Listening Skill


Make sure you have the right software to take advantage of what is available on the WWW. You can download players and find links to online radio stations at, and

The RealPlayer allows you to listen to RealAudio and use the Internet like a radio station. Many sites now also provide listening using the Windows Media Player - or even have their own players on the site. Once you have the RealPlayer you can begin to listen to English as it is used in everyday life. The possibilities are almost unlimited. You can:

Try some of the radio stations I recommend on my broadcasts page.

Films in English are an excellent language resource. Follow my tips on how to use films to improve your English.

Keep up to date with current events and watch an English-language news station, such as BBC World. Watch news reports on events you are already aware of.

Find out how to switch languages on your TV. If you have digital or satellite TV there are several channels that broadcast in multiple languages. Eurosport is one and Euronews is another.

Use my online English radio stations list, Popular radio stations live on the web..

Read my poem of the month or joke of the month and then send off for the monthly sound files.

Use the dictation pages to test your understanding.

Here is some of the advice I give my students:

  • Accept the fact that you are not going to understand everything.
  • Keep cool (idiom=stay relaxed) when you do not understand - even if you continue to not understand for a long time.
  • Do not translate into your native language (synonym=mother tongue)
  • Listen for the gist (noun=general idea) of the conversation. Don't concentrate on detail until you have understood the main ideas.
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