Advanced learner's dictionary
The advanced learner's dictionary is the most common type of monolingual learner's dictionary, that is, a dictionary written for someone who is learning a foreign language and who has a proficiency level of B2 or above according to the Common European Framework. It differs from a bilingual or translation dictionary, on the one hand, and a standard dictionary written for native speakers or linguistic scholars, on the other.
Although advanced learner's dictionaries have been produced for learners of several languages (including Chinese, Dutch, German, and Spanish) the majority are written for learners of English.
The best-known advanced learner's dictionaries are:
- Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary, first published in 1948
- Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English, first published in 1978
- Collins Cobuild English Dictionary, first published in 1987 and now published as Collins COBUILD Advanced Learner’s Dictionary
- Cambridge International Dictionary of English, first published in 1995 and now published as Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary
- Macmillan English Dictionary for Advanced Learners, first published in 2002
- Merriam-Webster's Advanced Learner's English Dictionary, first published in 2008
Note: Macmillan recently announced that the dictionary would no longer be available in print. So there are four popular learner's dictionaries for British English that are available in print (MW is only for American English).
Online dictionary resources also provide attractive support to advanced learners. The Open Dictionary of English is specifically designed to serve as a learner's dictionary. Visitors can register for free, adaptive tutoring, which seamlessly integrates with the dictionary.
Wordnik and Wikipedia's own Wiktionary are other useful resources to advanced learners. Due to their collaborative nature, they produce definitions and sample sentences that are more diverse and written in popular terms, which helps understanding for an English language learner.