Word formation is the
creation of a new word
It is s a branch of science of the language, which studies
the patterns on which a language forms new lexical items (new
unities, new words)
It’s a process of forming words by combining root and
DIFFERENT TYPES OF
There are 2 ways of word formation: productive and non-
Productive ways includes affixation, word composition,
Non-productive way includes sound interchange, stress
interchange, sound imitation, blending, back formation.
It consists of adding an affix to the stem of a definit part
of speech. The main function of suffixation is to form one
part of speech from another.
The secondary function is to change the lexical meaning of
the same part of speech.
Affixation is devided into suffixation and prefixation.
A prefix is an affixation process that includes adding a
morpheme at the beginning of the word. There are different
types: negative prefixes(unfair, non-stop), pejorative prefixes(to
misbehave), prefixes of place (Locative prefixes)(midway,
transatlantic), prefixes of size, degree and status(micro-, macro-
, mini-, co-, vice-), prefixes of time and order(ex-wife,
midnight, preview), prefixes of number (mono-, poly-, semi-,
tri-) and others.
It is a formation of new words by adding suffixes to the
There are 5 groups of suffixation:
- Noun-forming –er, -dom, -ism
- Adjective-forming –able, -less, -ous
- Verb-forming -ize, -ify, -en
- Adverb-forming –ly, -ward, -wise
- Numeral-forming –teen, -ty, -fold
It refers to the joining of two separate words to produce a
single word. The two words don’t lose their individual sounds.
This is the change of the function of the word. For
example when a noun comes to be used as a verb.
Bag – to bag
Back – to back
Bottle – to bottle
Word groups can be shortened.
Abbriviation can be graphical (a.m.- in the morning, i.e.-
that is) and Initial (J.V.- joint venture, BBC, UK, UNESCO)
Abbreviation of words consists in clipping a part of a word.
Clipping a synonym of reduction. In this process a
word that has more than one syllable is reduced to a
• Brassiere (bra)
• Fanatic (fan)
• Situation Comedy (sitcom)
New words are formed from a word group or two
synonyms by clipping the end of the first component and the
beginning of the second component
medical + care = medicare
Spanish + English = Spanglish
Modulator + demodulator = Modem
or Negative derivation.
A complex word exists first, the non-affixed form is derived
–baby-sitter to baby-sit
–editor to edit
Other terms for sound imitation are onomatopoeia and
Words coined by this type of word building are made by
imitating different kinds of sounds that may be produced by
animals, birds, human beings and inanimate objects.
Dogs – bark
cocks – cock-a-doodle-doo
ducks – quack
cats – mew (miaow, meow)
cows – moo (low).
is one of the ways of word building, based on a shift of
'conduct – to con'duct
'present – to pre'sent
'frequent - to fre'quent