Improving Language Listening Comprehension

April 14, 2017


If you're one of the many people who attempt to learn a new language, you've probably reached a point where it makes sense "on paper" but less when listening to a native speaker. In many cases it's just as important to hone your listening skills as it is to improve your speaking skills. Here are a few tips to help you improve your listening comprehension of other languages.

First of all actively practice listening to the language you are learning every day. Your listening practice should take as much time as your reading or speaking practice. A great tool for this is to watch foreign language videos online, especially dialogs. This will help you learn which phrases and responses are common in everyday speaking. These videos are especially helpful if they include subtitles. These subtitles can either be in English or in the language you are learning which will help you pair the written and spoken words.

Second, as you advance in your new language continually push yourself by listening to higher levels of spoken conversation. Many adults learning a foreign language start with children's programs then work their way up to sitcoms and finally more serious dramas, mysteries, or documentaries. Some of this material is actually made for second language learners and is graded with "beginner," "intermediate," and "advanced" levels.

Lastly we recommend speaking with native speakers. Nothing will put your hard work to the test quite like this. Let's face it, book learning can only take us so far. Fortunately today if you have access to the Internet you can practice with native speakers around the world. There are even websites where native teaching can be shared whereby you help someone learn English and they help you learn the language of your choice.

Get creative with your language learning and look for opportunities to get extra listening inserted into your day. Maybe you download some French pop music to listen to on your way to work or turn on a Korean news broadcast. The opportunities to listen to your target language are usually just a few clicks away and the world is literally at your fingertips.

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