Essay on ‘The vocabulary we have does more than communicate our knowledge

Essay on ‘The vocabulary we have does more than communicate our knowledge

Length: 1709 words (4.9 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Our vocabulary is the set of words and their meanings that we possess and are able to use. It is an instrument for verbal communication used to acquire knowledge through language, both written and oral. Our vocabulary allows us to spread information and communicate it not only to others but to ourselves. As a powerful tool that we often use to share and obtain knowledge, vocabulary, or lack thereof, will have an effect on our knowledge, but to what degree? According to the claim in the title, our vocabulary affects our ability to know to a large extent, and is capable of shaping, or in other words, confining and influencing, our knowledge and its scope. This essay will explore the validity of this claim by examining the roles and limitations of vocabulary in knowledge acquisition for different areas of knowledge, and the extent of these roles and limitations.
Although vocabulary is a useful medium for communication, it does not always communicate knowledge effectively. A single word can have so many different meanings, yet no two different words are identical. Even synonyms differ in their secondary meanings and connotations. This characteristic of vocabulary causes confusion in both communicating and receiving information, and has the power to distort and shape what we can know. Consider the framing effect in psychology, in which people alter their decisions when the presentation of identical options is manipulated in different ways such as word choice. This phenomenon has been observed in many surveys. In a study on public opinion of synthetic biology, participants showed more opposition to the field when "create" was used to describe it compared to "construct" (Pearson). Words are symbols that represent ideas in reality, yet t...

... middle of paper ...

...College London - UCL., 18 Aug. 2008. Web. 3 Sept. 2011. .
Butterworth, B. "Numerical Thought with and without Words: Evidence from Indigenous Australian Children." Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 105.35 (2008): 13179-3184. Web. 2 Sept. 2011. .
Matson, John. "The Origin of Zero." Scientific American. 21 Aug. 2009. Web. 1 Sept. 2009. .
Pearson, Brianna, Sam Snell, Kyri Bye-Nagel, Scott Tonidandel, Laurie J. Heyer, and A. Malcolm Campbell. "Word Selection Affects Perceptions of Synthetic Biology."Journal of Biological Engineering 5.1 (2011): 9. Web.
Woolman, Michael. Ways of Knowing: an Introduction to Theory of Knowledge. Melton, Vic.: IBID, 2006. Print.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Vocabulary Communicates Knowledge Essay

- Vocabulary is critical in communicating anything and informing others. Vocabulary is the words we use to phrase sentences; that are our thoughts. “We think in words. The more words you know, the more thoughts you can have." Our vocabularies consist of many words, so many thoughts we can have. These vocabularies, our words, can be very useful in stating ideas, raising questions, and describing objects or events. Our vocabularies have words such as; nouns and verbs tell exactly what a person is think or wanting others to understand....   [tags: Language ]

Powerful Essays
1464 words (4.2 pages)

Essay about The Importance of a Comprehensive Vocabulary

- The words we use are vital to communication amongst all people and in all situations. Vocabulary is the body of words used in a particular language. It describes a list of words and conveys information and ideas . All communication serves as a medium to explain and inform using a particular vocabulary. It is an important source in all areas of knowledge. Having a larger vocabulary makes enables one to be able to understand more people and increases one’s understanding of people and aspects of the world compared to someone with a limited vocabulary....   [tags: Language ]

Powerful Essays
1466 words (4.2 pages)

Developing The Vocabulary Skills Of Their Children Essay

- Parents are now confronted to find innovative ways to further develop the vocabulary skills of their children. One of these strategies is to practice joint attention which is attested by many researchers play a critical role in early word learning (Akhtar and Gernsbacher, 2007). Baldwin (1995, as cited in Akhtar and Gernsbacher, 2007) defines joint attention as the moments an adult and a child are concentrated on the same thing and both share the focus of attention. Joint attention also refers to a “whole complex of putatively social cognitive behaviors” (Akhtar and Gernsbacher, 2007) that surface toward the end of the first year of life that includes social referencing, pointing and gaze fo...   [tags: Language acquisition, Second language]

Powerful Essays
997 words (2.8 pages)

Essay on Vocabulary Teaching in ESL

- This report was assigned for us to learn understand language teaching and how it is practiced more. My assigned area is vocabulary learning and teaching. For this I have thought about what my thoughts and believes on the subject of learning and teaching vocabulary were and how they changed after interviewing a teacher of English as a second language and a learner of English as a second language. In this report I will discuss my beliefs before and after doing the interviews and further research; the believes of a teacher with the help of a concept map; the thoughts of a learner by doing a small interview and what the experts think by discussing extra material I have read and analysed especial...   [tags: Beliefs, Context, Relatability]

Powerful Essays
1033 words (3 pages)

Communication Is More Than Just Linguistic? Essay

- Men and women vary in their functions, and gender transformation are seeming physically and behaviorally. Men and women usually differ in ways like thinking, feeling, acting and mingling with others when it comes to dating, the workplace or social gatherings. Communication is much more than just linguistic. Effective communication cross-culturally among men and women entails knowing the basics of what make up a culture, the different forms of communication, and becoming culturally competent. Communication can be either verbal or nonverbal....   [tags: Nonverbal communication, Communication, Writing]

Powerful Essays
796 words (2.3 pages)

Texting: More Drawbacks than Benefits Essay

- Texting, the new age means of communications involves a series of point-to-point signals that are transmitted through a network. It first originated from radio telegraphy and the key idea behind texting was to use this “telephony-optimized system”, and to transport messages on the signaling paths needed to control the “telephony traffic” during time periods when no signaling traffic existed. Texting nowadays has become more of an exasperation than help in many aspects of life. Due to texting our generation is loosing key interpersonal communication skills needed to survive, texting removes the human aspect in communication skills....   [tags: Nonverbal Communication]

Powerful Essays
1592 words (4.5 pages)

Essay Vocabulary Development And Reading Fluency Skills

- Would you be able to read any discourse without knowing your high frequency sight words. Sight words or vocabulary development is an important language skill in reading and writing. It has been shown to increase sight vocabulary, lead to vocabulary acquisition, facilitate learner autonomy and motivation, and provide contextualized and linguistically rich input for learners, especially those in EFL settings where access to authentic input may be lacking (Huckin & Coady, 1999; Zahar, Cobb, & Spada, 2001)....   [tags: Second language, Language acquisition]

Powerful Essays
921 words (2.6 pages)

The Impact Of Technological Devices On Children 's Vocabulary Essay

- Several aspects of technological devices are marketed to parents as “educational”, but results from developmental research forced many companies to end this untruthful marketing strategy, because they were actually hindering vocabulary development (Siegler et al., 2014). It is evident that use of technology takes away from the time infants and toddlers spend actively engaging, face-to-face, with caregivers, who are their best resource for developing the vocabulary needed to communicate as they grow up....   [tags: Communication, Psychology, Infant, Childhood]

Powerful Essays
1831 words (5.2 pages)

Essay on Use Of Language And How Do We Communicate?

- Introduction The aim of the assessment is to research and report on the different roles that language can have in a child’s life. These roles can be seen and heard in language using oral, visual or written communication which integrates with the diversity of many English standards and social classes to form meaning. To demonstrate comprehension to tutors successfully various academic sources were studied including, the unit text. These findings are documented in the body of the report, along with demonstrating the two key stages in which children develop the ability to convey thoughts, feelings and ideas through cultural context spoken amongst family and the community....   [tags: Language, Linguistics, Noam Chomsky, Communication]

Powerful Essays
1262 words (3.6 pages)

`` Nobody Mean More Me Than You And The Future Life Of Willie Jordan `` Essay

- “Nobody Mean More to Me Than You and the Future Life of Willie Jordan,” is an essay written by poet, activist, and professor of English, Women’s Studies, and African-American Studies at SUNY at Stony Brook and U.C. Berkeley, June Jordan. Jordan wrote this essay about an experience she had while teaching at SUNY, beginning with the course “In Search of the Invisible Black Woman.” While teaching this course, Jordan assigned Alice Walker’s The Color Purple as class reading. When she facilitated a class discussion on the reading, Jordan was shocked when her majority Black class reacted strongly and negatively to seeing, written out, the language with which the characters of the novel spoke - Bla...   [tags: English language, United Kingdom, Latin alphabet]

Powerful Essays
1731 words (4.9 pages)