There is a lot to be said for knowing vocabulary. Just about any profession you enter will have its own "lingo", and being able to break sentences down word by word is incredibly helpful. There are reasons why teachers push basic knowledge, like knowing how to alphabetize quickly, doing your multiplication tables in your head, and understanding how to break sentences apart. Unfortunately, a lot of students come and go through school without learning the basics. THIS is your opportunity to improve your communication skills; written and verbal. If you know your vocabulary, you can discuss topics in a professional manner, and get your point across in a more understandable way. It's harder to be misinterpreted when you use words appropriately.
If you're reading a textbook, look for underlined or highlighted and/or bolded words. Read them out loud several times. Make sure that you are pronouncing them correctly. Try using them in sentences. Learn their definitions, and find out if they have multiple meanings.
I always talk to my nursing students about a graduate nurse who I precepted and was constantly mispronouncing words. One day, I heard her tell a patient that he was going to be going for a "colmomoscopy". You read that correctly and if you were thinking... "what is that?"...that doesn't exist.... you would be correct. However, she had NO IDEA that she was not only saying it incorrectly, but that there was absolutely no procedure by that name. In one moment, the patient lost all confidence in her abilities because she sounded ridiculous and uneducated. The graduate nurse was a nice lady, but our patients, our customers, our community members... need to know that we are not only nice, but competent, as well.
Learn the language and it will take you a long way.