Course Description

The focus of this course is on a particular style of spoken English:  unscripted, and spontaneous speech, including all the features of connected native speaker speech.  These features present particular difficulties for foreign learners, both as listeners and as speakers, when they attempt to map their own internalized models of spoken discourse onto real time communicative events.

The aim of this course is to build learners’ confidence in listening and speaking by:

  1. systematically raising their awareness of the features of native-like connected speech across a number of registers that are most problematic for their comprehension, and
  2. promoting the inclusion of these features in learners’ output so that they achieve a level of comfortable intelligibility for a variety of communicative purposes.

Course Outline


Non-matriculated visiting international students in the University Immersion Program who have achieved an overall score of 80 or above in the iBT TOEFL test, but who show a lower than 20 score in the speaking or listening  components of the test. The course is also open to any student enrolled in courses at UCSB or others from the wider community who may need to enhance their listening and speaking skills.


Learner Outcomes

By the end of the course, students will be able to:

  • understand the differences and similarities between three languages; students’ native language, spoken English, and written English - and how this understanding can help students to develop their spoken communication skills;
  • understand at least 80% of informal and formal spoken language in real time, for both monologue (one speaker) and dialogue (more than one speaker);
  • respond promptly and appropriately to informal native speaker conversation;
  • successfully negotiate complex exchanges of information in speech, and
  • use online and digital access to a range of sources for practice.
Coming soon!  We are planning to offer this course in the near future. Please click on Request Information below that we may promptly notify you when enrollment opens.