Pronunciation: SpeakAP displays pictures of your speech

SpeakAP is a fun little app for Android, iPhone, and iPad that offers a useful angle on pronunciation of individual words. Unlike software that seeks to tell you if you’ve matched the individual sounds in a word, SpeakAP focuses on the timing, intensity, and pitch of syllables in single words. This is a particularly good […]

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Vocabulary.com personalized game and dictionary

The terrific website Vocabulary.com has been out for several years now, and it just keeps getting better. This is a product of Thinkmap, the group that created Visual Thesaurus. You might call it a dictionary with witty definitions. You might call it an advanced vocabulary game that can quiz you on up to thousands of words by […]

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“Got a minute?” Scientific American’s podcast offers one every day.

Do you want to work on vocabulary, fluency, pitch range, or interpreting technical content to a lay audience Scientific American is a long-established magazine that publishes articles on a broad range of scientific topics for non-specialists. One of my students led me to the groovy “60-Second Science” daily audio podcast, which always starts with the […]

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Using English for Specific Academic Purposes

Andy Gillett’s UEFAP site, Using English for Academic Purposes, supported by BALEAP (the British Association of Lecturers in EAP) offers a deep set of resources for academic communication in all skill areas. The best segments of the site offer an introduction, strategic advice and practice exercises, and sample phrases for very specific communicative purposes. The advice […]

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All the language learning you can do with NPR

“NPR” stands for “National Public Radio,” a not-for-profit radio network that emphasizes high quality, in-depth, long-form news and conversation. Most radio shows are available as podcast episodes, and there is some content only available via podcast. For advanced English language learning, the NPR website and apps are a gold mine for working on listening, vocabulary, […]

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“Marketplace” podcasts

Whether you are interested in economies, personal finance, business, inequality, social and political movements, or how money impacts our daily lives, the Marketplace suite of podcasts has an episode for you. The context is primarily from the point of view of the United States. The style is largely conversational, interviewing expert guests and everyday people […]

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Phrases to get things done in English: Imber’s Verbal Stratagems

This simple and easy-to-use Verbal Stratagems website offers a robust collection of phrases for specific purposes, such as agreeing, checking for understanding, expressing gratitude, or making a suggestion. These phrases have been collected and maintained by Dr. Brenda P. Imber of the English Language Institute at the University of Michigan and Carson Maynard, a Michigan […]

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Practice pronunciation watching Youtube videos in YouGlish

This review is by guest contributor Emmanuel Orozco Castellanos. Learning English on Youtube may not seem like a new idea. There already exists a virtually infinite amount of videos to learn English or any other languages. You can find anything from grammar lessons to tips to perform better at job interviews. But sometimes all you […]

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MICUSP corpus of written academic papers

MICUSP, the Michigan Corpus of Upper-level Student Papers, is composed of papers with a grade of A from the University of Michigan written for upper undergraduate and early graduate courses. This searchable database makes it possible to see disciplinary differences in academic writing, to observe the various ways that a particular word or phrase is […]

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Use “Just The Word” to find phrases that sound great

Just The Word is a powerful tool for figuring out how a word patterns with other words: what are possible grammatical phrase structures for a word, and what words go with your search term? Just The Word uses a subset of 80 million words of the British National Corpus, a database of published written language and transcribed […]

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