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An interview about listening skills

Listen to the English teacher talk about listening to practise and improve your listening skills.

Do the preparation task first. Then listen to the audio and do the exercises.



Language level

Intermediate: B1


For me has been a challenge too, I need to give more time in this area, I work on my listen with podcast and songs, but some songs are too fast or use a particular way to pronounce the words, grammar also is a challenge. There are a lot of things to study, thousands of words, grammar, listening, writing, but it's not impossible. It's just hard work and persistence and on the other hand english is an awesome language.

Listening is used to be my big challenge. I tried to improve my lestening skills all the time but unfortunately l was struggled by new bans l could not know them in aim to solve them like the accents. l arrived to understand most of British words then l realized that there are more accents quite different and the spelling is tottaly changed. I was really lost.
Then some of my friends told me don't panik. There is one English language the ways of speaking are accent. Focus on one accent practice it and try to learn more vocabulary and grammar skills.
Is that true?

Hello Ahmed Abdi,

That's a difficult question to answer well without knowing more about what situations you need or intend to use English in. If, for example, you are going to use it to do business with people from a particular country or region of the world, then I'd recommend focusing on the accent from that region. But in most other cases, I'd encourage you to listen to different accents. It won't hurt to focus on one accent for some time, but be sure to listen to others.

There are some minor variations in the grammar and vocabulary that people use in different varieties of English, but in most cases I doubt these differences will be a serious problem for you.

I hope this helps.

All the best,


The LearnEnglish Team

Thank you Mr Kirk!
Very good advice! Well, l have to change my way. l know it is hard but nothing is impossible with perseverance.
Best regards!

I have to admit that also for me listening is the most difficult area. I try to go the miles away to improve it by listening to audio books and watching movies without subtitles as much as I can. In real life when I have a conversation, when I can't understand some sentences I ask in a polite manner the person who is included in conversation if he/she can repeat it or speak slowly, and sometimes I just pretend to understand and change the topic. its really challenge for me, but I think its just a matter of time and i will master it soon with hard work

Dear Peter M.,

I really want to improve my listening skills because I often get in trouble when I speak with other peole.

Nowadays, I try to do more and more listening practise to learn new vocabulary and the English slang to sound more natural. Even if I can't understand the audio I repeat it twice or three times and one more time with the transcription just to look at the correct spelling of new words I've listened.

Other thing I've been doing is watch videos or series without subtitles. Sometimes it's kind of difficult but I want to challenge me.

Best regards!

Hi Gema25,

It sounds like you're doing the right things. Remember, that when you're improving step by step over time it can be hard to see the progress, but that doesn't mean you aren't improving. Practice makes perfect, so keep it up!



The LearnEnglish Team

Listening is also difficult for me. When I spoke to someone, I request to speak for repeating. I can't concentrate on conversation and couldn't catch up some vocabularies well. Now, I practice listening exercises on British Council website everyday. I trust I'll improve my listening. Thanks.

Listening is the most difficult part for me. I confess that even when people speak my language, I find it hard to concentrate and focus especially if they are talkative or they speak fast. So, you can imagine what happens to me when I'm listening to audio recordings, particularly when speakers are native, it is like trying to understand a physicist explaining some nuclear theory. While I'm writing down some important point of the conversation, I miss the following part. I try to go the extra mile by doing more listening exercises, but it is still a huge challenge for me. I think that it is just a matter of time, with perseverance and hard work, I'll eventually master it. Obviously, I'm talking about listening in exams, in real life, I can manage, I'm not really that bad!

I think there are not so many options in this case. You have to practice, practice and again practice. You can't escape this even if want to. I know it's difficult at first when you start to listen to different records in your target language. People there speak fast and non-understandable. But, some time later you start to catch some separated familiar words. Then - phrase. That adds to speeches more sense. After several months you can find that the task you found difficult later became easier. That's it. That's how it works