In a globalized world, people are finding it easier to talk to each other. However, a heavy foreign accent can be just as big of a hindrance to clear communication as a language barrier. When a foreign English speaker with a heavy accent is speaking with a native English speaker, both parties know they are speaking the same language. Therefore, significant effort is put towards communicating a message. This makes things all the more frustrating when there is a miscommunication. English accent training can help make such awkward encounters a thing of the past.
Foreign business professionals use English accent training in order to Americanize their accent and supplement their knowledge of various idioms and slang terminology. No matter how extensive their vocabulary is or how perfect their grammar when writing, a heavy accent can make it difficult for foreign born speakers of English to establish credibility and trust. This is why English accent training has become overwhelming popular in the last 10-20 years.
English accent training : Making the Transition
There are countries with accents that aren’t immediately obvious languages such as English, making the transition to a clearer manner of speaking somewhat easier. Examples can be seen with Spanish and Italian. The reason behind the ease by which people understand them in the US is mainly because the native English speakers are more familiar with these accents and how they sound due to these accents being prominently are always featured in movies, TV shows, and commercials
Other accents that are fairly easy for native English speakers to understand are German and Filipino. Phillpino languages are syllable timed, whereas German is stress timed like English.
English accent training: Breaking down various accents
The accents below can come across to native English speakers as making speech difficult to understand, even if the speaker is in fact talking in perfect English with the correct word usage and grammar. Each accent is accompanied by a commonly faced problem by those trying to modify their accent.
- Arabic- The “th” sound is pronounced like a hard “d” –Pronounce the “t” sound by touching your tongue and upper front teeth while you pronounce this sound.
- Mandarin-English has more vowel sounds than Mandarin, leading many native Mandarin speakers to mispronounce similar sounding words.
- Welsh- Many in the UK consider the Welsh accent to be the equivalent of a “country” accent in America. The letter “r” is often trilled and gives the accent more of a musical quality than other accents.
- Scottish- Short words are joined together in a Scottish accent, while words ending in “g” have the final syllable dropped.
- Indian- Those with an Indian accent tend to speak English quickly, blending their words together and unintentionally confusing native English speakers.
- Japanese- Japanese only has 5 vowel sounds in comparison to English.
You might have noticed that Welsh and Scottish people are often identified as English speakers. The fact of the matter is, they have their own dialects that can be difficult for outsiders to interpret. Another common reason why foreign speakers struggle to adapt an English accent is some English letters and/or vowels are not present in their native language. Thus, an accent is heard as they try to compensate.
English Accent Training: How to Learn More
This is just one of our many blog articles that help educate and inform the public on English Accent Training. If you’re interested in learning more about English accent training, check out our free Accent Reduction screening. Within 48 hours you will receive results regarding your accent on a severity scale of 1 (very heavy) to 7 (very mild) accent. If you’re looking to start on your English accent training, we have office and online starter program options! Within 12 English accent training sessions, all clients have demonstrated accent reduction of 50% or more.