Academic Vocabulary Strategies Module

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Wrap Up

The purpose of this module was to provide you with the knowledge and strategies to create a rich academic vocabulary environment for students. The module addressed the importance of students being able to read, interpret, and analyze vocabulary in context, as they will encounter many academic words in complex texts across the curriculum. The term academic vocabulary was defined, and the module provided an explanation of tiered vocabulary. Following this, the module provided various research-based strategies including Marzano's 6 Step Process. The module concluded with information related to planning for vocabulary instruction. 

Now that you have completed the module, take a moment to reflect on your responses in the Initial Thoughts section and answer the following questions? 

What do you now know about academic vocabulary that you did not know before completing the module?

How has your understanding of vocabulary instruction changed?  

Do you feel prepared to plan and implement effective vocabulary instruction? Why?


According to Earl (2013), "Effective assessment empowers students to ask reflective questions and consider a range of strategies for learning and for acting" (p. 28). Below are forms of assessment that will require you to reflect on and apply your knowledge of academic vocabulary instruction gained from the module.   

1) Reflective Questions

How do you model the use of academic language during your instruction? 

After your instruction, how do students demonstrate their level of comprehension of academic vocabulary? 

How do you observe your students’ use/understanding of academic language when they are engaged in peer or group activities?

2) Post Self-Assessment

“Like any other complex skill, self-evaluation is hard work that requires commitment and practice to become automatic. This usually necessitates trying something repeatedly, working at it, feeling uncomfortable for a while, and experiencing new responses” (Earl, 2013, p. 116). With this in mind, return to the self-assessment you completed at the beginning of the module. Using your new knowledge, indicate how you plan to improve the areas in which you were not satisfied. 

Post Self-Assessment

3) Peer Observation Tool

 According to Timperley (as cited by Earl, 2013), "Teachers frame their learning by identifying goals for both [themselves and students]; they create partnerships with those with expertise to ensure their learning is focused and achieves desired goals; and they generate information about the progress they are making so that they can monitor and adjust their learning" (p. 129). Based on this, after identifying ideas for improvement, use the resources provided below (seen previously in Level 3) to plan a future lesson incorporating a focus on academic vocabulary.  Refer to particular strategies and resources found in the module to plan student learning activities and opportunities for formative assessment to guide instruction.  After you have created your lesson, use the Peer Observation Tool. The tool consists of four parts which are to be used before, during, and after vocabulary instruction. They include the following: 1) pre-observation goal setting, 2) classroom observation, 2) teacher reflection, and 3) observation review and improvement plan.

Power Standards Unwrapping Template

Marzano's Planning Tool

Important Points to Remember

Vocabulary Rubric

Peer Observation Tool


Earl, L. M. (2013). Assessment as learning: Using classroom assessment to maximize student learning. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.