Formal verbs

Working with words: Register


The aim of this page is to help you to write in a more formal style.


Register refers to a style of writing or speaking that is used in a particular situation. In this unit you have learned that the style of your writing is determined in part by your choice of vocabulary. If you wish to achieve an academic style (and thereby impress your lecturers), you will need to ensure that the words and phrases you use are appropriate in terms of register.

Formal verbs

Academic writers tend to use single-word verbs such as examine or devise rather than phrasal or prepositional verbs such as look at or come up with.


Put the appropriate single-word verb from the box below in the space provided. When you have finished check your answers.
conclude find accumulate express  raise
review  abolish address propose support


Informal Verb Formal Verb Noun Phrase
1.  come across an old document
2. do away with a law
3. build up a large of sum of money
4. bring up a concern
5. finish off a presentation
6. go over the main points
7. back up an argument
8. put forward a plan
9. put across ideas
10. deal with a problem



Last updated on: Monday, July 29, 2019