Introduction

There are countless British English in England, let alone in the whole world.
Don’t worry too much about accents. Everyone has one (even native speakers) and it should be a badge of pride to show where you come from.

However: Reasons to want a British accent:

  • To be more respected at work
  • To stop being treated like an outsider
  • To impress your friends!

British accents have a few things in common which we’ll look at later

General Advice

  • Get the foundations right when you start so you don’t cement your mistakes, but change will come over time.
  • Watch lots of British TV shows, movies, and of course podcasts
  • Talk with native speakers and try to mimic their pronunciation
  • Getting a teacher would be even better because they can correct your mistakes
  • It takes a long time, and many people don’t begin to develop their accent fully until they reach an advanced level, don’t give up!

Specific Advice

  • Shadowing – repeat words from phrases you hear. Pay attention to vowel sounds.
  • Watch your mouth in a mirror
  • Pay attention to your tongue position
  • L – tongue touches top teeth
  • R – tongue moves back in mouth, not touching

Learn Stress

  • I recommend forvo.com for pronunciation and merriam-webster.com for a dictionary.

  • PreSENT / PREsent

  • SUSpect / susPECT

  • Record yourself and listen back

Specific Sounds

  • T sound – Very strong

    • Butter, Better

  • R sound – Not so strong

    • Car, Park, Hair, Hard, Ear

American vs British

  • AdvertIZEment (USA) / AdverTISSment (UK)

  • The ILE sound is different. MoBLE (USA) / MoBILE (UK)

  • Words ending in “ation”. Organisation

I recommend this poem called The Chaos by Gerard Nolst Trenité

This poem shows the irregularities in English pronunciation. Try it for fun! It’s very difficult though.

 

Recap: Having an imperfect accent isn’t the end of the world. We each have our own and should be proud of it. However, there’s nothing wrong with wanting to improve, so I hope this helped.

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