Many students are now opting to self study as access to ESL materials via the internet becomes easier and the pace of modern life leaves little time to attend private school classes.
However, while many aspects of the language can be acquired independently using books, videos and audio resources, fluent spoken English cannot be gained in isolation. Skype English conversation classes fill this knowledge gap and offer a solution for those seeking to improve their speaking skills, correct their mistakes and gain native insights into the language.
Learning English properly means having a correct native model to follow. If you are studying British English, then useful material might include: BBC News broadcasts, British Council podcasts, audio books, UK newspapers, British TV series and films, textbooks published by Cambridge University Press, Penguin or Macmillan. As long as you practise on a daily basis and try to increase your contact time with the language, you will make good progress in reading, listening, vocabulary and grammar. However, this still leaves several key skills – speaking, writing and error correction (or native style for higher level learners). Skype English conversation classes with a British native speaker provide this missing piece in the jigsaw puzzle.
Many students acquire reasonable knowledge of reading, writing and grammar while still at school or university. However, most foreign education systems tend to ignore the significance of speaking. This can be due to a number of factors, such as: lack of native English teachers, large class sizes, local tutors who are not confident in their own speaking ability and so favour textbook work over interaction. Speaking must be regarded as the most important skill in any language as it is the primary means of communication. It should be practised from day 1 and not year 5! Failure to acquire a good level of spoken fluency in English ultimately means that you will not be able to communicate effectively in the language. In order to speak English well, you must SPEAK it.
There are several advantages to Skype English practice with a native speaker. Firstly, if you live outside a majority English speaking country, then your access to British teachers will be limited. Choice is a must when looking for a suitable ESL tutor and the internet provides this. Secondly, studying with a native speaker will help you improve your spoken fluency and style in modern English as well as your listening skills through regular interaction excluding your native language. Thirdly, Skype English conversation classes will save you both time and money compared with face-to-face classes in your local area. There are many good reasons to learn English online as part of a wider self-study approach.
The simple answer is: you don’t know until you try! Nowadays, most people are confident PC users and are already familiar with VoIP programmes like Skype. The online study format is a little different from that of the traditional classroom, but it also provides access to useful internet-based resources in a way that was previously impossible. When studying conversational English online with a British teacher you will still benefit from genuine interaction with a native speaker via both video and audio. The use of a headset can also help improve sound quality and really “put you in the room” with the tutor. Skype is simple to use and was created with communication in mind. It is therefore ideal for English conversation classes.
Are you an international student at an English-speaking university or college? Looking for ways to improve your academic English and boost your confidence when speaking? At OTUK, we provide specialised online English courses to help you improve your English for higher education, cultural integration and settlement. Continue reading