I dedicate this tutorial in response to the question, “How do I know if I’m saying it right?”
This is a common question I hear when my clients are first starting out in my Mastering Clear English program. Over the next 3 posts, I will share tips on how you can tell that you are saying things the “right” way.
I want to begin this series with a tutorial that teaches you how to visualize your English. We all learn in different ways. Some of us learn best by using our eyes. If you're a visual learner, like me, sometimes you learn concepts faster if you can see them.
Many of us may learn be seeing, but changing your pronunciation habits requires lots of listening -- listening to examples, listening to recordings of yourself. All this listening is critical to making the necessary changes. Sometimes, it can be difficult to judge your own pronunciation. Visual learners can still successfully learn new pronunciation skills, especially if they can visualize their English.
Today, I want to share an easy way to do this by using a free software called Audacity. I use this almost every day to make recordings for my clients and to analyze recordings they send me for feedback. I’ll show you how to use it to compare yourself to an example to see how accurate you are.
How to set up Audacity on your computer in 2 easy steps:
Step 1: Download Audacity by clicking this link and follow the directions for Windows or Mac.
Step 2: Set up the ability to import audio files from other sources into Audacity (Hint: like the free mp3 recordings available below). Click this link and scroll down until you see “How do I download and install the FFmpeg Import/Export Library?” Follow the directions for Windows or Mac.
**Optional step: If you want to send your own recordings as an mp3 to other people, follow the directions under the section “How do I download and install the LAME MP3 encoder?” This section is just above the section in Step 2 on the same page.
Watch the video below where I show you how to visualize your English Pronunciation:
Now that you know what Audacity can do, here’s how to use it make your pronunciation practice more effective:
- Download my recording pack to practice vowel sounds, stress and linking (see link below)
- Use Audacity to record a short segment from a podcast. Analyze the speaker and compare to a recording of yourself. (Just select a short segment from a podcast on your computer. Use Audacity to record a short segment from a podcast. Analyze the speaker and compare to a recording of yourself.)
- Select a skill to focus on. Record yourself over multiple practice sessions. Compare your first recording to your last and celebrate your improvement!