The Problem with English Writing Instruction

A friend of mine wanted to join a PhD program in Applied Linguistics. He hoped to become a linguist, and to work on developing second language reading and writing instruction. He had a meeting with a leading professor in the field, and asked him about the current state of second language writing research. The professor’s […]

What Makes a Great (Native or Non-Native Speaking) English Teacher?

Chad is an American in his early twenties. He completed a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology, but didn’t know what to do with his life after graduation. He got average grades in college, is reasonably smart, but lacks marketable skills. His choices after graduation are entry-level positions at a few local companies, but he doesn’t want […]

How Can I Sound Like a Native Speaker?

A good friend of mine is from India. She moved to the United States many years ago. Recently, she confessed to me that she has felt frustrated since moving to the US. She said, “Everyone thinks that I’m not a native speaker of English.” I was confused. She saw that I was confused. She crossed […]

How are English Tests Made?

Language tests are a concern for many students because they are tied to social and economic benefits all over the world. More and more people are required to demonstrate that they can use second and foreign languages effectively in order to advance in their careers. Because of this, language test preparation has become a big […]

How to Learn Vocabulary Naturally

People often talk about language learning in either a foreign or second language terms. We are learning a foreign language when we study a language that we will not use in daily life. We learn a second language when we study a language that we will use regularly. So, an American university student studying Chinese […]

How can I Improve my Listening Skills?

In a previous blog post, I tried to answer the question: “What is listening skill?” To briefly review, listening is a holistic process, where a listener’s experiences, preferences and comprehension work together to construct an understanding. No two people will understand what they hear in exactly the same way, because no two people have exactly […]

What is Listening Skill?

Learning to listen in a second language can be frustrating. If you’ve ever tried to learn a second language, you’ve probably had an experience like this: You begin to study the language. Soon, you make friends with people who also speak the language. You spend time together. Eventually, you can have conversations in the second […]