Since 1987, Collins COBUILD has been a leading source of authentic English worldwide.

Now celebrating its 30th year, COBUILD continues to provide invaluable and detailed guidance on the English language.


1st edition, 1987


2nd edition, 1995


3rd edition, 2001


4th edition, 2003


5th edition, 2006


6th edition, 2008


7th edition, 2012


8th edition, 2014


NEW – 9th edition

Our COBUILD dictionaries include:

  • Up-to-date coverage of today’s English – based on the constantly updated 4.5-billion-word database of today’s English language, the Collins Corpus
  • Authentic examples – real-life examples of English from the Collins Corpus show how words are used in everyday language
  • Vocabulary-building features – brand-new features on collocation, word history, usage and synonyms to help learners use English with accuracy and confidence
  • New supplements – offer guidance on effective communication in English
  • Full sentence definitions – all words and phrases are covered in depth and explained in full sentences to show words in context
  • Frequency – the most important words are clearly highlighted to indicate which to learn first

Word of the Edition


corpus is a large collection of written or spoken texts that is used for language research. (1st edition, 1987)

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The internet is the computer network which allows computer users to connect with computers all over the world, and which carries email.
(2nd edition, 1995)

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memory chip

In a computer, the memory chip is the microchip in which information is stored. (3rd edition, 2001)

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An e-book is a book which is produced for reading on a computer screen. E-book is an abbreviation for ‘electronic book’. (4th edition, 2003)

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bird flu

Bird flu is a virus which can be transmitted from chickens, ducks, and other birds to people. (5th edition, 2006)

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carbon footprint

Your carbon footprint is a measure of the amount of carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere by your activities over a particular period.
(6th edition, 2008)

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cloud computing

Cloud computing is a model of computer use in which services that are available on the Internet are provided to users on a temporary basis.
(7th edition, 2012)

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bromance is a close but not sexual relationship between two men. (8th edition, 2014)

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The alt-right refers to a group of people with extreme right-wing views, including extreme views on race, who use the internet rather than traditional politics to organize and to share opinions.
(9th edition, 2018)

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Our new editions, publishing March!

Collins COBUILD Learner’s Dictionaries provide invaluable guidance on the English language, and are the complete reference tools for learners of English.



9th Edition

Revised and updated to include invaluable and detailed guidance on the English language, this is the complete reference tool for learners of English.

  • Covers all the words, phrases and idioms that students need to master to speak and write effective English
  • Grammar patterns and example sentences provide extensive help with grammar, plus a new supplement helps with academic and business grammar
  • Ideal for students preparing for Cambridge English, IELTS, TOEIC and TOEFL examinations



4th Edition

Covers all language features to help intermediate learners gain an even better understanding of how real English works

  • Ideal for intermediate level learners of English, this dictionary is written in simple, natural English making it easy to use and understand
  • Covers all the essential words, phrases and idioms that students at this level need and provides help with grammar and usage
  • Ideal for students preparing for Cambridge English examinations



3rd Edition

An illustrated dictionary for primary school students, whose first language is not English, but who attend English language schools

  • Over 8,000 entries covering all the essential words and phrases that students need
  • Full coverage of curriculum (CLIL) vocabulary for children studying other subjects through English
  • Engaging 16 page full-colour supplement contains illustrations of key cross-curricular topics, perfect for CLIL

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