WordReference is a free bilingual online dictionary and translation. It offers dictionary services in several languages, including French, English, Italian, Spanish, Arabic and many more. As a former EFL teacher and multilingual speaker, I find WordReference to be one of the best dictionaries out there on the internet.
Is WordReference reliable?
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The second major service that stands out in WordReference are language forums which are discussion forums where language learners ask questions about word use, translation, and synonyms and get help from native speakers and fellow users.
Learning the correct definition of words and the correct syntactic/grammatical structure of the target language is only a small part of language learning. In fact, the biggest and most difficult part is learning how to use learned terms and expressions in context-appropriate ways, i.e. learning what linguistics refers to as pragmatics, and the use of language in social contexts.
Renowned linguist Noam Chomsky made a key illustration of this point when he stated this In his 1957 book, grammatical structures who – which A sentence can be grammatically correct but morally odd. He also illustrated his idea with this example: green, colorless thoughts sleep furiously.
From a grammatical perspective, the sentence fulfills all the grammatical requirements of the English language: a priori modifier (adjectives) + noun + verb + participle modifier (adverb); However, the sentence is meaningless. Hence, context is central to language learning and communication in general.
Wordreference offers the following services: verb conjugators, grammar and usage tools, language forums, and bilingual dictionaries. There are many bilingual dictionaries in WordReference including:
- From English to Spanish
- From English to French
- From English to Italian
- english to german
- english to portuguese
- english to polish
- From English to Romanian
- From english to czech
- From English to Greek
- english to turkish
- From English to Japanese
- English to Chinese
- From English to Korean
- From English to Arabic
- english to swedish
- english to dutch
- From Spanish to French
- From Spanish to Portuguese
Here is a quick overview of some of these features
1- Rules and usage
WordReference features a section called Grammar and Usage where users can access insights into grammatical usage and the nuances of meaning of grammatical items. More specifically, it offers the following services:
A- Grammar and use of the Spanish language
“The WordReference Guide to Spanish Grammar and Usage solves common questions about the use of different words in spoken and written Spanish, and points out the differences between homonyms and other words that are commonly confused. It can help you solve grammatical problems, such as verb tenses, conditional punctuation and even Spanish, and it also lets you know when words are used in different ways depending on the region.”
use of english b
This service helps language learners to use the correct and correct way to use certain terms and expressions. That is, it is more oriented towards what linguists call the pragmatism of language use.
This dictionary is designed to help learners use individual words correctly, and choose the appropriate words and structures for the meaning they want to convey. It explains the meaning of English words and also provides information about how the words actually work. The dictionary covers a range of different areas of the English language, to help learners use Language naturally and effectively. It provides clear information about words that are easy to confuse, words with similar meanings, and helps with words that are often difficult for learners to understand.”
2- Language Forums
This is definitely one of the best and most innovative features of WordReference. Language forums are discussion forums where language learners help each other make the most of their language learning. There are forums to learn about issues related to translation, word usage, synonyms, and many other language topics.
An increasing number of native English and Spanish speakers are using the forums to offer help and answer questions. There are now over a million questions and five million answers archived in the forums. You can search for answers or ask your question and let users help you. You need to log in or register to be able to ask questions and respond to others’ questions.
3- Conjugation of verbs
Verb Conjugation is a service provided by WordReference that allows language learners to get help learning verb conjugations in their target language. For example, users learn how to conjugate verbs with different tenses, regular and irregular verbs, how to use verbs in different situations (eg command, conditional, conditional, etc.), and more. The verb conjugator is only available for the following languages: French, Spanish, Italian, and English.
4- Bilingual dictionaries
Some popular bilingual WordReference dictionaries include:
A- Spanish-English dictionary
The Spanish-English dictionary includes over 130,000 words and 250,000 translations in both English and Spanish. It also includes terms from various Spanish dialects, regional terms in the United Kingdom and the United States, and legal and economic terms.
B- French dictionary
WordReference provides two types of English and French dictionaries: one by WordReference and one by Collins. The French-English dictionary contains more than 250,000 translations, over 100,000 words and expressions, links to questions and answers in language forums and the ability for users to ask their own questions about words and expressions that they need to be explained.
The Collins French-English dictionary offers over 175,000 words and 234,000 translations. There is also a French verb conjugation service that allows users to learn more about French verb conjugation.
C – Italian dictionary
Italian dictionary users can choose between the Italian WordReference dictionary and the Italian Collins dictionary. The way it works is easy: type the term or expression and select the type of dictionary.
5- English Synonyms of WordReference
WordReference English Synonyms offers a huge library of equivalent words, around 24,000 English words. Synonyms also include comments about contextual use. Opposites are also provided.
Here’s how it works: Type your term in the search box, click “English Synonyms” and browse the results. Sometimes, if the word or expression you are looking for is already discussed in language forums, excerpts from those forums are displayed among the results.