Five Academic Vocabulary Words to Impress your Professor

Five Academic Vocabulary Words to Impress your Professor


Are you thinking about attending university in the U.S.? CISL offers students the Academic Year Abroad Program, where students first attend CISL classes and perfect their English before taking one semester of classes at community college, and Academic Pathways, where students attend college or university directly after CISL (without taking the TOEFL). After this memorable experience, you will have excellent English skills and knowledge of life in the American college classroom. How exciting! To help you prepare, we have five academic vocabulary words you need to know in order to impress your professors. Use these in class discussions, incorporate them into your presentations or essays, and watch your marks soar!

Five academic vocabulary words to impress your professor

  • Ameliorate
  • Banal
  • Cadre
  • Didactic
  • Exiguous


  • Definition: To make or grow better.
  • Example: Several strategies have been implemented in order to ameliorate environmental pollution; in this essay, I will discuss three of these strategies and analyze the effectiveness of each.


  • Definition: Commonplace; trivial.
  • Example: I found his essay to be boring and full of banal arguments that did not convince me of his thesis statement.



  • Definition: A core or nucleus of trained or otherwise qualified personnel around which an organization is formed.
  • Example: After university, it is my hope to join a cadre of lawyers working together to fight environmental pollution caused by big businesses.


  • Definition: Conveying instruction; teaching some moral lesson.
  • Example: Bill Bryson’s didactic novels are entertaining and educational.


  • Definition: Extremely scanty (bare).
  • Example: The exiguous research on this topic made it difficult to write my essay, but I think I did a good job.

Would you like to learn more academic English words? Check out this awesome list of Vocabulary and Lexical Resources from IELTS Podcast.

Come study with us! Contact CISL to learn more about our Academic Year Abroad Program and Academic Pathways Program.