Last week we rolled out some changes that affected how Vocabulary.com users can learn words from Vocabulary Lists. The changes involved integrating your progress on words in a list with your overall progress on Vocabulary.com. The upside to these changes is that progress toward word mastery is uniform across the site, whether you learn words from lists or from the Vocabulary.com homepage.
But there was a downside as well, as many devoted Vocabularians let us know. The "classic" experience of list learning, which many of you had come to know and love, was lost in the process, with no way of practicing the words on a list independent of progress on those words on Vocabulary.com overall.
Recognizing the concerns over losing this functionality, we fashioned a solution that represents the best of both worlds: you will still be able to practice a vocabulary list as before, but you will also have the option of adding those words to your comprehensive Vocabulary.com learning program.
Now when you go to a word list, you will see a "Practice" tab. Selecting this will launch a word-learning activity that works in the "classic" way. You can answer questions on the words on the list and complete the activity as before, and you won’t be asked about any words that are not on the list you’re practicing. (The only exception is if there are less than ten learnable words on the list — then the practice session will be filled out with some other words.)
If, however, you would prefer to add the words on the list to your overall gameplay on Vocabulary.com, click "Learn This List" in the top right of the list page. We will then prioritize those words in your learning queue, making sure you get asked questions on them. You can choose to add words from as many lists as you like, from lists of any size you like, and they will all go into your customized learning program. If you want to remove those words from your learning queue, you can choose "Stop Learning This List" and you won't see any words from the list except for the ones you've already made progress on.
Now that the two options are available for learning lists, give them both a try to see which one better suits your needs. Teachers may want to use the "Practice" activity to allow students to work through a shorter list without having to master all the words on the list. But for learners interested in studying an extensive list or a collection of different lists, adding words to the learning program will provide an adaptive benefit: we will select questions that are most appropriate to your level, based on your previous performance on those words and what we know about how millions of users have answered questions in the past.
We greatly value all of the constructive feedback that we received about the recent changes, and we want you to know that we will continue to incorporate your feedback into improving Vocabulary.com for all users. These changes are laying the groundwork for a lot of exciting developments in the future, so stay tuned for more Vocabulary.com goodness!