your records, here are some points to
think about.
j you may want to test yourself using them
Write the English word on one side of a card, or on one half of the paper,
and the definition or translation on the other so that you can cover them up
and then check. If you use a computer list, make sure you can hide one or
other of the columns
j you may want to revise a set of related words
Keep your vocabulary records in topic groups so that you have a complete
set to hand if you need to write an essay on a particular subject, or so that
you have a ready-made chunk of language to learn.
j you need to be able to find the word again
Within your topic groups, it may be helpful to keep items in alphabetical
order, but, remember, this helps you to cheat when you test yourself if you
have the English words in alphabetical order!
j you need to be able to add more information to it
Leave enough room to be able to add new meanings, useful collocations or
examples to the lists or cards as you discover more about the words.

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impro veme n t

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can be uncountable or countable
getting better
significant/substantial/dramatic ~
slight/steady ~
(from newspaper article: they went on strike
for an improvement in working conditions)

sp i n
- turn round (wit
h or without an ob
- present inform ject)
ation in a particul
(with object) ar way
(from Internet New
s stories can be spun

as h am e d
not used before a noun
~ of, that, to be, to do
d of.
Its nothing to be ashame
barrassed for feeling
NB ashamed for guilt; em
mistake, etc.
silly, when youve made a
med of what he had done
(from novel: He was asha

bi t te r l y
- showing sadness or anger
weep, complain ~
bitterly opposed
- extremely
bitterly disappointed, ashamed
bitterly cold

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d 7 Choosing the right word

The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

A Choosing between similar words. In exams such as the Cambridge Proficiency

and CAE exams, you have to learn to choose between words with a similar
meaning. To help you choose the most appropriate word for your context, the
dictionary has SYNONYMS notes at many keyword entries. Here you can find
explanations of words that are very close in meaning. Use the synonyms
boxes at the entries in bold type to help you to choose the most suitable
words to fill the gaps in the following sentences:

1 He was wearing a ludicrous__________________ beard in an attempt to

__________________ his identity. (artificial, hide)

2 Firefighters wear protective __________________ with__________________ stripes.

(clothes, bright)

3 When he removed the __________________ from the wine bottle, the room
was filled with a __________________ vinegar smell. (lid, bitter)

4 Do not water plants in the middle of the day or the sun will
__________________ the leaves and they will quickly__________________ brown.
(burn, become)

5 It is important to keep track of your __________________ affairs, including

checking your credit card __________________ carefully for charges you dont
recognize. (economic, bill)

6 The government is considering new __________________s on __________________s

for junk food on television. (limit, ad)

7 I __________________ their boat as soon as it came into __________________ .

(identify, sight)

8 She has suffered from back __________________ ever since she __________________
her spine in a riding accident. (illness, injure)

9 There was a temporary shutdown at the nuclear power __________________

after a pipe in its cooling system __________________ . (factory, explode)

10 The amphitheatre will be the __________________ for an open-air concert of

__________________ music. (place, classic)

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B Exam practice d
In exams such as the TOEIC, one of the tasks asks you to choose one out of

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a number of similar words to fit the context. Look at this letter and try to
decide which of the words is the most suitable in each case.

The Manager
Roses Restaurant
Bingley Lane

Dear Sir

I am writing to complain about the poor service that we received in your

restaurant yesterday lunchtime. My colleague and I were hoping to be served
_______________ as we had a meeting to attend in the afternoon. However, the
1 (A) fast
(B) quickly
(C) quick
waiter seemed quite _________________ in his work and _______________ ignored
2 (A) uninterested 3 (A) firstly
(B) disinterested (B) first of all
(C) uninteresting (C) at first
us for a full fifteen minutes. When we had finally finished our meal, we were
_______________ billed for desserts that we had not ordered.
4 (A) wrong
(B) wrongly
(C) wrongfully
My friend wondered ________________ whether anyone ever left a tip when the
5 (A) loud
(B) loudly
(C) aloud
service was so poor. The waiter, hearing this, made a derogatory comment
about her. His ________________ words were: Not everyone is as mean as you.
6 (A) actual
(B) current
(C) present
We were so shocked that we left quickly, but I feel that you should follow
up this lapse of service and look forward to receiving your apology.

Yours faithfully

Janette Smith

Now look at the keyword entries in the dictionary and read through the
Which Word? notes that explain the differences. Did you make the right

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d 8 Phrasal Verbs
The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

A Many of the keywords combine with particles (= prepositions or adverbs such
as up, down, etc.) to make common phrasal verbs. It is often difficult to guess
the meaning of a phrasal verb from the meaning of the ordinary verb and of
the particle. Some are easier to work out than others, for example warm up
and cool down might seem quite logical, but others such as act up are harder
to guess.
Look at these verbs and decide whether they can be combined with up or
down (or both) to make a phrasal verb. Write them in the correct part of
the diagram.
water use add turn write wave cover
calm draw dress join wake wear cut

up down

B Now choose one of the phrasal verbs from the diagram to replace the bold
expressions in each of the sentences. You may need to change the form to
make it fit the sentence.
1 If you put too much ice in, itll taste diluted.
2 Where do you record new vocabulary?
3 Emergency supplies will be exhausted by the end of the week.
4 Calculate the total marks in each column.
5 The manager tried to pacify the customers.
6 When war broke out, he enlisted straight away.
7 Her application was rejected because she didnt have enough experience.
8 Do we have to wear formal clothes for dinner?
9 Could you make a list of possible candidates?
10 How many trees were felled to make room for the new road?

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C The keyword set not only has a variety of different meanings, it also d
combines with a whole range of particles to make phrasal verbs. Try this
quiz and then check the meanings of the phrasal verbs in the entry.

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1 If you set off an alarm, do you
a) install it b) start it ringing c) stop it ringing?
2 What could you set aside?
a) money b) your feelings c) both
3 If you set sth apart, do you
a) throw it away b) keep it for a special purpose c) neither?
4 If something is well set out, is it
a) expensively furnished b) clearly arranged c) newly washed?
5 If somebody sets their dog on you, do they
a) want you to look after it b) want it to attack you c) neither?
6 What could you set up?
a) a business b) a stereo system c) both
7 If something sets you back, does it
a) help you b) hinder you c) save you time?
8 If you set about something, do you
a) start it b) continue it c) finish it?

D Choose a suitable verb and particle or particles to fill the gaps in this report.
Remember that you will need to put the verb into the correct tense.

after away
break catch
into of off out
get get make
out up with
put run

Thieves _____________ _____________ a warehouse last weekend and _____________

_____________ _____________ several thousand pounds worth of goods. Security
guards _____________ _____________ them, but the thieves were able to_____________
_____________ in a stolen van. Police immediately _____________ _____________ a
description of the van and customs officers _____________ _____________
_____________ the men when they tried to_____________ _____________ _____________
the country with the stolen goods by boarding a ferry on the south coast.

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d 9 Choosing the right collocation

The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

Read Study page R48 on collocation the way words often appear together.
Knowing important combinations is important for speaking and writing
natural-sounding English. It is also something that is tested in exams such as
the CAE, where, in Paper 3, you have to choose the best word for a context.
The choice you make may depend on knowing the right collocation. Using
information from the Oxford 3000 keywords can help you prepare for this.

A In the dictionary entries, you will find common collocations printed in bold
italic type within example sentences. Use this information about the words
in bold type in the sentences below to help you to do the following exercise:
1 Find three adjectives that are often used with accommodation.
2 Write down four verbs that you can use with advice. ________________________
3 Is it possible to say answer an advertisement? ______________
4 Find three adjectives that are often used with anxiety. _____________________
5 Which of the following can you launch:
a) an inquiry b) an invasion c) a missile?

B Exam practice choose the right adverb for these sentences:

1 The fracture was clearly/obviously visible on the X-ray. ______________________
2 She is a decidedly/highly respected researcher in this field. ________________
3 I harshly/bitterly regretted having invited them. __________________
4 The question has been hotly/warmly debated in schools and colleges.
5 The decision was hotly/warmly welcomed by the unions. __________________

C Match these nouns and verbs up:

reach defeat
admit access
gain action
take an agreement
meet a target
Now check your answers using the examples in the keyword entries. You will
find the correct expressions in bold italic type.

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10 Correcting errors d

The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

You can improve the standard of your writing by training yourself to look for
certain types of error and using the dictionary to correct them. There are also
certain tasks in English exams such as CAE and TOEIC where you are asked to
identify errors. You can prepare yourself by using the information in the
dictionary when you practise.
A There are 7 spelling mistakes in this text. They are all important words from
the Oxford 3000 list. Find the errors and check the spellings in the dictionary.

The latest developpement in the replacement of 1 _______________________

books by electronic media has come with the first 2 _______________________
novel to be availible only as a digital download. 3 _______________________
Some people worry that this will discourage 4 _______________________
younger generations from reading printed books, 5 _______________________
but the author hopes that it will have the oposite 6 _______________________
affect, and encourage people to consume 7 _______________________
litterature in a new form. So does this 8 _______________________
signall the death of the printed book as we 9 _______________________
know it? Certainly, it would seem to be another 10 _______________________
nail in its coffin. But storytelling existed before 11 _______________________
the printed word, and may yet survive it. 12 _______________________

B In the dictionary entries, you will see how to use the word in a sentence
what construction is needed, the correct preposition to use, and so on. Which
is the correct construction here? Do you need an ing form or an infinitive?
If you are not sure, check the dictionary entries for the verbs in bold type.
1 He denied taking/to take the money. ________________________
2 Did she promise being/to be here? ________________________
3 I enjoy reading/to read science fiction. ________________________
4 Practise saying/to say the words aloud. ________________________
5 They pretended not to notice/noticing. ________________________

C Look at the sentences below and decide whether the underlined parts are
correct or not. Then check the keyword entries for the bold word in each
phrase to see whether you were right.
1 She was absent from school for three weeks.
2 Will my passport be accepted for proof of my identity?
3 Have you got access at a computer?
4 He was accused to lie.
5 She was alarmed at the sight of so many people.

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d 11 Vague Language and polite formulae

The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

In studying language, we spend a lot of time trying to make what we say and write
as clear and precise as possible. However, sometimes, we dont have the knowledge
or information to be more precise, or we may feel that in an informal situation,
we dont want to sound stiff and formal; at other times a vague expression
seems more suitable because it can appear more polite. This is particularly
common in English, so it is something that a learner needs to be aware of.

A Read the following passage from an email:

If you go to the market, theres masses of good stuff that you can buy
to take home for presents and souvenirs. I mean, for 5 or so, you can
get pretty pottery and glassware. You know, vases and things like that.

Find a phrase in the passage

1 that you use when you are thinking what to say next. _________________________
2 that you use when you are explaining what you have just said.
3 that means approximately. _________________________
4 that means and other similar items. _________________________
5 that refers to a fairly large number. _________________________
6 that means items. _________________________

B Look at these expressions and check the entries if youre not sure of the
masses a bit a couple a thousand and one a touch

Now choose the right expressions to fill the gaps in these sentences:
1 Your talk was very interesting. There are just __________________ of points
Id like to raise.
2 It will mean __________________ more work for you, but not very much.
3 You dont look too well. Perhaps youve got __________________ of sunstroke.
4 Can I get back to you this afternoon? Ive got __________________ things to
do before the 11 oclock meeting.
5 Dont rush weve got __________________ of time.

C Look at these keyword entries and find a polite way

of asking for help
of inviting someone to a party wonder
of asking a personal question possibly
of getting somebody to explain something
mind (verb)
and two ways to get the window opened.

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12 Test yourself on the Oxford 3000 d

The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

What is the best way to test your knowledge of the core vocabulary of English?
You cant test yourself on all 3000 Oxford keywords at once, so you will need
to break down your list into manageable chunks.
Look back at the page on recording vocabulary. If you have already organized
your core vocabulary into a form that is easy for learning, you will be able to
use it for revision and to test yourself.
If you have grouped your vocabulary into topic lists, you will be able to use
these as your test lists. If you havent yet done this, look at the ideas for the
topic work on pages VT22 to VT23 and make a list of or a set of cards for the
words that are practised in those activities.
Another way to create short lists of vocabulary to learn at each revision
session is to make your own test selection using the complete list of the
Oxford 3000 words at the back of the dictionary. For example, you could
choose two topics, such as Health and Business and Finance. Write these
headings on a piece of paper. Open the dictionary at the list of the Oxford
3000 words and choose a couple of pages to scan. Quickly read down the list
of words and note under the headings any words that you think are related
to the topic. If you are not sure, write them down with a question mark to
check later.
If you start with the first two pages of the list, you might select the following:

account amount budget
acquire annual business
advertise balance businessman
adverti sement bank businesswoman
agency bargain buy
agent bill buyer

accident baby be born
age bacteria brain
ambulance bandage break
anxiety bed broken
arm blind cancer
attack blood cast

Now fold your page in half and write the translations or definitions of the
words on the other half of the page so that you can hide the English words
when you want to test yourself. Meanwhile add to your collection by looking
at more pages from the list, and by starting new topic lists.

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d 13 Topic: Work
The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

A Getting a job
Look at the words in the box, which are all to do with getting a job. Then
decide which best fill the gaps in the paragraph below.
application apply interview appoint
hire employee employer

The MadWorks company is one of Rustowns biggest _____________s, with

1200 _____________ s, but because it is expanding, it needs to _____________
30 new people. It advertises the posts and hundreds of people
_____________ for them. The managers look at the _____________s and choose
the best to invite for _____________ . After that they decide which of the
applicants to _____________ .

B Types of work
Match a word from the box with one of the definitions below:
engineering factory manufacturing
profession service sector

a the business or industry of producing goods in large quantities in

factories, etc. _______________________

b the activity of applying scientific knowledge to the design, building

and control of machines, roads, bridges, electrical equipment, etc.
c a system that provides sth that the public needs, organized by the
government or a private company. _______________________
d a building or group of buildings where goods are made.
e a type of job that needs special training or skill, especially one that
needs a high level of education. _______________________
f a part of an area of activity, especially of a countrys economy.

Now check your answers in the entries for the keywords.

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C Structures at work d
1 2 3 4 5

The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

6 7

6 a person who has been chosen to speak or vote for sb else or on
behalf of a group
1 a way of doing sth, especially the usual or correct way.
2 a person who helps or supports sb, usually in their job.
3 an organization of workers, usually in a particular industry, that exists
to protect their interests, improve conditions of work, etc.
4 to control or be in charge of a business, a team, an organization, etc.
5 lasting for a long time or for all time in the future.
7 to make things to be sold, especially in large quantities.

D Money
wage benefit salary pension pay

Look at these words to do with money and work and decide which word
best completes each phrase:
a weekly ________________________
an annual ________________________
low rates of ________________________
unemployment ________________________
a retirement ________________________

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d 14 Topic: Entertainment
The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

Using one word as a starting point, it is possible to build up a web of

words that you can use as a record of related topic vocabulary. Starting
from the keyword theatre, you can fill this mind map (=diagram) with
over 20 words to do with the world of entertainment, simply by using the
vocabulary shown in the definitions and examples, and by following up
the cross-references and going to the entries highlighted in blue on the
map. There are clues below to help you to find your way and the number
of letters in each answer is given in brackets.

1 What you see at a theatre (4)

2 The people involved in a 1 (5)
3-4 Verbs connected with a 1 (7), (3, 2)
5 The roots of theatre are to be found in these
medieval entertainments (7, 5)
6 A type of religious play that is still performed (7, 4)
7-8 You can also watch or listen to a 1 on these (10), (5)
9 In American English, theater can also refer to this (6)
10 What you see in a 9 (BrE 4), (NAmE 5)
11-14 Types of 10 (6), (11), (7), (6)
15-18 People who work in 10 (4), (6), (8), (8)
19-21 Verbs to do with 10 (5), (4), (5)
22 An event where a series of performances,
such as 10, are shown (8)
23-24 Other types of 22 (4, 8), (4, 8)

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The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

7 2


theatre 5


9 10 12






19 18
22 20




Now choose another subject area, for example sport, and build your own
mind map starting from the keyword sport and following up all the
references to other entries, illustrations, special pages and notes.

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d 15 Topic: Science
The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

In exams such as IELTS, you will often need to talk about scientific processes
and use measurements, statistics and numbers to analyse trends and describe
experiments in academic writing. The Oxford 3000 entries can help you
prepare for such exams or writing tasks.

1 Weights and measures

These abbreviations are a mixture of metric and non-metric measures. Can
you work out what they stand for and put the full forms of the words in the
right place on the chart?

kg ft st gal lb l pt yd mg m ml cm

metric ______________________ ______________________

imperial ______________________ ______________________

metric ______________________ ______________________

imperial ______________________ ______________________

metric ______________________ ______________________

imperial ______________________ ______________________

2 True or false?
Are you sure of the meanings of these terms? Try this quiz and then check
your answers in the entries for the keywords in bold type.
True False
a A mile is longer than a kilometre. ________ ________
b A kilogram is slightly less than two pounds. ________ ________
c A tonne equals 1 000 kilos. ________ ________
d An American gallon is bigger than a British one. ________ ________
e There are three inches in a yard. ________ ________
f A pint is around half a litre. ________ ________

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3 Talking science d
a What are the related nouns to these adjectives?

The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

long ________ high ________ thick ________ wide ________ deep ________
b Which of these words can be verbs as well as nouns?
amount analysis design device double experiment
monitor program proportion rate result switch

c Write down three verbs that you can use with the noun experiment.
d Another word for vertical is perpendicular. True or false? _______________
e Write down the opposites of these words: plus, approximate, minimum.

4 How much do you know about science and maths? Can you answer these
basic questions?
a Name three types of triangle.
b An electrical charge can be positive or negative true or false?
c Can a cell exist on its own?
d An element is made up of different types of atoms true or false?
e What is the formula for carbon monoxide?
Now check your answers using the entries for the keywords in bold type.
If you found this easy, you should look at the specialist list of scientific
keywords following the Oxford 3000 list in your dictionary.

5 Talking about the weather

gases atmosphere temperatures pressure tropical
speed dissolved absorb climate environmental

We all talk about the weather, but do we realize the effect that climate
change is having on a topic of everyday conversation? Use the keywords in
the box to complete the paragraph below.

Global warming is caused principally by the increase of greenhouse

a ______________ in the b______________ . The result is c______________ change of
which higher d______________ are only one symptom. Another is more
extreme weather, such as hurricanes, which begin as low- e______________
areas over the f______________ oceans but gather g ______________ until they
hit land with a huge destructive force. h______________ pollutants such as
nitric acid and sulphuric acid are easily i ______________ in water and result
in acid rain. The destruction of the rainforests is critical because trees
have the ability to j ______________ carbon dioxide.

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d 16 Topic: People and Emotions

The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

A Read the following passage and decide which form of the words in
bold type is correct in the context:

Since the 1993 film Grumpy Old Men, we seem to have developed
an obsession with grumpiness. TV series and stage shows have
proliferated to celebrate the phenomenon. Are we all becoming
less 1 satisfaction/ satisfy/satisfied with life, or is it just that we
have more opportunities to 2 bore/boring/bored people with our
rants about things that 3 irritate/irritated/irritating us? In the
past, people were restricted to 4 annoy/annoying/annoyed other
people at the bus stop or in the staff canteen, but now the Web
has opened up an international forum for their 5 embarrass/
embarrassing/embarrassed comments. Am I alone in finding the
grumpy blogger syndrome a 6 worry/worrying/worried
development? There is an 7 amaze/amazing/amazed number of
people out there who are inviting us to share their 8 depressed/
depressing/depressingly negative view of the world. Perhaps Im
ignoring hundreds of contributions that are 9 amuse/amusing/
amused and life-affirming? Or maybe Im in acute danger of
becoming a grumpy old man myself for complaining about it?
Now that is 10 frighten/frightening/frightened!

B Look at this set of adjectives describing different personality traits. Put

them into two groups, according to whether you think the word describes
a good or a bad personality trait.

aggressive kind confident honest bad-tempered

boring brave shy emotional fair

Good Bad

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C Perhaps it depends how you look at things! Read these situations and decide d
which judgement you agree with.
1 Heather asked some boys who lived locally to help her clear out her

The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

garage. Two boys worked very hard to get the place tidy and clean and
she gave them each some money. Another boy came about an hour
before the end of the day and did much less work, but she gave him
the same amount.
a I think she was being kind. All the boys needed the money equally.
b Heather was not being fair. The other boys worked much harder for
the same money. She was too soft on the boy who came later.
2 Chris jumped into the lake when the little girl fell in even though he
wasnt a very strong swimmer himself. Fortunately he was able to rescue
her because someone threw them a rope.
a I think it took a lot of courage for Chris to jump in when he knew
he couldnt swim very well.
b It was a crazy idea to jump into the lake he could have drowned,
too, and maybe put more people in danger.
3 In the middle of the match, after the umpire decided her serve went
out, the French player lost her temper and started shouting at the
umpire and the line judges. She was penalized one point.
a Its only natural for a player to be angry when they think a decision
is unfair. I like it when players show their feelings. It proves they are
human. Todays players have to be aggressive or they would never
have the will to win.
b It was right that she was penalized. Its important for players to have
discipline and self-control and respect the rules of the game and the
officials. Emotional outbursts like that do not set a good example for
younger players coming into the game.

D Now take a closer look at the keywords highlighted in bold type in the
exercise. Use the information in the entries to decide whether the following
sentences are true or false:
a The opposite of kind is inkind. __________
b Another word for courage is bravery. __________
c In British English you could use mad instead of crazy in
sentence 2b. __________
d Irate is a less strong word than angry. __________
e If you offend someone, you can say you have hurt their feelings. __________
f The quality of being aggressive is aggressiveness. __________
g In sentence 3b, you could also say self-discipline. __________
h Emotional always has negative connotations. __________

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d KEY to Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

1 Looking at a keyword 8 a win-win E thick, sweet, soft

1 verb b no-win light soft, white
c winning smooth, shiny
2 a MEDICAL d We could be onto a soft, sticky, hard
b RULE winner fine, soft, pleasant
d CIRCUMSTANCES 9 to achieve fame or
success 4 Talking about language
3 a critical condition B/C
b out of condition B
1 complaint complain
c note at disease 11 a lose your balance
2 warning warn
b lose your life
4 a appalling 3 criticism criticize
c lose interest
b freezing/icy/humid 4 praise praise
d lose your hair
c treacherous driving 5 comment comment
e lose no time (in
conditions 6 description describe
doing sth)
7 explanation explain
5 a imposes f lose speed
8 suggestion suggest
b meets g lose your job
h lose your nerve D
6 under no condition is 1 She complained that she
also possible in 12 gains
always got the boring jobs.
US English mislaid
2 She warned the children
7 a condition not to eat the berries.
b state 13 a to 3 She criticized her/him for
c state b by, to spending too much on
d condition c by clothes.
e state 4 She praised Jane for
14 lose herself in
dancing brilliantly.
8 a  lost out
5 She commented that the
b  losing out to
weather seemed to be
c  improving.
3 Keywords in Definitions 6 She described it/the food
9 conditioned reflexes
A mineral as deliciously sweet.
10 yes material 7 She explained that she
substance was late for work because
2 Looking at keywords: gas her car had broken down.
You win some, you lose liquid 8 She suggested that s/he
some should phone them
B quality: transparency, tomorrow.
authenticity, mystique
1 irregular E reply response
2 yes state: immunity, suggestion proposal
3 gun matrimony, oblivion signalled indicated
4 a  process: lithography, declared announced
b desiccation, osmosis comments remarks
c  C a loom emphasize highlight
d b barometer predict forecast
5 you win some, you lose c axe F 1 d
some d circuit breaker 2 a
D smooth rough 3 b
6 win (sth) hands down
pale dark 4 e
7 a back huge tiny 5 g
b over narrow broad 6 c
c out 7 f

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G agree agreement C inhabitants C 1 b

compare comparison unable 2 c

The Oxford 3000 Vocabulary Trainer

conclude conclusion concept 3 b
decide decision inability 4 b
oppose opposition proof 5 b
imply implication perception 6 c
interpret interpretation inexplicable 7 b
propose proposition repetition 8 a
suggest suggestion pronunciation
D 1 broke into
solve solution destruction
2 made off with
H 1 comparisons 3 ran after
2 proposition 4 get away
3 agreement 7 Choosing the right word 5 put out
4 conclusion A 1 false, conceal 6 caught up with
5 implication 2 clothing, fluorescent 7 get out of
6 solution 3 cork, sour
7 decision 4 scorch, go/turn 9 Choosing the right
8 interpretation 5 financial, statement(s) collocation
9 suggestions 6 restrictions,
A 1 rented/temporary/
10 opposition commercials/adverts/
advertisements furnished
2 give/follow/seek/take
5 Word formation 7 recognized, view
3 yes
8 trouble, hurt
A 1 remarkably 4 acute/intense/deep
9 plant, burst/ruptured
2 bacterial 5 an inquiry/
10 venue, classical
3 availability an invasion/a missile
4 dietary B 1 (B)
researchers B 1 clearly
5 2 (A)
steadily 2 highly
6 3 (C)
carelessness 3 bitterly
7 4 (B)
hesitation 4 hotly
8 5 (C)
suspected 5 warmly
9 6 (A)
10 specialist C reach an agreement
B ability able 8 Phrasal Verbs admit defeat
inability unable A up: use, add, cover, draw, gain access
disability disabled join, wake take action
both: turn, write, dress, cut meet a target
concept conceivable
conception inconceivable down: water, wave, calm,
wear 10 Correcting errors
A 1 development
destroyer destructive B 1 watered down
2 0
destruction indestructable 2 write down
3 available
explanation explanatory 3 used up
4 0
explicable 4 add up
5 0
inexplicable 5 calm down
6 opposite
6 joined up
force forceful 7 effect
7 turned down
enforce forced 8 literature
8 dress up
unforced 9 signal
9 draw up
forcible 11 its
10 cut down
proof prove 12 0
disprove B 1 taking
proven 2 to be
unproven 3 reading
4 saying
5 to notice

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