Study Skills pp 181-208 | Cite as

Reference Section

  • Kate Williams
Part of the Macmillan Law Masters book series


The first part of this section follows from ‘Why use a dictionary?’ on P. 54 Chapter 3. The first six headings below correspond to the headings there. You can use a dictionary to:
  1. 1.

    Check the meanings of words

    ‘Spurious’, ‘judicial’, ‘precedent’ are words you might have checked. You may know the meaning of the last one but want to know what it means in this legal context.

  2. 2.

    Check the meaning of idiomatic expressions

    Look up ‘lip-service’.

  3. 3.

    Check how to pronounce a word

    How do you pronounce ‘spurious’? Compare the way this word is marked with ‘spurn’, ‘sputnick’ and ‘sputter’ further down the page.

  4. 4.

    Find out what a familiar word means when it’s used in an unfamiliar way

    Look up ‘distinguished’. What does it mean here?

  5. 5.

    Find out what part of speech a word is

    This is not just for grammar buffs but can help you to establish meaning and pronunciation:

    ‘distinguished’ as in a ‘a distinguished visitor’ is an adjective describing the noun ‘visitor’.



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© Kate Williams 1989

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  • Kate Williams

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