Our Recordings

We believe that you need to learn real English, not school English. Real English is how people speak and use English in the real world. We make recordings that have all the features of real, authentic English speech: English as it is spoken in the real world by real speakers.

This is the English you would hear every day in America or England.

How We Make Our Recordings

We make our recordings by talking to ordinary people. We go to people’s homes, or somewhere else, we sit down with them and we ask them to talk about their lives, and what interests them.

After a while, speakers become relaxed, and start talking in a natural manner. In this way, we get very realistic language.

Background Noise

Most places are a little noisy. Background noise is everywhere: birds sing, children laugh, radios play, airplanes fly overhead, fridges hum, and people walk and talk. That’s why professional recordings are made in quiet studios. We do not use a studio, we talk to people in natural situations.

We try very hard to keep background noise as low as possible. But it is there. If you listen carefully you will hear background noise on some recordings. It should not be a problem, just ignore it.

Sound Quality

We make our recordings with good quality digital audio equipment. We use a studio quality microphone, and professional digital recorders. We then process the recordings using sophisticated sound editing software. We take out some things, like coughs, long silences and irrelevant comments, but we leave in all the characteristics of natural speech.

We do everything we can to provide good quality sound, but some recordings are better than others.

Characteristics of Our Passages   

Our passages have the characteristics of natural, authentic, English speech. That means:

  • they are pretty fast
  • the words are not carefully pronounced
  • there are pauses, and hesitations
  • there are mistakes, including grammar mistakes
  • speakers change their mind, or repair what they have said
  • speakers repeat themselves
  • ideas are often disorganized
  • speakers use slang or nonstandard expressions
  • speakers assume that listeners will use inferences to figure out what they mean
  • the way of speaking differs from one speaker to another speaker
  • and on top of all this, there may be some background noise.

Happy Listening!