Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Special Issue on the English Language in Ukrainian Context, November 2020    Pp.244-254

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The Poly Code Character of the English Learners’ Dictionaries 

Irina Kolegaeva
Department of English Lexicology and Stylistics
Faculty of Romance and Germanic Philology
Odesa I.I. Mechnikov National University, Odesa, Ukraine 

Lesia Strochenko
Department of English Lexicology and Stylistics
Faculty of Romance and Germanic Philology
desa I.I. Mechnikov National University, Odesa, Ukraine 

Yuliia Tomchakovska
Department of Foreign Languages № 2
Faculty of International Legal Relations
National university “Odesa law academy”, Odesa, Ukraine 

Oleksandr Tomchakovskyi
Department of Lexicology and Stylistics of the English Language
Department of Romance and Germanic Philology
Odesa I.I. Mechnikov National University, Odesa, Ukraine




The paper deals with one of the most relevant questions of semiosis in English lexicography. The article studies the mechanism of double encoding a message (verbally and pictographically) to optimize the perception, processing, and storage of information by the user of the dictionary. The aim of the given research is to determine the features of an English poly code dictionary entry as a communicative phenomenon of educational lexicography. The study is based on five lexicographic sources, traditionally called the big five. The research material includes 1640 poly code entries. The article suggests a new interpretation of a poly code entry as a threefold unity of a lemma (the headword), a verbal definition, and a picture. These three constituents jointly name, interpret, and visualize the meaning of a dictionary entry. The article also analyzes the configuration of a poly code entry informational potential in terms of increasing/decreasing of the information presented by the iconic constituent in comparison with the verbal one. The research proves that the whole set of poly code dictionary entries reflects a particular view of the world characterized by absolute anthropocentricity and specific Anglo-Saxon bias. The results of the performed research are significant for English language teaching and learning as they prove that pictographic illustrations that accompany verbal explanations are not purely ornamental. They optimize the readers’ activity of searching, understanding, and memorizing the necessary information.
Keywords: learners’ dictionary, lexicographical entry, poly code communicative phenomenon

Cite as: KOLEGAEVA, I., STROCHENKO, L., TOMCHAKOVSKA, Y.,& TOMCHAKOVSKYI, O. (2020). The Poly Code Character of the English Learners’ Dictionaries. Arab World English JournalSpecial Issue on English in Ukrainian Context. 244-254 .


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Irina Kolegaeva, doctor of philological sciences, full professor, Head of the Department of
English Lexicology and Stylistics, Faculty of Romance and Germanic Philology, Odesa I.I.
Mechnikov National University, Odesa, Ukraine. Her research interests are Language Teaching
and Learning, Stylistics of the English Language, Theory of Communication.