Without a doubt, Today English is the most popularly and widely spoken language in the world. Nearly every country in the world has some proportion of English speaking population living there, studying and even doing businesses for quite some time now.
Considering this, the importance of knowing this language can not be emphasized enough and it is almost a prerequisite if one has to be successful in today’s competitive world. English is used internationally in businesses, different industry sectors, politics, sports and almost every conceivable field today and without it one would be considered as handicapped.
Despite learning the language in school, unless you are a native speaker of English, most people hesitate while conversing due to a lack of fluency and a less than optimum level of proficiency in the grammar of the language.
English has always been a quirky language with more exceptions than rules and unless one is familiar with its vast vocabulary and has had years of practice in using the language both in the spoken as well as written form, one cannot lay claim to mastery of English.
Mush as it is desirable, there is really no quick or instant fix to getting a command of the language and it is only with time and great effort that one can become fluent and proficient in the English language.
Tips to Improve Your English
However, if you are one of those who want to improve their English language, a few tips are mentioned here, but remember there are no substitutes for constant practice and diligent effort. Of course, having a good tutor will expedite the process a bit but is not an absolute must.
The best ways to improve your English are:
- Do not be hesitant: Instead, speak with any one and everyone who can speak English. The more you speak, the less you will hesitate and if you can do this with friends, you could all agree to stand correction from each other if you commit a mistake. This way you will get rid of hesitation and increase your confidence.
- Start every conversation in English: If you take it upon you to consciously start every conversation in English, you will outgrow your fears before you even know it. Doing this with total strangers will be much better since they do not know you and will approve your errors.
- Improve your vocabulary: You can built up your confidence level with a comfortable collection of words in your vocabulary. You can do this by keeping a dictionary or thesaurus with you at all times and a pocket edition is better when you are starting out. They may not contain all the words possible, but they surely contain the most necessary ones for you to get by.
Once you learn a new word or phrase, make sure you begin using them right away and at every possible moment, for it is only with regular practice that these words become second nature to you.
- Don’t just speak, write. While it is all very well to improve your spoken English, take the time to also improve your written skills by maintaining a diary and noting down all the new words and phrases you may come across. It is just as important as to have good written English as it is to have good verbal skills and both of these can be easily developed simultaneously.
- Read English. Read the English newspaper for instance. It is not too verbose and can contain most of the words you will need for daily conversation. Focus on each word, understanding their meaning and context in which they are used, taking notes if required and making use of them.
- Watch English. Spend time daily viewing English movies or television shows and follow along by reading the sub-titles. In time, you will not need to rely on the sub-titles anymore and your English will have improved a great deal. Set some time daily to also watch the English news which is a great way to improve your English comprehension.
- Listen to e-books. Audio files on the internet are available in plenty in e-book form and many of them are to be had for free. Listening to these is a very effective way of honing your English both in the vocal as well as written form.
The English language has two components, the vocabulary and its grammar. The right combination of the two is what helps you deliver perfect English whether in oral or written form hence, it goes without saying that in order to improve your English, you must improve both, your vocabulary and your grammar.
The importance of Vocabulary
Vocabulary is the collection of words used to form a language and there are roughly around 500,000 words in the English language, many of them similar in meaning and context and one has to be aware of them and how and when they are to be used.
A dictionary is the best place to source and understand the meaning of new words and once you have done this, use a thesaurus to understand the synonyms and antonyms of each word. This will give you full control of that specific word, its synonyms and its antonyms that you can now use in conversation and writing.
The importance of Grammar
The main purpose of learning a language is to be able to communicate and express yourself in it to others who speak, read or write the same language as you. Grammar is what lends meaning to the vocabulary and if you use the wrong grammar, chances are you will convey a wrong meaning of your message and this could be embarrassing as well as lead to misunderstandings.
You can polish your grammar by learning it from books, online or from other speakers who are better than you. Of course, the need for extensive practice cannot be overemphasized. Form meaningful sentences and convert positive statements into their negatives and vice versa, make questions out of statements and turn statements into questions, use a single sentence in different tenses to polish up your grammar.
It is not at all a big task to improve your English provided you follow the above suggested tips and practice them on regular basis.