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HomeIELTS VocabularyTypes of collocations in the English language

Types of collocations in the English language

There are seven types of collocations in the English language. They are: 

  • Adverb + Adjective
  • Adjective + Noun
  • Noun + Noun
  • Noun + Verb
  • Verb + Noun
  • Verb + Preposition
  • Verb + Adverb 

There are various types of collocations with regard to how they are structured. To avoid confusion, it is a must that you familiarize yourself with each kind. 

Here are the different types of collocations with examples. 

Adverb + Adjective 

CollocationsExample Sentences
conveniently located“The shop was conveniently located across a university.” 
deeply offended“He looks deeply offended by her remarks.”
desperately eager“The police were desperately eager to solve the case.”
eternally grateful“She is eternally grateful to her neighbors for helping her put off the fire.”
fully aware“She was fully aware that she was speeding.” 
highly unusual“It was highly unusual for him to be late for work.” 
perfectly normal“The fact that she got high marks in the exam is perfectly normal.” 
richly decorated “The lawn is richly decorated for tonight’s party.”
totally unbelievable“I find her story totally unbelievable.” 
utterly stupid“That is such an utterly stupid thing to do!”

Adjective + Noun

CollocationsExample Sentences
big disappointment“The son thought he was a big disappointment to his parents after failing the exam.” 
deep sleep“He went into a deep sleep after the nurse injected him with tranquilizers.” 
heavy traffic“I will be late for the meeting because of the heavy traffic.” 
irresistible food“The new restaurant offers irresistible food.” 
joint account“The couple decided to sign up for a joint account.” 
loud music“He was not able to focus on his studies because of the loud music from the adjacent room.”  
maiden voyage“The Titanic sank on its maiden voyage.”  
rich history“China is a country known for its rich history.” 
strong accent“I can’t barely understand what she was saying because of her strong accent.”
stunning view“The tourists were amazed by the stunning view.” 

Noun + Noun

CollocationsExample Sentences
account executive“He works as an account executive at the city’s largest shopping center.” 
action movie“My dad is fond of watching action movies.” 
beauty parlor“I need to go to the beauty parlor for a manicure.”
cable car“He has never been in a cable car so he was excited.” 
debit card“I had to use my debit card because I ran out of cash.” 
election fraud“The senator was being accused of election fraud.” 
group dynamics“The group dynamics of the team is admirable.” 
jury system“We trust that the jury system will give the right verdict.” 
panic attack“She was experiencing panic attacks the night she was brought to the hospital.”
search warrant“The police were not able to get into the property because they do not have a search warrant.” 

Noun + Verb

CollocationsExample Sentences
accident takes place“An accident took place on the highway last night.”
battery drains“My phone’s battery drains easily; I need a new one.” 
bee stings“The bee stung my hand and now it’s swollen.” 
bomb explodes“The bomb exploded and left at least four people injured.” 
car crashes“We saw a car crashing into a lamppost last night.” 
crisis developsCrisis develops every now and then, but the company has always been prepared.” 
dog barks“I was not able to sleep well last night because of the dog’s barking.”
plane takes off“He closed his eyes and hoped to fall asleep as the plane took off.” 
time runs out“She answered the exam as best as she could as the time ran out.” 
water drips“The sound of the water dripping annoys her.” 

Verb + Noun

CollocationsExample Sentences
break the law“You will be sentenced to jail if you break the law.” 
catch a cold“My mom told me not to play in the rain because I might catch a cold.” 
come to a decision“We need to come to a decision by tomorrow.”
do your bestDo your best on your exams.”
get a job“She needs to get a job to support her studies.”
have a drink“Would you like to have a drink?”
make money“He makes money by selling properties.” 
pay attention“You need to pay attention to what the teacher is explaining.” 
save energy“He needed to save his energy for the match later that night.”
take notes“He took notes as he listened to the professor.” 

Verb + Preposition

CollocationsExample Sentences
agree with“I totally agree with you; that is such an excellent idea.”
believe in“You need to believe in yourself.” 
concentrate on“She needs to concentrate on improving her grades.” 
confess to“The man confessed to robbing the bank and was sentenced to five years in prison.”
get rid of“You need to declutter to get rid of things you do not need anymore.” 
give up“She gave up on waiting for the rain to stop.” 
hear from“I haven’t heard from him in a long time.”
recover from“The team captain is still recovering from a knee injury.” 
stare at“She stared at the old lady across her figuring where she knew her from.” 
wait for“I need to wait for my parents before I can leave.” 

Adverb + Verb (Verb + Adverb)

CollocationsExample Sentences
badly need“She badly needed the money so she asked for help from her friends.” 
distinctly remember“I think I met her at a convention last year; I distinctly remember.” 
firmly believe“The witness firmly believes that the accident was the white car’s fault.”
fully understand “The employee fully understood the contract so she signed it.”
greatly admire“I greatly admire my parents for raising me and my siblings.” 
hotly deny“The officers hotly denied the request of the civilians.”
seriously doubt“I seriously doubt he bought the car himself.” 
sincerely hope“She sincerely hoped that her friend would get better.” 
strongly criticize “The citizens strongly criticized the president for implementing such law.” 
totally agree“The employees totally agree with the manager’s decision.”

Note: Both structures are acceptable. 


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