In most cases, English proficiency is necessary for successful immigration to an English-speaking country, including Australia. But you do not have to live in an English-speaking country to become fluent in English. With the right approach, you can improve your language skills without leaving the comfort of your home.
- Surround yourself with English
Find ways to make English part of your daily life, for example, make a shopping list or keep a diary in English, watch TV shows and movies in English, or listen to English audio books on your way to school or work.
- Make foreign friends
Find ways to meet native English speakers: go to foreign bars and restaurants, join social clubs or attend a language exchange event. You could even volunteer to act as a guide at a local travel agency. Or you could meet new friends online.
3. Find a study buddy
You don’t need native speakers to practice your English. Find a study buddy or start an English club and meet regularly to speak English. You can motivate each other, and you will learn by helping others with their problems.
- Use authentic materials
Learning English from textbooks can be boring. Try reading materials written in English for native speakers. If you cannot find books or magazines in English, use the Internet to read news in English daily. Many free English language resources are also available on the Internet, including tests, quizzes, books, and so on.
- Go online
Online you will be able to chat to people from all over the world. Join chats or forums, attend online English courses, or find a pen pal to practice English while also learning about different cultures. With social networks, it’s easier than ever to keep in touch with friends from all over the world.
- Set realistic goals
Give yourself a reason to study: do you want to get a promotion, be able to talk with foreign colleagues, study abroad or spend your next vacation in an English-speaking country? Set both short-term and long-term goals and track your progress.
- Listen to real English
Practice by listening to English at normal speed, even if you don’t understand everything. Also practice listening without seeing a transcript, and don’t be afraid to listen several times. Finding free English podcasts on the Internet is pretty easy, and YouTube is a real treasure trove when it comes to this!
- Find fun ways to learn new words
If you like to sing, learn lyrics for your favourite English songs. Or, if you have good visual memory, write new words on sticky notes and put them around the house. Come up with fun examples or draw small pictures next to the new words to better remember them.
9. Have fun
Learning a language requires work, but you will be more prone to it if you enjoy the process itself. Play games, solve crosswords, sing songs, read comics and don’t worry too much about mistakes – it’s a natural part of the process!