When you meet new words, you have to make an effort to remember them. Whether you heard it first in the news or at the back of a milk carton, you have to try to record it, write it down somewhere. But how do you retain the words you learn? Is it possible to remember all the words you have met over time? 

Expanding your vocabulary is a ‘must’ to succeed in any English exam, but to do this requires an enormous amount of time and practise. To do this easier, you have to treat vocabulary-building systematically. 

Read our guide on how to make your first vocabulary notebook.


If you like the idea of taking down notes with pen and paper, a dedicated notebook is a good option since it keeps everything in one place. A notebook with alphabetical or color-coded tabs can do the trick, as long as you have a system to organise your entries to make sure it’s easily searchable: is it by date and time, or do you put nouns ahead of the verbs?


Notecards are portable vocabulary notebooks: you can easily put them in your pockets! Dedicate each notecard to a single word and definition, shuffle a deck or two every day and memorise each word during commutes. You can easily jot down new words when you see one with blank notecards in hand. However, that can also be a disadvantage since you can easily lose them, so make sure you store them in one place.

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