Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Word families

King's College, Cambridge - photo by Andrew Dunn at Wikmedia Commons
Complete the word families from the word given. Based loosely on the Academic Word List (AWL), these exercises will give you some practice in word formation.


  • Where two possibilities exist, I've gone for the simpler one, so creation rather than creativity, conceive rather than conceptualise, etc.
  • Verbs like realise, recognise etc are spelt with the British -ise ending.
  • Word families are taken from the Academic Word List, and the lists reflect the sublists in the AWL. So List 1 contains the most common words, List 10 the least common words. The idea is to master the earlier goups before going on to the later groups.
  • Adjectives in these lists are usually formed with suffixes, such as -able, -ive, -ical. I've only used -ed, -ing adjectives when they are the only possibility. I these few cases I've chosen the most common.
  • The exercises currently cover the first four sublists of the AWL. More to follow.
  • Printing - the exercise will print cleanly on Page 2
Select list Randomised

Complete the tables using the appropriate form of the word family

Exercise 1

Exercise 2