Another week, another episode of Everyday English with E2! Each week we focus on English grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation and spelling. This week we are learning new vocabulary by learning about the root word ‘decide’.

Remember: If you need extra practice with your English grammar you can do this by going to


One of the biggest questions we get at E2 is ‘how can I improve my vocabulary?’ and we get this from everyone! Beginners, intermediates, OET and IELTS students, and even students doing a master’s degree! But did you know that sometimes one single word can be slightly changed to mean something slightly different? You don’t have to learn a new word to improve your vocabulary; just slightly modify one of the words you already use! 

Hello and welcome back to another episode of Everyday English with E2. My name is Mark. Each week, we focus on English grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation or spelling, and this week it’s all about vocabulary. So many students think they need to learn new words to improve their English. And they’re not wrong. New words are great! But you’d be surprised how much easier and more meaningful it can be if you just learn slightly different words that come from the same ROOT word.

But before we get going and learn some slick new vocabulary, remember that you can check out anytime if you want to improve your fundamental English. It’s free to sign up! Just click the link below this podcast.

Ok, so I’m going to tell you a secret. The best resource for learning a language is totally free! Shhhh… don’t tell anyone I told you this, and please don’t tell my boss I told you this. You want to check the Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English online at www.ldoceonline.dom. Or if that’s too hard to remember, type in longman dictionary into google and you’ll get it. You don’t have to do it now, but be sure to check it out after you listen to this podcast.

When you get to the Longman Dictionary website, at the top, you’ll see you can type in the word you want. So here’s your first word: Decide. Like, “I decided to quit my job last week.”

Now, first of all, you can see that the ‘decide’ page has a definition and a bunch of examples that are common ways to use the word decide! There’s “You must decide for yourself” or “I can’t decide whether I like him or not”. If you scroll down, you can see more examples and even synonyms and similar words you can use. So for that reason alone, my students love this website. BUT what I want you to see is the word family. It’s at the top of the page. I see a list of words like: decision, INdecision, decided, UNdecided, decisive and INdecisive. And more!

So, click on one of these words, and you’ll go to a new page. I’m going to check out the word ‘decisive’. And here I can see the definition: decisive: ‘someone who is good at making decisions” AND “an event that has a big impact on the way something happens” some examples of the word decisive. “I wish I were more decisive.” “This country needs decisive leadership.” “The answer was a decisive ‘no.’” or “we need to take decisive action.” 

You can also make your own personal sentences with this: “When I was young I wasn’t very decisive.” or “When I was young, I was very indecisive.” if I want to use the negative form. Or simply, “I need to be more decisive.” I know I have this problem sometimes.

Pretty cool, huh? It’s a new word. It’s easy to understand because you already know the word ‘decide’ or ‘decision’.

Let’s try another. Check out the word ‘undecided’. It’s a great adjective and there’s a great example. “I’m still undecided about how I’ll vote.”

So if someone asks you, “Have you chosen which job or school you’ll pick?” You can respond, “no. I’m still undecided.”

And if you want more examples, just keep looking at the page!

Ok, one last one. “Decisively” on this page I can find more examples, and oh, here’s a great sentence. “We have failed to act decisively.” So advanced topic, maybe on an English speaking test, I get asked, ‘what should governments do if they want the people to trust them?” I might reply with. “They must act decisively. If they do not, other countries or criminal organisations may take advantage of them. The more decisively a government acts, the more they can protect their citizens.” 

Nice! You’d get a great score for that!

I hope you enjoyed learning a fun and awesome way to improve your vocabulary! And if you want to continue to develop your vocabulary or you just want to brush up on your grammar, or pronunciation, make sure you head to and sign up for our free online courses.

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@e2english Hi! I’m Louisa, a new presenter here at E2. Practise your English with me! #duet #learnenglish ♬ original sound – E2English