In this section, you can explore prepositions and the words that usually precede them, which it may be helpful for you to memorise. Under each entry, most of the vocabulary has been selected because of its high frequency in academic English, based on the Academic Word List. For more information about the Academic Word List, and the work of Avril Coxhead in compiling it, follow the link to Sandra Haywood’s Academic Vocabulary website at the University of Nottingham.

Important note: other prepositions may be possible with the words in the lists, sometimes with a different meaning e.g.:

“known to somebody” = for sb. to be aware of sth., but “known by somebody” = for sth. to be understood by/comprehended by sb.; sometimes when combined with a different kind of noun e.g. “by somebody” = the agent, but “for something/body” = purpose; and “of somebody“= possession;
or if a word is followed by a preposition before a noun e.g “in public” or “in class”; or a time expression e.g. “in the second semester”, “for a fortnight” ; or is followed by a prepositional phrase e.g. “as a result of sth.”

For more comprehensive information about possible word and preposition combinations, it is necessary to look up the individual word in a good dictionary, such as The Macmillan Online Dictionary

(sb. = somebody and sth. = something).

BY

(to be) allocated by sb. for sth.

an analysis by sb. of sth.

(to be) collated by sb.

(to be) evaluated by sb. for sth/sb.

(to be) followed by sb./sth.

(to be) implemented by sb.

(to be) known by sb.

(to be) motivated by sb./sth.

to offset (sth.) by sth.

(to be) preceded by sb./sth.

a simulation by sb. of sth.

the survival by sb.

(to be) triggered by sb./sth.

OF

an analysis of sth. by sb.

an awareness of sth.

the commitment of sb. to sth./sb.

to consist of sth.

the function of

the impact of sth. on sth./sb

an implication of sth. for sth./sb.

the independence of sb./sth. from sb./sth.

the justification of sth./sb.

the renovation of sth.

TO

(to be) analogous to sth.

a commitment to sth./sb.

the commitment of sb. to sth./sb.

(to be) equivalent to sth.

(to be) external to sth.

(to be) fundamental to sth.

(to be) grateful to sb. for sth.

(to be) identical to sth./sb.

(to be) inherent to sth.

(to be) intrinsic to sth.

(to be) known to sb.

opposition to sth. by sb.

(to be) significant to sb.

(to be) specific to sth. (“unique” to)

ON

an authority on

an emphasis on sth.

to focus/a focus on sth./sb.

information on sth.

to impact / an impact on sth./sb. of sth.

(to be) imposed on sth./sb. by sb.

to lecture / a lecture on sth. by sb.

a perspective on sth. of sb.

(to be) placed on sth./sb.

(to do) research [noun] on sth.
(but, to research [verb] sth. = no preposition).

statistics on sth.

a thesis on sth.

AGAINST

to campaign / a campaign against sb./sth.

to discriminate against sb.

discrimination against sb. by sb.

to offset (sth.) against sth.

FROM

(to be) exempt from sth.

(to be) obtained from sb./sth

(to be) sought from sb./sth.

an injury from sth.

WITH

(to be) associated with sth./sb.

to coincide with sth.

(to be) compared / a comparison with sth.

(to be) compatible with sth./sb.

(to be) concurrent with sth.

(to be) consistent with sth.

(to be) familiar with sth.

to interact with sth./sb.

to register with sth./sb.

IN

an improvement in sth.

(to be) inherent in sth.

to invest in sth./sb.

(to be) involved in sth.

to occur in sth.

to participate in sth.

proficiency in sth.

(to be) resident [adjective] in a place.
(but a resident [noun] of somewhere)

a revolution in sth.

(to be) significant in sth.

ABOUT

a conference about sth.

data about sth.

information about sth.

to know about sth.

to lecture /a lecture about sth. by sb.

research [noun] about sth.
(but to research [verb] sth. = no preposition )

statistics about sth.

tension about sth.

a theory about sth./sb.

a thesis about sth.

BETWEEN

a comparison between 2 or more things

a connection between 2 or more things

a contrast between 2 or more things

differentiation between 2 or more things

to discriminate between 2 or more things

a distinction between 2 or more things

tension between 2 or more things

FOR

(to be) appropriate for sb./sth.

to campaign / a campaign for sb./sth.

a capacity for sth.

compensation for sth./sb.

criterion / criteria for sth.

data for sth.

(to be) evaluated by sb. for sth/sb.

an incentive for sb./sth.

justification for sth.

statistics for sth.

AS

(to be) considered as

(to be) regarded as

(to be) perceived as

(to be) published as

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