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Learn better English -- 12 tips to help you study English

Learning English can be painful but also great fun and exciting. Much depends on how you approach it. A great start would be to practice your English on Kangaruni. Add a comment to one of the many articles, join the forum or start your own blog and let friends comment. We are all foreign students so no need to be afraid to make mistakes! Beneath are 12 tips for learning better English: Enjoy!

Keep your goal in mind and be prepared to do the hard work – Learning a new language requires a lot of study and dedication. You will need to read, write, learn dry grammar and do stressful exams. At times you may feel tired and lose hope: `will I ever be able to learn it? ` During those periods you’ll need to remember why you study English. For example: to reach your full potential and open opportunities for a great career in an industry that you love. Or to build a new life in Australia, or to provide your children with a better future.

You can be smart but fail in English: Many smart people struggle to learn English. There are numerous examples of African surgeons or Asian lawyers who struggle to learn English. They sometimes spend years in bridging courses before passing the EILTS test. So do not despair but keep hope: English is very difficult and failing a test does not mean that you are not smart enough to study down under.

Never, never, never be afraid to make a mistake! Speak freely without being afraid to make a mistake. Mistakes are how we learn; we make the mistake then we learn from it and improve. If you are not sure of the answer, have a go anyway. You may just surprise yourself! And, even if you are wrong, at least you will be able to learn the correct word, phrase or pronunciation. Besides: Australians will very much appreciate your efforts.

Set clear goals –Set goals for yourself whether it be learning twenty words a week or giving a presentation in English at work next month. Goals will keep you motivated.

Study a little each day –Studying formally for at least 30–60 minutes a day will help you retain what you learn. At the beginning of each study session, review what you learned in the lesson before.

Study out loud and tape yourself – A great way to learn a language is to listen to an English text played for example on your Ipod. Try to stop the Ipod after every sentence and repeat the words while recording. Listen back to your own voice (don’t be embarrassed!) and compare your words with the English text. It will give you a better feel for the language.

Act! A good feel for the language is more important than knowing all the grammar. To really learn a new language you need to `act'. Pretend you are English and `play` with the words. Imitate the words while thinking about a famous English actor. `Acting English` will improve your accent and you will notice that people better understand you. It will also help you to think in English instead of translating the words in your mind and the language will come much more natural to you. All this will provide you with more confidence and your skills will improve very quickly.

Use different learning methods –Language can be learned through different activities such as speaking, reading, writing, and associating pictures with words. Find out which method works best for you and use a variety of other methods for practice.

Surround yourself with English. Read English books, listen to it English songs, try to sing English songs yourself, watch English movies, join the Kangaruni forum and speak English with other students.

Be active on Kangaruni: Start adding comments to Kangaruni articles and write an English blog on Kangaruni. Writing and presenting in English are possibly the most important skills to be able to study in Australia. Improve your skills while writing a blog at Kangaruni and let other students comment. It will be fun and you don’t need to be afraid to make mistakes as the others are mostly from non English speaking background too!

Don't get stuck –If you don’t know a certain word, work your way around it. Try to think of another word to explain what you mean, but don’t give up.

Have fun! –Learning a new language can be fun and exciting. Enjoy your progress and be happy about what you’ve achieved, Good luck!

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