How to repair breakdowns in communication

Focus words & pitch

How to repair breakdowns in communication One of the most effective techniques you can use to repair breakdowns in communication is this. Highlight the most important word in your message. When a conversation breaks down, identify the most important word in your message. We’ll call this the focus word. Say that word again using pitch emphasis […]

Can I Reduce My Accent?

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Can I reduce my accent? You can reduce your accent and speak in a way that sounds clear and confident.

Speak clearly using pitch emphasis

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Speak clearly using pitch emphasis When people contact me about accent reduction coaching, they usually assume that they have problems articulating American English vowel sounds American English consonant sounds And that’s often true. However Most of you non native speakers of American English need something else, if you want to be easily understood. What you […]

Why Do People Always Ask Me Where I’m From?

Why Do People Always Ask Me Where I’m From?

Why Do People Always Ask Me Where I’m From? When I first meet with people to see how best to help them communicate more clearly in American English,  I ask them to describe some of their problem situations. One of the biggest complaints that I hear from people is this~ Susan, people always ask me where […]

Sound more natural in American English

sound more natural in American English

Sound more natural in American English The people who I work with in my accent reduction coaching program often tell me~ Susan, I wanna sound more natural when I speak American English. How can I do that? Sounding more natural is an excellent goal. Here’s one technique that’ll help you achieve  that. How to speak […]

Is it Better to Speak with a High Pitch or a Low Pitch?

Is it Better to Speak with a High Pitch or a Low Pitch?

Is it better to speak with a high pitch or a low pitch? My accent reduction coaching clients often ask me if it’s better to speak with a high pitch or a low pitch. Good question! My response In order to be a clear, effective and engaging speaker of American English, you need to vary […]

Did you say live or leave?

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Did you say live or leave? Do people get mixed up when you say the words live & leave? This happens to non native speakers of American English all the time. Here’s why that happens Two American English vowel sounds that non-native speakers frequently mispronounce are: /iy/ as in Green /I/ as in Silver Many of […]

Do you use the /ɚ/ sound?

Do you use the :ɚ: sound?

Do you use the /ɚ/ sound? If you’re serious about refining your American accent, you need to know when to use the /ɚ/ sound. Say/ɚ/ with light stress There’s a good chance that you’re currently either over-pronouncing this sound  (Spanish speakers) dropping this sound  (Chinese speakers) If you do that, your speech will sound unfamiliar to American listeners. […]