Taking time to improve your English skills is important. Not only will it give you extra appeal in the job market but it’ll allow you to expand and widen your social circles. Like any skill, if it’s not used regularly you are likely to forget it.

When the academic term is over or when you’re not on campus it can be easy to forget your English practice. That’s why we have created a list of the best ways to keep improving your English language learning.

1. Practice every day

To get the most from your university experience, you need to make a study plan. Set certain days for each area of your English practice and make sure it fits around your lifestyle. For example, Mondays are for reading skills, Tuesdays are for writing, Wednesdays are speaking days and Thursdays are for listening.

2. Keep a notebook of new words.

Write down any new words and phrases you learn. Try and use them correctly in a sentence a few times a day to make sure you really understand and remember them. It may be handy to have a pocket English dictionary always in your bag or download a dictionary app to your smartphone so you can find the meanings and definitions of words wherever you are.

3. Listen to English podcasts

There are literally hundreds of English podcasts made for language learners. Download episodes and listen to them when you’re going to the shops, cleaning your room or just relaxing. Podcasts created for English as a second language (ESL) are going to help you the most, so look out for these.

4. Do a language exchange

Practicing English with a native speaker really is one of the best ways to learn. Not only will they be able to tell you any mistakes you might make, but they’ll help you learn every day, conversational English. A great place to find a language exchange partner in London is Meetup. They are often in the evenings and weekends giving you flexibility to carry on with your normal studies too.

5. Watch films with English subtitles

Sometimes it’s difficult to understand people with strong accents or if they say new words. When you watch a film with English subtitles you can see the words clearly, can pause the film and look them up in a dictionary and really understand the sentences the people are saying.

6. Listen to songs in English

Maybe some of your favourite music is by a British or American artist who sings in English. Pick one of your favourite songs and look at the lyrics. Go through the lyrics and highlight any words you’re unfamiliar with and look them up in a dictionary. Try to really understand the meaning of each sentence. Not only is this a useful way to keep your English practice going but it’s also a fun excuse to listen to some music.

One thing to remember is to have fun with your English practice. You’re much more likely to make real improvement with the language if you’re enjoying the way you’re learning it.

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