Vocabulary, in the broadest sense, is the set of all words used in a language. In the text analytics industry, the term Vocabulary has a more specific meaning. It refers to the set of all terms that are used to represent the concepts in a domain.
The term Vocabulary can also be used outside of the text analytics industry. For example, in the field of education, a vocabulary is the set of all words that a child is expected to know at a particular grade level. In medicine, a vocabulary is the set of all terms used to describe the concepts in a particular medical domain.
Types of Vocabulary
Different types of vocabulary can be used for different purposes. For example, a stopword list is a type of vocabulary that includes words that are commonly used in a language but don’t convey much meaning, such as “the” or “and”. A thesaurus is another type of vocabulary that includes synonyms and related terms.
Vocabulary and Similar Terms
Vocabulary is sometimes confused with other similar terms, such as ontology, taxonomy, and controlled vocabulary. However, there are important differences between these terms. An ontology is a formal representation of a set of concepts in a domain, while a taxonomy is a classification system for a set of items. A controlled vocabulary is a restricted set of terms that are used to describe the concepts in a domain.