This course covers the nature of vocabulary acquisition: how vocabulary develops, is learned and taught. Various factors will be analyzed in detail, including, the role of pronunciation, word frequency, various learning strategies for vocabulary growth and considerable attention will  be drawn to current research methodology in Vocabulary Acquisition. Students will review research as well as conduct a mini study.  


Lectures: Tuesdays & Thursdays at 10 am.

Ásrún Jóhannsdóttir,

 Tuesdays 10 am Room A050 (Main building basement)

Office hours: by appointment via email

 Thursdays 10 am Room Ág310 (Árnagarður 3rd floor)

The goals of this course are for students to:

  • Become familiar with the discipline of vocabulary acquisition
  • Realize what it entails to know a word
  • Become familiar with the latest trends in research on vocabulary acquisition and assessment.


Course Format: Lectures, in class group work and discussion, term assignments and research assignments.

Moodle will be the main source of information for this course.

Course material:  Nation, P. (2013). Learning Vocabulary in Another Language. Second edition Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

+ Chapters and articles provided by the instructor.

Online Resources: posted in Moodle during the course of the term.


  1. Term assignments                                         25%
  2. Midterm group assignment                            25%
  3. Online discussion                                          15%
  4. Final assignment: Mini study                          35%


Assignment descriptions:

  1. Term assignments: various assignments during the term of the course. Assignment details will be given at a later date.
  2. Written assignment. Students will review articles on a set topic. 3 students per group (3 articles). A list of topics will be published by the teacher around September 15th.. One topic per group
  3. Online discussion: A free but focused discussion on each weeks topic with references to the reading material (extra reading allowed) (see course schedule). Threads will be opened in Moodle and students are expected to participate at least once for each topic (8-10 topics).
  4. Final assignment: A mini study. A choice of three methods of vocabulary testing. Topic details will be given later.