Watch any American drama you want, like friends, prison break, 24, and so on. If you understand 85% of conversations and you can write down exactly what they say in the drama without a subtitle, you are OK and can survive in MBA in terms of English. If you can't, you will face serious situations in a business school.
Today, I write about English. I guess more than 80% of Japanese students in foreign country, who have no experience to live abroad, are struggling with using English. Of course, I'm a typical one. Since I'd like to enjoy my MBA, I've decided to make and implement a plan to solve my English issues.
In my case, this is the biggest issue. I oftentimes could not listen what my friends say. When it comes to a lecture, since not all professors are native English speakers and even native speakers, they speak slowly and clearly to make everyone understand, I have little difficulties in understanding the lecture. However, at the same time, I struggle with listening to classmates' questions during the class. This means, I also have hard time to communicate with classmates outside the classroom.
Regarding to American English, people use a lot of liaisons, omitting the sound, and this makes me difficult to listen to them. In other English, they have different accents, and this also makes me confused. I don't believe Indian English and European English are same language:p
According to my net friend's blog, it is important to know the English sounds to skill up listening, and dictation is a very good way for this purpose. I'll make a time to do some dictations.
Reading speed is a little bit problem for me. Compared to other non-native speakers, I seem to need more time to read the same amount of material. As I have a lot of chances to read English materials, such as textbook and case, I think I can improve my reading speed thorough this. If I know more words, certainly I can reduce the time to read the materials. I'll sometimes review 3800 and try to memorize new words using iKnow.
I think I can express what I'd like to say without much difficulties. Although I make a lot of grammatical mistakes and use unnatural phrase, still I feel to succeed to make my friends understand what I'd like to tell.
This is also huge issue. I cannot tell my thoughts, idea, and feelings to others. From grammatical viewpoints, structure is haphazard. Pronunciation and delivery are a disaster. I am often frustrated, and small man inside me tell "how stupid I am, why I can't say such a simple thing in English!!"
I realized that I didn't speak English these days. Maybe less than one hour in a day. My poor English makes me reluctant to communicate with classmates, even though the more you speak English, the better you can speak English.
A few days ago, I received an email from my university language center telling to offer English exchange program. According to the mail, it will give me a chance to practice English with native English speaker for free! Using this program, I plan to secure the time to speak English. In addition, I also feel the importance of possessing an English weapon, useful English structure and phrases. I'll try to memorize useful phrases and structures.
Unfortunately, I'm not a person who understands 80% of English conversation in American drama. Besides, as everyone knows, there is no way to improve English rapidly. To make things worse, just studying in English environment does not help you to be good at English AT ALL. (This is not only my opinion but other Japanese MBA students', by the way.)
I'll try dictation method to know English sounds, aiming to improve my listening skill. Sometimes I review 3800 and play at iKnow to facilitate my reading speed. Also I try to have more chances to speak English and memorize useful phrases diligently.