How to know you’re fluent in English?

G’day mate, how are you doing? Today, I am going to talk about how you can know you’re fluent in English? Well, there are a couple ways to think of, but the levels of fluency are being demarcated from each category. I’ll explain the first phase for today.

  1. You can avoid direct translations – This is the very first step for English learners. For me, of course I used to think about pretty much everything in Japanese first, then sort of tried to interpret/translate into English. It took much longer time to respond to my listener. If you can think and speak without direct translations, then you’re fluent in English.
  2. Your pronunciation and accent do not interfere their understanding – It’s ok to have your own language-influenced accent, but mispronunciation is problematic. Once you’ve refined all the 44 English pronunciation, you should be alright. But ideally, you also want to reduce your accent, or neutralise it so that native speakers don’t need to strain to understand what you’re trying to say. If not problem at all in terms of pronunciation and accent, you’re fluent in English.
  3. You make minimal errors – It’s ok to make grammar or collocation errors during your conversation. But, it’s expected to be minimal as too many mistakes definitely impede native speakers’ understanding, or non-native speakers. If you feel you’re nearly error-free, then you’re fluent in English.
  4. You can comfortably maintain conversation – Obviously, you’re fluent in English if you feel not struggling to understand what native speakers are saying and can maintain your conversation with them. Ideally, you could initiate the conversation from scratch. Just waiting for their talk sometimes doesn’t give them a good impression. Because, if you don’t start talking, your speaking partner does feel awkward in some cases. Please give it a go!
  5. You don’t get stuck – What do I mean by this? Well, specifically speaking, you are quite often lost for words, or stumble over even simple expressions due to lack of grammar or vocabulary. Or maybe just shy, but I don’t really reckon that’s the main reason. If you are talking to someone smoothly without hesitation or unnecessary pauses, then you’re fluent in English.

To be continued

Thanks for reading today!

Have a good one.

Published by Masato Kawaguchi

I am an English entrepreneur here in Australia. I've been teaching the PTE exam for the last 2 years or so, now mainly general English online.

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