Academic Vocabulary Strategies Module

Click here to edit subtitle

Challenge & Initial Thoughts

After viewing the video and the chart below, reflect on the challenge question and initial thoughts by journaling your responses. You will be asked to reflect on these responses later in the Wrap-Up & Assessment sections.

"The bar on the left-hand side of the figure depicts a student who is at the 50th percentile in terms of ability to comprehend the subject matter taught in school, with no direct vocabulary instruction. The bar on the right-hand side shows the comprehension level of the same student after specific content-area terms have been taught in a specific way" (Marzano & Pickering, 2016). 


Students need to be able to read increasingly complex text to be prepared for the demands of future endeavors in college, career, and life (CCSSI, 2016). Specifically, students need to be able to read and interpret the meanings of academic vocabulary within text. CCSSI suggests that students should grow their vocabulary through conversations, direct instruction, and reading (2016). According to Common Core State Standards Initiative (CCSSI) students must be prepared for the demands of college- and career-level reading upon graduating from high school (2016). 

How does the teacher create an environment that is conducive for preparing her student to be able to use a wide range of strategies to comprehend, interpret, and evaluate texts as they interact with unfamiliar vocabulary words? 

Initial Thoughts 

What does it mean to teach academic vocabulary? How can you provide a classroom environment that is rich with instructional strategies that help students build vocabulary knowledge? What vocabulary strategies prepare students to read, interpret, analyze, and comprehend complex text? How do your instructional plans help students develop their academic language abilities? How do your assessments help you distinguish between students’ academic language development and their content understanding? How are your activities and assessments appropriate for the variety of language development needs of your students?

Self-Assessment of Vocabulary Instruction

Click the link below to complete a self-assessment of your current practice in vocabulary instruction. You will be given statements in which you will indicate your satisfaction with each. Do NOT complete the Ideas for Improvement section of the assessment. You will complete this section at the conclusion of the module. After completing the self-assessment, click Next and use your score to determine where to begin in the Perspectives & Resources section of the module.



Common Core State Standards Initiative. (2016). Developmental Process. Retrieved from 

Marzano, R. J., and Pickering, D. J. (2016). Building Academic Vocabulary Teacher’s Manual. Retrieved July 15, 2016, from