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Vocabulary, Fall 2009: English Communication for Graduate Students

Instructor: Mr. Michael Krigline, MA

 Kunming Medical University

Click "refresh" in your browser to be sure that you load the most recent version of this page; I may change things before quiz/exam time.

bold (and/or blue) shows one-word synonyms (be sure you know how to spell both words); an asterisk (*) indicates key words (these may change after the first quiz, so check back before the second quiz and before exam time). The Chinese characters were added by my students; if you think a different translation is better, send me a note (see the home page for our address) and I'll ask Chinese friends which is better. I’d also like someone to supply missing translations.

^ = you have seen this vocabulary term before; be sure you understand it!


An English Name can be Super   (some of these will also be on the final exam)

pragmatic: practical (实用的)

to swell: grow quickly (like a wave) (膨胀)

*rite of passage: important event as sb grows up (仪式)

urban: in a city (城市的)

to enroll:sign up to enter (a college, etc) (注册)

routinely: normally (通常)

*to snap up: quickly select or take (急促抓取)

to circulate: to send around (a class, etc) (分发、传阅)

*connotation: the feeling or idea suggested by a word (内容)

Mandarin: the majority “Han” Chinese language (普通话)

sage: sb who is very wise, esp. with traditional wisdom (智者)

astrological: related to the stars and their influence on people (占星术的)

*to adopt: to formally accept sth in a permanent way (eg adopting a child) (收养)

phonetic: related to the sounds of speech (语音的)

pitfalls: hazards, serious problems (like a pit you can fall into!) (陷阱)

quirky: unusual (and often humorous or interesting) (古怪的)

(Chinese) character: a single Chinese pictograph (汉字)

How to increase your metabolism

(next year, add esp and etc)

*metabolism: the chemical processes by which your body changes food into energy (新陈代谢)

to rev up: to increase (esp. to make an engine run faster, i.e., with more revolutions per minute) (增加)

rumors: things people say based on what someone else said, not necessarily based on the truth (谣言)

genetic: related to the part of a cell that controls its characteristics or development(遗传性)

to boost: to increase or lift sth up (提高)

*muscle: part of your body that connects your bones, allows you to move and gives you strength (肌肉)

calories: a unit of measurement for the energy available in food (卡路里,热量值)

*groceries: the food you just bought at a store, esp. bags of such food (杂货)

to conserve: to save (保存)

myths: things that are widely believed (often from ancient times) but not proven to be true (神话)

carbohydrates: a substance that gives your body heat and energy, found in foods such as rice and bread (碳水化合物)

protein: a substance in food needed to make you grow and remain healthy, found in foods such as meat and beans (蛋白质) 


Obesity threatens Chinese people

*obese, obesity: to be so fat that it puts health in danger (肥胖)

nutrition: the content of food from a health point of view (good nutrition means eating the right mix of food to get plenty of vitamins, minerals, fiber, and everything else needed for good health) (营养)

disease: illness (疾病)

diabetes: too much sugar in the blood (糖尿病)

kilogram: a metric unit of weight (公斤)

life expectancy: the length of time sb is expected to live (often expressed as an average for some group of people, people with a certain disease, etc.) (寿命)

*patient: a sick person, under the care of a doctor (病人)

physician: doctor (formal term; be sure you can spell both terms!) (内科医生)

proportion: part of sth, in relation to the whole or to sth else(比例)

respectively: in the same order as what you just mentioned (For boys, 14 percent are obese and 13 percent are overweight, with the proportions for girls nine and 11 percent, respectively. That is 9% obese and 11% overweight) (各自地)

*to indulge: to let yourself have sth you enjoy but (usually) that is bad for you if you get too much (沉溺于)

to be vulnerable to: to be able to be easily harmed or damaged (易受伤害的)

incidence of: occurrence of; number of times sth happens (esp sth bad like disease or crime) (发生率)

onset: start (esp of sth bad like a disease, winter, “old age,” etc.) (开始)

[medical] complications: [countable, plural] unforeseen negative results; additional illnesses while a patient is already sick (并发症)

poverty: being poor (贫穷)

twin: two similar things, children, etc. (孪生的)

*epidemic: a large number of cases of an illness, occurring at the same time (流行病)

*the ___ community: all of the people associated with a certain job (the medical community, the academic community, the business community) (团体)


House, MD (pilot)

*to babble like a baby: to “talk” without making sense (“After taking the medicine, she babbled like a baby for a minute before falling asleep.”)

change--“Do you have change for a dollar?” This means “please give me coins instead of this dollar, so I can buy something from a machine that doesn’t take paper money.”

*“He’s a delinquent.” This means that, as a youth, he broke the law or did socially unacceptable things.

“Good call.” This means “You made the right decision.”

intermittent problem: something that is sometimes wrong or bad, but sometimes fine (“This muscle has an intermittent problem; three times last week it hurt but most of the time it is OK.”)

*to screw up: to make a mistake (see dialog 3)

to trigger a response: the trigger is the “button” you push to make a gun fire, so this is talking about the situation or cause of a response or reaction

to trust sb implicitly: to believe sb completely without doubt (“If I were her student I would trust her implicitly.”)

^allergy/allergic reaction: a condition that makes you ill (or gives you skin problems, etc) because of contact with something your body can’t handle (e.g., an insect bite, oil from some plants, chemicals in the air); when you get sick because of an allergy it is called an “allergic reaction.” (过敏反应)

aneurysm: when a blood vessel (or artery) is filled with too much blood (esp. due to disease)

biopsy: the removal of cells from a body so that they can be examined for disease

*CT/CT scan ( or CAT scan): a device (also process or result) that gives a sectional (3-D) picture of the inside of someone’s body (I believe the letters come from “Computed Tomography”) CT扫描)

coroner: an official whose job is to determine why sb died, using medical tests

*diagnosis/diagnostic/diagnostician: the process and tests used to find out what an illness is (diagnostic is an adj; a diagnostician is a doctor with this specialty) (诊断)

*fatigue: extreme tiredness; a fatigued person is tired a lot (十分疲劳)

^genetic: related to the part of a cell that controls its characteristics or development (遗传性)

HMO: Health Maintenance Organization--an medical organization that provides health care to members under a group insurance plan (often without giving patients many choices)

*hygiene: common practices (such as washing one’s hands and throwing out trash) that make you and your environment clean, esp. to prevent illness (卫生)

*the immune system: immune system: [c] the parts of your body that work together to protect you from disease (免疫系统)

*to inject (into a vein): to put (medicine) into the blood through a needle (注射)

lesion: damage to skin, brain, etc., caused by injury or sickness

MRI: Magnetic Resonance Imaging--a process that creates a picture of the inside of your body, using strong magnetic fields (磁共振)

^nerve: the “wires” inside your body that carry information to and from the brain (神经)

neurocysticercosis: infection of the central nervous system due to tapeworms

neurologist: a doctor whose specialty is the body’s nervous system (network of nerves)

oncology/oncologist: the study of tumors/a specialist in this field (肿瘤/肿瘤学家)

*oxygen: an important element in our air (氧气)

parasite: a plant or animal (e.g., a worm) that can’t live except by being part of another plant or animal (寄生虫)

*sanitary: (adj) describing something that is especially clean or free from infection, bacteria or other unhealthy things; also called “hygienic” (卫生的)

seizure: a short, sudden loss of control of one’s body (often due to illness or a negative reaction to drugs) (癫痫发作)

steroid: a chemical (or drug) that can fight illness or build muscles

*tumor: a useless mass of cells in your body that have multiplied too quickly (some are dangerous and some are not) (肿瘤)

vasculitis: inflammation of a blood vessel (in this story, it is in the brain)

*to ventilate: to pump oxygen into a patient’s lungs (机械通气)

stroke: a serious medical condition when an artery in the brain bursts or becomes blocked

ischemic syndrome or condition: related to a lack of blood (e.g., to the brain or heart) because something is partially blocking the arteries

vascular: related to the tubing system that carries body fluids (esp. blood) 



(Bumrungrad International Hospital [Bangkok] Information Sheet)

*surgery: medical treatment that involves cutting open someone’s body (外科)

arthritis: a painful disease in the joints between bones (关节炎)

*nerves: the “wires” inside your body that carry information to and from the brain (神经)

spinal cord: the major “cable” of nerves that runs inside your back bone (脊髓)

*adolescents: young people, between “child” and “adults” (age 12-18) (青少年)

admitted (to a hospital): to be officially taken into a hospital for treatment or other care (收住入院     

*pneumonia: a serious lung illness that makes it hard to breathe (fei yan); “pneuma” is Greek for air, wind or spirit (肺炎)

blood clot: a solid mass of dry blood (particularly dangerous if it goes to the heart or brain) (血栓)

medications: medicine or drugs used to treat illnesses (医药)

tablet: a pill; an easy-to-swallow form of medicine (药片)

capsule: a plastic container with medicine that can be swallowed (胶囊)

injection: shot; a way to put medicine into a body through a needle (注射)

intravenously: into one’s veins (esp. in terms of giving sb medicine) 静脉注射地)

*addicted: unable to stop taking or doing something (a drug, habit, etc) (成瘾)

prescribe: when a doctor or other authority states what needs to be done (e.g., what medicine to give, what action to take) (开处方)

*allergy/allergic reaction: a condition that makes you ill (or gives you skin problems, etc) because of contact with something your body can’t handle (e.g., an insect bite, oil from some plants, chemicals in the air); when you get sick because of an allergy it is called an “allergic reaction.”  (过敏反应)

*to depict: to describe sth in a different (often artistic) way (描述)

constipation: a medical term for difficulty getting rid of your bodys solid waste (便秘)

drowsiness: sleepiness (睡意)

narcotic: a type of drug that reduces pain or makes you sleep (麻醉剂)

*alcohol: a drink that can make you drunk if you drink too much (beer, wine, vodka, rice wine, etc) 酒精,乙醇,酒精饮料)


Successful Writing

(1) The Basics

1. real world (the real world): [c] life after college; everyday life in business, education, research, etc., when your work is evaluated by others or affects others (and not just a teacher); real-world (with a hyphen) can also be used as an adjective {preface}

2. review(评论,复习): [c] an informed opinion, written to influence the reader’s choice or appreciation of something; (AmE [vti]) to look again at something you have studied (British equivalent: revise) {1}

3. *topic sentence(主题句): [c] an interesting sentence that gets the reader’s attention and introduces the topic of a paragraph {1}

4. *implication(含义,意在言外,暗指,暗示): [c] something you believe to be demonstrated by a particular situation or set of facts: e.g., if your essay states that campus trees act like soldiers (defending, protecting, giving…), then (by implication) we should respect the trees like we respect soldiers, or (by implication) students should feel safer because of the trees. {1}

5. *vague(模糊不清的): (adj) unclear because of a lack of details or because a specific description is not available {1}

6. *colloquial(口语的): (adj) language or words that are informal, and that are usually only used in spoken communication (口语) {1}

7. title(标题): [c] a short name that identifies a book, article, essay, movie, etc.; a word that (usually) comes before someone’s family name to show position, profession or respect (e.g., Dr., Mrs., Prof.) {1}

8. *lean(瘦的): (adj) without fat or waste; thin—usually in a healthy sense {1}

9. double-space(两倍的距离,两倍行距): [vti] to type or write on every other line, allowing room above your text for hand-written corrections {1}

10a. hand in (or turn in) (交给): [vt] to give an assignment to a teacher (or sometimes a boss, official, etc.) {1}

10b. turn in (see hand in)

11. wordy/wordiness(多言的,用词过多的,冗长的,啰嗦的): using more words than necessary when a more concise term, phrase or grammatical structure is possible {1}

12. Chinglish(中国式英语): an informal term (it’s not an official word) that refers to an incorrect mixture of the Chinese and English languages; producing Chinglish expressions is a natural part of the process of learning English

13. due date(预期): [c] the time or date on which something is expected (especially rent payments, homework assignments, or the birth of a baby); “What are their due dates?” is the same as “When are they due?” {1}


(2) Plagiarism and Paraphrasing

1. *plagiarism (to plagiarize) (剽窃物): [u] presenting someone else’s artistic or literary work as if it were one’s own {2}

2. *intellectual property (IP) (知识财产,知识产权): [u&c] creative works that can be protected by copyright or other legal means, and which can often be easily copied illegally (such as software discs, published material, essays written by other students, or music/movie discs) {2}

3. *tarnished(晦暗,生锈): [n, adj, vti] metal (like silver) that has lost its color and brightness (or the process of becoming like this); a reputation/record/etc., that has become worse in the eyes of others (the opposite of a shining reputation) {2}

4. documentation(文件,文档): [u] the practice of adding notes to a piece of writing in order to reveal the source of your information (the verb form [vt] would be to document; also see footnote) {2}

5. *quotation (direct quotation/quote) (引语): [c] writing that tells what someone says in that person’s own words; quotations are placed inside quotation marks (“ ”), also called inverted commas  in British English {2}

6. document (see documentation)

7. *to paraphrase(释义,解释): [vt] to express in a shorter or clearer way what someone has said or written {2}

8a. footnote(脚注): [c] a note at the bottom of a page of writing that offers an explanation or reference information (an endnote is a similar note placed at the end of a chapter instead) {2}

8b. endnote (see footnote)

9. *idiom(成语,惯用语): [c] a fixed group of words with a different meaning from the meanings of its words {2}

10. *optional(任选的,非强制的): (adj) indicating a choice; not required, but acceptable or possible {this word is used many times during my class}


Education in the USA

elementary school: the first years of a child’s formal education, traditionally including kindergarten through eighth grade (though some elementary school end with sixth grade), also called grade school, grammar school, or primary school

middle school: in some places, this school educates children in grades seven and eight (and sometimes nine); sometimes also called a junior high school

secondary school: traditionally grades nine through twelve, helping children prepare for college or for a vocation (though some secondary schools are only grades 10-12); most people call this high school

*tuition (BrE: tuition fees): money paid for academic instruction

suburb: the area around the outside of a city (many suburbs are really small cities) where people live, often driving to work in a nearby city

sparse: spread out; not concentrated or dense (“Compared to the cities, the countryside is sparsely populated.”)

*curriculum: all of the subjects taught at an educational institution (considered as a group), or the list/catalog of elements (classes) for a particular subject. The plural form is either curricula or curriculums.

to be home schooled (to home school): to be educated at home, normally by your parents or a tutor (this practice in general is called home schooling)

*liberal arts: academic subjects such as languages, literature, history, philosophy, mathematics, and the sciences

professional schools: academic institutions that prepare advanced students for certain professions, in particular law, business, and medicine)

*community college: an institution offering adult education courses on various subjects, including basic academic classes (similar to first-year university courses), vocational training (nursing, computer tech, engine repair), and hobby-related courses (photography, gardening); also called a technical/vocational school or a junior college. Community colleges can confer an Associate’s Degree, normally after two years of prescribed study.

*room and board: a place to live/sleep and all of your meals; the money you spend (esp. while at college) for your dorm/apartment and food

work-study programs: classes in a particular field (such as engineering), along with paid employment (normally either part-time, during holidays, or every other semester)

*scholarship: when someone pays some of the college expenses for gifted students or athletes (a “full ride” or “full scholarship” means that someone pays ALL of your expenses, including tuition, housing, transportation and food) (奖学金)

assistantship: a paid position that provides reduced tuition or a salary in exchange for teaching or research duties (normally for graduate students—called postgraduates in BrE)

*diploma: an official certificate showing that you successfully completed an academic degree (conferred by a high school, college, graduate school, or professional organization)

*to confer (a degree): to officially give a title, degree, or award in recognition of your achievement

*to prescribe: to require, or to establish regulations; to professionally recommend that a patient buy/use a specific medicine


The following vocabulary is from after Quiz 1 (2009)



Film:  Lost Worlds

*abandoned: to leave a place without intending to return (often because of safety)

*bellwether: something that indicates future development or trends, like the “lead sheep” (with a bell around its neck) shows the way that all of the sheep that follow it will go

diversity: variety, especially interconnected variety (“Biological diversity is the variety of interconnecting life that keeps things healthy.”)

carnivorous plants: plants that “eat meat” (i.e., that live by killing animals, instead of by gaining nutrition from the soil)

deforestation: to clear forests; i.e., to cut down too many trees

*dense: tightly packed or close together; concentrated; not sparse (“Compared to the countryside, the city is densely populated.”)

dusk: the period after day but before night

ecosystem: interdependent creatures and the environment they inhabit and depend on

faucet: the thing that water comes from in your bathroom (also called a tap)

habitat: the natural conditions and environment in which a plant or animal lives

inhabitants: those who live in a certain place.

jaguar: a large cat (like a leopard), mainly found in the forests of the Americas

kelp: a type of large seaweed, that supports a wide range of living things

*metropolis: big city. “Beijing is a densely populated metropolis”

*nursery: pre-kindergarten school; a place that helps small children/plants/animals to grow and develop properly (“Kelp is a nursery for spawning fish.”)

okay: OK, all right

*to pollute: to make the environment dirty by dumping waste or smoke into rivers, lakes, or the air

*shallow: not deep, often referring to water or thinking

*resourceful: able to use whatever is available, often in un-normal ways, to achieve a goal (“The soil is very poor, so plants and animals must be resourceful to get the nutrition they need.”)

restoration: the process of restoring something or “bringing sth back” that was damaged

to reweave: to weave again; to reconnect complex things, like the way someone makes cloth or clothes by hand

species: a biology term for organisms that are very similar and that can be bred (put together) to produce plant/animal “children” (“Many species are being driven to extinction.”)

watershed (of a river): the land area that drains into a particular lake, river or ocean

Phrases and proper nouns

to be “master” of sth: to be the boss; to be in charge of things

to tip the balance of life: to do sth that gives one form of life an unfair or unnatural advantage

the Table Mountains (Roraima): the unique mtns shown in this film; the indian name is “tepuis”

Venezuela: a country in northern South America where you’ll find the Table Mountains; 委内瑞拉


Garbage and Pollution: the terrible cost of development

garbage: trash, rubbish (垃圾)

*to generate (generated): to produce or create (often a large amount of sth that is not countable, such as trash or electricity) (生产)

*rural: not in a city; not urban (农村的)

*landfill: the garbage dump; the place where a city puts the trash it collects (垃圾堆)

toxic: poisonous (有毒的)

pathogenic: disease-causing (致病的)

*organic: natural; produced by living things, as opposed to things that are man-made (man-made or inorganic things include chemicals that make plants grow or kill bugs) (有机的)

*to contaminate: to do sth that yields a harmful effect, such as making a river dirty through pollution (污染)

combustion: burning, esp to produce heat or an explosion (燃烧)

*premature: before the normal time (早熟的)

to consume / consumption: to use time, energy, goods, etc / the amount of energy, oil, etc., used (消耗)

microscopic: extremely small, such as things you can't see without a microscope (显微镜)

*lungs: the organs you use to breathe (肺脏)

*respiratory: related to the lungs or breathing (呼吸的)

scarcity: not having enough; rareness (缺乏)

*chronic: a problem or illness that lasts a long time, and can't be easily cured (慢性的)

to render (has rendered): to cause or express something in a particular way (render emphasizes the resulting condition) (表现)

to shrink (has shrunk): to make smaller, often in a negative way (收缩、缩水)

microorganism: an extremely small living thing; a microscopic organism (微生物)

*domestic: within one's own country (domestic problems), family (domestic violence) or home (domestic appliances) (国内的,家庭的)

blunt: spoken in an honest way, even if it hurts or offends others (blunt is also the opposite of sharp) (直爽的、率坦的)

*to recycle (recycling): to put used objects or materials through a process so that they can be used again (循环利用)


Growing Up vs. Growing Old

*beaming/to beam: to smile happily

*frustrated: you feel this way when annoyed because you cannot change a situation, understand something you are supposed to do, lack control, etc. (students have given these translations: 憋屈, 惘然, 失意的, 气馁, 灰心, 沮丧, 失望)

*funeral: a ceremony in honor of sb who recently died

*icon: [c] a symbol of sth, esp one that is well-known (e.g., the Nike "swoosh," "Michael Jordan" as a great basketball player, "Wal-Mart" as a big discount store)

mesmerized: be very fascinated by sth; to be so interested in sth/sb that it is hard to pull away

milkshake: (AmE) a thick, cold, sweet drink, made from milk, ice cream and fruit or chocolate (in BrE, it might not have ice cream) (奶昔)

*podium: a raised area where speakers stand to teach or preach

*regrets: feelings of sadness because of sth that you wish had happened differently; to "have no regrets" you must live in a state of forgiveness

*to revel in sth: to enjoy sth very much

*in tribute to sb: to express admiration, praise, or respect to sb

wrinkle: lines or folds that show age (in a face, clothes, etc)


How to Stay Young

essential: necessary(必要的)

to grieve: to feel very sad, esp because a loved one has died(悲痛)

a guilt trip: to feel guilt (shame/sadness because you did sth wrong) about something, esp. when that feeling is unreasonable or unnecessary ("My mom's letters always put me on a guilt trip for not becoming a politician like she always wanted me to be.") (内疚)

*idle: not working, or at least not working to produce anything (like a car that is waiting at a traffic light) (懒惰的)

*keepsakes: small objects you keep to remind you of someone or someplace(纪念品)

refuge: a place of protection (from rain, snow, thieves, foreign soldiers, etc.) (避难所)

to take one's breath away: to be very beautiful, exciting or surprising(惊呆了)


Film: Patch Adams

*to adjourn: (formal) to end a meeting, class, etc.

*amputation: a medical operation to cut off someone's arm, leg, etc.

antics: strange, often humorous, behavior

catatonic: [medical] not able to move or talk because of an illness

*to conform: to act like others, esp. because “everyone” in your group or society acts this way

*cut the crap: (informal) stop telling lies

have a crush on sb: to feel like you are in love (especially as teenagers) and not sure that you want the other person to know (Patch says to Carin: "I have a crush on you. Ha! I can't believe I just blurted that out.")

*to be dismissed: to be given permission to leave a meeting, or to be forced to leave a university, club, job, etc.

fantasy: in this film, "what's your fantasy" means "what is something you wish you could do before you die from this disease" (One patient dreams of "one last safari" and another dreams of swimming in a pool of noodles!)

to flunk out: to fail, and therefore be dismissed from a school

*genius: a person with exceptional talent or abilities (or things such a person creates)

*give me a break: (informal) can either mean “stop this annoying behavior” or “stop being so strict with your expectations” (in dialog 7, it is the former; we can tell by Mitch’s tone of voice)

*the Golden Rule: "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you" or "treat other people the way you want others to treat you"; this is a quote from Jesus in the Bible, and for the first 200+ years of American history, every school child memorized this "Golden Rule"

gynecologist (BrE: gynaecologist): a doctor specializing in women's medical conditions and who delivers babies (a big joke about this almost gets Patch dismissed from med school)

*infirmity: illness

meat packers: people who process meat to sell in grocery stores (Patch attends a "meat packers convention"; that meeting is full of puns, such as "Nice to meat you.")

*nickname: a short name or alternate name for someone (e.g., Patch for Hunter) (绰号; 雅号?)

to patch: to fix (especially sth with a hole or tear)

a prick: a very offensive term for a stupid, unpleasant male who "isn't fun to be around"

*pun (to make a pun): [c] words that sound alike, in such a way that the result has two meanings and is often amusing; example: “Seven days without food makes one weak/week.” (“one” could mean “someone” or the number; orally, “weak” could mean “lacking strength” or “seven days”)

*to repel: opposite of attract; to forcefully push sb/sth away

self-committed mental patient: a person who decides that he needs emotional help, and checks into a mental hospital; self-committed patients can also check out whenever they wish, but those committed (put into the hospital) by a doctor, judge, etc., cannot just leave whenever they want to.

*to steer clear: to avoid sb/sth unpleasant ("You can stay at my university, but you WILL steer clear of Dean Walcott.")

transference: [technical] to unconsciously develop personal emotions for patients, which might prevent/hinder you from making difficult decisions regarding their treatment (In order to avoid transference, doctors say "that cancer patient" instead of using the patient's name.)


part 2

adamant [adj]: with strong opinions (坚强不屈的)

*backbone: the rows of bones down the middle of your back; something important that gives an organization strength and structure ("This is the backbone of our institution.")

bedpan: a pan used as a toilet by bed-ridden (confined to bed) patients

*contagious: easily passed from one person to another (e.g., illnesses like a cold or flu)

*decency: moral manners; in line with commonly accepted moral, polite and respectful standards (风化?)

to disband: to stop existing as a club, school, organization, etc.

motif: theme, esp of decorations ("We should decorate with a western motif.")

mockery, to make a mockery of…: to cause sth important to be regarded as a joke or as useless ("You've made a mockery of our distinguished guests.")

*murdered: intentionally killed ("She was murdered. There was a shotgun involved. Then the murderer turned the gun on himself.")

pediatrics (BrE paediatrics): the field of medicine dealing with children

*protocol: the official set of rules and practices ("Don't get me fired. Just observe rounds and stay within hospital protocol.")

*stature: literally "height" but figuratively one's level of respect ("Treat them according to their stature as doctors.")

thorn: a sharp barb (point) on some plants, like rose stems; someone who annoys you like such a barb


Doctor/patient conflicts become more common

to assault: to attack (袭击)

to detain: to make someone wait (when passive [被动的], it often means “to wait in jail” for a decision by the police or judge) (使延迟,耽搁,扣留)

*statistics: numerical information, usually related to the number of times sth is done (统计)

to stab: to push a knife into sth or sb (刺伤)

*to deteriorate: to become worse; to fall apart (恶化)

^*to trigger: to cause a (usually negative) response or reaction

expenditure: expense; the total amount spent during a particular period of time

agitation: argument, anger, anxiety or frustration because of a needed change

*netizens: people who use the Internet, esp. those who actively participate in chats/blogs/etc.

*to implement: to take action on a plan/policy/recommendation/etc. after making an official decision


Stress is a Laughing Matter

*“is no laughing matter”: [idiom] is serious. “Pollution is no laughing matter.” (i.e., it’s a serious problem)

*to follow suit: to do the same thing, esp in a card game when you have to play the same “suit” (heart, diamond, spade or club) as others

*spontaneous: instant and automatic

*bouts: incidences or episodes of a problem

exhaustion: extreme tiredness

*camaraderie: feelings of close friendship, esp on a team

uninhibited: not restricted


The Foundation for Lifelong Love

it is murder: it is extremely difficult (colloquial/口语) (谋杀)

*passion (passionately): a very strong belief or feeling, especially a deep feeling of sexual love (激情)

intolerable: so bad that it is beyond your ability to accept or deal with (无法忍受的)

to alter: to change or adjust, esp. little by little (改变)

*courtship: the time that a man & woman get to know each other before marriage (恋爱期)

to plague sb: to deeply annoy sb, esp for a long time (使苦恼)

honeymoon: a short vacation couples often take right after they are married (蜜月)

red flags: (AmE) something that alerts you about a problem or danger (a red flag is also a symbol of communism, but Americans often use it idiomatically to mean a warning sign) (红旗:警告)

flaws: imperfections, such as in pottery (陶器) or art (瑕疵)

*spouse: husband or wife (夫妇)

^quirky: unusual (and often humorous or interesting) (古怪的)

impulsive: done without much thought (esp. of the problems one's actions might create) (冲动的)

newlyweds: people who have recently been married (usually less than a year) (新婚)

core values: your central or deepest ideas about what is right and wrong, or what is important in life (核心价值观)

non-negotiable: sth you are not willing to change or discuss, such as a final price offer or a core value (不可协商的。没有商量余地的)

*move in: to change your address, esp. when entering someone else's home (搬家) ("After I lost my job, I had to move in with my parents.") (搬进)

*data: information or facts (数据)

ultimate: most important (because it is the biggest, final, highest, most difficult, etc.) (终极的,最为重要的)

*to resolve: to make a firm, unchangeable decision after much thought ("Tom resolved to stop smoking.") (下决心)


Film: House, MD (maternity)

A few phrases:

*to break (bad news, the sad truth…): to tell (sth unpleasant) to sb

exhibit A…exhibit B…: examples used to prove sth, esp. in a courtroom

*to get our hands on sth: to obtain sth that was not easy to obtain

Hail Mary pass: a football term, describing when you pass the ball a long way down the field with only seconds left in the game—you probably won't score, but if you do it will win the game. ("This is a Hail Mary pass. It might cure your daughter. It might not.")

*managed to (do sth): an informal way to say that you did something that was not easy to do (“It is a rare medicine, but I've managed to find some.")

*a needle in a haystack: sth that is almost impossible to find ("Finding out which virus she has is like looking for a needle in a haystack. But if we don't search the haystack she will die.")

 [No Audible Dialogue]: a subtitle that means you can't hear what the actors are saying

*to rattle off (facts/numbers…): to list information quickly or without much thought (as if from memory)


A few terms:

*autopsy: to examine a dead body in order to find the cause of death(尸检)

*to bug sb: to irritate sb (like a swarm of bugs)

*cluster: a group of related things that are close together; similar things that exist in a dependent relationship (grapes grow in clusters) (群,簇)

*coincidence: when unrelated things happen by chance in a way that makes them seem related(巧合)

[medical] cultures: bacteria (or other biological material) grown for scientific use or examination

*epidemic: a large number of cases of an illness, occurring at the same time(流行病)

fever: the medical condition of having a high temperature (98.6°F and 37°C are normal)

to hunt/to go hunting: to look carefully for sth, esp. an animal

*ICU: Intensive Care Unit, which gives special care to those who are very sick; often, relatives are not allowed to visit or touch someone in an ICU (NICU is Natal Intensive Care Unit) (重症监护室)

infant: baby (also called a newborn) (新生儿)

to isolate: to keep sth far away from others ("We need to isolate this illness to protect other patients.")

to lodge: to get stuck ("He couldn't breath because of candy lodged in this throat.")

*maternity: related to motherhood ("Isn't this a cute maternity dress?" "Let's visit the maternity ward.") (产妇的)

natal: related to birth ("Pre-natal medical care is very important." "The natal unit delivered two babies today.") (新生儿的)

*over-the-counter drugs: medicine that you can buy without a prescription (Use hyphens if it is used as an adjective. "Many antibiotics are available over the counter in developing countries.") (非处方药)

to plummet (plummeting): to fall quickly

postmortem or post-mortem: BrE meaning "autopsy"; literally means "after death"

^seizure: a short, sudden loss of control of one’s body (often due to illness or a reaction to drugs) (捕获、发作、惊厥)

*a shrink: (informal) psychiatrist or mental health dr.

to spike: to rise sharply and quickly and then fall again ("When electricity spikes, it is bad for your computer." "Her fever is spiking at over 103°.")

*a superbug: resistant bacteria; bacteria that can't be killed with common drugs(耐药菌)

*to take precedence: to be more important, and thus needing more urgent attention ("In the emergency room, a heart attack takes precedence over a broken arm.") (优先)

*vice versa: the other way around


Antibiotic resistance and the developing world

*antibiotics: drugs that kill bacteria and thus stop bacterial diseases (抗生素)

bacteria (plural): a microscopic one-celled life form; some bacterium are good (causing decay, fermentation, etc) while others cause disease; bacterial is the adjective form(细菌)

to ban (sth): [vt] to say sth must not be done, seen, used, etc.

to curb: to limit the growth or influence of sth(抑制)

*dilemma: [c] a difficult situation caused when all choices seem equally good or bad

*to eliminate: to completely stop or get rid of(消除)

to emerge: to come out of sth or appear because of sth's influence(出现)

fake: [c & adj] not real but looking real, esp. used to describe inexpensive copies of things

FDA: Food and Drug Agency (or Administration), a part of the government responsible to test food and medicine to be sure it is safe, allow new drugs to be sold, determine how to label ingredients, etc. [美国]食品及药物管理局)

*in the first place: used to talk about circumstances at the start of a situation (often related to a decision that later caused problems)

*in [the] light of sth: taking sth into consideration(考虑到)

in the pipeline: being prepared, hopefully to be ready soon(准备中)

*to mushroom: to grow or develop very quickly(迅速生长)

*over the counter (drugs): medicine that you can buy without a doctor’s prescription (Use hyphens if it is used as an adjective. "Many antibiotics are over-the-counter drugs in developing countries.") (非处方药)

*panacea: cure-all; sth that people think will solve or cure “everything”

*pathogen: something that can cause a disease (e.g., a virus or bacteria)

*precaution: what you do to prevent sth dangerous or unpleasant from happening

prudent: sensible, esp. in light of the consequences

*resistant/resistance: partially able to keep from being damaged by sth (e.g., water-resistant=difficult to damage with water) (有抵抗力的)

side effects: an unexpected (and often unwanted) effect/consequence caused by medicine, events, change, etc. (“Side effects of this medicine include headaches and a sore throat.”)

spurious: not genuine or not based on fact (e.g., a spurious argument or spurious research)

*STD: sexually transmitted disease

strains (of a disease): forms (of a disease, plant, etc.) that are similar (“This new strain of TB is antibiotic resistant.”)

^superbug: resistant bacteria; bacteria that can't be killed with common drugs(耐药菌)

supplements: additions; things that help or improve [sth] when added, such as vitamin pills and herbal “medicines” (补给)

*viable: full of life; able to succeed or grow (e.g., viable proposal, viable embryo, viable immune system(有活力的、有活性的)

virus: a microscopic parasite that makes people sick, or the disease caused by such an organism (technically, a virus consists of a nucleic acid core within a protein sheath) (病毒)


Cancer Support: Tips for Family and Friends

^oncologist: a specialist in the study of tumors

*awkward: when you feel this way you are uncomfortable or embarrassed because you are doing something that is emotionally difficult

*to impose on sb: (formal) to ask sb to do sth that isn't convenient for them ("I don't want to impose, but could you…")

*upset: when you feel this way you are unhappy or worried due to disappointment, bad news, etc.

to reassure: to try to give sb confidence or make them feel better about a bad situation or problem

*neglected: (vt) to fail to give the needed care or attention to something, esp. because of carelessness or forgetfulness

a surrogate: sb who takes the place of another ["After the puppy's mother died, the vet (animal doctor) found a surrogate mother to nurse (give milk to) him."]

an omen: a sign of sth that will happen in the future ("Sailors think that a red sky in the morning is a bad omen.")

^precaution: what you do to prevent sth dangerous or unpleasant from happening


Shanghai to get camp for Web addicts

youngsters: [old-fashioned] young people or adolescents(年轻人)

^addicted: unable to stop taking or doing something (a drug, habit, etc) [an addict is sb who is addicted] (沉溺于)

*camp: a structured program with organized activities, games, lessons, crafts, etc., often designed to help children learn a moral lesson or gain a useful skill while having fun(露营)

*to recruit: to look for people to join your company, school, army, etc. (招募)

*to be considered for sth: to be evaluated in order to determine if you can do sth, are suitable for a job, etc. (考虑过的)

*an alias: a false name(化名)

*to bury oneself in sth: to give all of one's attention or energy to sth(全身心投入)

*to skip class: to choose not to go to class without a good reason (AmE, also "playing hooky")(逃课)

^frustrated: you feel this way when annoyed because you cannot change a situation, understand something you are supposed to do, lack control, etc. (students have given these translations: 憋屈, 惘然, 失意的, 气馁, 灰心, 沮丧, 失望)

*intervention (process): a method that gets involved (literally, “in the middle”) in order to produce change, especially to prevent or treat sth bad. (干涉)

*volunteer (adj, n, v): without pay; sb who chooses to do something to help others, or the act of providing this help(志愿者)

to patrol: to check on things in an area with some regularity, like police officers who frequently walk through a neighborhood to be sure there is no trouble or no one in need(巡逻)


House (Christmas):

A few phrases:

[4th, 5th, etc.] circle of hell: refers to a famous 14th century Italian novel (Danté's Inferno, often studied as "the greatest medieval poem") that supposedly described the different levels of punishment after death (House/Wilson use this phrase when talking about duties they hate, such as filling out medical records)

*pay through the nose: to have to spend an unreasonable amount of money for something(花冤枉钱)

*pulled off the market: taken out of stores so that no one can buy it anymore(下市)

to rat sb out: to tell an authority about something sb did wrong; to betray sb by speaking against them

that well doesn't run dry: (rare) that topic is like a water well that never runs out of water; you keep talking about something when you should forget it


A few terms:

agnostic: to believe that people cannot know whether or not God exists (A religious person believes God does exist. An atheist believes that God does not exist. An agnostic is not sure.)

^allergy/allergen/allergic: a condition that makes you ill because of contact with something your body can’t handle; you are "allergic" to "allergens"(过敏)

candy canes: a popular J-shaped Christmas candy/decoration (House: "Candy canes? Are you mocking me?  …Relax. It's a joke.")

*cardiac: related to the heart (cardiac arrest = heart attack—when your heart stops) (心脏的)

cast: a hard, temporary casing that doctors put on a broken bone to keep it still while it heals

*defibrillator: a machine doctors use to electrically shock and thus restart your heart(除颤器)

*derma-: a prefix that means skin, so dermatitis (皮炎) means skin inflammation(皮肤的)

divine (adj): from God or related to Him, so "divine intervention" would mean "when God gets involved to produce change"

*dose/dosage: the amount of a medicine you take at one time (two pills, 0.1cc, etc.) (剂量)

*to exacerbate: to cause sth bad to get worse

foster home/foster care: a place where some children are raised (often temporarily) if their parents are dead, in jail, etc.

*fragile: easy to break(易碎的)

*hypo-: a prefix that means below or abnormally low, so hypoallergenic means abnormally low chance to cause an allergic reaction. (低-

hypochondria: the fear that you often have illnesses when you don't

hypochondriac: sb who suffers from hypochondria

infallible: perfect; without error or mistakes

^injection: shot; a way to give sb medicine(注射)

*malpractice: a legal term related to doctors' mistakes that should be punished (malpractice insurance helps doctors pay to fight lawsuits) (失职)

^medication: drugs or medicine (prescription or over-the-counter) used to treat illnesses(医药)

miracle: something unexpected but very good that happens (maybe with divine help) (奇迹?)

miserable: extremely unhappy or uncomfortable, esp because life isn't the way you want it

monastery: a place where religious people live and study (修道院)

*negligent/negligence: careless, in such a way that your mistake can cause damage ("I admit negligence, but I'm not guilty of malpractice.") (疏忽)

*to notify: to tell sb about something in a formal way. (Notice that you would say: "If you need help, notify me" and not "…notice me." The latter means "please look at me" and sounds funny.) (通知)

nun: female religious workers

*prognosis: medical prediction; what a doctor thinks will happen as the result of an illness(预后)

*secular: not religious; not related to or under the authority of religious leaders(无宗教信仰的)

*stethoscope: a Y-shaped tool doctors use to listen to your heart and lungs (听诊器)

to subside: to gradually become less

*syringe: a special medical tube with a needle, used for injections or take out your blood(注射器)


Non-medical aid

*stage (1,4,etc): a part of or time in sth's development(阶段)

*to credit sth/sb: to praise sth/sb as the main reason for a good result (归功于)

*supernatural: impossible to explain by normal causes; divine or magical force (超自然的)

skepticism: doubt(怀疑)

*vice versa: conversely; the other way around(反之亦然)

*poll: a survey that asks many people the same question to find out general opinions about sth(民意测验)

strength: power (to do sth)

*trials: hardships, distress, or tests (esp emotional)

*testimony: proof based on sb's experience; formal statements about sb's experience (esp in court) (证据)

*intercessor: one who orally intervenes or speaks for sb, including by prayer, pleading, argument, etc. (仲裁者、调解人、说情者)

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 2009 Michael Krigline. As far as I am concerned, people are allowed to print/copy it for personal or classroom use.

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