Flo-Joe for Cambridge English Exams

Cambridge English: First

Practise the specific areas of language that feature in the Open Cloze task in the FCE Use of English paper.

FCE Word Formation

Video tutorial

Part 3 of the FCE Reading and Use of English Paper is called 'Word Formation'. Watch our short, 5 minute video explaining this task. Please note that reference to the 'new' exam format relates to the update that took place in 2015.



In this video we’re looking at Part 3 of the Reading and Use of English Paper - Word Formation. Here’s an example Word Formation task which appears in the FCE handbook - which you can download from the Cambridge English website. The task consists of a short text with 8 gaps - with an additional gap as the example at the beginning. The candidate has to complete each gap with the correct form of the stem word that appears in CAPITALS at the end of the line. In the example, the stem word is 'common' and the correct form is shown as 'commonly'.

So, Part 3 tests your knowledge of the way words are formed in English, including the use of prefixes and suffixes, and any spelling rules associated with these changes. Let's try some examples.

Nouns from verbs
The stem - given- word could be a verb and the required word to fill the gap might be a noun. Nouns are often formed with a suffix such as 'ment', 'ion', 'ness', 'ence' ect. What are the noun forms of these verbs? The answers will appear in a few seconds.

Adjectives from nouns
The required word will often be an adjective and you'll sometimes need to identify the correct suffix, for example, 'like', 'ous', 'ful'. What are the adjective forms of these nouns?

Forming opposites
We often use prefixes to create the opposite form of adjectives. Some common prefixes include 'im', 'in', 'un' , 'dis'. What are the opposites of these adjectives?

Exam tips
Here are some tips for this part of the exam. As always, read the complete text first to get a global understanding of the content.

Examine the sentence structure to identify the part of speech required, such as a noun, verb, adjective or adverb.

Use your understanding of the context to decide if the missing word is positive or negative.

That’s the end of this video. If you’d like further practice in the new FCE exam visit the Flo-Joe website at www.flo-joe.co.uk.


Practice Word Formation exercises using the structures listed above:

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