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Developing literacy skills with the Ask Oxford website

Teaching and Learning Resources , Teacher Training , Literacy
Skills for Life Network

A look at the range of activities to support the development of word level skills on this dictionary based website

The Ask Oxford website at is managed by Oxford University Press and offers a range of web based activities based around words. You’ll find:

a word of the day, with origins and derivations. You can also opt to receive the Word of the Day be email.

a quote of the day

an ask the experts section, with a database of some of the questions sent in to the Oxford Word and Language Service team. If you have a fairly broad question on grammar, usage, or words then it will most likely be answered here. You can search by category:

  • Dictionaries
  • Usage
  • Grammar
  • Words
  • Spelling
  • Word Origins
  • Symbols
  • Other Things
  • The English Language


and there’s also a list of popular questions, such as ‘What is the longest English word?’ and ‘How many words are there in the English language?’ (at least a quarter of a million, it seems!). If, after browsing the FAQs, you still can’t find the answer to your question, you can send your query to the Oxford Word and Language Service (OWLS).


The site could be useful both for helping learners develop word level skills and also to support the personal literacy skills aspect of the Level 4 Subject Specialist qualifications.


Happy surfing!



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