What words or particles should I use with this verb?

There is a website called tsukuba web corpus with a collections of all kinds of words/verbs taken from a bunch of native resources online.

The website breaks down how often words appear with a given particle, grammatical structure, collocation, etc.

You can check on the site if a certain phrase or sequence of particles for a given verb is acceptable/common/natural, and see its frequency in standard Japanese usage.

How to use the Tsukuba Web Corpus

  • Go to the tsukuba website (and bookmark it)

  • Set the language to English if you want

    Tsukuba Howto 1

  • Click on Start Your Search

    Tsukuba Howto 2

  • Type the word you want to look up in the search bar

    Tsukuba Howto 3

    NOTE: する verbs count as a different word, for example 利用する (verb) is a different word from just 利用 (noun)

  • Click on the result to be brought to the collocations summary page

    Tsukuba Howto 4

The Collocations Summary Page

Tsukuba Howto 5

As you can see, the page can be quite daunting on a first look, so I made sure to highlight the important parts that you should be looking at, with a brief explanation:

  1. On the left side, there is a list of all grammatical patterns the searched word appears in. They are grouped/sorted by function (Noun + particle, Noun + compound particle, Auxiliary verbs, etc) and the numbers will show how many entries and how frequent a certain collocation appears in the corpus.
  2. After clicking on an entry in 1, in the middle, there is a list of the relevant collocations of the searched word with the given pattern. For example if you searched for を particle + <verb>, it will show what kind of nouns will appear with を (e.g. 食べる -> 肉を食べる)
  3. Click on an entry in 2 and the right side area will show a list of all the phrases with the actual usage of the word/pattern. It will also show the verb in its conjugated forms (食べる -> 食べない, etc)
  4. If you require context related to where the sample sentence came from, you can click on the area marked as 4 and it will bring up the source material
  5. If you click on the “Pattern freq order” tab, the left-most part will instead list all grammatical patterns for the searched word ordered by most to least amount of occurrences. It’s very useful if you want to quickly get a general idea.