Language Learning Strategies for Listening

We’ve covered language learning strategies for writing and reading. Up next is listening. These strategies are inspired by “Learning Strategies in Foreign and Second Language Classrooms: The Role of Learner Strategies” by Ernesto Macaro, which is well worth a read.

  1. Get in the right mind-set: Prepare yourself for the task, clearing your mind and concentrating
  2. Keep up with the audio: Prepare yourself for the speed of the text and remember to keep up. Try to maintain your concentration and don’t get distracted.
  3. Use any information have you been given: If the topic of the audio is indicated, try to keep it in mind. Make predictions of what the topic might cover. What do you need to listen for?
  4. Use your world knowledge and common sense: Does your interpretation of the text make sense?
  5. Listen for context clues: Think about the tone of voice, background sounds or any other clues.
  6. Avoid getting stuck on single words: Try to avoid getting stuck on single words for too long, otherwise you may miss out on other information.
  7. Listen for key words: They’ll help you get the ‘gist’ of the text.
  8. Accept you might not understand every word: However you can still your understanding of the rest of the text to infer the meaning of words or phrases you don’t understand.

What are your listening strategies?


2 thoughts on “Language Learning Strategies for Listening

  1. Andrew Weiler says:

    Listen to the language you are learning without being concerned about the meaning. Focus entirely on the sounds, the tones, the sound clusters and see what new sounds etc you can find. ENJOY!

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