7 Warning Signs Your English Pronunciation Isn’t What It Could Be

socializing for immigrants learning English pronunciation

Being more social will help improve your English pronunciation!

If you’re trying to improve your foreign accent in spoken English, there are some dos and don’ts you should be aware of. Here are seven things you can do to avoid making common mistakes while learning to pronounce American English.

1. Don’t be scared to leave the comfort of your cultural group—spend time with Americans and engage in conversation regularly. Watch how they pronounce words and sounds you have trouble with.

2. Don’t avoid learning the rhythm of English: it’s not enough to read and write English well if you’ll need to speak English in a work setting or socially. Use an English pronunciation and accent reduction class online to help you understand American English rhythm.

3. Don’t forget to breathe: In any new language we learn, it’s always better to breathe and speak slowly and deliberately so listeners can focus on what you’re saying rather than how you’re saying it. Speedy speech is not the hallmark of excellent fluency, and can often make you seem more anxious.

4. Don’t think your accent will go away on its own over time. You need to engage in routine activity socially, at school and/or work, and also practice your spoken English. One of the most effective ways to do this is to have a speech pathologist listen to your recorded voice and give you feedback about where you need help with your pronunciation in English. Practice, practice, practice, and help from an online accent reduction coach—all of this can be done for less than $20 per month.

5. Don’t avoid social media: Take the time to listen to accent reduction videos online and join social media groups that focus on American English pronunciation learning. You’ll hear from others who are going through a lot of the same things you are, and also find a wealth of helpful information about accent reduction exercises and other tips to improve your English.

6. Don’t avoid social groups or clubs: Joining a club or group with common interests such as sports teams, book clubs, and even volunteer activities will help grow your circle of native English speaking friends and enhance your understanding of conversational English.

7. Don’t be scared to ask for feedback from friends and family—ask important questions, including, “Can you understand my English better now than when we first met?” and so on—likely, you’ll be very encouraged by what you hear.

Chinese Students and Accent Reduction—What Does it Take to Get There?

accent reduction classes online for Chinese students and professionalsThe number of Chinese students attending college within the United States is on the rise but the tangible returns for college graduates still leaves much to hope for. Employers within America and China have both seen an exponential growth of Chinese college graduates searching for job placement, but many students are finding out the hard way, that paying a hefty educational investment does not guarantee a career alone.

How does accent reduction and learning how to improve American English speaking skills affect non-native speakers on a real level? Let’s discuss this issue, with special respect to Chinese students and others seeking careers after graduation who have not had the opportunity to work with a certified accent reduction trainer.

During the 2011-2012 academic year there were 194,029 Chinese students studying in the United States, representing the largest group of international students from a single country, and accounting for 25.4% of all foreign students studying in America.

Attending college at a United States institution is a costly venture for Chinese students as unlike many American students, they don’t qualify for in-state tuition breaks, financial aid, or scholarships—forcing many Chinese families to pay the full tuition, which can range around an average of $200,000 for four years of university education.

For Chinese students that are accustomed to excessive memorization and frequent testing, the American system of more liberal arts can be surprising, with many students limiting themselves to Chinese Clubs and staying in to study, not maximizing their college experience that extends outside of the classroom. Teachers and native students reaching out to non-native speakers is of invaluable worth to these Chinese students who want to reduce a foreign accent in English but just don’t know how or where to find the opportunities to do so.

PronunciationPro.com offers inexpensive ways for Chinese students and others to improve accents in American English in just 12 weeks. And there’s also special programs just for those needing help to pass the spoken portion of the TOEFL test!