The Applied Linguistics Academic Word List (ALAWL)
The creation of a domain-specific word list for applied linguistics
Because specialized vocabulary knowledge is an essential component of disciplinary expertise, scholars in many domains, such as agriculture, economics, and medicine, have developed robust, register-specific word lists to supplement general service and academic word lists. However, similar lists for applied linguistics are less robust and may provide superficial vocabulary options. We developed an applied linguistics academic word list (ALAWL) of 664 words by sampling more than 48 million tokens taken from academic articles in 12 leading applied linguistics journals from the years 2012 to 2021. Our list covers 5.34% of words in a reference corpus of nearly 3 million words and, when combined with the new general service list and new academic word list, provides greater coverage than earlier attempts at such a list, accounting for 93.49% of words in the corpus. We describe our methods and present the ALAWL as an option for learners and educators in the field of applied linguistics and TESOL.