Pronunciation is the key to strong communication skills. If you are not able to pronounce the right word in English, it does not make sense because a native English speaker might not be able to get you. Pronunciation is one of the marking criteria in the IELTS examination and holds 25% of your IELTS Speaking Test score.
Non-native English speakers have their own version of pronouncing a word, lending each English word a unique twang. If your English pronunciation isn’t good, then your level of fluency will be consistently underestimated. But if you’re planning to take the IELTS test soon, you need to improve your pronunciation to score well in the IELTS Speaking Test.
The most effective technique which will help you in improving your spoken English is:
Learning through the ‘Imitation Method’.
The Imitation Method
Imitation is the ability to mimic the way someone speaks. In simple words “To Copy”. In this technique, all you need to do is to listen to a native English speaker to whom you want to copy and just try to imitate the way he or she speaks. Some people are natural mimics. That means it’s easy for them to make the same sounds, accents, and rhythm as someone else they hear speaking. But for people, who are not natural mimics, need to practice the imitation method daily to improve their communication skills.
How to Improve Pronunciation using the Imitation Method
Step 1: The first step would be to talk to a native English speaker. Listen to the native speaker as much as you can. Just sit down and observe how the native speaker is speaking and what you are missing when you compared your pronunciation with their natural speaking style.
Step 2: Now try to imitate the way the native speaker was speaking with you. Start with simple sentences, then move ahead with the complex ones. While imitating the native speaker, record yourself saying that sentence on your phone and play it back.
Step 3: You can do various speaking exercises from practicing the sounds and intonations to understanding how to fluently speak English. Some of the best exercises are:
- Tongue Twisters
- Minimal Pairs
- Sounds of English
- Similar Sentences
Step 4: Practice difficult and big words. Ask your native English-speaking friend or colleague how they would pronounce some of the difficult and big words. Then imitate the way they pronounce those words. When you practice difficult and big words, you understand easily how to pronounce all the simple and common words.
Step 5: Practice, practice, and practice more. The more you use the imitation method to improve your pronunciation, the better you get at it. The more you practice, you get to compare and point out all the mistakes.
Being able to read and write English is one thing and being able to pronounce it is a different ball game altogether. If your English pronunciation is lacking, follow the imitation method and the steps mentioned above to improve your pronunciation and get a good IELTS band.
Once you’re ready to take the IELTS test, book your seat in advance. Visit the IELTS AOLCC website to select the ideal dates for your IELTS Test. You can book the IELTS test centres in Kingston, London, Brampton, and Mississauga. Normally, ILETS AOLCC arranges the speaking test on the same day as the listening, reading, and writing tests. If you need more time to improve your speaking skills and practice the imitation method, you can send your special requests to firstname.lastname@example.org.