Nov 21

Why you should study English pronunciation

by Tomasz P. Szynalski

First impressions

Pronunciation is definitely the biggest thing that people notice when you are speaking English. Let me tell you a personal anecdote about this:

Michal and I once went to a conversation class taught by native speakers (Americans). Before the class started, the teacher said to us: “So, do you speak good English?”. I replied “We think so”, and the guy said “It sure sounds like you do”.

Notice that I just said three words, and the teacher could already tell if my English was good or bad. Why did he think my English was good? It wasn’t because I used difficult words or advanced grammar structures. It was the way I pronounced English words.

When you talk to a person in real life, they may not notice your limited vocabulary or grammar mistakes. But they will notice right away if your pronunciation is good or bad. If your pronunciation is poor, they will think about you as the guy/girl who speaks bad English, and good grammar and vocabulary won’t help you!


Good pronunciation should be one of the first things that you learn in English. You can live without advanced vocabulary — you can use simple words to say what you want to say. You can live without advanced grammar — you can use simple grammar structures instead. But there is no such thing as “simple pronunciation”. If you don’t have good pronunciation, you have bad pronunciation.

And the consequences of bad pronunciation are tragic. Even if you use correct grammar, people may simply not understand what you want to say.

For example, if you pronounce sleep like this, and not like that, or if you pronounce ghost like this instead of this, native speakers will have serious problems understanding you! In my opinion, you should know how to say English sounds like the ee in sleep or the o in ghost, before you even learn words like sleep and ghost.

Here is an anecdote about this. After coming back from a vacation in the USA, a friend of mine said:

“Whenever I spoke to a person in America, they kept asking me What? What? I would repeat my sentence again and again. Finally they would say Ah-ha! and then say my sentence, using exactly my words! It was very humiliating. I knew my words and grammar were good, but nobody would understand me, just because of my pronunciation. I am very motivated to learn English now.”

 Can you communicate in English?

Almost all English learners say “I don’t need to study pronunciation. I just want to communicate in English.” Many of them think that they can communicate in English because they can communicate with their teacher and other students.

Do not make this mistake! You have to remember that:

  • Your teacher has been listening to bad English for years. He or she can understand it much more easily than the average person.
  • Other students are usually from the same country as you. Therefore, they speak English like you and they make the same mistakes. So it is easy for them to understand you.

The only true test is: Go to America or Britain and try to talk to “normal people” — a clerk at a supermarket, a bus driver, etc. If they can understand you, then you can say that you can communicate in English.

Unfortunately, many learners ignore pronunciation. They can communicate in class, so they think that they are good enough. After a few years they go to England or the USA and… nobody understands what they are saying. Remember my friend who went on vacation to America and couldn’t communicate? He was the best student in his English class.

Communication is not enough

If you can communicate in English with people from other countries, congratulations! It’s a big achievement. Now you should ask yourself two questions:

  • Is my English easy to understand?
  • Is my English pleasant to listen to?

Some people communicate successfully in English, but have a strong foreign accent. Although you can understand what they are saying, it is not easy. You have to listen to them really carefully, which takes effort. In addition, some foreign accents are simply unpleasant to listen to.

If you speak English with a strong foreign accent, you are making things difficult for people who listen to you. If understanding your English takes effort or your accent is unpleasant, people will avoid talking to you if they have the choice. Would you like to listen to zis speaker for 15 minutes? On the other hand, if you have a clear, pleasant accent, people will simply enjoy talking to you. They will want to spend time with you.

End of the Article.

Contact me today if you need help to improve your English fluency.

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Oct 22

How English is Evolving

How English Is Evolving Into a Language We May Not Even Understand

By Michael Erard

The targeted offenses: IF YOU ARE STOLEN, CALL THE POLICE AT ONCE. PLEASE OMNIVOROUSLY PUT THE WASTE IN GARBAGE CAN. DEFORMED MAN LAVATORY. For the past 18 months, teams of language police have been scouring Beijing on a mission to wipe out all such traces of bad English signage before the Olympics come to town in August. They’re the type of goofy transgressions that we in the English homelands love to poke fun at, devoting entire Web sites to so-called Chinglish. (By the way, that last phrase means “handicapped bathroom.”)

But what if these sentences aren’t really bad English? What if they are evidence that the English language is happily leading an alternative lifestyle without us?

Thanks to globalization, the Allied victories in World War II, and American leadership in science and technology, English has become so successful across the world that it’s escaping the boundaries of what we think it should be. In part, this is because there are fewer of us: By 2020, native speakers will make up only 15 percent of the estimated 2 billion people who will be using or learning the language. Already, most conversations in English are between nonnative speakers who use it as a lingua franca.

In China, this sort of free-form adoption of English is helped along by a shortage of native English-speaking teachers, who are hard to keep happy in rural areas for long stretches of time. An estimated 300 million Chinese — roughly equivalent to the total US population — read and write English but don’t get enough quality spoken practice. The likely consequence of all this? In the future, more and more spoken English will sound increasingly like Chinese.

It’s not merely that English will be salted with Chinese vocabulary for local cuisine, bon mots, and curses or that speakers will peel off words from local dialects. The Chinese and other Asians already pronounce English differently — in both subtle and not-so-subtle ways. For example, in various parts of the region they tend not to turn vowels in unstressed syllables into neutral vowels. Instead of “har-muh-nee,” it’s “har-moh-nee.” And the sounds that begin words like this and thing are often enunciated as the letters f, v, t, or d. In Singaporean English (known as Singlish), think is pronounced “tink,” and theories is “tee-oh-rees.”

English will become more like Chinese in other ways, too. Some grammatical appendages unique to English (such as adding do or did to questions) will drop away, and our practice of not turning certain nouns into plurals will be ignored. Expect to be asked: “How many informations can your flash drive hold?” In Mandarin, Cantonese, and other tongues, sentences don’t require subjects, which leads to phrases like this: “Our goalie not here yet, so give chance, can or not?”

One noted feature of Singlish is the use of words like ah, lah, or wah at the end of a sentence to indicate a question or get a listener to agree with you. They’re each pronounced with tone — the linguistic feature that gives spoken Mandarin its musical quality — adding a specific pitch to words to alter their meaning. (If you say “xin” with an even tone, it means “heart”; with a descending tone it means “honest.”) According to linguists, such words may introduce tone into other Asian-English hybrids.

Given the number of people involved, Chinglish is destined to take on a life of its own. Advertisers will play with it, as they already do in Taiwan. It will be celebrated as a form of cultural identity, as the Hong Kong Museum of Art did in a Chinglish exhibition last year. It will be used widely online and in movies, music, games, and books, as it is in Singapore. Someday, it may even be taught in schools. Ultimately, it’s not that speakers will slide along a continuum, with “proper” language at one end and local English dialects on the other, as in countries where creoles are spoken. Nor will Chinglish replace native languages, as creoles sometimes do. It’s that Chinglish will be just as proper as any other English on the planet.

And it’s possible Chinglish will be more efficient than our version, doing away with word endings and the articles a, an, and the. After all, if you can figure out “Environmental sanitation needs your conserve,” maybe conservation isn’t so necessary.

Any language is constantly evolving, so it’s not surprising that English, transplanted to new soil, is bearing unusual fruit. Nor is it unique that a language, spread so far from its homelands, would begin to fracture. The obvious comparison is to Latin, which broke into mutually distinct languages over hundreds of years — French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Romanian. A less familiar example is Arabic: The speakers of its myriad dialects are connected through the written language of the Koran and, more recently, through the homogenized Arabic of Al Jazeera. But what’s happening to English may be its own thing: It’s mingling with so many more local languages than Latin ever did, that it’s on a path toward a global tongue — what’s coming to be known as Panglish. Soon, when Americans travel abroad, one of the languages they’ll have to learn may be their own.

Author: Michael Erard ( wrote about the spread of the Chinese language in issue 14.04.

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Sep 26

Essay:The Disadvantages of Living in a Foreign Country Generally Outweigh the Advantages?

The human is a strange kind of species. We’re always looking for something better, prettier or more prestigious. This desire for the other often leads one to travel to other countries, and that, in itself, is not a bad thing to do.
Before one decides to live in another country, one often takes a holiday and tends to look at the new country through rose tinted glasses. Everything seems wonderful and the people and the food are simply amazing and this can prompt the wanderlust deeper until the desire to return to live there, at least for a while, becomes un-containable.
Visiting as a tourist is a vastly different ballgame to entering a different country with an end view of taking up residence there. In the minds of the locals, you’re now invading their sacred space and territory. One becomes an expatriate with the emphasis on “ex”.
Not long after the honeymoon, the rose tinted glasses fall and are trod upon. The reality hits home – hard. Possibly the job opportunities that were touted to be so plentiful have suddenly dried up for a multitude of reasons afore- undisclosed. The local help that was so abundant seems to be now channelled in directions opposed to your own.
On the previous visits the sharing of the new culture was abundant but now there are not the invitations to imbibe in the dining and social whirlwinds of entertainment (probably most of which you surreptitiously paid for anyway). Because these events took place in the “better” venues within the district, you are now faced with the dilemma of being more astute when choosing more appropriate entertaining establishments. An error of judgement soon leads to unwelcome stomach mutterings.
As you now find yourself in the more residential areas of the city you experience that feeling of being between a rock and a hard place with an unprecedented continuous noise factor. Peoples’ ideas of boundaries between “yours” and “mine” are somewhat stilted in “their” favour. The feelings of insecurity begin to creep up on you and at a depth you may never have experienced before.
Shopping for the daily sustenance now becomes an endurance test and suddenly you are longing for your previous corner dairy or local supermarket with their fixed prices and clear labelling. Never before has the weekly grocery excursion been such a chore. The local markets lack the shopping trolleys and parking spaces; in fact, space is the one thing that’s totally missing.
Just as suddenly you discover you’re now isolated from anyone who understands English as fluently as you’d wish them to. Your helpful hosts from previous visits are nowhere in sight, leaving you with the onerous tasks of haggling over the pettiest of things that are most often surrendered for a more peaceful solution for you and financial advantage for “them”.
Within a few months one does adjust to the reality of new situations. Unless one has a strong determination to expand one’s thinking to accept new encounters as part of a form process in the adoptive initiation into another country, one can quickly become disappointed, disillusioned and disappointed with one’s new lifestyle. But it need not be so.
The integration of a depth of understanding and participation of enculturation is a gift that enhances one’s character for the rest of one’s life. One cannot put a value on this quality. As a person encounters more such learning experiences in life, they inevitably exhibit a sense of wholeness and personal development of lessons learnt at ground level within the new environment. It is no mean achievement for the one involved, but one that enriches not only the life of the individual, but also those lives whom one touches as the journey through life proceeds.
In my opinion, the disadvantages of living in another country can became real advantages in one’s life and are ultimately well worthwhile enduring for the ultimate benefit of all concerned.
Author: Murray J Greene

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Sep 22

Preparations for Listening and Understanding Lectures.

Preparations for Listening and Understanding Lectures.

As the euphoria of the high school graduation celebrations fade, the student can be lulled into a false sense of freedom and release from classroom pressures. It can be like a valve exploding but eventually the reality of the situation must be manifested and acknowledged. In fact, it’s just the beginning. The student must realise it is the beginning of a new educational style, if one is moving to the next level of studies in order to pursue ambitious career opportunities. Supervision now becomes one’s personal responsibility formed by a clear perspective of goals to be achieved via a chosen tertiary formational programme, be it at university or trade school level.

The student has to redefine his/her attitudes towards the art of learning. Their aspirations in the chosen field have to be honed and perhaps redefined. Adopting a new approach to the reality of further studies the student needs a complete re-evaluation of former study habits. The freshman must realise that he/she is now individually responsible for his own research and study. No one is there to goad them on now. It’s all up to himself. With this in mind, the student should pursue unstintingly the details of the proposed course, sifting through the faculty informational packs and website data, to thoroughly prepare to enter a new arena of learning.

The young mind needs to be reprogrammed with a keen desire to retain knowledge. The student will devise new means to effectively compartmentalise his/her mind like some cerebral filing system ready to receive the wealth of fresh targeted knowledge that will surely need to be extracted again and again for re-examination, re-assessment and finally for that big examination day, which in the meantime, is off in the unfathomable distant future. It’s too easy to loose a brain-file so the student plots and plans ways and means to secure the new treasure trove of intellectual wealth fully aware that it will most certainly need to be produced, intact and with interest, deep into study nights, or after a communal friendly argument in which the student fared not so well. “Study” takes on a new meaning and eventually the coins of knowledge need to be produced, intact and showing capital gain, on the counting day.

Armed with a positive frame of mind and an arsenal of fact seeking missiles, each one loaded and scripted for it’s own purpose to exterminate any shred of doubt and fear, the student confidently enters the lecture hall for the first engagement. His/her defence mechanism is locked on to their exclusive target of subject facts and with good navigational aids consisting of organised note taking, undivided attention on the presenter and a strictly disciplined mind determined to win this first battle, our new recruit is armed, aimed and poised to win the war.

Author: Murray J Greene

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Mar 29

Clear Ideas on English Listening Practice

Article by jack

If you are not a native English speaker, you may find that learning English is very hard, but you will become very confused if others think that English is a very easy language to learn. This is not confusing, for they just compare it to other languages, like German, Polish or even Japanese. But for you learning one of these languages is not difficult. The situation is similar. But once you learn English, you will feel English listening always trips you over and over again. How to learn English listening has become a very big problem.

If you are just a beginner, you can begin with the pronunciation practice, which often plays a very important role in English listening, for you know the truth is that listening materials are always standard English. If you practise standard pronunciation, you will have the same way with your speakers on the tape or on the radio. So try to learn standard English pronunciation. In this way you can try to use Rosetta Stone English that can instruct you by the standard way.

But pronunciation is not the only thing in English listening, there are some other very important elements that can guide you to the correct way. Among them is speaking.

How strange it seems to be! However, it is very important for you to learn listening. How? When you speak, you need to make sure that your English is correct at least. So you will have to compare your English with your materials at hand. When meeting some difficulties, you must check in case that they may occur next time. In this way you have improved your speaking, and your listening has been enhanced at the same time. Or perhaps you haven’t got any feelings about your promotion. If you use Rosetta Stone Spanish to learn this foreign language, you can try this way for you as well.

Another good way to learn English listening is through reading English books, magazines or newspapers. When you read, you will probably amass lots of useful words and phrases that often appear in your listening materials and in your conversations with native English speakers. Once you read, you can become very familiar with them, and your English listening will be improved surely. Other times if some of your friends are practising Chinese using Rosetta Stone Chinese, you can give them suggestions like this. Of course, the languages are different, but they share some common things in being learned.

Finally, try to practise listening as ofen as you can.

About the Author

We can learn all kinds of things, from economy to daily life, from the scientific learning to language aquisition. I wrote about something about software before, like Rosetta Stone English and Rosetta Stone Japanese, and of course some other things, like biology, chemistry, or even literature.

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Mar 29

Tips For Writing English Teacher Resume

Article by Juliacates1

An English teacher resume should be well drafted using the ideal format. You can browse different websites and get sample teacher resume. It will assist you to draft an effective resume and also guide you to draft your own resume. They also provide free resume templates which can be utilized to customize different sections of the resume.
The job description of English teacher is to teach students the courses in English language and adopt effective teaching methodology.
Tips for drafting a unique English teacher resume are mentioned below:
You can begin your resume by providing your contact details. These contact details include your name, current address, phone number and e-mail id. This information should be included at the beginning of your resume and should contain accurate information.
The objective statement should be followed by the contact details. This statement should be one to two sentences. It should clearly mention the position that you want to apply for and your career aim.
The skills, qualification section should be listed using bulleted points. The information included in this section should be related to the field of teaching. It should include all the details which will inform the recruiter that you are the most suitable candidate applying for the post.
The work history should include information about the job duties undertaken in the previous job and also inform about the name, duration and designation. It should be given in reverse chronological order and so it should begin with the latest experience.
The education section should include information about the degrees and courses. You can also include information about the license and certifications in a separate section. Besides these, you can also include and highlight any special achievements and awards that you have received. The last section in the resume is the reference section.
You have to check all the content included in the resume, once you have completed drafting it. This will help you to correct any spelling and grammatical error that has occurred while drafting it. You should also include keywords related to the education field.
The tips and details mentioned above will guide you to write an impressive English teacher resume.

About the Author


Julia sharing tips for Sample Teacher Resume, English Teacher Resume and having blog on Teacher Resume Writing Tips.


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Mar 29

Want to Learn English in Malta? Try These Tips

Article by Donald

If you want to learn English in Malta, then you can be in for a real treat. English schools in Malta can found in plenty offering some of the best courses to suit individual needs. These courses include exclusively designed modules for corporate executives, school pass outs, general learners and much more. When you decide to learn English in Malta, there are some important considerations that need to be looked into. Here is list of some of them in a bit more detail.

English School in Malta: This is something very important. You need to find the right English school in order to effectively learn English in Malta. Make sure that your choice of English language school in Malta provides the right infrastructure, teaching faculty and most importantly the right atmosphere which is ideal for learning a language. Try and find out the quality of knowledge review system available with the school. This helps you judge the evaluation progress you make while you learn English in Malta. Finding a good English school in Malta is not enough. You got to ask some questions to yourself as well for a better learning experience. Ask yourself why you want to learn English. Understanding your motivation, whether it be to help qualify for a better job or to communicate with someone you know, will help you stick to your goal of learning English.

English Courses in Malta: Make sure that your choice of English course in Malta suits your needs. It is better that you always have a crystal clear perspective of the purpose of learning English. Your purpose might be related to corporate dealings, confidence building, general improvement and much more. Along with choosing the right English course in Malta, you must schedule your practice time as well. You can also practice by writing English. Write letters, emails, and notes in English whenever the recipient can understand English. Your English lesson at school will probably have you writing as well, but practical writing in the real world is the best way to discover whether or not you know the language well enough to communicate.

I hope these inputs help you understand some of the important considerations to keep in mind while you learn English in Malta.

BELS is a leading English language school in Malta providing a variety of English courses to suit your individual needs. For more information log onto:

About the Author

Donald is a famous writer who writes about aprender ingles en malta, accommodations in malta, Cours particulier Anglais, and corsi di inglese a malta. You can easily Learn English in Malta.

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Mar 29

The Best Way to Speak English Fluently

Article by Jeff Long

So you are looking for the best way to speak English fluently… You are in the right place. In this article I’m going to show you how to work on your English skills and become a fluent speaker even within a few months (if you already speak some English, and… you do if you are reading this article in English).

So, what is the best way to speak English fluently? Here’s a quick story.

Back in the days, I was really bad at languages. There were dozens of different exercises, hundreds of grammar rules with no reference to the real world and it seemed that learning languages takes years and it’s extremely boring. But I was wrong. Learning languages can be easy, but only if you learn on your own.

I’ve come to the realization that it’s not about studying a language. It’s not about grammar rules. It’s not about when to use “the” or “a/an”. It’s not about learning hundreds of words from wordlists. And it’s definitely not about doing pointless exercises from a handbook.

So, if it’s not about studying a language, then what? Well, it’s pretty simple. You need to USE your target language, in this case English. Languages are for people, you don’t want to learn a language to understand its grammar or its vocabulary (unless you are a philologist or something like this).

You want to learn English to use it: speak with native speakers, read English websites or books, participate in message boards, write to English speakers, listen to English music and understand lyrics and so on.

So, what should you do? Yep, just use it. It’s okay to learn the basics of a language in a more conventional way (for example from an interactive course) but if you already speak some English, you just need to start using it as much as you can.

Make a list of things that you do on a daily basis. And then try to do these things in English. Some simple examples: watching movies, listening to podcasts, reading blogs or books, speaking with friends, listening to music, watching TV. Yep, you can do all of these things in English.

And this is the whole “secret”. Stop looking for a new method that will make you a fluent English speaker overnight and just get off your ass and start USING English. Really, it’s that simple.

About the Author

If you want to become fluent in English, you should definitely also read Tips to Speak English Fluently.

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Mar 29

How to Write English Writing Software

Article by Jane Sumerset

Writing does not have to be a complicated and arduous task especially now that technology has made it possible to simplify the writing process with an English writing software program. Now, even people who consider themselves lacking in the skills for writing can produce outputs that are grammatically correct and professional-looking. You practically don’t need to undergo rigid grammatical review classes to perfect your grammar in writing; you can easily achieve this with the software program.

The English writing software program is a very practical and useful solution to improve your writing output and develop your writing skills. Although the process is automated, with its constant use, you get to identify your grammatical errors and correct your mistakes in punctuation and spelling. The software program also enables you to save time in proofreading your output with the assurance of producing outputs that are guaranteed free from errors.

Aside from convenience and time-saving feature of the software, it is also a good way to educate oneself with the rules of grammar. The software analyzes your writing and provides you with the suggested correct version. This is particularly helpful to people who wish to improve and master the rules of grammar but do not want to enroll in formal classes for whatever reasons they may have. They may use the software as a practice to perfect their writing skills and master good grammar.

The software program is a versatile tool that is multi-functional. Some of its important uses are the following: (1) checks for grammatical, punctuation, and spelling errors; (2) provides suggestions on how to improve sentence structure among many others. With the automated proofreading of your writing, you definitely earn more time to produce more outputs that are error-free.

You don’t even have to worry that the software program will be outdated with technology advances. The program is built such that it updates itself with the latest grammatical usages, vocabulary, and the likes where your written output can be compared with and from which the corrections are based.

The software program is specifically designed to be able to ascertain that what you have written matches the English language grammatical rules and correct usages as closely as possible. It is heavily based on a high end technology that is several notches above the usual built-in editors of your word processing programs. You get to enjoy several features and functionalities that your word processors may not contain. With this high technology software program, you will be able to clearly express in writing whatever comes into your mind. What is good about this program is that it is self-evolving such that it provides the users the latest technology to enhance and improve their writing skills.

Now, you don’t need to go at great lengths and spend a lot of time trying to find ways to improve the structure and form of your writings. The English writing software will practically take care of ensuring that your written outputs are grammatically correct with no spelling and punctuation errors. What you get is a clearer and more comprehensible output.

About the Author

Watch how innovative English Writing Software instantly can improve your writing on a daily basis and learn how advanced NLP technology can help you to write perfect emails, essays, letters or reports. Read more

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Mar 28

Tired Of Getting A Low Score In Your English Tests?

Article by Mary Simmers

The title was actually what was asked to me by one of my best English teachers. I was flunking my English language class in high school because it was indeed too boring. The fact that I had to stare at the blackboard, trying to absorb all those lessons made me uninterested in the language.

I guess I’m not alone with that kind of feeling especially for other students like my age before. Besides, why do I have to learn English anyway? This is the first thing that comes into our mind when listening to English courses at school.

Unfortunately, we all have to. In this modern world, English is the universal language for business and commerce, even with politics! English is used by a lot of people especially when you are up to dealing with your business or when you are at work. Professionals need to talk and write in English and that is one of the signs of formality.

So whether you like it or not, you will have to do something to catch up with that failing grade of yours. Studying is always the first solution that one can come up when it comes to academic problems.

However, the problem relies with how the student is studying. A student who is reading a book while facing the T.V will never understand what he or she reads. When you study, use a room without any televisions, radios or other objects that can distract you. As long as you are surrounded with the things that catch your attention, then you will never learn to what you are going to study. Once you started to study all by yourself, use the dictionary, the thesaurus and any available resources available to you.

If you have a laptop or a PC, you can try using grammar checkers in order to correct yourselves if in case you want to improve your vocabulary. Read English books. Practice writing English sentences and then check it to see if you have improved. These things help you a lot in acquiring the knowledge you would like to have.

Make it a habit to list down difficult words that you might have encountered while in the course of reading a book or answering your English homework. Study hard and be a dedicated student. If you are determine enough, you will surely learn with all the things that help you come through it.

Of course, success in your grades in English and all other subjects is dependent on how much you really are passionate with your work. But in any case, determination and perseverance can sometimes be the key to make our studies successful.

Keep on reading English books when in doubt; you will learn a lot from them indeed. Also, do not limit yourself with the dictionary. You can also use the thesaurus, which will help you in finding the right synonym for a certain word.s. do the things that you know it is right for your studies. Never stop learning, be eager enough to learn more and more.

About the Author

Find out how to write perfect English letters, reports and emails by writing less. See Grammar Software in action! Read more

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