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Welcome to the Macmillan Dictionary BuzzWord feature! If you're interested in English today and want to keep up with changes in the language, this is the place to come. We'll keep you at the heart of language change!

About BuzzWords

The BuzzWord may not be a word you'll find in any dictionary, and it's not always a brand-new term either: it may be a new way of using an existing word (e.g. troll), or a new way of putting words together (e.g. drug driving, chillax). Whatever the reason for its present popularity, the BuzzWord is a word that is current and in sudden or increasing use – it might not stay around forever, but it's worth knowing what it means and how people are using it today.

About the author

Macmillan Dictionary BuzzWord author

Kerry Maxwell has an MA in Linguistics from the University of Manchester. She has worked in academic research and as a lexicographer in the publishing industry.

Kerry lives in York, UK, where she works as a freelance author and editor. Kerry is author of Brave New Words: A Language Lover's Guide to the 21st Century (Pan Macmillan, 2007) and has been writing the Macmillan Dictionary BuzzWord column since 2003.


Macmillan Dictionary and Onestopenglish.com work in close collaboration to provide teachers with dictionary-related classroom resources. Between 2010 and 2016, we published a series of free BuzzWord lesson plans, written by language experts Tim Bowen and Kerry Maxwell.

BuzzWord lesson plan series

Free downloadable lesson plans developed in partnership with Onestopenglish.

Macmillan Dictionary BuzzWord lesson plans

Downloadable student worksheets contain vocabulary exercises and develop students' awareness of typical word formation types. Teacher's notes and answer keys are also included.

Level: Upper-intermediate to Advanced

Download lesson plan

Our favourite BuzzWords 2003–2013

To celebrate the 10th anniversary of BuzzWord in 2013, Macmillan Dictionary published a mini book with our 50 favourite BuzzWords. You can flick through a digital version of Our Favourite BuzzWords below.


Here are some useful links for you to explore the BuzzWord feature further: