French Writing Resources

WordReference

wordreference.com

Quick Pros-

  • really fast, it’s easy to load and navigate between pages
  • offers Collins Dictionary entries
  • includes a handy French verb conjugator

Quick Cons-

  • not overly detailed, basic translations
  • lots of neat, but essentially useless features- for French writing at least
  • lack of French nuance in entries

The Story-
WordReference is unbelievably speedy, which is nice, but the quality of information offered is not very nuanced: WordReference entries only offer a translation with a basic definition in French. However, depending on the word, WordReference entries display compound forms and corresponding translations in French. For example, if you search “walking”, you also get translations for “walking distance”, “walking frame”, etc. WordReference also offers sentence examples both in English and in French. For certain words, a “Collins” tab offers the Collins entry of the word. Finally, as you scroll through an entry with your mouse, lines of text are highlighted, making it very easy to zone in specific information. Watch out! The “in context” tab is not what it sounds like; it does not offer examples of a word or a phrase in different contexts. The tab merely brings you to an English google search of the term. This is a cool feature, but likely not overly useful for French studies. As well, the image tab, as it uses Google Image, skews results: for the term “walk-over” the tab shows a bunch of shoes from the company “Walk-Over”. They were really nice shoes, but they do not have much to do with the definition of the word. Another interesting-although not conducive to French studies-feature is that, at the top of the entries, you can hear the pronunciation of the English term in different accents. These features reveal that WordReference is based in the English language, as such, its entries may be lacking in some French language nuance: the entry for “hot” displays tons of English nuance for this term, but I couldn’t find any information about the French nuances of “etre chaud” vs. “avoir chaud”. Finally, there is a feature of wordreference that is really useful for French studies: a detailed and easily readable French verb conjugator.

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One comment on “WordReference

  1. Wotiso
    April 7, 2015

    SpanishDict is good for those looking at Spanish, good translation, sound and sound grammar

    Like

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This entry was posted on November 26, 2014 by in Bilingual Dictionary, Grammar and tagged , , , , , , , , .
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