How to Boost Your English vocabulary: 12 ways to expand your vocabulary

Elly Kimreviewed byKateryna Protsenko / more about Editorial Process8 min
Created: Jul 13, 2022Last updated: Dec 20, 2023
English Vocabulary

So many people chat easily in English. And then the question naturally arises, why can't I do that? The essence of the problem lies in the fact that not every one of us has a sufficient vocabulary.

While learning English, not only the rules are important, but also the words. Without a vocabulary, all the rules and formulas for making sentences will simply be useless.

First, understand: it is impossible to remember all the words! This is not related to your laziness, these are purely physiological features of our brain. Don't blame yourself that you have known and heard something, but forgotten. Just choose the most effective way for you, and answer how to improve your vocabulary in English.

How to Boost Your English Vocabulary

Words are an essential part of the language. If you don't know them, you won't be able to express one thought or understand another. To constantly improve your English level, you need practice. But after work, people don't want to read foreign books or watch movies without translation.

And what if you spend only 15-20 minutes a day learning English? And you don't have to force yourself, because the process is organized excitingly. You see your progress by the day, compete with other users, exercise pronunciation, and the level is growing rapidly.

All this is implemented in the Promova application, where you can increase your vocabulary by 300 words per month.

12 Ways to Expand Your Vocabulary

There are some tips to improve vocabulary:

1. Learn a few words a day.

Take a list of 15 words every day. That's enough for a start. Say all the words loudly, clearly, and with different intonations twice in the morning and the evening. Depending on your memory, you can spend two or three days on one list. 

2. Read aloud

You should always read aloud. Pronouncing a word will be easier for you to remember not only how it looks, but also how it is pronounced. In addition, you will have a much better chance that you will be able to use the word in speech and improve your vocabulary skills.

But before you learn a word, check its pronunciation. If you immediately remember its pronunciation incorrectly, you are unlikely to retrain.

3. Use household items

Any household items in the house can become your assistants. You can stick stickers with words on them. Some people think that it is ineffective or suitable only for learning banal vocabulary, but it is not. It is important not only to stick papers but also not to forget to work with them. Otherwise, after a week you will stop noticing them, and the words will not be remembered.

4. Special literature

In English, it is called the Vocabulary Resource Pack. Pay attention: these are NOT textbooks. There are many authors and publishers, but the structure of such manuals is about the same. Each has one level of difficulty; the words are collected by topic. After the explanations, several exercises for using and memorizing await you.

5. Constantly use new words in speech 

use new words in speech

The best thing is to find someone to talk to. The network is full of resources that are created for such mutual pumping of conversational skills. If you are embarrassed to talk to unfamiliar speakers, agree with a friend. 5 minutes of each conversation should be in English.

6. It is necessary to learn new vocabulary and words without taking them out of context

One word in English can have many translation options that are not related to each other in any way.

Therefore, all methodologies recommend memorizing the entire phrase, and sometimes sentences. By no means a specific word, since you can get into an awkward situation by using the wrong word.

7. Films, books and foreign songs will be a very good help to increase vocabulary

You can choose different films, for example, adapted, with or without subtitles, and the genre can be different. The more you watch, the more accents and speech styles you hear. As it turned out, there are a lot of colloquial phrases in films that you can remember and skillfully use in your speech.

Another good helper is a book. It doesn't matter what kind of books they are, electronic or audio. By reading, you memorize words visually, as well as pronouncing them to yourself, which gives you every chance to expand your vocabulary.

Songs in English are another English vocabulary booster. They will help you develop the skill of speaking, easier assimilation, and memorization of words. Information that sounds like a "background" is sometimes absorbed even more firmly.

8. Do you think what to cook for dinner today? Look for the recipe on an English-language culinary website.

9. Change the language of the settings of your computer, mobile phone, and other gadgets to English.

10. Do you like to keep up to date with events, and read the news daily? Do not neglect English-language news portals. 

If you are not familiar with the sociopolitical vocabulary, then you can first read the news in your native language, and then find the same in English. At the same time, you will learn the point of view of the bourgeois press on various events. It is very interesting and often unexpected.

11. Mind map

According to most opinions, this is the coolest way to work with words. For example, choose the theme "Kitchen". You write in the center of the paper "kitchen", and then it's time for creativity. Draw an arrow and write "food" and everything that fits into this category: potatoes, pasta, meat, onion, cucumber, and so on. Next, you can draw an arrow with actions, for example, what you can do with food: cook, book, peel, cut, slice, blend, and so on.

12. Use visual associations

For example, you learn the names of parts of the world, countries, and capitals. Print out a large contour map and sign all the names in the language you are studying. You see the outline of the country on the map – you understand what kind of country it is – you see its name in a foreign language, as well as the name of the capital. You do not need to compare the name in your native language, you directly build an association with the country and its foreign name.

The same can be done with a calendar for studying the days of the week, months, and numbers, with a wall clock, with objects in the room.


Learn Even More Words with Promova

How to learn new vocabulary? Every year new language apps appear in the App Store. It remains only to decide which one is right for you. It is better, of course, to look at those that are based on a scientific methodology.

Instead of starting a diary, or setting an alarm clock, you can use a smart Promova algorithm that will adjust to you and will tell you exactly when and which words should be repeated. The creators of the application promise that if you study for only three to four minutes a day, then in a month you will master 150 new words.

And expanding vocabulary will be guaranteed for a long time.

The words in the application are divided according to the level of complexity and different categories — from travel and chemistry to thematic collections based on popular TV series.

You don't have to painfully try to figure out which words suit your language level or independently select words on a specific topic.

Another advantage of digital cards is that they are complemented by illustrations, in combination with which words are remembered better.


Vocabulary expansion is one of the indicators of the level of language proficiency. The number of known words is just a number that has no particular value. It is not necessary to strive for certain figures and draw conclusions based on them. But measuring vocabulary still makes sense.

Measuring the number of familiar words will help you track your progress in English. To do this, it is important to use the same methods – for example, always the same vocabulary test. If you take the test 1-2 times a year, you can see the progress. This will help, if necessary, adjust the balance in learning, pay more attention to vocabulary, or motivate you to further improvement.

Everyone learns differently, so if you don't know what works for you yet, try as many ways or combinations of them as possible: word cards, phone apps, word lists, games, or stickers are great ways to increase your vocabulary. The same applies to finding the right time: some people need an accurate schedule, and others learn spontaneously. But the main thing is to practice systematically. Practice makes everything perfect and possible.


How do I remember the new words I've learned?

There is only one way to leave a word in memory for a long time: to constantly use it in speech. But if you do not live in a country with an English-speaking population, it is not so easy to follow this rule. Put the most difficult words at the beginning and end of the list. This is called the "edge effect". Memorizing words from the beginning and end of the list are remembered best. So write down there what you can't master in any way.

How can I improve my English vocabulary fast?

Don't learn English words in a vacuum. If you come across an unfamiliar word, and you decide to remember it, write down the context in which it was used. If you like a song, read its translation. Write down a quote that you particularly liked. Sing it during the next audition. Also improve your vocabulary with movies, music videos, and books. There is no single indicator of whom, how and in what time should remember words. If suddenly something did not work out the first time, do not scold and do not blame yourself for it. Just go from the other side, look at the situation from a different angle, and in no case compare yourself with others. Everyone has an individual pace of learning a foreign language.

How do you learn new words daily?

Every day we have to assimilate and memorize large amounts of information. The process of memorizing is time-consuming, but properly selected methods will help to cope with this task. The main thing is to overcome laziness and find an interesting approach for you. Then memorizing words will not be a daily routine. Divide words into semantic blocks. Do not learn words out of context — immediately use them in speech. Periodically return to the studied material. Learn words piecemeal and don't try to memorize everything at once. And be sure to combine memorization techniques. In order not to overload the memory, we advise you not to chase a lot of words. If you plan to study daily or at least every other day, 15 words will be enough.

Which app is best for learning English vocabulary?

If you are interested in services that help you memorize English words, we recommend Promova. Thanks to this resource, you will understand how it is easier to remember English words. Promova will help you memorize new words every day and return to them at increasing intervals. The program will remind you when you need to repeat the words, in the specified order and with the desired frequency.


Breck BesteSep 19th, 2023
I've read numerous articles on vocabulary improvement, but this one stands out. It's well-structured, engaging, and filled with practical exercises. It's clear that the author genuinely wants readers to succeed.
Regent Aug 4th, 2023
I need to learn English
Gillian BrownellJun 20th, 2023
The recommendation to explore various resources, such as books, online articles, and podcasts, is excellent. It highlights the importance of exposure to different topics and registers, which ultimately enriches vocabulary.