Would you be interested in a course that promised “30 days to better English for Professionals?”
You may be thinking, “There’s no way I can get my English to the level I need or want in 30 days!”
Maybe you use English often at work but still feel uncomfortable about speaking up in meetings.
You may feel unsure that you can express yourself well enough in English to convince coworkers or managers of the value of your ideas. You might even wonder if they understand you!
How could 30 days make a difference?
You’re right that mastering any language is a long process. But if you can address your problems systematically, you can make real progress. The difference it can make may surprise you!
I know that you’re busy! But can you find 1/2 hour a day 3-5 days a week? Then in about two months you can finish these 30 short-- but carefully designed-- lessons. You should see a real improvement in your English!
30 days is time enough to overcome most pronunciation problems. It's enough to master the use of essential professional vocabulary-- & strategies for learning more. Most importantly, you will gain the confidence to use what you already know.
I’ve been helping people learn English for years. For more than a year and a half I've also been coaching international scientists in English using a program very much like this course.
Most can read English fluently, but many have struggled with pronunciation and speaking skills. (Some still find them difficult after living in the U.S. for years!)
They also want help in increasing their English vocabulary, and in choosing the right words for their needs.
Using this step-by-step program has made a real difference for them. It's especially helped their confidence, vocabulary, and the clarity of their pronunciation. I’m confident that if you'll invest the time, these lessons can do the same for you.
This past year it’s been so inspiring to see people pulling together to try to protect and help each other. Scientists, health care providers, & other essential workers have pushed themselves so hard. They have not only cared for the sick and kept economies going, but they created a vaccine to control the virus.
At the same time, it’s been so frustrating to see unnecessary obstacles, confusion, and misguided --or false-- claims. They have made the pandemic so much worse than it had to be.
The importance of good research and clear, honest communication has been so obvious! It’s a global problem. We can’t solve it without working together across borders, cultures, & all the things that can divide us.
We desperately need the best efforts of everyone who can help. So good communication matters more than ever—not polished, perfect speech but a willingness to share and to listen and work together.
It matters more than ever that you contribute your research and ideas to the global effort. If I can help make that any easier, I’m so glad to do it!
If you’re reading this, you already have a good understanding of English. What’s important is to work on whatever is blocking you from sharing your thinking effectively in English.
It might be a pronunciation problem. (Most likely it's at least partly related to word stress or vowel sounds.) There are some simple checks and exercises that can help.
It might be a need for a few relevant words that express your ideas more accurately, so they’re not misunderstood.
It might be uncertainty about the "rules" & expectations for writing in English.
It might be a lack of confidence that holds you back from speaking up.
You can overcome many of these communication problems in less time than you think. All it takes is a well-planned program and an understanding of where to focus your efforts.
By the end of this course, you will have:
(I can't promise that you'll feel comfortable if you get invited to meet the president or speak at a major conference, though! Many native speakers are nervous in those situations, too!)
You will have:
I’ve been working to convert my one-on-one lessons program into a “30 Days to Better English” online course. It will be a less-expensive, self-paced alternative to my program.
It still teaches
The lessons are mostly brief video or audio training, readings, & workbook or partner practice, (if you have or can find someone to practice with). There will also be live Question & Answer sessions, group message boards, & (if you're interested), accountability partners, plus email support from me & options to have a one-on-one session with me.
In the group lesson option below there will be 6 small-group lessons with me (which will replace most of the live Q&A sessions.)
See the outline below for the basic plan for the course.
I'm also offering a hybrid course. It will follow these lessons but will include a small-group Zoom lesson directly with me for each module, and probably one or two extra Q&A sessions. (The group lessons will take the place of one self-study lesson-- L. 2 or 3, or lesson 5 in Mod. 2,4,& 5.) We will meet once a week for 6 weeks at times each group agrees on.
I hope to start the first group lessons in Sept. 2021, so please contact me immediately if you are interested. Lesson times will depend on group members.
I would love to hear from you if you might be interested in a course like this or in the course plus group lessons option. Please leave your name and email below.
If you are seriously interested in taking the group lessons starting In Sept. ($290 or two payments of $150-- more information at the bottom of the page), please add your country (OR time zone if you prefer) what days & times would be possible for you for the weekly group lesson. For example, if you can only meet after work on weekdays, say that-- and give the time you could be ready to start a Zoom lesson. If you want to talk to me about it first, I can email you to arrange that.
At least the first time I teach it, you will have the option of taking part of the course (one or two modules) now. Then you can continue with any others s you need them. (Of course, if you know you want the whole course, there will be a price discount.)
There are 6 main modules or units in the course. Each includes five days of short lessons & practice. (The practice includes quizzes and some options, depending on your level & needs.)
Each module will introduce and practice 10-20 word families especially useful for professionals. (Word families here refers to related words used in different positions in a sentence-- verbs, nouns, adjectives, etc.)
We'll use and discuss other vocabulary, especially in Module 6. But you'll learn these 100 word families well.
You will already recognize most of them. The lessons will help you pronounce and use them. You'll practice them in various ways, until you can think of them when you need them, even under pressure.
The fifth lesson in modules 2, 4, & 6 will be a live question & answer session. (There will probably be extra Q&A sessions so everyone can find times that works for them.) You don't have to be finished all the lessons before it to attend a Q&A, but doing 3, 4, or 5 lessons a week-- whatever you are able to do-- is important to get the full benefit from the course. Consistent practice is the key to progress.
Here is the basic plan:
Welcome videos: course overview & communication basics
Lesson 1: Module 1 vocabulary with pronunciation & stress.
L. 1 Practice: Record yourself reading aloud the three example paragraphs from lesson 1. Then write sentences using 10-15 of this module's words OR complete a crossword puzzle to practice their meanings.
L. 2: 2-way communication & the importance of listening. Questions, including checking for understanding & verifying assumptions. Introducing the listening/reading practice. (This will be the first group lesson for those working directly with me.)
L. 2 Practice: Read about & watch a TED talk on how to explain anything clearly. Then think about your own work. Write the key points to briefly explain your work to 2 English-speaking audiences: a scientist in another field & an interested friend of a friend. You’ll use these for networking later.
L. 3 'Short' vowel sounds video (plus an audio file to review.)
L. 3 Practice: read aloud a dialog to practice short vowels (with a partner if possible.)
L. 4: 'Long' vowel sounds video
L. 4 Practice: read aloud a dialog to practice long vowels.
L. 5 Short & Long Vowel Rules video.
L. 5 Practice: 1. Record yourself reading a list of sentences including the different sounds of English. (Optional but highly recommended: send it to me to review. Then I can recommend practice activities in the next module based on what you need to work on.)
2. Brief Short/Long Quiz.
Modules 2-6 will follow the same basic plan as Module 1 for the first lesson: It will introduce the theme of the module and its vocabulary. Lessons 2-4 or 5 will develop it and practice the skills required. Lesson 5 will be a live Question & Answer session in this module & modules 4, & 6.
Highlights for Module 2:
L. 2 The sounds of vowels before Rs with practice activities
L. 3 Other Vowel Sounds (AU/AW, OI, & OO, OU, OW when not pronounced with the long or short sounds.) Practice: Fill in a worksheet putting some very common words into columns based on their vowel sounds.
L. 4 Common Homophones (like to, too, or two, for or four, their, there, or there). Recognition & spelling practice. (These are common sources of writing errors among native speakers too.)
L. 5 Live Q&A.
L. 1 The vocabulary in this module is 20 verbs (with their related nouns & adjectives.) We'll look at 3 ways to pronounce the regular past tense & when to use each one. In the rest of this module we'll look at how to use these verbs (& the past tense.)
In L. 2 (the group lesson) we'll talk about how to adapt your message for different situations & levels of formality. We'll practice explaining what you do and have done in small talk, at a networking event, or at a job interview.
In L. 3 we'll look at giving feedback & discussing work with your team.
L. 4 will look at writing a report or summary about what you & your team did & what you have not done yet. Past tense practice options: write a summary of a work project, practice for an interview, or write a resumé (C.V.)
L. 5 will look at general good practices for writing in English, including writing structure, transitions, & proofreading.
L. 1 & 5 will follow the plan discussed in Module 2: L. 1 intro to the topic & vocabulary (just 10 words module); L.5 a Live Q&A.
L. 2 Teams & problem-solving, with an article on teamwork to review & to practice the vocabulary
L. 3 How to develop (& tips to protect) your confidence while speaking in English
L.4 Business meetings: how tos & some useful phrases & idioms-- with more on those + a TED talk for practice
L. 1 will follow the plan discussed in Module 1 & 2: L. 1: intro to the topic & vocabulary.
L. 2 Keys to persuasion, including reading a related article (L.2 practice) & practicing some of its ideas after L. 3.
L. 3 (Group lesson) Pros & cons & how to disagree without being disagreeable
L. 4 Positive & negative connotations of words (with a worksheet for practice)
L. 5 More work on connotations.
L. 1 will be a little different in this lesson. We'll use the 15 word families in this module's vocabulary to illustrate English word building: prefixes, suffixes, & roots, & especially how suffixes can change the word's use in a sentence (its "part of speech"--verb, noun, etc.)
L. 2 More on prefixes & negative prefixes, including using examples from earlier vocabulary & other prefixes for 3 roots in this module's vocabulary: act, ceed, & port.
L. 3 More on word roots. Practice with a word root recognition game.
L. 4 Group lesson: more vocabulary-building skills: context clues & tools like dictionaries & thesauruses. Discuss an article using some of the module's vocabulary to discuss some current issues (Covid-19, vaccine research, & the role immigrants played in developing vaccines.)
L. 5 A final live Q&A & a 'graduation' celebration.
The group lesson option (6 group lessons with 24 prep & practice lessons to do on your own or with a classmate) will be $290 (or $275 if you pay before Sept. 20) OR two payments of $150. It's possible I can arrange a longer payment plan if needed-- let me know.
We will start with group lessons based on this plan in mid Sept. Feel free to contact me on the mid-page form above if you have any questions, including about group lessons. (We may start new groups at several points in Sept. & Oct. if there is more interest.)
I plan to open the course to individual self-study later this fall.