Quick Quiz: Vocabulary.com assigns you harder or easier words…

A) Based on information you input about your grade in school or education level.
B) By assessing your performance and then personalizing your learning experience based on what it knows about you.

If you chose Answer B, you're right! Whether you're playing the App or online, Vocabulary.com uses an adaptive algorithm to tailor a learning experience unique to each player.

Want to see how adaptive learning in action? Follow along with two users' very different experiences in opening play.


Player #1 is an English PhD who just downloaded the Vocabulary.com App after reading the Fast Company review that called it a good-for-you addiction to replace Candy Crush.

The first question Player #1 sees is on scared, and after getting it right, it seems that she cannot miss a word, answering fifteen questions correctly in a row. Our game quickly determines she is a player with an advanced vocabulary. By the end of Round 1, she's moved from scared to words like embarrassed and solution

And only six questions into Round 2, the game is assessing her on defamedecimate, and bonhomie.

The game will continue to fine-tune its understanding of her vocabulary level, while seeking out and pushing her to learn words she's doesn't already know.


Player #2 is having a different experience. An ELL student whose friends recommended the app as a great way to learn English, he's missing questions on psychological, congratulations and more — all within his first round of play. 

The game quickly responds. In Round 2, he's already working on basic words he needs to know such as trophy, surgery, and shiny (and feeling more successful). The game will stick with him on the words he is missing, teaching him through successive questions that are rich in context clues and sure to help him learn.

If he plays the game every day, he won't have too much longer to wait until he's mastered the words he missed in that first round of play, and he'll be on track toward even more.

If you're a teacher, the presence of this adaptive learning system means word learning on Vocabulary.com is a quick and easy way to ensure your students receive differentiated vocabulary instruction. If you're here just for fun, it means word learning on Vocabulary.com will never get boring by being too easy or too hard. 

Learn about how this works by watching a short video introducing the Vocabulary.com game.