Objective: First Certificate (FCE)

Anywhere, anytime: a FCE companion

Being understood vs understanding

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To contribute to the feeling of utter confusion and hopelessness our poor FCE learners must experience over the complexity and sheer number of the conflicting responses when it comes to pronunciation….Remember that pronunciations DOvary from region to region…

Can vs can’t…

As suggested in a Wordreference.com forum:

Let’s get back to basics for the sake of the true intended beneficiaries of this forum: those trying to understand and make themselves understood in English, even though English is not their first language. In this thread, we are talking about two related but different problems: being understood and understanding. Understanding is by far the harder of the two problems to solve within the context of an online (written) forum. In terms of being understood, I’d recommend the following:

Without doubt, the simplest resolution to your problem is to use “can” in the affirmative and “cannot” in the negative. If you think that sounds too unnatural in given circumstances, go ahead and use “can’t,” but just be sure to fully enunciate and express the “t” at the end. That should ensure you’ll be understood by the vast majority of English speakers regardless of their dialects, accents, races, creeds, colors, political affiliations, food preferences, or whatever.


Written by ElenaBen

November 23, 2007 at 7:56 pm

Posted in Pronunciation

Tagged with , ,

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