When a Bug is Not a Bug: an Introduction to the Computer Science Academic Vocabulary List

Published In

Journal of English for Academic Purposes

Document Type


Publication Date



This article presents the Computer Science Academic Vocabulary List (CSAVL), a pedagogical tool intended for use by English-for-specific-purpose educators and material developers. A 3.5-million-word corpus of academic computer science texts was developed in order to produce the CSAVL. The CSAVL draws from the improved methodologies used in the creation of recent lemma-based word lists such as the Academic Vocabulary List (AVL) (Gardner & Davies, 2014) and the Medical Academic Vocabulary List (MAVL) (Lei & Liu, 2016), which take into account the discipline-specific meanings of academic vocabulary. The CSAVL provides specific information for each entry, including part of speech and CS-specific meanings in order to provide users with clues as to how each item is used within the context of academic CS. Based on the analyses performed in this study, the CSAVL was found to be a more efficient tool for reaching an minimal level of academic CS reading comprehension than the Academic Word List (AWL) (Coxhead, 2000), or the combination of the AWL with the Computer Science Word List (CSWL) (Minshall, 2013).


© 2021 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.



Persistent Identifier