Top Tips for IELTS

Internal – word of the day

Today’s word from the Academic Word List is



The main forms of this word are internal, internalise and internally

One invention that changed the world was of course the internal combustion engine. Beyond that, the word is also used extensively in medicine:

internal medicine/injury/bleeding

If you watch enough bad detective films – especially set in the USA – you will be familiar with the internal affairs department (IA), which investigates cops who may have committed illegalities. This does have a more general use in politics/business: companies or countries may not want people to become involved in their internal affairs.

Other common collocations include:

internal and external

internal communications (ie memos)

the internal market (often meaning much the same as the domestic market)

something may be purely internal (meaning that it is of little or no interest to outsiders)

countries and organisations may be concerned with internal security

Internalise tends to have a fairly precise meaning and is used to talk about knowledge, beliefs or attitudes that have been fully understood and become part of you:

An important part of the language learning process is the internalisation of new vocabulary; one way to achieve this is by writing sentences using those words in a way that is meaningful for you


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