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Making SRS items (cards) for learning languages

On Antimoon, we use the SuperMemo terminology. A Q&A pair is called an item. A collection of items is called a... collection. In Anki, an item is called a card and a collection is called a deck.

We have over eight years of experience creating SRS collections (decks). In these years, we used many types of items (cards) for learning English. On these pages, you can read about these different types of items. All the examples are taken from our own collections.

For each type of item, you can read more explanations and examples on separate pages.

  • Definition-word items: You read a definition. Then you give a word which fits the definition. An example item:

    Q
    = a sensation of fear, disgust, etc., as of something crawling over the skin
    A
    the creeps [kri:ps]

    That movie gave me the creeps.
  • Sentence items (recommended for beginners): You read a sentence and try to understand it, thinking about interesting words and grammar structures in the sentence. An example item:

    Q
    He was coming on to her all the time.
    A
    If a man is "coming on to" a woman, he is trying to attract or seduce her so that they might have sex.

    Sentence items vs. definition-word items: why we are fans of sentence items

  • Gap-filling items: You have to give a word to fill in the gap. The word can be a preposition, a form of a verb, etc. An example item:

    Q
    There were under twenty people _____ the lecture.
    A
    There were under twenty people at the lecture.
  • Pronunciation items: You have to pronounce a word correctly. An example item:

    Q
    Pronounce "iron".
    A
    ['ai ..(r)n]
  • Word-definition items: You read a word. Then you give the meaning of the word. An example item:

    Q
    What is circumstantial evidence?
    A
    = evidence that suggests but does not prove

    circumstantial [se:(r) k..m 'st@n S..l]

Items made by English learners

(Note: We are publishing these samples in order to show you how learners use SRS to learn English. We are not saying that these are the best possible items and that you should imitate them. These samples are only an inspiration.)