Five Essential Study Tips for Language Success
Find a productive and secluded place to work.
Steve Gardam, director of the Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre, reveals some of Roald Dahl’s working habits and how they inspire productivity for any budding student. One of which was Roald Dahl’s insistence that finding a special place to work will stimulate the mind and help you to focus. Roald Dahl’s famous ‘writing hut’ consisted of a specially adapted armchair and a rickety electric heater to keep him warm in winter.
Although you don’t have to go to the extremes of the famous author and construct your own writing hut, finding a quiet place to work will help you focus on your studies and help you to really grasp the complexities of the English language. Whether you find a secluded spot in your local library or create a work-focused space at home, having a familiar spot that you can return to every time you study will help you enter into ‘study mode’ and work productively.
Take breaks between longer periods of study.
Another secret to the success of Roald Dahl’s writing career was the discipline he instilled in his work timetable. He found a schedule which worked for him and stuck to it, working in his writing hut for two, two-hour stints each day with a long break in-between. He said that you “should never work for too long at a stretch, because after about two hours you are not at your highest level of concentration, so you have to stop”.
And it’s the same for studying the English language. Although there is a learning timetable in all the English language courses we offer international students, independent study is also vital for language success. Even outside the classroom, create a structured timetable of learning for yourself whilst studying on your own. Be consistent and disciplined, allowing yourself regular breaks to take in everything you have learnt.
Take advantage of the environment around you.
There are many advantages to studying in the UK whilst you learn the language. Using study resources and work focused environments are great ways to stay productive with your learning. However, students who travel to the UK to learn English language have the added benefit of being surrounded by fluent English and native speakers who can help students progress even further.
Befriending native speakers helps you to pick up a more rounded experience of the English language as they can teach you more informal English phrases used in everyday life that may not be taught in the classroom.
Practice with friends and study partners.
Independent study is great for soaking up new information however implementing your new language skills in real-life situations helps those new skills to stay in your memory.
Practising with a study partner or English speaking friend and creating role play situations such as a shopping experience, customer service information phone call or a business meeting will help you to identify what areas of English language are important to you. For even more ways to improve your English, our informative blog post offers advice to help you perfect your skills and improve your fluency.
Keep up with your new language skills.
Once you have acquired your new English language skills it’s important to keep up to them and revisit your learning resources. Being fluent requires you to reinforce what you have learnt by putting it to use in everyday life. It may be tempting to put your notebooks aside and not open them again once your course has finished. However going through your learning resources from time to time refreshes your newly acquired skills and helps you to stay fluent.
For more information about keeping up with your English language skills after you have completed your English language course, our recent blog post goes into more detail and offers top tips for international students.
Studying English language requires hard work and dedication and taking control of your own learning is also part of that process. If you require further advice or guidance, our helpful country managers are on hand to provide support and information throughout every student stay so you can make the very most out of your English language course and take the right steps towards language success!