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  Fluentenglish.com > English > "Can I become fluent in spoken English thro' self-study?"
  Self-study facts: Page 5 of 7
   
 
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Helping learners in difficulty
Prof. Kev Nair knows what sort of difficulties a learner is likely to run into —while learning by themselves from his self-study books. He knows this from his experience with hundreds of thousands of learners since as far back as 1974.

Through constant observation and study, he’s found out the points where a self-study learner might run into difficulties. And we’ve identified the doubts that a learner might come to have, and the queries and questions that a self-study learner might like to get answered. And his self-study books deal with all these difficulties, doubts, queries and questions thoroughly and completely.

Fluency learner’s difficulties are of a unique kind
Now, there’s something important that you must understand here: You see, while you’re learning other subjects like mathematics, computer programming or machine repair, you’ll often run into difficulties that may need the help of an instructor. But you won’t normally run into difficulties of that sort while you’re learning the fluency skill. Actually, by the very nature of things, you can’t.

Of course, if someone who doesn’t know English is trying to learn it, then they’ll certainly have difficulties of the same sort as learners trying to learn subjects like mathematics, computer programming and machine repair. But fluency learners are people who’ve already learnt English. And now they’re doing something different: They’re now learning to be fluent. And while learning the fluency skill, their intention is not to gain more knowledge of the English language as such — though they’ll certainly be picking up more knowledge of the English language along the way. Their intention is to gain spoken English fluency. So while learning the fluency skill, what they’re actually doing is to learn the techniques of orally manipulating the English they know in a skillful way — and of making it work in the way they want it to. And they’re trying to re-orient the knowledge they already have... to the needs of the fluency building process.

So while learning the fluency skill, the difficulties you may run into are of a different type. And Prof. Kev Nair’s self-study books deal with them effectively.

Knowledge of fluency techniques
Prof. Kev Nair’s self-study books describe and explain each aspect of each fluency technique thoroughly and completely – in the simplest English you can imagine. Every effort has been made to make sure that you learn from them easily and quickly. And every effort has been made to make sure that you retain whatever you’ve learnt – and that you don’t forget those things in a few days after you’ve learnt them.

Several techniques have been used in these self-study books to make sure that the things you learn and retain do not remain simply at a verbal level, but get absorbed into the deeper levels of your mind, into your whole system. This has been done, so that the things you learn will spring to your help whenever you need them. Several techniques have also been used to make sure that it becomes second nature to you to apply the things you learn from the self-study books to real-life situations. You begin doing this instinctively, almost without thinking. And you become skilled at doing whatever needs to be done to process speech in your head – and to produce it smoothly and continuously. Several techniques have been used to make these skills become easy to you.

Now, the aim of getting you to train in this way is to get you into a state of readiness to deal effectively with speech-processing difficulties and speech-production difficulties — while speaking spontaneously.

You put the fluency techniques to practical use in real-life situations when you speak spontaneously in those situations. When you speak spontaneously, you convey your ideas in a way that you find possible at that point of time — and not in a preplanned way. So you’re free to adapt everything you say to frameworks that you then find possible. Now if you find some difficulty while doing this, as you speak on, you have to deal with it on the spot — then and there.

You see, these are not difficulties that are particular to learners alone. Even fluent speakers face these speech-planning and speech-production difficulties every time they speak spontaneously. Yes, every one of them, without exception. The only difference between a non-fluent speaker and a fluent speaker is this: Fluent speakers know fluency techniques. And they’re good at dealing with these difficulties on the spot — by applying the fluency techniques unconsciously. In this way, they’re able to prevent their speech from breaking up. And when they do this, their speech gives the impression of a smooth flow. But someone who has not learnt fluency techniques does not know how to do this, and so they falter and can’t speak fluently. In fact, the whole thrust of fluency training is to get you to understand what sort of difficulties these are, and how you can deal with them as you speak on — on the spot.

The whole point is this: The sort of difficulties that you may have while speaking in a real-life situation are difficulties that an instructor cannot realistically help you deal with. They’re difficulties that you will have to deal with yourself — on the spot.

Difficulty studying by yourself
This is a self-study course. And so this course is meant for people who are willing to study on their own – without being instructed by someone else. And Prof. Kev Nair’s self-study books make this quite easy to do.

It’s almost impossible that the self-study learners may have difficulty understanding things from Prof. Kev Nair’s self-study books. Here are the reasons:

1). The self-study books don’t use language that is unclear or confusing – or that can be understood in more than one way. They tell you things in the most simple and direct language. The self-study books use words that are the simplest that can carry the ideas conveyed, and grammatical structures that are the clearest and most direct possible. The books use English that is plain and clear to tell you things. And they convey ideas from the instructor’s mind to your mind quickly, easily and accurately.

2). The topics the self-study books deal with are well-planned and well-organized, so that they’re clear and sensible and all their parts fit well together.

3). The self-study books don’t tell you things in a hurry or leave you wondering what they mean. They explain everything slowly and patiently, taking their time doing it. The self-study books say enough about each little point, so that it gets firmly into your mind. The books give you plenty of examples at every step and make it quite easy for you to understand everything. Plenty of examples – a very large number of them. And when they explain a point, they give you all the information you need.

4). The self-study books anticipate the sort of difficulties you may run into while learning from them, and the sort of queries and questions you may like to get answered. The self-study books deal with these difficulties, and answer all these queries and questions thoroughly and completely. So while learning from the self-study books, you’re not likely to get a feeling that you’re not certain whether your understanding about some points is correct or not. And you won’t get a feeling that you’ve not understood any points fully.

So, if you can follow simple directions in simple English, you’re not likely to face any difficulty while learning from Prof. Kev Nair’s self-study books. Even if you do, self-study books themselves take care of those difficulties.

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In this section
1. Alternatives to self-study route, not really practical. 5. Helping learners in difficulty
2. Classroom instruction, not really effective 6. Living and working in an English environment
3. Fluency techniques and real-life situations 7. Fluency techniques: The only quick and easy route
4. Face-to-face instruction and feedback
 
 
 

 
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