Monthly Archives: September 2019

Clarifying and Checking Information

Are you comfortable asking people for clarification when you don’t understand them? How about offering clarification to make sure people understand you?

Some of us may not like to ask for clarification because we don’t want to seem inattentive or disrespectful. We may hesitate to offer clarification because we don’t want to be perceived as lacking confidence in our speech or in other cases, patronizing.

However, being completely confident with both of these is useful, and in some cases crucial, for successful communication. This is true whether English is your first language or second language.

The article below, from ThoughtCo., provides common phrases that you can use to effectively clarify and check information. 

When using these phrases, it’s also important to use the right tone. For example, using a polite and professional tone may be appropriate in most of these situations.

Observe how others ask and give clarification. Consider recording and re recording yourself saying some of the phrases until it conveys the attitude you wish to express.

If English is your second language and you are interested in enhancing aspects of your English communication, Progressive Speech provides customized training focused on effective, clear, and confident speech.

The Importance of Intonation

This article, from the British Council Voices Magazine, highlights the importance of English 𝙄𝙣𝙩𝙤𝙣𝙖𝙩𝙞𝙤𝙣 or the ‘music’ of English. Using incorrect intonation can lead to major misunderstanding, even if English is our first language!

If English is your second language 𝙖𝙣𝙙 you feel that your speech sometimes limits your effectiveness, then sharpening your English intonation skills can help minimize the chances of miscommunication.

The article explains two simple ways to begin improving our English intonation: be aware of how others use intonation and examine our own intonation. During the day, notice how others use the music of their speech to express themselves. Also, record and re-record your own voice regularly until it conveys the attitude you wish to express.

If you are interested in more formal training in English intonation, 𝙋𝙧𝙤𝙜𝙧𝙚𝙨𝙨𝙞𝙫𝙚 𝙎𝙥𝙚𝙚𝙘𝙝 at provides customized lessons to strengthen your intonation for effective, clear, and confident speech.