Conflict’ means disagreement or argument between people, groups or countries. In the early 1400s it meant ‘armed battle’ (fighting with weapons). Later it came to mean ‘struggle’ or ‘quarrel.’ The phrase ‘a conflict of interest’ was first used in 1743.


  • A lot of conflicts that arise in homes are due to lack of time and lack of money.
  • The 1960s in the west was a time of great political and social conflict.
  • Marriage Counselors specialise in conflict resolution.
  • She didn’t know whether to go with her husband or with her family; she was conflicted.

Collocations: When you learn new vocab, make sure that you note collocations too. For this group of words some collocations are:
capacity of, capacity to
challenge to, challenge of, challenged by, a challenging time
a clause with
compound interest, problems are compounded by, to compound the problem
conflict between, in conflict with, conflicting opinions, conflicted by, conflict resolution

Check the meanings of the words if you don’t already know them. Check the meanings of the various forms as sometimes they are different. You can check them at Time4english by clicking the words (

Academic Word List (50)

Vocabulary for IELTS – Academic Word List 50

Complete the sentences below with the correct word and the correct form of the word.

  1. Many people are _______________ about issues of sexuality. (conflict, capacity )
  2. Studying in a new country can be quite _______________. (conflict, challenge)
  3. The arena was at full ______________ . (challenge, capacity)
  4. Studying abroad is challenging, but a _______________ problem can be the use of a second language. (compound, clause)
  5. Insurance forms have so many _______________ and so much fine print that you never really know what you are signing. (clause, compound)

Answers (in the wrong order)
1. conflicted   5. clauses   2. challenging   3. capacity    4. compounding

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