The Complete Guide to How to Improve Your English Speaking Skills

Grover Laughtonreviewed byKateryna Protsenko / more about Editorial Process17 min
Created: Aug 30, 2022Last updated: May 14, 2024
Speaking Skills

Practicing speaking is the key to success in learning English as a second language (ESL). No amount of reading, watching, or listening can replace actual speaking practice when it comes to developing confidence and fluency in English conversation. If you would like to know how to improve your speaking skills, there are plenty of ways to get speaking practice, even if you don’t have a native English speaker to exercise with. It just takes a little creativity, organization, and motivation.

This guide will give you some ideas for improving your English speaking skills, whether you are a beginner or an advanced English language learner. You’ll find tips on how to improve speaking skills in English as well as techniques for becoming more confident and proficient. By the end of this guide, you’ll have plenty of new ideas to help take your language skills to the next level.

How Long Does It Take to Improve in English Speaking?

Some people are under the false impression that they cannot improve their spoken English skills because they do not have a native speaker to practice with. This could not be further from the truth! There are numerous ways to enhance your speaking skills, even if there is no possibility to practice with a native speaker. However, to answer the question of how to improve my English speaking, you’ll need to be proactive and dedicate consistent practice time every day.

With enough motivation and effort, you can see certain improvements in your speaking skills in as little as two weeks. However, how much progress you make will depend on several factors, such as your current English proficiency level, how often you practice, and what types of practice activities you choose.

Talking about the time the development of speaking skills takes, it is important to keep in mind that everyone learns at a different pace. While some people may be able to become conversationally fluent in around a year, others may need a few years. The most important thing is to remain patient and consistent with your efforts. Do not get discouraged if you don’t see the immediate results. With time and practice, you’ll achieve your goals!

There is always room for improvement when it comes to learning any language, even if you are already proficient. For example, many advanced learners still make mistakes with specific grammar structures or vocabulary choices, especially in spoken English. Even if you are already confident in your speaking skills, there may be some areas that you can still work on. For example, you may want to focus on improving your pronunciation or becoming more fluid when having conversations.

Why is It Important to Improve Speaking Skills?

Strong English speaking skills are more than just a nice-to-have – they're a gateway to opportunity in today's globalized world. Whether you're aiming to study abroad at a prestigious university, launch a successful international career, or simply connect with people from diverse cultures, being able to communicate effectively in English is crucial.

Let’s look at the main reasons why you should know how to develop speaking skills:

  • You will be able to communicate more effectively. If you can speak English well, you will be able to express yourself more clearly and accurately when communicating with others. This is especially important in professional or academic settings, like meetings, presentations, or negotiations. You can avoid misunderstandings and ensure your message is received exactly as intended. 
  • You will become more confident in yourself. Being proficient in English can do wonders for your confidence levels, personally and professionally! When you are not worried about making mistakes or having difficulty communicating, you can focus on enjoying yourself and engaging fully in conversations. This can significantly boost your credibility and make a positive first impression on colleagues, clients, or professors (for academic settings). The newfound confidence can also lead to new opportunities opening up for you both at home and abroad.
  • You will be able to connect with more people. One of the best things about speaking English is that it gives you the ability to connect with people from all over the world. Whether you meet someone while traveling or make friends online, being able to communicate in a common language is sure to make the experience much more enjoyable for both parties involved.
  • You will be able to enjoy all types of cultural experiences. From watching Hollywood movies and TV shows to reading world-famous novels and listening to popular music, there are countless cultural experiences waiting for you once you can speak English fluently! Not only will you be able to appreciate these things more fully, but you’ll also be able to look at them from a different perspective and gain new insights into other cultures.

Investing in your English speaking skills is an investment in your future. Not only will it make communication easier, but it can also lead to new opportunities and experiences in life!

Top 12 Tips on How to Improve English Speaking

How to improve your speaking skills? Whether you are just starting to learn English or are already quite proficient but want to take your skills to the next level, there are always ways to success. Here are 12 tips that will help you communicate more effectively and confidently while mastering the intricacies of the English language.

Speak as Much as Possible

One of the best ways of how to improve your English speaking skills is to simply speak as much as you can. The more you practice, the more comfortable you will become and the easier it will be to produce the sounds and words correctly. If you are shy or self-conscious about your abilities, start by practicing with a close friend or a supportive family member who can offer encouragement and give you constructive feedback.

If you don’t have anyone to practice with, there are still plenty of opportunities to speak on your own. For example, you can record yourself speaking and then listen back to identify any areas that need improvement. After a while, you may even want to start holding conversations with yourself in English just to keep the practice going. 

Free English speaking clubs also provide a vibrant platform for honing your skills. Take, for instance, Promova, where weekly gatherings offer a supportive environment to mingle, converse, and explore diverse topics with learners worldwide. Engage in lively discussions covering lifestyle, health, hobbies, and more, all while gaining valuable feedback from certified tutors.

Find an English Speaking Partner

If you really want to know how to improve your English speaking skills, one of the best things you can do is find a partner who is also learning or wants to learn the language. This way, you can practice and help each other out when needed. You can find a partner in person or online through websites or forums for language learners.

Selecting a compatible partner is key to productive conversations. Aim to pair up with someone at a similar proficiency level to ensure mutual understanding and prevent frustration. Additionally, shared interests foster engaging discussions, making conversations more enjoyable and meaningful.

Partnering up not only facilitates language practice but also cultivates a sense of camaraderie and motivation. Together, you can navigate challenges, celebrate progress, and embark on a rewarding language-learning journey.

Listen to Native Speakers

Incorporating listening exercises into your language-learning routine is essential for honing your English speaking skills. Immersing yourself in authentic English spoken by native speakers provides invaluable insights into pronunciation, intonation, and vocabulary usage.

To immerse yourself in spoken English, explore various media formats such as television shows, movies, radio broadcasts, and music. Watching English-language content exposes you to diverse accents, colloquialisms, and cultural nuances, enriching your understanding of the language.

Furthermore, engaging in conversations with native speakers, whether in person or online, offers firsthand exposure to natural dialogue and communication patterns. This interactive approach fosters active listening skills and enhances your ability to comprehend and respond effectively in English.

Remember, consistent exposure to spoken English is key to improving your speaking proficiency. By actively listening to native speakers, you'll gradually internalize language patterns and develop greater confidence in expressing yourself fluently.

Broaden Your Vocabulary

Developing a rich vocabulary is essential for effective communication in English. Strengthening your word bank empowers you to express ideas with clarity and confidence. Here are some strategies to expand your vocabulary and integrate new words into your spoken English:

  • Daily learning: Dedicate time each day to learn new words and expressions. Explore online resources like word-of-the-day email lists, vocabulary-building apps, and language learning websites to discover new terms and their meanings.
  • Practice in conversation: Actively incorporate newly learned words into your conversations. By using them regularly, you reinforce your understanding and retention of vocabulary. Engage in discussions with language partners or friends to apply new words in context.
  • Utilize reading materials: Read a variety of books, articles, and online content to encounter diverse vocabulary in context. Pay attention to how words are used and their meanings within different contexts. Highlight unfamiliar words and look up their definitions to enhance comprehension.
  • Maintain a vocabulary journal: Keep a record of new words in a dedicated journal. Write down the word, its definition, and a sample sentence demonstrating its usage. Organize entries by themes or topics (“clothing,” “food and dining,” “travel and transportation,” “work and professions,” “nature and environment,” “technology,” “health and wellness,” “family and relationships,” and “hobbies and interests,”), to facilitate review and retention.
  • Review and practice: Regularly review your vocabulary journal to reinforce learning. Practice using newly acquired words in writing exercises, conversations, or language games. Repetition and application are key to internalizing vocabulary.

By actively expanding your vocabulary and integrating new words into your spoken English, you enhance your language proficiency and expressiveness. Consistent practice and exposure to diverse vocabulary sources contribute to your linguistic growth and fluency.


Learn the Natural Flow of the Language

Understanding the natural flow of a language is crucial for enhancing English speaking proficiency. By grasping how words are commonly arranged to form coherent sentences, you can communicate more effectively. Here are actionable tips to help you internalize the natural rhythm and structure of English:

  • Listen and imitate: Tune in to conversations, podcasts, or audio recordings featuring native English speakers. Pay close attention to their sentence structure, intonation, and rhythm. Practice imitating their speech patterns to develop a more natural flow in your own language usage.
  • Read aloud: Engage in regular reading aloud sessions to familiarize yourself with English sentence construction. Choose books, articles, or online content that align with your interests and proficiency level. Focus on articulating each word clearly and observe how sentences are formed.
  • Practice with variety: Experiment with different types of texts, including narratives, dialogues, and informational articles, to expose yourself to diverse sentence structures. Challenge yourself with materials that vary in complexity to expand your linguistic repertoire.
  • Seek feedback: Solicit feedback from language partners, teachers, or language exchange groups to evaluate your spoken English. Identify areas for improvement and focus on refining your sentence structure and fluency.
  • Use language learning tools: Explore language learning apps, online courses, or grammar resources that provide interactive exercises and feedback on sentence construction. Practice incorporating newly learned structures into your speech.

By actively immersing yourself in the natural flow of English through listening, reading, and practice, you develop a more intuitive understanding of sentence structure and linguistic patterns. Embrace opportunities to engage with the language authentically and consistently refine your speaking skills.

Read Out Loud

In your journey to improve your English speaking abilities, reading out loud plays a crucial role alongside speaking and listening. This multifaceted approach not only enriches your vocabulary but also enhances pronunciation and fluency. Here's how reading out loud can elevate your speaking proficiency:

  • Vocabulary expansion: Reading exposes you to a wide range of words and expressions, expanding your lexical repertoire. Encounter unfamiliar words in context and reinforce their meanings through repetition and application in your speech.
  • Pronunciation practice: Reading aloud provides an opportunity to practice pronouncing words correctly and refining your articulation. Pay attention to the phonetic nuances of each word and strive for clear and accurate pronunciation.
  • Rhythm and flow: Reading aloud helps you internalize the natural rhythm and cadence of the English language. By vocalizing written text, you develop a deeper understanding of sentence structure and the flow of speech, which is essential for fluent communication.
  • Interactive practice: Engage in interactive reading sessions with a friend or family member to make the learning process more dynamic. Take turns reading passages aloud and provide feedback to each other on pronunciation and expression.
  • Self-assessment: Practice reading aloud to yourself, either silently or by recording your voice and listening to the playback. Evaluate your pronunciation, intonation, and pacing, and make adjustments as needed to improve clarity and fluency.
  • Utilize online resources: Leverage online dictionaries and pronunciation guides, such as Cambridge Dictionary, to clarify pronunciation doubts and enhance your speaking skills. Utilize audio resources to listen to correct pronunciation models and practice mimicking them.

Incorporating regular reading aloud sessions into your language learning routine is a powerful way to reinforce vocabulary, refine pronunciation, and internalize the natural flow of English. Embrace the opportunity to engage with written texts actively and transform them into spoken expressions.

Talk to Yourself

This may sound silly, but one of the best things you can do to improve your speaking skills in English is to talk to yourself. This is a great way to practice English pronunciation and get comfortable with saying new words and phrases.

You can do this either out loud or in your head. If you are self-conscious about talking out loud, start by muttering under your breath or thinking to yourself in English throughout the day. For example, you can say simple phrases like “I need to go grocery shopping” or “I need to buy a new shirt” as you go about your daily activities.

Retell Stories in English

A great way to practice speaking English is by telling stories. You can either make up your own stories or retell ones you have heard. Either way, this is a great way to practice using different words and sentence structures.

When telling a story, start by thinking about the main points that you want to include. Then, try to use as much detail as possible to make the story more interesting. Remember to pay attention to your tone and facial expressions – these can be just as important as the words you use when communicating with others.

Think in English

Throughout the day, try to think in English as much as possible. This may seem difficult at first, but it will become easier with practice. Whenever you find yourself with a few spare minutes – on the bus, in line at the store, or just before falling asleep – run through some English conversation topics in your head.

One way to do this is by translating your thoughts into English as you go about your day. For example, if you are thinking about what you need to do that day, say it to yourself in English instead of your native language. You can also try thinking about how you would say things before actually saying them out loud. This may seem like a lot of work, but it will pay off in the long run by helping you to think more quickly and easily in English.

Make a Schedule

If you want to make the most of your English speaking practice, it’s important to be organized and have a plan. Try to set aside some time each day for practice, and stick to your schedule as much as possible. You may also want to create goals for yourself to track your progress and see how far you’ve come.

For example, if you are just starting out, your goal might be to hold a basic conversation in English for five minutes without making any mistakes. Once you reach that goal, you can move on to something more difficult, like having a conversation using only past tense verbs. Having specific goals will help you stay motivated and focused while practicing so that you can improve more quickly.

Use Technology

Embracing technology can significantly aid in improving your English speaking abilities. Online dictionaries and translators offer assistance with challenging words, while numerous apps and websites provide interactive speaking practice. Many online dictionaries even offer audio pronunciations for words, facilitating accurate pronunciation. For example, you can leverage the Merriam Webster dictionary for comprehensive language support.

Moreover, online platforms and forums offer opportunities to engage with fellow language learners worldwide. These resources not only foster a sense of community but also provide valuable feedback and motivation. Whether it's practicing conversations or receiving guidance from peers, these digital platforms can accelerate your language learning journey.

Additionally, Promova app incorporates advanced AI speaking features powered by machine learning technology. With the newly launched "Speaking" feature in the English-to-English course, learners can practice pronouncing useful phrases and sentences for future conversations. By listening to examples and repeating sentences, users receive instant feedback on their pronunciation accuracy. This interactive approach encourages learners to overcome the fear of real-life conversations and enhances speaking proficiency effectively.

Sign Up for a Course

If you want to know how to speak better English and have more structure and guidance, consider signing up for a course. There are many different types of courses available, from online programs to in-person classes.

Taking a course can be especially helpful if you are struggling with a particular aspect of the language, especially speaking or pronunciation. It can also be a great way to meet other people who are learning English and make friends that can help support your efforts.

Improving English Speaking Skills with Promova

In case you want to take your English speaking skills to the next level, you can take advantage of courses on the Promova platform, which is specially designed for non-native English speakers. Promova offers a number of benefits that can help you improve English speaking quickly and effectively, including:

  • Group classes or private tutoring. You can choose to take group classes or have private tutoring sessions. Either way, you’ll be able to get the individual attention that you need in order to make progress with your English.
  • Interactive exercises. You’ll get to practice your speaking with interactive exercises that are tailored to your level. This way, you can focus on the areas that need the most improvement.
  • Feedback from native speakers. You’ll receive feedback from native English speakers on your pronunciation. This will help you identify areas where you need to make changes so that you can sound more like a native speaker.
  • Flexible schedule. The program is flexible so that you can learn at your own pace and fit it into your schedule easily. Also, you can access the platform from anywhere in the world, so you can learn even if you’re not in an English-speaking country.
  • Mobile app to learn words. You’ll be able to practice your vocabulary with Promova app so that you can learn new words on the go. The app also includes some exercises to help you practice your speaking skills.

The program also includes some other features that can help you improve your English, such as grammar lessons, vocabulary lists, and speaking practice with other learners.


Now, more than ever, being able to speak English is an essential skill to have. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways of how to improve your speaking, whether you take an online course, join a language exchange program, or practice with a native speaker. Just make sure to get started today so that you can start reaping the many benefits of being bilingual.

Thanks to some tips on how to improve your English speaking, you will definitely succeed! Practice makes perfect, so don’t give up and keep learning. After a while, you will see the results of your hard work.


How long will it take me to improve my English speaking skills?

It depends on a number of factors, such as your current level of English, how often you practice, and what types of activities you do to practice. Generally speaking, most people need around two weeks to see certain improvements in their spoken English skills. However, everyone learns at a different pace, so some people may take longer while others may progress more quickly.

What is the best way to improve my English speaking skills?

There is no one answer to the question of how to get better at speaking since everyone learns differently, and what works for one person may not work for another. However, some good ideas include taking an online course, practicing with a native speaker, and listening to English-language news sources or podcasts. Additionally, many people find that setting goals and using a language learning app or program can help them to stay on track with their goals.

Do I need to be perfect at grammar to improve my English speaking skills?

Many people try to learn English by memorizing rules or studying excessively. While there is nothing wrong with wanting to achieve mastery of the language, it is important to remember that speaking is a skill that is best developed through practice and conversation. Some people avoid speaking English altogether because they are afraid of making mistakes. However, this is actually one of the worst things you can do, as it will only make it harder to improve your skills in the long run.

What common mistakes do people make when trying to improve their English speaking skills?

Many people try to learn English by memorizing rules or studying excessively. While there is nothing wrong with wanting to achieve mastery of the language, it is important to remember that speaking is a skill that is best developed through practice and conversation. Some people avoid speaking English altogether because they are afraid of making mistakes. However, this is actually one of the worst things you can do, as it will only make it harder to improve your skills in the long run.


Braden GravesSep 21st, 2023
the suggestions in this article are spot on. I'm already seeing improvements in my english fluency
PromovaJun 21st, 2023
Absolutely! To overcome the fear of making mistakes while speaking and gain confidence in conversations, consider these strategies: embrace mistakes as learning opportunities, practice in supportive environments, shift focus to effective communication rather than perfection, set achievable goals, and celebrate your progress along the way. Confidence will gradually grow with consistent effort and a positive mindset.
Cate BolyardJun 21st, 2023
How can one overcome the fear of making mistakes while speaking and gain more confidence in conversational situations?