Accent Modification

Real reasons why clients have wanted to reduce their accents:

  • "to assimilate"
  • "to sound as Canadian as I feel"
  • "to have to repeat myself less"
  • "to feel more confident"
  • "as a self-development exercise"

An accent occurs when sounds from your first language affect the pronunciation of sounds in your second language. Improving your pronunciation in your second (or third) language is called accent modification. The process involves learning new consonant sounds, vowel sounds, intonation and communication habits to match the local Toronto accent. As you learn to match more sounds, you progressively sound more native in your accent. Whether your accent is heavy or slight, we can help you. We understand that strength of an accent doesn't reflect how intelligent you are or how well you understand English. And, we know that clients who chose accent modification often experience trouble with pronunciation in their first language as well. Our clinic will help with that too. 

Accent Modification - Yes.
Accent Reduction - No.

We won't use the phrase "accent reduction" to describe the accent-related therapy or training that we do and here's why. The idea of accent reduction is essentially ethnocentric. It presupposes that our own accent is "neutral" and that the other accent must be reduced to get back to the neutral, pure, or best accent. To train someone in accent therapy, you are adjusting their original accent to match (usually) your accent. Simply put, through this process one would be replacing the original accent (e.g., Cork accent) with a new accent (e.g., Toronto accent) and this is more appropriately called accent modification or accent adjustment.

     

    Our Approach

    At Well Said: Toronto Speech Therapy, we have worked on hundreds of accents and can help you achieve measurable improvements with your pronunciation in your real life. Using a client-centered, evidenced-based, holistic and collaborative approach, we will work with you and employ the latest research on accent and adult learning to achieve your speech goals. 

    Did you know our services are covered by most workplace and education insurance plans? Try our "Is Accent Work for Me?" self-reflection tool below to discover how you might benefit.

    We frequently work with clients who have the following accents:

     

    What We'll Do

     

    1. Professional assessment of: 

    • Consonants 
    • Vowels
    • Contractions
    • Grammatical Errors
    • Plural and Past-tense markers
    • Suprasegmentals 
    • Intonation 
    • Word Stress

    Time total: 1.5 - 2.5 hours

    2. Establish a Treatment Plan considering:

    • Your goals
    • Your schedule
    • Your learning style
    • Your budget

    Time total: 1 hour

    3. Support you through the steps: 

    • Isolation drills
    • Syllables drills
    • Words drills
    • Sentence drills
    • Reading aloud
    • Short, medium, long conversations activities
    • Presentation preparation 

    Time total: 10-80 hours (varies based on your needs)


    Is accent work for me? 

    Unsure if accent work is right for you? Try our new self-assessment tool by clicking on the box below. A box will open with a series of questions that will help you decide if this service is what you've been looking for. 


    Our Learning Path 

    step 1 of accent training

    Hear the Difference

    Understand the way you currently speak and how it differs from the local accent .

    step 2 of accent training

    Learn the Pattern

    Learn how to pronounce sounds, say words and deliver sentences. 

    Step 3 of accent training

    Practice the New Way

    Achieve your goal through step-by-step and supported practice in a safe space.