Methods to Improve Spoken English

Whether or not you live in an English-speaking country, you can improve your pronunciation, vocabulary, grammar and fluency. Learning a language takes practice and work, but with the correct methods you can learn to speak English correctly and with confidence.

  1. Listening

    • Listening to good spoken English at your level of understanding will improve all aspects of your speaking, since we normally learn our first language by first listening and hearing it spoken by others. If you can understand English-language radio and television, then listen to news and documentary programs, whose presenters tend to speak well. For easier work, practice listening to English instructional CDs or computer software, at home or at a school language lab. You can also find English-language radio, TV and instructional materials on the Internet.

    Reading and Repeating Aloud

    • You need to actually say English words aloud to improve your pronunciation. Practice reading aloud in English, or repeating after instructional software or audio recordings, every day. Record your pronunciation at home or in a school language lab, and compare yourself to native speakers. Ask someone who speaks English well for additional correction.

    Reading for Vocabulary

    • You can improve your English vocabulary by reading every day in English. Plan to spend at least a half hour each day reading material that you find interesting and a bit challenging. Write new words on note cards or in a notebook and study them. Then make an effort to use them correctly the next time you speak English.

    Practicing Correct Grammar

    • If you make many grammatical mistakes in English, study a grammar book or take a grammar class. Then pay attention to grammar as you speak even if you have to slow down at first. Don't keep on repeating the same mistakes. Watch or "monitor" your own grammar so you can improve. Ask friends who speak English well to correct you here also.

    Practicing for Fluency

    • Using your English frequently in informal and formal situations will improve your fluency and confidence. Find native and other English speakers at school or in your hometown, and practice speaking with them often. Help English-speaking travelers wherever you see them. Find an English conversation partner on the Internet to practice speaking even more. Overcome your shyness by taking an English speaking class or joining a speech club and giving presentations in English.

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