English as a Second Language/improving


hello brian  i am studying english at under graduate level and wish to ask you if aswell as grammer if learning linguistics,semiotics,phoenetics and semantics would give me a boost to gain a firm mastery of the english language both in speaking and most importantly in writing?  please reply sir   thankyou  dillon

Hi Val!

The simple answer is no, they won't help.  They won't help mainly because virtually no native speakers are aware of them and even if they were, understanding the theory behind language does not actually help one to USE that language better.  In fact, it may make you WORSE at using the language!

What they will help with is understanding WHY language is used the way it is.  What this means is, they actually help you understand your own language better than other languages, so really they are much more useful for teachers than for learners.

I will say that phonetics may be a bit of an exception when it comes to writing; a degree of phonetic study can help you with spelling, particularly with such a problematic language as English.

Hope that helps!  Take care, and thanks for the question.

English as a Second Language

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Brian Connelly


I can answer pretty much any question a student might have about English; about grammar, vocabulary, meanings of words, phrases, expressions or idioms, pronunciation, etc. I can answer questions about how to learn or study English better, how to improve certain aspects of communication (listening, writing, speaking, etc), about why we have certain rules.


I've been teaching English in Japan, mainly as a private (one-to-one) teacher, but also at companies such as Universal Studios or international airports. I have taught professional interpreters and translators and I have also taught students who dropped out of high school and never learned any English. Several years ago I acquired the CELTA and I have been running my own classroom for the past year.

None in particular, but I work with a number of companies who regularly introduce me to new students and occasionally to other companies that are looking for English teachers.


Past/Present Clients
I currently have approximately 40 individual students with whom I work one on one. I have also worked with local manufacturing companies, colleges, local retailers, as well as Sharp, Universal Studios, Itami International Airport, Kobe International Airport

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