DREAMers, Deported Immigrants, the Dream Act, and Educating Foreigners for Success

accent reduction center speak english like an American immigration reformThe desparity between the advantages native-born Americans and naturalized citizens is no secret, and it’s also no secret that those who are here without papers are even further disadvantaged, especially when it comes to education, wages, and the ability to climb career ladders.

But that’s changing. Perhaps much like the March on Selma, the segregation battle, and the bravery of Rosa Parks, people on both sides of the literal and figurative fences are rising up, taking to the streets, and making it known that they want immigration reform. They want it for their friends, for their family, for their coworkers, and for themselves.

According to Ted Hesson of ABCNews, “The Senate bill would allow previously deported spouses, children and parents of permanent residents and citizens to apply for a provisional immigration status. The same would go for some young immigrants, aka DREAMers, who lived in the U.S. but have since been removed or voluntarily left the country.”

With this kind of thought and fire behind the movement, it won’t much matter what the House of Representatives does with their upcoming vote—eventually, immigration and how we look at immigration, immigrants, and the inalienable right to education for everyone in the US. What’s most important now is what immigrants will do with their legal right to be in the US once they have it. And one of the most powerful ways they can leverage their freedom to stay here is to educate themselves, work on fluency in English, and perfect an accent in English while working to reduce a foreign accent in spoken English.

Being able to speak English like an American is every bit as important as any degree an immigrant from anywhere can hold. Improving English pronunciation is the key to unlocking all other forms of potential for immigrants.

For those ready to continue moving forward even in the face of those who will try to back peddle the immigration movement, being able to be heard is tantamount to every effort in this fight and in the successful days to come thereafter.

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Accent Reduction Classes at Indian Call Centers Now Part of “Everyday” Training

learn to speak English like an American with Pronunciation ProMany have struggled with English pronunciation from a call center employee, and likewise, many call center employees in India and other countries have struggled to understand varying dialects of English, from Texan to Californian, New Englander to New Yorker, and many, many more.

But the fundamental error in thinking among native English speakers who have interacted with Indian call center employees is that because their English pronunciation is not good, this means that they don’t know or understand English. Quite to the contrary, mostIndians who speak English as a second language speak with excellent grammar, and often with an extensive vocabulary. The issues they face are primarily a thick Indian accent, and challenges with American English pronunciation.

To this end, many call centers in India have started to make English pronunciation classes part of their basic training for call center employees. In this way, a lot less time on phones is wasted, more customers can be dealt with in a more timely fashion, and more work gets done in less time. It’s an issue of efficiency as much as it is an issue of communication.

According to a recent CanIndia article, “Accent reduction is the need of the hour.” Author Prapid Rodrigues writes on, “foreign-born professionals working at blue chip companies voluntarily sign up for such [pronunciation] classes. It is seen as a way to move up the corporate and social ladder. Accent reduction is actually a misnomer, because it means learning an accent.”

In other words, for those Indians trying to improve an accent in English, many working even within very limited budgets are still doing what they can and must do to reduce Indian accent in English and create more intelligible spoken English—not just to get a call center job, but with the aim of learning how to speak English like an American in order to one day leave the call center behind.

In Mumbai, getting a call center job is an accomplishment, and can be worth a lot when pitted against the alternatives worth far less income. But when an Indian native has done accent reduction training, if he or she does ever end up in the US, Canada, or the UK, the odds at landing a job are much better, and the odds of landing a higher paying job are also much better.

How to Speak English without an Accent: Phonetic Differences Between Chinese and English

English pronunciation for Chinese peopleWhile it is true that more than one-third of all Chinese speakers use the Mandarin dialect, it is also true that there are many other dialects of Chinese, including Cantonese, Wu, and Taiwanese. The differences in these dialects can mean a difference in the various challenges when it comes to learning how to pronounce English correctly and with confidence.

With that said, there are many essential commonalities that make English pronunciation for Chinese people difficult at times. For example, Chinese has far less vowel sounds than American English, and can therefore present an issue when it comes to phonetics and speech patterns that are common in English, and not so common in Chinese.

One of the most fundamental and interesting differences between Chinese and English is that in Chinese dialects, changes in tone and pitch can completely alter the meaning of a word that is otherwise pronounced exactly the same. Now try and imagine this in English. For example, no matter how loudly or quietly, and no matter what octave your voice is in, if you say the word “dog” in English, it means the same (unless you’re speaking in terms of contextual differences like slang) thing—a furry, four-legged mammal prone to chewing bones and chasing cats. In Chinese, the slightest change of tone can be the difference between polite conversation and salty language.

These issues and differences between Chinese and English can make even the most well educated Chinese professional or student sound like they do not speak English. It is often incorrectly assumed by many Americans that pronunciation is the same as fluency or comprehension, and this is simply not true. But for those whose English pronunciation is a problem, a thick accent can deter work associated and defer promotions and other opportunities.

Being able to be understood is the most important part of speaking any language, and that’s why Pronunciation Pro focuses on listening to each English language learner as an individual to determine what his or her unique challenges with English speaking are.

Non-Native English Speakers Publish “Voice” Magazine, Create Hope for Peers at Purdue

A zeitgeist student named Chuck Yang at the Krannert School of Management, along with 30 others, have launched a free publication especially for students who are non-native English speakers. The publication, appropriately named “Voice” will be a forum to discuss the ups and downs of learning and using English every single day, even when it is difficult or even seems impossible.

At PronunciationPro.com, we meet and get to know individuals like Chuck Yang all the time—bright, young, enterprising people who are looking for solutions to reduce their accents. But for some, fitting in is hard, and many do not share their beautiful ideas and inspiring thoughts with those in the world around them because of the fear they have of how they will sound when speaking.

pronunciation pro Voice magazine launch at Krannert School of ManagementAt the launch of Voice, Yang stated, “King George VI exclaimed in Westminster, after many years of suffering and stammer, ‘I have a voice.’ Well, I share his passion tonight.”

The Krannert School of Management is part of Purdue University—where more than 4,000 Chinese students study, work, socialize, and receive their degrees. With so many thousands of non-native speakers feeling they did not have a voice, and wanting to reduce non-native accents, Voice gives them the understanding that there is an interim period where, while you’re working on your studies at school and working on reducing your accent in English, there is a place that’s safe for you to communicate your thoughts and feelings.

Further, Yang and his team, through the creation and publication of Voice are sending another message: You belong here, you are a part of this student body, you are a part of this culture, not apart from this culture.

In the fight for equal rights in this country, there is now a Voice for non-native speakers of English. We appreciate you, and your contributions to American society are as important and as insightful and inspiring as anyone else’s. Don’t be scared to speak up, even if you fear your accent in English is not good. Practice makes perfect, and you will find native English speakers along the way who will befriend you, champion you, and yes, even understand you! :)

Communicating Effectively in the Workplace as a Non-Native English Speaker

learn to reduce your accent in English for non native English speakersWhen it comes to effective workplace, there’s precious little else as important as communication. Whether it’s the emails we’re sending out, the conference calls we’re on, the patients we’re treating, or a board room meeting with top executives from Tokyo, being understood is second to no other necessity for career-minded individuals.

That’s why it’s so important to value your English learning experience enough to learn to pronounce English so that you can know beyond a shadow of a doubt that the people you are engaging with won’t have to second guess you, or wonder what you said. Oftentimes, to be polite, coworkers, clients, customers, and even employers won’t ask you to repeat yourself–they don’t want to seem rude or offensive. So it’s many times up to the language learner him or herself to be able to answer the questions, “Is my English speaking understandable? Can my coworkers and others I work with each day understand what I am saying?”

If you find that you are unsure of the answer, chances are, there are ways you can improve your pronunciation in English. But the last thing you need to do is panic, stress out, or over-think how you’ll get from where you are today to point B–the place where you won’t have to wonder if your staff, your manager, or those you serve can clearly and easily comprehend what you are saying.

Your English can be as good as any native speaker–believe it! It’s just a matter of dedicating yourself to the practice of reducing your accent in English, and learning the rules of American English pronunciation, word stress, intonation and more. When you have mastered learning how to pronounce, any challenge you face with pronunciation later on will be a quick fix, because you’ll have the tools you need to figure out any nuances of the language you hadn’t dealt with before.

American English Pronunciation and Correct Word Stress

For those of you who may have missed the webinar today, here it is!

It’s so important to undertand the nuances of English sound and rhythm, and this video discusses all of that for those new to any accent reduction programs.

Non-native English speakers will often have difficulty with pronunciation because the natural rhythm of English and its intonations and rate of speech in English are so unique to the language–no other language on earth has the same word stress as English.

What are the rules of word stress in English? Listen to the American English Pronunciation webinar and learn! This way, not only are you more easy to understand to native English speakers, you will also enjoy being able to understand those speaking to you in an American accent so much better once you understand the use of word stress and syllables in American English.

As Annie Ruden discusses, every word in English is made up of sylables, and each of those syllables contains a vowel sound, even when it does not contain a vowel.

Learn all this and so much more for FREE by watching this Learning English Accent webinar, and if you like what you hear and see, check out the FREE week trial from Pronunciation Pro starting anytime you’re ready to sign up!

Welcome to the Pronunciation Pro Supplemental Blogsite!

learn english pronunciation onlineWelcome to the Pronunciation Pro supplemental blog! This informational site will contain a number of tools, videos, and connections to our other online sources to help you on your journey through learning American English pronunciation. Everything from video posts, guest posts about learning English as a second language, answers to questions you’ve asked on Facebook and Twitter, and so much more. We will talk about English pronunciation and how to speak English with an American accent.

A little about Pronunciation Pro: Our founder and principal, Annie Ruden, is a licensed Speech and Language Pathologist with a Masters degree in Communication Sciences. Over the years Annie has specialized in teaching English pronunciation and the American accent, and has crafted her own workable, efficient, and unique ways to teach people how to use the correct sounds and rhythm of English.

Annie has been teaching English Pronunciation since 2007, and has helped people from all over the world learn how to speak English clearly and with confidence. This has opened doors to people that would have otherwise been closed, allowing them to get jobs, progress in their careers, and have more confidence as they socialize with native English speakers.

Annie knows that people come to the US with great ambition and hope for the future, but oftentimes, upon arriving, they often feel lonely, experience extreme culture shock, and struggle to communicate—PronunciationPro ends these complications by allowing ESL speakers the chance to learn to speak with an American accent quickly, affordably, and easily through time-tested online methods.

No matter how much English grammar and vocabulary you know, it’s tough to make things work if your pronunciation makes your English difficult or impossible for others to understand. If you’re tired of constantly being misunderstood, being asked to repeat yourself, and you’re frustrated with being limited by your pronunciation, you’ve come to the right place for help!

This blog will provide information and support to teach and train you in the areas of pronunciation training online and so much more. Please feel free to ask questions and let us know what you’d like to learn as it relates to speaking English and understanding American culture. So much of American culture comes through in the way we communicate—you cannot experience the full breadth of either without having both.

There are a number of buttons on this blog that will help us keep connected. You can subscribe to this blog, sign up for my mailing list, or like and follow Pronunciation Pro on social media. Choose your favorites, but the most important part is that you come back often so I can help you learn to speak English clearly and with confidence.

Are you serious about learning to speak English clearly and with confidence? Register for a 12 week Pronunciation Pro Program. Visit our online pronunciation program sign up page to register for 1 FREE week of the program. Questions? E-mail our warm, personal team of pronunciation experts by emailing us here about Pronunciaton Pro :)