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Two Vowel Shifts in Almost All ESL Accents

In addition to sharing useful information about shifts to the [ɪ] and [ʊ] sounds, I use an example word that fills me with regret and joy. I love t... Read more

Rhotic vs Non-Rhotic Accents

One major subdivision of accents/dialects is whether they are rhotic or non-rhotic: do they drop their R's or not? When the R's drop after vowels (... Read more

Broad vs Narrow Transcription of R

I had a question from someone about why they see different symbols for the R sound even though people are talking about the same one... The symbo... Read more

Nasalizing Vowels

There are three nasal consonants that are common for English speakers, but often we carry over that nasality into vowels, especially the vowels th... Read more

Introduction to Accents 6: Prioritizing Learning Accents

What accent should you learn when it's not immediately demanded by a project?  Coach Jim Johnson leads you through a list of which accents and di... Read more

Introduction to Accents 5: Helpful Hints

Often there are little shortcuts or tricks that help you to jumpstart learning an accent. Here, Jim Johnson leads you through a number of possible ... Read more

Introduction to Accents 4: Intonation

Intonation is primarily about musicality and rhythm. There tend to be recurring musical phrasings, such as lifts at the ends of phrases, that are b... Read more

R Sounds in Phonetics

There are a number of ways to express the basic R sound in phonetics, which can depend on where it occurs in a word - oftentimes a pre-vowel R is r... Read more

Introduction to Accents 3: Placement

Placement refers to the sensation of where the sound "lives" in the mouth, which can commonly lead to a mouth posture that helps with an accent. T... Read more

Cockney & Australian Confusion

I was contacted by someone who is struggling to nail the Cockney accent, and he keeps slipping into what sounds more like an Australian accent. Thi... Read more