Writing Tools for the Self-directed Learner Part. 1

In this four part series, I’m going to introduce the four tools that I have been using in my EFL academic writing courses. The first of the four deals with vocabulary use is Vocabprofile English.

Vocabprofile English Interface

Vocabprofile English Interface

It’s great for generating a profile of words used in an essay. My students are expected to generate a certain percentage of words from the Academic Word List (AWL), so this tool can quickly inform them how well their essay achieved that. The following how-to video demonstrates how to cut-paste an essay and then generate a profile of the writing. Admittedly, the Vocabprofile’s choice of colours for the site is a little garish but once you become accustomed to the colour scheme you can quickly spot the information needed. Personally speaking, looking for yellow (AWL words) on a black background is a lot easier to distinguish than on a white one.
Scrolling through the results becomes quite self-evident if you have a basic understanding of world lists and how vocabulary is divided into families, tokens, types, etc. The one thing Vocabprofile does not do is spot grammar mistakes nor offer suggestions on improving the text – that will be the subject of next week’s post.

Until then, give vocabprofile a try and let us know what you think.

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