Learning a new language seems like a fun prospect, and initially, it can rather stress free and easy. But like learning anything new, it takes time, practice and patience. There are many aspects to learning new languages specifically pronunciation and spelling. In many languages, a slight mispronunciation or spelling error could lead to a whole new meaning that you may not be aware off.
Those who choose to pursue the study of phonetics and language usually possess a passion for the topic. Regardless of how tedious it may be, it remains interesting throughout. If you find yourself struggling, here are a few ways to make the studying process a little simpler.
What is Phonetics?
To put it simply this branch of linguistics is the study of sounds present in speech. Each language has their category phonetics. It involves very specific study of tones and pronunciation. It is also present in sign language; its equivalent obviously being the study of signs.
Phonetics is not to be confused with phonology. The first is a very concrete study of facts and scientific forms while the second is a study of the abstract, systematic grammatical foundations of these sounds or signs. There are three basic categories into which the study of phonetics can be divided:
- Articulatory Phonetics:
This subcategory deals with the way sound interacts with a variety of physiological elements. Here consonants and vowels are studied in relation toairflow and different sources of sound.
- Acoustic Phonetics:
There are various acoustic aspects of speech, avoiding a definition these aspects can be categorised by waveforms and their amplitudes, duration, its frequency by itself and in relation to other spectrums, and other linguistic utterances and phrases.
- Auditory Phonetics:
As the name suggests, this branch of phonetics studies the way speech is received and perceived by the listener. There are a lot of elements that are studied here that are rather mechanical like the pitch, harmonics and the amplitude of speech. Every little detail is more crucial than we realize in our everyday lives.
Why is Studying Phonetics Useful?
The study of phonetics is not an abstract idea; rather it is a scientific one. There are more benefits to studying this subject that most people are aware of; especially, career wise. Language has come down to us through many generations of adaptation and change.
The very fact that English is a combination of Germanic and French languages in its most basic form is a point of interest. If you are the type of person who enjoys studying languages and linguistics, then focus your education on phonetics for the most valuable experience.
Effective Ways to Study Phonetics
- As stated above, phonetics is the study of sound and speech in language. So one of the best ways to understand and study it is through consistent practice.
- More than writing things down, communication is critical.
- Practice ideas that are taught to you on a regular basis.
- If there are ideas or concepts that are difficult to study, do sufficient research before beginning any homework or assignment.
- Building a good foundation is crucial. Do not skip any of the necessary building blocks.
- The more firm your foundation of understanding, the easier it will be to progress in university.
- Regularity in attending classes is absolutely This goes hand in hand with attentiveness.
- It is vital that you pay attention to everything the teacher says and take down detailed notes.
- Remember that phonetics deals a lot with sounds, its mechanics and the way it is heard and perceived.
- This means that there will be a lot of practical training, so most of the information you receive will be in the form of lectures.
- There is more to learn from practical classes than from theoretical essays.
- Hence, paying attention is vital. It will also give a good impression to the teacher by displaying your keen learning enthusiasm.
- Taking down running notes can be difficult for some students so find a method that suits you best.
- Use bullet points to take down short but important points.
- If necessary, take permission from the teacher to record lectures so that they can be replayed and studied in a more in-depth manner while at home.
- Planned Learning
- Any kind of studying, regardless of the subject, should be done in a planned and systematic way.
- This ensures utmost concentration and effort towards achieving the best grades that an individual can.
- The first step is to create a schedule, routine or study plan.
- This is a great way to study difficult subjects like maths. Read about 5 Excellent Ways to Understand Mathematics to know more.
- If you’re not used to this concept, download printable daily, weekly and monthly planners online as a start.
- These planners are aesthetically pleasing and extremely easy to print and you.
- When you’re more familiar with this habit, use a notebook or journal to create more comprehensive and detailed plans.
- To keep track of assignments and homework, make a note of everything assigned during the day and try to formulate a plan on the way back home.
- Upon arriving, write out a detailed schedule that includes the intricacies of what work needs to be down and how you plan on doing it.
- Follow strict time schedules when it comes to doing homework. Chalk out a significant chunk of your day dedicated to studying phonetics so that there is no time wasted or deadlines missed.
- To save time and energy, it is necessary to stay organized.
- Keep homework, classwork notes, assignments and essays in individual folders so that they’re easy to find.
- Ensure everything is in its assigned place so that no time is wasted searching for stationery or any other requirements.
- Planned learning also includes studying for tests. Do
- Don’t wait until the absolute last minute.
- Formulate a different schedule before exams. Conduct sufficient research, ensure that all doubts are clarified and give yourself at least a week for athorough
- This way you can aim high and ace any class. Systematic studying is the way to success.
- Find a Partner
- A great way to practice and study phonetics is with another person.
- This is a great method because you will not be constricted to your own views and opinions.
- Learning through someone else’s perspective sometimes makes the process easier and simpler.
- There will be many topics that will be difficult to understand and comprehend; this is theway a friend or peer can help.
- The opposite is also useful. If there is something the other person cannot understand, by explaining it to them and trying to teach them you are increasing your knowledge and memory retention on the subject.
- In the initial stages, it is best to find someone who is a year or two ahead since they have already studied everything and have a greater understanding of what is expected.
- Extra Coaching
- If coping in class becomes more difficult than expected, do not hesitate to hire a tutor or coach.
- They will help in creating schedules, understanding difficult topics and preparing effectively for examinations.
- However, before hiring a tutor consider speaking to your teacher. By building a relationship with your teacher, it provides opportunities to ask them for extra classes or assistance, till you are able to catch up to everyone else’s level of understanding in class.
- Do not hesitate to ask for help as and when needed since this will be beneficial for you in the end.
By following these standard learning tools, learning any language will be offewer burdens. You can improve your grades and secure your career in the future too. Do not hesitate to experiment with learning methods that suit your schedule and habits. This will make the process more effortless.