Frequently Asked Questions About Accent Reduction

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Am I a good candidate for this program?

This program is designed for motivated professionals who understand English grammar but would like to communicate more effectively and learn how to speak English fluently. Specialized training and practice is needed to overcome the native language impact on the pronunciation of Standard American English. The goal is to replace your existing speech habits with new habit patterns which are used automatically in your everyday speech.


What is the difference between English as a Second Language programs and Accent Reduction or Modification programs offered by a Speech Language Pathologist? 

English as a Second Language (ESL) programs focus on vocabulary and grammar. A Speech Language Pathologist has extensive training and practice in articulation, language, fluency, and voice areas. This background knowledge and practice is key for going beyond ESL programs and helping non-native English speakers to be easily understood.


What happens during the screening?

Click on the green box on the home screen for a free, no obligation screening. The link will bring you to the online Compton Screening Assessment of Foreign or Regional Accents.  This page will collect background information as well as a sample recording of words, a brief reading passage, and conversational speech. This will take about 5 minutes. Your instructor will listen to the recording and contact you by email, phone, or web conferencing to discuss if this program is a good fit for you. 


What is the difference between the initial screening and the evaluation?

The screening is a quick tool to determine if this course is right for you. The evaluation is a more in-depth, personalized analysis by a Speech Language Pathologist and will provide information necessary to determine areas for the training sessions. Sounds in words, sentences, reading and conversation as well as English conversation speech patterns will be analyzed. The evaluation is web-based and done pre and post training to help determine progress. You will be sent the link for Compton P-ESL evaluation online tool after payment has been received.  The evaluation will take about 30 minutes to complete.


What days and times are the training sessions? 

Online sessions are individual and last 60 minutes.  Session times will be arranged between you and the instructor. Your instructor is located in Mountain Standard Time (MST) and can arrange sessions in mornings and evenings to help accommodate clients in various time zones.  


What if I have to cancel my session?

Makeup sessions will be offered for sessions cancelled more than 24 hours in advance.  No makeups will be offered for sessions that are cancelled with less than 24 hour notice.   Sessions must be completed within a year of the initial evaluation. No refunds will be provided for partially completed courses.


What can I expect during the training sessions?

You will learn to discriminate difficult sounds of Standard American English as well as learn to produce these sounds in words, sentences, and reading passages.  You will also learn to reproduce the rhythms, phrasing, and intonations of Standard American English. The final stage is the carryover of the new skills into conversational speech. Sessions can be recorded for future reference and practice.  Homework will also be assigned to help master the sound or skill.


What is intonation?

Intonation includes pitch, stress, sound duration, and speech rate.  By using the typical intonation patterns of a language, a listener can understand the message faster and respond more quickly. 


Is there a report I can share with my employer?

Yes, you can share both pre and post training evaluation reports with your employer. The post training evaluation will include the percentage of improvement.


How much improvement will I make?

Clients who attend sessions and complete practice exercises usually experience a 50% (or more!) increase in clarity and accuracy of their spoken American English.


What equipment do I need?

You will need a laptop or desktop, Internet, and web camera for the accent reduction course online sessions. A headset with microphone is also helpful. Practice assignments are also web based. The free app VoiceRecorder for your mobile device will  be used for various assignments.


What platform do you use? What if I have technical issues?

Training sessions will take place using Zoom/ Skype for Business. A link with meeting information will be sent to your email address and/or calendar. 


System requirements for meetings

https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/201362023-System-Requirements-for-PC-Mac-and-Linux



Contact Zoom support for technical questions or to test equipment.

https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/201362283-How-Do-I-Join-or-Test-My-Computer-Device-Audio-


Can you tell me more about  the lifetime subscription to the practice material?

During the first session, you will be given access to the Compton P-ESL Online web based practice lab as well as instructions for practicing. This is a lifetime subscription so you may access the content after the course is completed for maintenance and continued improvement of your new speech patterns. Additional assignment handouts will be sent via email after each training session.


What kind of payment do you accept?

After the initial screening and consultation, a PayPal invoice will be sent to your email address. Payment must be received prior to evaluation and training sessions.


Do employers reimburse for the course?

Yes, some employers reimburse for the course. Please check with your company regarding reimbursement.  Reports and an itemized receipt will be provided to help with expense reimbursement. 


Do you offer an hourly rate?

Additional hours may be purchased after the completion of the 7 or 13 week courses.


Are there some good websites to help me learn English grammar and idioms?

Confusing English Words

https://www.thoughtco.com/confusing-words-quiz-for-english-learners-4061562

Prefixes and Word Roots

https://www.learnenglish.de/grammar/prefixtext.html

https://www.virtualsalt.com/roots.htm

Conversation Starters

http://iteslj.org/questions/getting.html

Idioms

http://www.idiomsite.com/

https://www.smart-words.org/quotes-sayings/idioms-meaning.html

https://www.phrases.org.uk/idioms/index.html

https://www.grammarcheck.net/idioms/