Understanding Future Forms in Spoken English

how to speak proper English with Pronunciation Pro Annie Ruden

Will you be traveling or are you going to travel? That is the question!

When talking about the future in English, the future forms of “will” and “going to” should be expected to be used in most conversational English. These two forms, while used frequently, can also be confusing, with many nonnative English speakers having difficulty distinguishing between when to use either of the two future forms. By learning the main differences between the two future forms, you can better gain an understanding on when to use either word in your “future” conversations.

The main distinguishing factor between the two forms, is that “going to” is used for plans and intentions made before the moment of speaking, while “will” is saved for talking about the future at the moment of speaking.

For example:
I think I’m going to get lunch with Sally later on this afternoon.
I will be meeting Sally at 2 p.m. for lunch.

In these examples, both sentences talk about future plans to get lunch that afternoon, however the “going to” is used to make a future prediction based on evidence in the present situation, whereas, “will” is used to talk about future facts or things we believe to be true about the future.

To better understand when to use “going to” or “will” take a look at the following examples:

Going To: Used to make future predictions based on evidence in the present situation
There’s so much traffic today. We’re not going to make it to the movie theater for hours!
You’re going to crash the car if you continue texting and driving!
It’s a beautiful day today, it’s going to be great weather for laying out.

Will: Used to talk about future facts or things we believe to be true about the future
The President will serve in office for four years.
I don’t think Bob will be happy about the mess we made.
The train will arrive at 2:15 pm according to schedule.

In reading the above examples, you may find that a few of the examples can be used interchangeably with no difference in meaning. This is because even when the terms are misused in conversational English, native speakers will still be able to understand what you mean without any problems. “Going to” and “will” are that similar, which makes for a very confusing concept, however, although they can improperly be used interchangeably, by learning the correct times to use either of these terms, you can feel more confident in your American English and know that you are speaking properly in English.

To further practice using “going to” and “will” in everyday examples, visit PronunciationPro.com for mp3 files and worksheets to better improve your future forms while speaking accent free English.

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.

English Pronunciation and Accent Reduction: What We Can Learn From My Fair Lady!

improve your American English accent with pronunciation pro My Fair LadyThere’s a lot to be learned about English pronunciation and accent reduction from the fair lady, Eliza Doolittle, and her accent reduction coach Professor Henry Higgins.

As the story goes, Higgins makes a bet with his buddy, Colonel Pickering that he can turn the unwitting street urchin, Eliza, into a high society socialite in a mere six months time. He works tirelessly with Eliza to reduce her cockney accent to make her sound like a proper lady of the times, and in the end, he is a smash success, and wins his bet with Pickering.

At PronunciationPro.com, speech pathologist and accent reduction coach Annie Ruden offers to non-native English speakers the same kind of English pronunciation help—but Ruden gets it done in HALF the time it took Henry Higgins!

How is this possible? How can you begin to speak English like an American in just 12 weeks? Well, our old friend Higgins and his protegé Eliza didn’t have access to the Internet, and they surely weren’t able to interface using MP3 recordings, live webinar training, and live feedback from a certified American English trainer based on unique recordings from each student. Perhaps if Higgins had this kind of access, he would have taken up English pronunciation training as his full-time job!

But the essentials of Professor Higgins’ approach is not unlike what Pronunciation Pro uses today: the use of intonation training, working on the rhythm of spoken English, phonetics, and other accent reduction exercises are what made Professor Higgins successful, and this is exactly the framework that Pronunciation Pro uses as well—but with the added benefit of taking less time, working at your own pace on your free time, and at an unbeatable price that begins with a 7-day free trial.

Interested in reducing your accent in spoken English? Check out PronunciationPro.com’s $19 monthly subscription and read through the FAQs and testimonials to see how you too can enjoy the benefits of a 50-75% reduction in your foreign accent in English. It’s simple, builds confidence, and you’ll do it in half the time Eliza Doolittle did!

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.