Hi there,

Please bear with me as this might take a while. So I'm from Pakistan, and even though Urdu is my native "spoken" language, English is easily my "native" written one. The reason for that being that I went to an English medium private school, and we weren't taught much in Urdu. However, I've been speaking Urdu throughout at home and with friends, without getting any chance to really speak English. I didn't really stop to think about this issue before, but then last year I was admitted to a prestigious college in the US. It was pretty depressing to discover that I had trouble formulating complete sentences while speaking in English. However, my command over the spoken language has improved rapidly over the last year, and now I don't really have that many problems communicating with people in college.

However, I still notice that when I'm speaking in English, I alternate between being really fluent and breaking down at times so that I can't fully express myself. I find that really frustrating since my written English is of the standard of a native speaker, and I pretty much excel in my humanities courses in college. Do you think I should just give it some more time? I've also noticed that when I consciously try to think in English, I have the same problem completing my train of thought, but when I'm writing, I have no such difficulties. One more thing: I don't really know what kind of an accent I have, but my friends back home (I visited recently) say it's become really "Americanized". Yet I still have to repeat myself sometimes in the US to be understood clearly. Again, should I just be patient? I'm not really worried too much about this whole issue since I've done really well in college so far, and made lots of good friends. I guess hoping for improvement never hurts though.
Thoughts are quicker then words. I've the same experience. Not that my English is that good but writing it is easier than talking it. When you have to speak, you have to do both things at the same time. Think and speak.

Practice will improve things. I'm sure of that.Emotion: smile
I am not sure about other things but as for accent if you have to repeat yourself in US, its is not because your English is poor, its because the way subcontinent people intonate is totally different than the US people. More over in US you stress on nouns and pronouns, while in subcontinent you stress on verbs.
Hope this helps
Students: Are you brave enough to let our tutors analyse your pronunciation?
I can't really understand how you have trouble completing your train of thought while thinking in English, whereas you have no trouble writing. I thought one would think something before writing it down. Anyway, maybe you should practice your speech when you're by yourself, like for example, saying your thoughts out loud. Do you read a lot? Maybe you could start watching some more television. Reading is an excellent way of learning a language, but listening to it being spoken is also important.