Gotta, Wanna, Shoulda, Coulda: How and When to Say Words This Way

American English pronunciation and accent reduction help with American slangGotta = Got to

Wanna = Want to

Shoulda = Should have

Coulda = Could have

Americans have a funny relationship with English. In some circles and circumstances, it would be totally unthinkable to say “wanna” instead of “want to.” For example, you will probably never hear someone in a board meeting say, “We wanna really increase sales this quarter and I think we coulda done better last quarter.”

But in other instances, learning to speak English like an American means you will need to loosen up. For example, many Indian, Chinese, and Arabic native speakers have a hard time letting go of the very formal English when they are in a social and relaxed atmosphere. For example, if you were out at a club with friends, over-pronouncing and using absolutely perfect diction can be seen as uptight, and make you seem as though you can’t loosen up—this means it isn’t entirely bad to engage in the use of gotta, wanna, shoulda, coulda, and other technically misspoken words in certain settings.

This doesn’t mean you should over-use these variations on the correct pronunciation of words in English, and it certainly doesn’t mean you should speak this way immediately. As they say, you must walk before you can run, so having an excellent grasp on English pronunciation and after you feel very confident with the practice of your accent reduction program, you can begin to use the more relaxed versions of words that are so incredibly commonplace.

Before you start feeling brave, discuss with your English pronunciation Speech Pathologist whether or not they feel you are ready to take this step. It is entirely possible that once you have completed a 12-week pronunciation course online, your American pronunciation coach may tell you that it’s okay to start blending in more relaxed versions of common speech.

Either way, chances are, you will know when the time is right. And when you do, try to keep in mind the contexts in which the difference between the two. It takes time and practice, but once you have perfected your American English accent, there’s no reason you can’t blend in with your American counterparts—but only if you wanna :)

How to Pass the TOEFL Exam: Prepare for the Spoken TOEFL Test

pass the TOEFL spoken English test PronunciationProFor foreign students in the US, the TOEFL iBT test is an important step towards job placement and advancement. The test is administered as at sit-down exam, or via Internet, and measures ability to use and understand English at the university level, and evaluates how well you combine listening, reading, speaking, and writing skills.

Over 27 million people have taken the TOEFL exam, including students planning to study at a higher education institution, scholarship and certification candidates, and students and workers applying for visas. Known as “The Test of English as a Foreign Language,” TOEFL was developed by the ETS that many colleges and universities in the US require ESL students to take. These people must have a passing TOEFL score before they can apply to programs.

Designed for advanced learners who are ready to prove they have the ability to live, study, or work in an English-speaking environment, knowing how to pass the TOEFL exam is important for many—and preparation is key to success.

To pass, applicants must pass the speaking portion of TOEFL, which accounts for a fourth of the total grade. There are six speaking questions: two about familiar topics, and four based on short readings and conversations. After hearing a question, individuals must provide a response, and are evaluated on delivery, language use, and topic development. Many who take the exam find the speaking portion to be challenging.

In order to score well on TOEFL speaking section, English pronunciation is important, but unfortunately, many are not aware their accents can hinder results on the exam.

With a mandatory two-month waiting period between exams, many college hopefuls only have a few opportunities to pass the TOEFL before their desired application date. Considering the $160 to $250 testing fee per exam, passing the first time is ideal.

For those who want to prepare for the TOEFL exam, English pronunciation and accent reduction courses online can help their ability to speak English clearly and have a better chance at passing.

PronunciationPro.com offers help online in a 12-week program that is tailored to your schedule and budget to enhance confidence while speaking English. Providing a free trial and a basic version that costs less than the price of one TOEFL exam, there are a variety of options complete with online trainings with affordable ASHA certified Speech Pathologists.

Speaking English clearly is important for the TOEFL test, for participating in classroom settings, and for job placement. Preparing before the exam with an English pronunciation expert is beneficial and can help relieve stress before the TOEFL exam. Prepare for the exam in a way that will yield results, by signing up for Pronunciation Pro.

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!