I am currently adding upper-intermediate and advanced vocabulary flashcards in Anki, and I'm using a lot of sources for that, like

  • books ("English Vocabulary in Use Upper-Intermediate/Advanced", anthologies in English, but with translated vocabulary as footnotes, picture dictionaries, etc.)
  • websites (vocabulary.com)
  • apps (IELTS and GRE apps)
  • Wikipedia, newspaper articles etc. (I simply write everything down I don't know and add it)

However, since I've started doing that I've always had the wish to do it more systematically and faster. I'm looking for a collection of advanced vocabulary that is neither too trivial, nor too specialized. It shouldn't contain words like "door", "flower" or "car", but it doesn't have to contain words like "homotropic", "Epicurean" or "epenthesis" either. A collection that contains words like "wisdom tooth", "exuberance" or "cantakerous"; words that you normally don't learn at school when you learn English as a second language, but that a native speaker of English usually knows. Or to put it differently, a collection of non-trivial everyday vocabulary.

There is only one collection I've found yet that vaguely addresses my needs, Advanced English 2014. It contains about 45,000 words, phrases etc. from beginner to advanced. However, I'd have to buy Supermemo together with it, and since it is for Windows only I'd always have to switch my OS (Usually, I use Linux). Is there something else around that concentrates on intermediate and advanced vocabulary, but doesn't stop at 1,000 or so words?

(I've seen "Resources for learning English" on Meta, but there is nothing which really addresses this specific question.)

  • 3
    If you want to improve your vocabulary, it's best to read books. Read Dickens, there's a lot of vocabulary. Or any good author like: John Fowles. If you don't see words in context, you'll never remember them. Reading is best. BOOKS and not websites or web content. That way you get to expand your mind and your vocabulary. Good magazines are OK too, like The New Yorker or the Atlantic Monthly. If you don't read words in a context that makes sense, and just collect loose words, it's a worthless exercise, in my opinion. – Lambie May 11 '17 at 22:26
  • Actually, I did that "no context" mistake at the beginning, so I now always add three example sentences for each meaning in Anki, if possible (sometimes I have words that are so obscure that it is hard to find any meaningful example sentences, but thankfully this is rare). I have now always also an English definition. – mondegreen dispenser May 11 '17 at 22:29
  • I doubt many people know what an Anki deck is. I sure don't. – Lambie May 11 '17 at 22:34
  • I've edited my post. – mondegreen dispenser May 11 '17 at 22:38
  • 3
    Well, coat hanger is the kind of word you get from living in a place. So.....:) Perhaps you should spend more time with comedians on utube, they use a lot of everyday words you might not read in articles. And I don't just mean the dirty ones. – Lambie May 11 '17 at 23:11

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