The idea behind Pronounce.eu was born in 2014. Pronounce.eu was officially founded in 2015. The whole concept is based on my great interest in the pronunciation of different languages, and of Dutch and English in particular. Hence the word 'Pronounce', which means 'to make the sound of a word or letter in a particular way'.

In my job as a teacher of Dutch as a second language I always strive to teach students the correct pronunciation. To me a good pronunciation is one of the most important aspects when learning a foreign language. My experience is that people quickly tend to assume that they can't pronounce a certain sound or have often heard that a certain sound is difficult for people with a specific native language. Therefore in advance they don't like the idea of trying. However, in my opinion it is possible for anyone to learn how to produce a (foreign) sound.

What interests me most is to explain in a practical manner how to pronounce a sound: whether the tongue should be positioned high or low in the mouth, or should touch the teeth, how the position of the mouth should be, etc. In this way almost anybody can master the correct pronunciation of foreign sounds. People should simply know how to pronounce the sounds and then compare them to the real sound. If they only hear the sound, they do not know how to form the sound physically.

Another important aspect is that people with a certain language background may literally have a different perception of a sound. When they don't recognize a sound they translate it, mostly without knowing, into a sound which is familiar to them. This may result in a totally different sound. By explaining exactly the difference between those sounds people know what to do in order to pronounce the sound correctly.

Each course is specifically intended for people with a certain language background. The courses deal with a few sounds that are difficult for that language group. Apart from that there are also general sounds that are interesting for everybody and are therefore part of every course. For each sound it is explained how to pronounce them. Also, exercises are provided. Using the accompanying images you can see if the position of the mouth and tongue are right. Moreover, you can listen to the correct sound.

In short: a practical explanation, accompanying pictures and audio files therefore form the basis of the pronunciation courses that I have developed and which you can purchase through this website.

To be able to understand the courses you should have some knowledge of English, as the explanation is in English. Sometimes English sounds are used as starting points and sometimes sounds from the language background concerned.

If you are more interested in a one-to-one training course focusing on pronunciation, please contact LTC, where I teach Dutch. 

I wish you a lot of success and fun improving your pronunciation.

Hester Wisselink