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Accents International Blog

How Long Does Accent Reduction Training Take?

by Judy Ravin | | Accent Comprehension, Diversity

When considering taking on a new skill, one of the most important questions to ask is “How long will it take to get results?” As opposed to simply learning new information, acquiring a skill requires both knowledge and performance. In other words, skill acquisition mandates applying new information to perform an action. It requires practice.

In this regard, accent reduction is no different than learning to play an instrument, solving a mathematical equation, or becoming a successful photographer. Skill acquisition demands expert instruction (knowledge) and practice (action). According to authors Mary Brabeck (PhD), Jill Jeffrey (PhD) and Sara Fry (MA), “Transferring knowledge to a new skill requires extensive and deliberate practice. This is what makes it possible for students to access and apply increasingly complex information without explicitly thinking about it. In other words, it increases automaticity.” In other words, practice makes permanent.

The difference between accent reduction and other kinds of skills is how “extensive and deliberate” the practice needs to be. From our 25 years of accent reduction coaching, we’ve found that ten hours of instruction combined with fifteen minutes of practice/day results in automaticity. Or as we like to say, accurate pronunciation becomes “second nature”.

To get these results, the learner needs:

  • A professional linguist who’s both a subject matter expert and an exceptional teacher
  • Instructional sessions that meet no more than twice/week. Long-term skill acquisition requires daily practice . To get “second nature” results, short periods of focused practice in between sessions are required. Cramming won’t work.
  • A highly customized curriculum taught within the context of the learner’s industry specific terminology
  • Consistent instructor feedback
  • A compassionate learning environment that acknowledges the learner’s achievements and builds upon them

Accent reduction training doesn’t take long. It takes expert instruction, a tried-and-true methodology, ten hours of coaching, and a commitment to practice fifteen minutes a day. To learn more: (link somewhere on the website). Still have questions? Set up a call with Judy Ravin, President and Co-Founder of Accents International. She’d love to help. 

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