How Many Words Do We Know? Practical Estimates of Vocabulary Size Dependent on Word Definition, the Degree of Language Input and the Participant’s Age

@inproceedings{Brysbaert2016HowMW,
  title={How Many Words Do We Know? Practical Estimates of Vocabulary Size Dependent on Word Definition, the Degree of Language Input and the Participant’s Age},
  author={Marc Brysbaert and Micha{\"e}l A. Stevens and Paweł Mandera and Emmanuel Keuleers},
  booktitle={Front. Psychol.},
  year={2016}
}
Based on an analysis of the literature and a large scale crowdsourcing experiment, we estimate that an average 20-year-old native speaker of American English knows 42,000 lemmas and 4,200 non-transparent multiword expressions, derived from 11,100 word families. The numbers range from 27,000 lemmas for the lowest 5% to 52,000 for the highest 5%. Between the ages of 20 and 60, the average person learns 6,000 extra lemmas or about one new lemma every 2 days. The knowledge of the words can be as… CONTINUE READING
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