Frequency Level Checker

What is it?
What does it do?
How do you use it?

For a fuller explanation of information found on the results page see:

what the charts tell you
word frequency levels and word families
alterations to lists

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◆What is it?

The Frequency Level Checker is an on-line tool to help language teachers quickly check the number and percentages of words in a particular text that come from different word frequency levels of English.

This tool can be used to analyze the vocabulary level of a text to see whether it is appropriate for a certain group of learners.  It can also be used to predict what words might cause difficulty for a certain group of learners. It can be used to make study materials for learners.

◆What does it do?

The Frequency Level Checker divides and counts the words in a text into four word frequency groups, here referred to as "levels." There are separate groups for punctuation and numbers.

Level 1 contains the most frequent 1000 words of English and their word families.
Level 2 contains the second most frequent 1000 words and families.
Level 3 contains roughly 800 of the most frequent words found in secondary and university level reading material, but does not include any words from Levels 1 and 2.
Outside Levels contains all the words outside the 3 frequency levels mentioned above. Words in this group are NOT divided into word families.
Symbols contains punctuation and some program keys, for example "enter key".
Numbers are shown separately at the end of the list.

(For the source of words in Levels 1, 2, and 3, see Acknowledgments.)

◆How do you use FLC?

1. Text box page
Paste in text from an Internet source or text created on a word processor, or type it in yourself. To get the best results for a text from a word processor, use plain ASCII text.

2. Color-coding the text
You can choose to color-code words found in the different levels or use the default settings.  The color-coded words will appear on the results page. The default settings are red for Levels 3 and Outside Levels, and black for Levels 1, 2, Symbols, and Numbers. To change any of these colors, use the options below the text box before clicking Enter. If white is chosen, words will appear as blank spaces on the results page.

3. Click Enter
The text will be sent for processing. The results page will appear shortly.

4. The results page gives you:
    1. The full text with words color-coded with either the default settings or settings of your choice.
    2. A list to the right of the text with all words in the text divided into one of the four word frequency levels explained above.
    3. Two charts at the bottom of the page showing the number and percentage of the different word counts.

Note: Clicking on a word in the text will automatically bring that word to the top of the word list to the right.  This makes it easy to check how many times a certain word appears in the text and whether any other family members appear.

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The word lists for Levels 1 and 2 are based on the General Service List of
English Words by Michael West. Level 3 is the Academic Word List developed by Averil Coxhead. (For more on the lists see: Permission was kindly granted for the use of these word lists on this site. Maeda has made alterations to the original lists, briefly explained in alterations to lists.

This Website was developed with a grant from Tokyo International University, Japan, in collaboration with Y. Kawamura and K. Kaneniwa. Technical support was provided by Y. Hobara and R. Hobara.

The Japanese Language Reading Tutorial System: Reading Tutor served as a guide for this website.

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Comments on this site or questions can be sent to:
Joyce Maeda
Tokyo International University
1-13-1 Matoba Kita, Kawagoe-shi, Japan 350-1197