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  1. #1
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    Default How to improve English?

    I have been in USA for many years and English is still considerably poor. I was busy at work in the past and feel it is time to seriously spend time in improving my English again. Poor English really keep me from any career advancement here in USA and I saw many poor foreigners end up as a lifetime brain slave in this country just because of poor English. I feel the biggest problem for me is I can't express my ideas freely and accurately. I think it is because there are not engouh amount of referenceable sentences in my head. Probably this is can be improved by memorizing some good sentences. I pick up a book I read recently for how to interview. I feel this book is full of good sentences such as "Unfrotunately, Hannigan got so caught up in trying to demonstrate his French language skills that he, too, missed the essential point." Memorizing good books is a good strategy for improving English? If this is true, could you also recommend some books I can read and memorize sentences from? I appreciate any input from teachers and learners here.

  2. #2
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: How to improve English?

    If the sentences have patterns that are readily reapatable. However, do fixed sentences enable you to express your thoughts and idea in a conversation, which is basically improvisation? They will help in certain situations where you can predict the content of the conversation, but beyond that, I think that it will be a bit of a limited approach. Simply readin widely, but with attention to the language used, would probably be more beneficial, IMO. By the way, what's your first language?

  3. #3
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    Default Re: How to improve English?

    My English reading skill is near perfect. I am a voracious reader and read almost all subjects. But it just doesn't help speaking at all. My native language is Mandarin.

  4. #4
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: How to improve English?

    You're writing's fine too- you use 'voracious', which would be the natural collocation for a native speaker. Are you sure your spoken language is as bad as you think? It sounds to me as though there might be an issue of confidence here that is holding you back, though it's very hard to make such judgments from a couple of posts. What's your accent like?

  5. #5
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    Default Re: How to improve English?

    My accent is moderate. Like I said, my biggest problem is being unable to express my ideas/points clearly in the conversation. When people don't understand me, most time it is because my speech content is incomprehensible to them, not because of accent. Often time I pause a lot during my speech because I need to figure out a better way/word for saying something. I think this deficiency can be improved by speaking/talking more. I talk with my family at home in English. But they are not native speakers either and I found this way doesn't help my speaking skill too much either. But as a adult, I find it really hard to know any American friends outside of work. My workplace is full of foreigners. Another question: how writing skill is related to speaking skill? Highly or lowly correlated? Writing more can significantly improve speaking?
    Last edited by svforumer; 28-Jun-2005 at 19:16.

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