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Determine Your Specific Pronunciation Difficulties

Order a complete phonological assessment of your accent! This determines the specific areas of pronunciation difficulty for each individual. It is a powerful means of capturing the wrong accent patters in non-native English Speakers. It identifies exactly how your pronunciation varies from standard American English and gives you a percentage. Cost: $150

In the News

Lisa Jeffery and Accent Reduction Miami

Miami Herald: English in the 305 has its own distinct Miami sound

By Patience Haggin  September 9, 2013

Sometimes you can tell where someone is from by the way they talk. New Yorkers, Bostonians, Chicagoans — their accents are distinct, recognizable. The Miami accent is harder to pinpoint. But there is one and Miamians need only cross the county line to be singled out for the way they draw out their vowels or linger on certain syllables. More noticeably, most Miamians speak with a certain Hispanic twang, the influence of decades of Latin American immigration that has made a mark on the language of Miami natives, even those who don’t speak Spanish themselves. Accent coach Lisa Jeffery works with people who want to learn to speak with a standard American accent--to switch their Miami pronunciation off, temporarily. Most of her clients come for professional reasons. The Miami accent, with its Latin rhythm, Spanish-influenced vowels, and its heavy “L,” strikes non-Miamians as “cutesy-wootsy.” Jeffery says that people associate this accent with the public image of Miami. Read more...

By Patience Haggin, National Public Radio August 2013

Accent coach Lisa Jeffery works with people who want to learn to speak with a standard American accent--to switch their Miami pronunciation off, temporarily. Most of her clients come for professional reasons. The Miami accent, with its Latin rhythm, Spanish-influenced vowels, and its heavy “L,” strikes non-Miamians as “cutesy-wootsy.” Jeffery says that people associate this accent with the public image of Miami. To test her theory, Jeffery asks people what Miami would be like if it were a person. “Would it be a male or a female? The answer is always the same. ‘Oh, a female.’ And what would Miami look like? She would be hot. With the short skirt and the vivacious Latin accent,” Jeffery explains. “Now, that is perfect for girls going to party on South Beach because it is so cute. It’s the cutest in the country, I’d say. But once they get jobs and become professionals, it’s not so popular.” Miamians tend to pepper their sentences with “likes” and end them in “upspeak,” making statements sound like questions. These features can make speakers seem unconfident and overly cute--in short, unprofessional. In addition to the pronunciation features that pervade their speech, Miamians tend to pepper their sentences with “likes” and end them in “upspeak,” making statements sound like questions. These features can make speakers seem unconfident and overly cute--in short, unprofessional. Having an accent can have a significant effect on the way someone is treated. Read more...

Sun Sentinal June 2013

"Yes, si or oui?": Language Barrier-- For South Florida's bilingual population, breaking through language barriers can be a maddening matter of etiquette.

June 28, 2013|By Johnny Diaz, Sun Sentinel

Pardon me, what's your preference: Spanish? Creole? Portuguese? It's a question many non-native English speakers with noticeable accents hear every day in professional and social situations in South Florida whenever they try to find common ground through our common language, English. Read more...

Sun Sentinal January 2013

Classes putting an emphasis on reducing foreign accents

January 20, 2013|By Johnny Diaz, Sun Sentinel

Excuse me, can you repeat that? It's a question many non-native English speakers with noticeable accents hear in everyday professional and social situations in South Florida. So they've turned to accent-reduction classes, which have sprung up in recent years to help them speak English more clearly. Some local instructors say they've been seeing an increase in demand from people who simply want to be better understood. "It's chic now, accent reduction classes,'' said Lisa Jeffery, who teaches at FIU and privately through her business, Speech and Accent Academy in Miami. Jeffery, whose clients are from Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade, coached three Israeli soldiers from the Friends of the Israel Defense Forces who were presenting speeches for a fundraiser in Boca Raton last week. Jeffery said she has seen her business increase more than 10 percent in the past year. "With the downturn of the economy, people get training when they don't have a job. They improve themselves to get a job." But Jeffery doesn't like to call what she does accent reduction... read more

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