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  1. #1
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    Unhappy How do I improve my listening more quickly?

    I have big listening problem in English. For example, my boss would say, 'Please give me a printout'. I can guess what printout refers to, but I was stuck there for a second.

    I know the way to improve my listening that I should keep listening, but what material I should take for practice?

    Yesterday, I went to a language training center for consulting. They focus on listening, speaking, reading, and writing. The consultant told me that their teachers will correct my grammar if I speak it errorously. My boss doesn't care my English solecism. He can understand my English (writing, speaking) well. I am just bad at listening. (His English is good)

    Do you have any advice? Thanks!
    Last edited by thedaffodils; 21-Sep-2009 at 13:05.

  2. #2
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    Re: How do I improve my listening quickier?


  3. #3
    Abstract Idea is offline Key Member
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    Re: How do I improve my listening quickier?

    Quote Originally Posted by thedaffodils View Post
    I have big listening problem in English. For example, my boss would say, 'Please give me a printout'. I can guess what printout refers to, but I was stuck there for a second.

    I know the way to improve my listening that I should keep listening, but what material I should take for practice?

    Yesterday, I went to a language training center for consulting. They focus on listening, speaking, reading, and writing. The consultant told me that their teachers will correct my grammar if I speak it errorously. My boss doesn't care my English solecism. He can understand my English (writing, speaking) well. I am just bad at listening. (His English is good)

    Do you have any advice? Thanks!
    Dear thedaffodils,
    I have this very same problem with my listening skills. I am trying to improve them. Of course there are bunches of professional materials on the subject, it is very hard to choose the best one, it is a matter of personal choice.
    However, I do believe that by focusing on real movies one steps further towards improving his listening skills - I am convinced about that. I think you could choose carefully specific movies with the English accent's you want to work. Then you work a methodical way of studying the movies, replaying key parts of them on a DVD player with the remote control over and over.
    You may also work with subtitles, both in English and in your mother tongue.

    A similar work can be made also with recorded news or radiophonic transmissions with the written scripts - play and replay them, first without reading the scripts, then reading, then as dictations, and so on. Try to construct your own methodic way.

  4. #4
    thedaffodils's Avatar
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    Re: How do I improve my listening quickier?

    Quote Originally Posted by mara_ce View Post

    Thank you very much, Mara. This is very helpful.

  5. #5
    thedaffodils's Avatar
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    Re: How do I improve my listening quickier?

    Quote Originally Posted by ymnisky View Post
    Dear thedaffodils,
    I have this very same problem with my listening skills. I am trying to improve them. Of course there are bunches of professional materials on the subject, it is very hard to choose the best one, it is a matter of personal choice....... ...
    ...
    Thank you. I knew all these methods. They sound hard to keep practising.

  6. #6
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    Re: How do I improve my listening quickier?

    Basically, there is no shortcut. But the fastest way is hours of exposure, every day, in real social or professional situations. Anything else is just slower, as you don't "feel the need" to learn without the social interactions, and nothing beats "hours a day."

  7. #7
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    BobK is offline Harmless drudge
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    Re: How do I improve my listening quickier?

    K is right, TD. To go back to your 'printout' example, you were 'stuck there for a second'. That's not a big problem (although it may not be very satisfying for you); you won't be 'stuck for a second' next time. And the more you are exposed to new words and ways of putting things, the less stuck you will be.

    Just think what that experience taught you: what happens to the stress? Does the same happen with 'take off' (v)/'takeoff' (n); with 'let down' (v)/'letdown' (n); with 'get away' (v)/'getaway' (n)...? So that one hiccup (=temporary little problem) with 'printout' has taught you how to get the stress right on thousands of new compound words. (In fact, as you were only 'stuck there for a second', you had probably already begun to recognize the pattern - maybe years ago. And the 'second' will get shorter and shorter until you're fluent.)

    Keep at it.

    b

    PS You probably know this already, but your 'quickier' (in the title) is wrong; so would 'quicklier' (be wrong). The approved formal version would be 'more quickly', but informally many people would say 'quicker'.
    Last edited by BobK; 21-Sep-2009 at 12:56. Reason: Added PS

  8. #8
    thedaffodils's Avatar
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    Re: How do I improve my listening quickier?

    Quote Originally Posted by BobK View Post
    K is right, TD. To go back to your 'printout' example, you were 'stuck there for a second'. That's not a big problem (although it may not be very satisfying for you); you won't be 'stuck for a second' next time. And the more you are exposed to new words and ways of putting things, the less stuck you will be.

    Just think what that experience taught you: what happens to the stress? Does the same happen with 'take off' (v)/'takeoff' (n); with 'let down' (v)/'letdown' (n); with 'get away' (v)/'getaway' (n)...? So that one hiccup (=temporary little problem) with 'printout' has taught you how to get the stress right on thousands of new compound words. (In fact, as you were only 'stuck there for a second', you had probably already begun to recognize the pattern - maybe years ago. And the 'second' will get shorter and shorter until you're fluent.)

    Keep at it.

    b
    Thank you for your encouragement. My boss is impatient if I am so logy. (He is not bad but doesn't have enough patience.)

    He said he would like to pay the tuition if someone can help me improve my listening. (He said my writing, speaking, reading are okay to him, but he is not satisfied with my listening.)

    Hmm, I am not always that logy, but sometimes I didn't understand what he said.

  9. #9
    Abstract Idea is offline Key Member
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    Re: How do I improve my listening quickier?

    Quote Originally Posted by thedaffodils View Post
    Thank you for your encouragement. My boss is impatient if I am so logy. (He is not bad but doesn't have enough patience.)

    He said he would like to pay the tuition if someone can help me improve my listening. (He said my writing, speaking, reading are okay to him, but he is not satisfied with my listening.)

    Hmm, I am not always that logy, but sometimes I didn't understand what he said.
    Why don't you try to record some of his speechs? Maybe with a cell phone or something like that turned on in stand by for some long time. Then you could study later his speechs.

    By the way thedaffodils, have you noticed if other people can understand well your boss? I am talking about his mates and native fellows, not his wife.
    Our wives can always understand us, even if we say less then 50 % of the words.

    And you, can you understand well other people talking English or is this listening problem restricted only to your boss's speechs?

  10. #10
    thedaffodils's Avatar
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    Re: How do I improve my listening quickier?

    Quote Originally Posted by ymnisky View Post
    Why don't you try to record some of his speechs? Maybe with a cell phone or something like that turned on in stand by for some long time. Then you could study later his speechs.

    By the way thedaffodils, have you noticed if other people can understand well your boss? I am talking about his mates and native fellows, not his wife.
    Our wives can always understand us, even if we say less then 50 % of the words.

    And you, can you understand well other people talking English or is this listening problem restricted only to your boss's speechs?
    Thank you for your response.

    1. I cannot blame my listening problem on his English, because his English is good without odd accent, though he is not a native speaker.

    (I cannot understand most of Indian accent of English.)

    2. All other foreign co-workers of mine are from my boss's country. They speak their own mother tongue.

    3. I don't mean that I don't completely understand all English they spoke. I can understand what they say mostly. I should say that my work requires me to grasp a higher level of English.

    Actually, if he could change the way of his expression, I would have understood it at once. For example, give me a printout. -> please print that out, and give it to me.

    I think most non-native speakers would have the problem like me more or less. My boss didn't understand what IOU referred to.

    I should go to it, keep practising but not whine here any more.

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