Scrabble players don't know the meaning of words
- By: Karen Hebert
Excellent Scrabble players may know more words than the rest of us but not necessarily their meaning. Although Scrabble experts know lists of words that most of us do not use on a daily basis, they cannot use these words in a sentence.
Scrabble experts practise for competitions by memorising lists of three and four letter words that appear in the Official Scrabble Players Dictionary--so called “legal words.” However, in a study testing whether they knew the meaning of these words, the low ranked players proved to be only slightly worse than the highly ranked players.
These findings were presented to the Western Psychological Association annual conference. The study was conducted by Diane Halpern of Claremont McKenna College in California and her colleague Jonathan Wai.
Halpern told Reuters Health that these results suggest that, in Scrabble, the letters of the word count more than the meaning. These findings indicate that