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Vocabulary

Development

Unit

At the end of this unit, you are expected to be


able to:

LEARNING

outcomes
1
2

Unit 1(1-20)1.indd 1

Guess the meaning


of words from the
context

Confirm the
meaning of words
by using the
dictionary

Guess the meaning


of words from their
word parts

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2 Reading and Critical Thinking


Self-Evaluation Checklist
Before starting on this unit, evaluate your present skill level.
Skill

I can do
thiswell

I am not good
at this

I am not able
to do this

1. Guessing the meaning of words


from contextual clues
2. Guessing the meaning of words by
analysing their word parts
3. Using the dictionary to confirm the
meaning and usage of words

The aim of this book is to equip you with critical reading and thinking skills.
However, before you can develop the skills of reading and thinking critically,
you need to have the skills for handling vocabulary. The first unit of the book
gives you the strategies for developing your vocabulary.

Guessing the Meaning of Words from Contextual Clues


In order to avoid interrupting the flow of your reading, resist the urge to reach
for the dictionary each time you come across an unfamiliar word. You should
try to guess the meaning of the word from the context. In other words, the
ideas surrounding the unfamiliar word may suggest the meaning of the word
to you. Here are some types of clues.

Definition or Synonym Clues


The author may give the definition of the unfamiliar word or explain
the meaning of the word. The author may explain using simpler words
(definition) or use a more common word or phrase that means the same thing
as the unfamiliar word (synonym). A signal for this type of clue is the phrase
in other words, but often there is no signal as the sentence itself is a definition
sentence.

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Unit 1 Vocabulary Development 3

Contrast or Antonym Clues


The author may give a word or phrase that means the opposite of the unfamiliar
word. Some words signalling that the author may be giving an antonym are
however, but, yet, on the other hand and in contrast. If you are familiar with the
antonym used, you can guess the meaning of the unfamiliar word.

Experience Clues
Sometimes you may be able to guess the meaning of an unfamiliar word
based on your experience. This is when the sentence is about or connected
to a situation that you are familiar with or have experienced, which makes
you realize that the unfamiliar word is a term for a concept already known to
you.

Example Clues
You may be able to guess the meaning of a concept word from the examples
cited in the text. This occurs when you are familiar with the meaning of the
terms used for the examples, although the concept word may be new to you.
Signals for this kind of clue are phrases like for example and for instance.
The above clues may be in the sentence where the unfamiliar word is or in other sentences
in the same text. This is why you should read on instead of referring to your dictionary the
moment you come across an unfamiliar word.

Guessing the Meaning of Words by Analysing their


Word Parts
Many words are of Greek or Latin origin and are formed by combining Greek
or Latin word parts. As two-thirds of academic English words come from
Greek or Latin, knowing the meaning of individual Greek or Latin prefixes,
roots or suffixes can help you guess the meaning of such words. Prefixes come
before the main part of the word, roots are the main part of the word, and
suffixes come after the main part of the word.

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4 Reading and Critical Thinking


You will find lists of some frequently used word parts at the end of this unit.
You can also download more lists from the Internet. You can use the keywords
Greek Latin word parts when you use a search engine such as Google to
look for them. Invest time in memorizing their meanings and you will be
able to read more efficiently as you do not have to keep on referring to the
dictionary.
For example, if you are reading an article that uses the terms benign tumour
and malignant tumour, do you know what they mean? You may know that
the term tumour means abnormal growth of tissue, but do you know the
difference between a benign tumour and a malignant tumour? If you know
the meaning of the Greek or Latin word parts of bene and male, then you
would be able to guess that a benign tumour is harmless whereas a malignant
tumour is dangerous (bene = good; male = bad).

Using the Dictionary to Confirm the Meaning and


Usage of Words
After you have tried guessing the meaning of unfamiliar words from the
context, you may wish to confirm that your guess is correct by referring to
the dictionary, especially if you are not confident of your guess. By guessing
the meaning from the context, you reduce the number of words that you need
to look up in the dictionary. You should refer to the dictionary only after you
have finished reading a section of the text rather than every time you come
across an unfamiliar word.
As you are trying to determine the meaning of words, it helps to be able to
recognise the function of the word. Being able to recognise the role of the word
in the sentence can help you to identify the correct meaning from the list of
meanings a word may have. In grammar textbooks, these word functions or
roles are referred to as parts of speech.
Let us consider the word record as an example. If the dictionary entry for the
word record lists several definitions, you can identify the correct definition if
you can determine the role of the word in the sentence.

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Unit 1 Vocabulary Development 5

Different definitions of the word record:


1. information kept about something that has happened
2. more, better, worse, faster, etc. than ever before
3. to make a record of something that has happened, usually by writing it
somewhere

Different functions of the word record:


1. She recorded her monthly expenses in her notebook.
Role of record: action word (verb).
2. She keeps a record of her monthly expenses in her notebook.
Role of record: object (noun) of the action word keep.
3. She spent a record RM2000.00 on groceries in the month of December.
Role of record: word to describe the noun (adjective). The noun in
this case is the amount of money RM2000.00.
When record is used as a verb, as in the first sentence, the definition must
refer to an action. Therefore, the definition of record in this sentence is to make
a record of something that has happened, usually by writing it somewhere.
When record is used as a noun, as in the second sentence, the definition
must be something that can act as doer or object of an action. Therefore, the
definition of record in this sentence is information kept about something that
has happened.
When record is used as an adjective, as in the third sentence, the definition
must be able to describe a noun. Therefore, the definition of record in this
sentence is more, better, worse, faster, etc. than ever before.
The above strategies for coping with unfamiliar words can help you read more
smoothly and thus, motivate you to read. Many people lose the motivation to
read when there are too many interruptions in their reading. By being able
to read fluently, you will be more motivated to read. The more you read,
the more you learn, and your language proficiency as well as your general
knowledge will improve. This will make it easier for you to understand new
reading material.

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6 Reading and Critical Thinking


Reinforcing the Skills
Let us apply the skill of guessing the meaning of words to the highlighted words in the
following passage.

The soursop, or the fruit from the graviola tree, is a miraculous natural cancer cell killer 10,000 times
stronger than chemotherapy. Why are we not aware of this? This is because some big corporation
wants to recoup the money they spent on years of research by trying to make a synthetic version
of it for sale.
Various parts of the graviola tree the bark, leaves, roots, fruit and
seeds have been used for centuries by medicine men and native
Indians in South America to treat heart disease, asthma, liver problems
and arthritis. The fruit is very large, and the sub-acid sweet white pulp
is eaten out of hand or, more commonly, used to make fruit drinks,
sherbets and such.
A drug company invested nearly seven years trying to synthesize two
of the graviola trees most powerful anti-cancer ingredients. Alas, they
hit a brick wall. The original simply could not be replicated. As the
graviola tree is completely natural, it is not patentable. Theres no way
the company can make serious profits from their research.
Cancer-killer fruit

Findings from the over 20 laboratory tests conducted since the 1970s
by the drug company were mind-numbing.
1. Extracts from the tree were shown to effectively target and kill malignant cells in 12 types of
cancer, including colon, breast, prostate, lung and pancreatic cancer.
2. The tree compounds proved to be up to 10,000 times stronger in slowing the growth of cancer
cells than Adriamycin, a commonly used chemotherapeutic drug!
3. Whats more, unlike chemotherapy, a compound extracted from the graviola tree selectively
hunts down and kills only cancer cells. It does not harm healthy cells!
The amazing anti-cancer properties of the graviola tree have also been extensively researched by
others:
1. The US National Cancer Institute performed the first scientific research in 1976. The results
showed that graviolas leaves and stems were found effective in attacking and destroying
malignant cells. Inexplicably, the results were published in an internal report and never released
to the public.

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Unit 1 Vocabulary Development 7

2. A paper published in the Journal of Natural Products, following a recent study conducted at the
Catholic University of South Korea, stated that one chemical in graviola was found to selectively
kill colon cancer cells at 10,000 times the potency of Adriamycin.
3. The most significant part of the Catholic University of South Korea report is that the chemical
found in graviola was shown to selectively target cancer cells, leaving healthy cells untouched. This
is unlike chemotherapy, which indiscriminately targets all actively reproducing cells (cancer cells as
well as healthy cells such as stomach and hair cells), causing the often devastating side effects
of fatigue, nausea, vomiting, hair loss, mouth sores and pain in cancer patients.
4. A study at Purdue University found that leaves from the graviola tree killed cancer cells among
six human cell lines and were especially effective against prostate, pancreatic and lung cancers.
Seven years of silence broken its finally here! A limited supply of graviola extract, grown and
harvested by indigenous people in Brazil, is finally available in America.
Source: http://www.whydontyoutrythis.com/2013/02/soursop-fruit-natural-cancer-killer-stronger-than-chemo.html

The following shows how you can use context clues to arrive at the meaning
of the words highlighted in the above text.
1. synthetic

This is because some big corporation wants to recoup the money they spent on
years of research by trying to make a synthetic version of it for sale.

The previous sentence gives us the antonym clue for the word synthetic.

The soursop, or the fruit from the graviola tree, is a miraculous natural cancer cell
killer 10,000 times stronger than chemotherapy.

The word natural is opposite in meaning to synthetic. A definition that


is opposite in meaning to natural is the definition of synthetic. Hence, we
may think of man-made as the meaning of synthetic.

2. pulp

Unit 1(1-20)1.indd 7

The fruit is very large, and the sub-acid sweet white pulp is eaten out of hand or,
more commonly, used to make fruit drinks, sherbets and such.

Most of us have the experience of seeing how fruit drinks are made even
if we have not made any ourselves. From this experience clue, we know
that the part of the fruit that is used to make fruit drinks is the flesh of the
fruit.

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8 Reading and Critical Thinking


3. mind-numbing

Findings from the over 20 laboratory tests conducted since the 1970s by the drug
company were mind-numbing.

In this case, the synonym clue appears in the next paragraph. The word
amazing has the same meaning as mind-numbing.

The amazing anti-cancer properties of the Graviola tree have also been extensively
researched by others.

4. devastating

Target word

This is unlike chemotherapy, which indiscriminately targets all actively


reproducing cells (cancer cells as well as healthy cells such as stomach and hair
cells), causing the often devastating side effects of fatigue, nausea, vomiting,
hair loss, mouth sores and pain in cancer patients.

The type of clue that is present in this sentence is example clue because
the sentence provides examples of side-effects that the target word is
describing. As the examples of side effects are horrible, we can guess that
devastating means horrible.

From the above explanation, we can see that the context clues can be in the
same sentence as the target word, in adjoining sentences or in other parts
of the text. The following table summarises what we have found:
Word
function

Meaning

Type of clue

synthetic

adjective

man-made

the antonym natural from a previous sentence

pulp

noun

flesh of fruit

the experience of eating fruit

mind-numbing

adjective

amazing

the synonym amazing that appears in a later


sentence

devastating

adjective

horrible

examples of horrible side effects such as


nausea and hair loss

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Unit 1 Vocabulary Development 9

Practising the Skills


Read the following passages and give the meaning of the words in bold print.

Text

The history of medicine, as far as the problems and their solutions considered below are concerned,
is the history of unceasing, laborious and creative work of many generations of professionals on
developing methods and means for reliable diagnosis, efficient treatment and prevention of different
diseases for the sake of the health of the living and of the coming generations.
The achievements of todays medical science and practice which made it possible to master a number
of diseases thus prolonging the age of human life cannot, however, obscure our concern about the
fact that man is departing farther and farther from harmony with Nature. But man is the crown of
Nature. The human body is unsurpassed in the complexity and sometimes in the mysteriousness of
its biophysical and biochemical processes.
It is known that the human body and its functioning systems consist of a great number of cells, each
cell being the source ofmillimetre-waveelectromagnetic oscillations of extremely low intensity. The
biological field as well as the electromagnetic field is set up by cells, each of them obeying the total
field synthesised by all cells. Cells influence the whole system with their biochemical and biophysical
fields and obey this system only to the extent to which they are allied to one another and to the
whole. It is this fact that provides the highest degree of integrality of the human body: an event
occurring in some part of it immediately becomes an all-body event.
Thus, in terms of biophysics the human body is an open biological loop of liquid-crystal character
whose inputs and outputs are a field matrix formed bythe system of acupuncture meridians. Part
of the energy of the acupuncture system is a complex field which is beyond the human body. All
forms of energy known in physics are found in it. In a close interaction with the physical body is
its bioenergoinformational shell that consists of a fine-energy biofield substance. The mechanisms
of interaction between the energoinformational component of the key systems of the physical
body and its bioenergoinformational shell as part of the environment is the subject matter of fine
human anatomy. Thus, in terms of radio physics, too, the human body may be thought of as an open
bioenergoinformational system exchanging energy and information with the environment. It is safe to
say that bioelectrical phenomena are inherent in a living body, are intimately associated with it and
underlie all processes occurring therein.

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10 Reading and Critical Thinking

We are aware of the existence of homeostasis, or a set of well-coordinated neurohumoural reactions


aimed at keeping and recovering the constancy of the internal medium of the human body which is
necessary for the optimum functioning of all key systems. Changes in the health status are known to
be largely governed by the character of adaptive reactions of the human body to one or other agent,
or, in other words, by the resistance of the human body. When the human bodys natural and yet very
complex processes are disturbed, the human body must be given an adequate help to maintain its life
force and to restore the optimum functioning of its organs, systems and tissues.
Source: http://ramed.wikidot.com/en:fundamental-new

Target word

Word
function

Meaning

Type of clue

obscure
oscillations
synthesised
matrix
inherrent

Text

The indiscriminate reference to cancer as being a killer disease by professionals and laypeople alike
has turned cancer into a disorder with tragic consequences for the majority of todays cancer patients
and their families. Cancer has become synonymous with extraordinary suffering, pain and death. This
is true despite the fact that 90 to 95 per cent of all cancers appear and disappear out of their own
accord. There is not a day that passes without the body making millions of cancer cells. Some people,
under severe temporary stress, make more cancer cells than usual and form clusters of cancerous cells
that disappear again once they feel better. Secretion of DNAs anti-cancer agent, Interleukin II, drops
under physical and mental duress and increases again when people are relaxed and joyful. Thus, most
cancers vanish without any form of medical intervention and without causing any real harm.
Source: http://www.naturalnews.com/022578_cancer_body_disease.html

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Unit 1 Vocabulary Development 11

Target word

Word
function

Meaning

Type of clue

indiscriminate
synonymous
duress
intervention

Text

Energised water is the nearest thing to cellular water, and its life-enhancing frequencies are gratefully
absorbed by dehydrated and exhausted cells. Without sufficient good quality water in our systems,
many processes grind to a halt. It is estimated that a baby contains approximately 90% water, while an
old person contains 70% the difference is that that water has been replaced by toxins of all kinds
accumulating in the cells.

Dead water, that is, water laden with foreign substances and frequencies, will tend to leach energy
from our system. Dead water is often full of the effects of electromagnetic radiation of various kinds,
particularly man-made, as well as physical and energetic pollutants of all kinds.
Energised water is more alive, wetter meaning that it does a better job of picking up and removing
toxic material from the body. Dead water is disorganized and chaotic and contains clumps of
molecules, while energised or structured water is more like a liquid crystal with much smaller microclusters of water molecules, making it more like the water in cells, more able to hold minerals and
other necessary substances in (colloidal) solution.

People are beginning to become aware of the distinction between decontaminating water
(removing bacteria), purifying water (removing physical impurities) and energising water. Water
remembers frequencies or the energies of substances it has come in contact with. As such, removing
the physical toxins from water is not enough the frequency signature or memory must also be
removed. Energising water involves removing the energy signatures of harmful substances that the
water contains, and adding positive frequencies.
Drinking energised water is possibly the single most effective way to boost your energy many
practitioners in the vibrational medicine field are coming to a similar conclusion. It is the anti-oxidant
par excellence, scavenging free radicals and replacing cellular water with a real liquid crystal water
which nourishes rather than starves the system.
Source: http://www.energizewater.com/index_files/wiew1.htm

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12 Reading and Critical Thinking


Target word

Word
function

Meaning

Type of clue

dehydrated
chaotic
distinction
scavenging

Text

Dr. Heinicke discovered a substance that he called proxeronine. He found that proxeronine, combined
with another enzyme he called proxeroninase, formed an active ingredient in the body that was not
a protein, carbohydrate or fat, but a substance known as an alkaloid, a nitrogenous organic molecule
that has a pharmacological effect on humans and other mammals.
Dr. Heinicke was able to isolate the alkaloid into a pure state and found it to be a dry crystalline
structure; so he used the Latin prefix xero meaning dry as the first part of the new name, and due
to its alkaline nature, he added the suffix ine to make the word Xeronine, which means dry alkaline
compound. Dr. Heinicke proposed that when released in the body, Xeronine works at the molecular
level to repair damaged cells by regulating the rigidity and shape of proteins at the cellular level of
the body.
The proteins in your bodys cells are made up of organic material. Some of these hold you together,
like your skin, hair and bones. Others at the cellular level, are the functional proteins that help cells do
work such as enzymes, hormones, antibodies and cell membrane receptors. Dr. Heinicke joined forces
with Dr. Solomon to develop the Heinicke-Solomon Theory. The theory explains from a medical
perspective how Noni juice is converted in the body to produce Xeronine that is theorized to help
sick cells resume normal function.
The production of the Xeronine alkaloid is what is believed to create the adaptogenic compound
used to help a specific cell to regain a state of homeostasis that leads the body back to a balanced
state of health.The theory suggests Nonis natural ability to create an adaptive resistance at the cellular
level in the human body may help abnormally functioning or damaged cells to reach a balanced state
and resume normal function while allowing healthy functioning cells to resist adverse influences from
biochemical factors to maintain normal function. This may explain the broad influence Noni has on
the different systems in your body.
Source: http://bnsopp.blogspot.com/2008/03/how-does-noni-work-part-1.html

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Unit 1 Vocabulary Development 13

Target word

Word
function

Meaning

Type of clue

isolate
perspective
homeostasis
adverse

OURCE

INTERNET RES

To download the most frequently used words in academia, visit the following website:
http://www.victoria.ac.nz/lals/resources/academicwordlist/

Self-Evaluation Checklist
Now that you have completed Unit 1, evaluate your skill level:
Skill

I can do this
well

I am not good
at this

I am not able
to do this

1. Guess the meaning of words from


contextual clues
2. Guess the meaning of words by
analysing their word parts
3. Use the dictionary to confirm the
meaning and usage of words

Congratulations if there is improvement in your skill level. However, if you


are still weak in vocabulary skills, you need more practice using additional
reading materials of your choice.

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14 Reading and Critical Thinking


Finally, note that the above skills go hand in hand. First, you try to guess the
meaning of a word from the context. If that does not work, see if you can break
down the word into parts and guess its meaning from the meaning of its word
parts. Finally, if all else fails, you may look it up in the dictionary!
Even if you have guessed the meaning of a word from the context or word
parts, you may still want to refer to the dictionary to confirm its meaning,
unless you are very confident that you have determined the right meaning.

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Unit 1 Vocabulary Development 15

APPENDIX
Common Word Roots
Root

Meaning

Example

Definition

agri

field

agronomy

field-crop production and soil management

anthropo

human

anthropology

study of humans

astro

star

astronaut

one who travels in a spacecraft into outer


space

auto

self

automatic

self-acting or self-regulating

bene

good

benefit

advantage

bio

life

biology

study of life

cardio

heart

cardiograph

instrument for recording the mechanical


movements of the heart

cede

go

precede

to go before

chrom

colour

chromatology

science of colours

demo

people

democracy

government by the people

derma

skin

epidermis

outer layer of skin

dyna

power

dynamic

characterized by power and energy

equi

equal

equivalent

same as

geo

earth

geology

study of the earth

helio

sun

heliotrope

any plant that turns towards the sun

hydro

water

hydroponics

growing of plants in water reinforced with


nutrients

hypno

sleep

hypnosis

state of sleep induced by suggestion

ject

throw

eject

to throw out

lat

side

bilateral

involving two sides

magni

great, big

magnify

to enlarge, to make bigger

man(u)

hand

manuscript

written by hand

meter/metre,
metry

measure

thermometer;
spirometry

device to measure temperature;


procedure to measure lung capacity

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16 Reading and Critical Thinking


Root

Meaning

Example

Definition

mono

one

monoplane

airplane with one pair of wings

nym

name

pseudonym

false name

ortho

straight

orthodontic

branch of dentistry dealing with correction


of irregularities of the teeth

ped

foot

pedestrian

person travelling on foot

phile

love

Anglophile

person who loves anything English

phobe;
phobia

fear

xenophobe;
xenophobia

person who fears foreigners or anything


foreign; fear of foreigners or anything
foreign

phone

sound

homophone;
telephone;
Francophone

same sound;
device that delivers sound;
speaker of French language

pod

foot

podiatry

field of medical care and treatment for the


human foot

psycho

mind

psychology

study of the mind in any of its aspects

pyro

fire

pyrometer

instrument for measuring temperatures

script

write

scriptures

sacred writing or book

syn

same

synonym

word with the same meaning

tele

distant

telescope

instrument for seeing or viewing afar

terra

earth

terrace

raised platform of earth

thermo

heat

thermostat

instrument for adjusting heat

zoo

animal

zoology

study of animals

Common Prefixes
Prefix

Meaning

Example

Definition

ante-

before

antebellum

before the war

anti-

against

antifreeze

substance added to a liquid to lower


its freezing point

circum-

around

circumscribe

to draw a line around; to encircle

contra-

against

contradict

to speak against

de-

reverse (the opposite


of), remove, out of,
reduce, derived from

defoliate

to remove the leaves from a tree

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Unit 1 Vocabulary Development 17

Prefix

Meaning

Example

Definition

dis-

apart, not, opposite

disperse

to drive off or scatter in different


directions

dys-

bad, ill

dysfunctional

not functioning

ecto-

outside, external,
outer

ectoparasite

parasite living on the exterior of


animals

endo-

within

endogamy

marriage within the tribe

equi-

equal

equidistant

equal distance

ex-

out of, former, away


from, lacking

excavate

to dig out

extra-

beyond, outside

extraterrestrial

beyond the earth

hyper-

over (excess or
exaggeration)

hypertension

high blood pressure

hypo-

under

hypotension

low blood pressure

in-

a negative force

injustice

unfairness

inter-

between, among,
mutually

intervene

come between

intra-

within

intramural

occurring within the bounds of an


institution

intro-

into, inward

introspect

to look within, as ones own mind

macro-

large

macroscopic

large enough to be observed by the


naked eye

mal-

bad

maladjusted

badly adjusted

micro-

small

microscopic

so small that one needs a


microscope to observe

multi-

many

multimillionaire

one having two or more million


dollars

neo-

new

neolithic

New Stone Age

non-

not

non-conformist

one who does not conform to


a generally accepted pattern of
thought or action

pan-

all

panacea

something which is a cure-all

poly-

many, much

polygonal

having many sides

post-

after

postgraduate

pertaining to after graduation

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18 Reading and Critical Thinking


Prefix

Meaning

Example

Definition

pre-

before

precede

to go before

pro-

for, forward

proponent

supporter

proto-

first

prototype

first or original model

pseudo-

false

pseudonym

false name, especially an authors


pen-name

re-, red-

back, again

rejuvenate

to make young

retro-

backward

retrospect

the looking back on things

semi-

half

semicircle

half a circle

sub-

under

submerge

to go or be put under water

super-

above, beyond

superfine

extra fine

trans-

across

transalpine

across the Alps

Number prefixes
Prefix

Meaning

Example

Definition

uni-

uniform

clothing standardised to one style

mono-

monotonous

in a single tone

bi-

biannual

twice a year

di-

dialogue

speech between two people

tri-

tricycle

three-wheeled vehicle

quadr-

quadrangle

square or oblong open space surrounded by


buildings

penta-

pentameter

poetic verse containing five beats

hex-

hexagon

a figure having six sides

sept-

septet

group of seven

octo-

octuplets

eight babies at a single birth

noni- or
novem

nonipara

a woman who has given birth to nine


offspring

deka- or
deca-

10

decathlon

athletic contest of seven events

cent-

hundred

centenarian

a 100-year-old person

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Unit 1 Vocabulary Development 19

Prefix

Meaning

Example

Definition

milli-

thousand

millennium

a period of 1,000 years

mega-

million

megawatt

one million watts

giga-

billion

gigabyte

one billion bytes

Prefixes that mean no


Prefix

Meaning

Examples

a-, an-

without, not

asexual, atypical, amoral, anarchy

de-

reverse action, away

defrost, demystify, desensitize, deduct

dis-, dif-, di-

not, apart

dissatisfied, disorganized, different, divert

in-, il-, ir-, im-

not

inappropriate, illegal, irreversible, impossible

non-

not

nonproductive, non-essential, nonsense

un-

not

unlikely, unnoticeable, unreliable

contra-, counter-

against

contrary, contradict, counterproductive

Prefixes that indicate when or where


Prefix

Meaning

Examples

pre-, pro-

before

pre-dinner, preliminary, previous, prologue

post-

after

postwar, postoperative, postpone

ante-

before

antecedent, antechamber

inter-

between, among

interstate, intercept, interfere

intra-

within

intramural, intrastate, intravenous

trans-

across

transcontinental, transparent, transaction

sub-

under

submarine, submerge, subjugate

super-

above

superscript, superior

circum-

around

circumnavigate, circumference

ultra-

beyond, on the far


side of, excessive

ultrasonic, ultraviolet, ultraconservative

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20 Reading and Critical Thinking


Common Suffixes
Suffix

Meaning

Examples

-al

forms adjectives that means related to

electrical, mechanical, occupational

-er

added to verb to form noun that means


person who

planner, singer, teacher

-ian

added to concept noun to form person


noun

beautician, grammarian, politician

-ic

added to concept noun to form adjective


that means having the characteristic of

materialistic, organic, toxic

-ism

forms nouns that means the act, state or


theory of

criticism, optimism, capitalism

-ist

added to object noun to form person


noun

environmentalist, florist, pianist

-ize

forms verbs from nouns and adjectives

computerize, emphasize, generalize

-logy

science or study of

biology, dermatology, geology

-oid

forms adjectives or nouns that means in


the shape of

humanoid, ovoid, spheroid

Source: Adapted from http://w ww.infoplease.com/ipa/A0907013.html

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