in touch with real speech
In touch with real speech

Reviews 2014-16

Review in 语言教育, by Robin Fanglan

Field’s book is the theory, this book is the practical implementation of that theory

You can read the full review here.

Review in English Australia Journal, by Arizio Sweeting

Phonology for Listening is a masterpiece of its time.

You can read more here, and the full review here.

Review in the Journal of Second Language Pronunciation, by Sinem Sonsaat

A great reference book for researchers who are interested in second language listening and pronunciation instruction.

Review from a Newsletter for ESOL teachers in Essex, by Jane Hadcock

A new rich seam of learning has opened up for my ESOL classes in the form of Phonology for Listening’s ideas for the teaching of listening. And it’s not just a dusting, it’s a veritable gold mine and ready to be plundered.

Review in Speak Out! January 2015, by Robin Walker

Robin Walker wrote this review for the IATEFL Pronunciation Special Interest Group Newsletter. He writes, early on

… precisions and accessibility are hallmarks of the whole book

and later on he writes that Phonology for Listening

is essential reading … [and] … is a title that should be on every teacher’s bookshelf

Review in the Journal of the International Phonetic Association, by Alice Henderson

Alice Henderson works at the University of Savoie, and has written a review of Phonology for Listening in the Journal of the International Phonetic Association – the August 2014 issue.
Like Jane Setter’s review, it gives a comprehensive account of the contents of the book and ends:

Such a change of focus has the potential to help many learners to better cope with real spoken English.

You can read more here.

Review in TESOL Quarterly June 2014, by Jane Setter

Jane Setter is a Professor of Phonetics at The University of Reading. It is an eight-page review, and gives a very good account of  Phonology for Listening. She says ‘I … recommend this text wholeheartedly as an essential publication in this area’ and ends the review thus:

The development of an ebook makes an outstanding publication truly extraordinary.

You can read more here, and the full review here.

Review in The Island Weekly February 2014, by Anne Hodgson

Anne Hodgson lives and works in Germany, and writes a blog entitled ‘The Island Weekly’. She has written a great review of Phonology for Listening here. She ends the review thus:

Phonology for Listening represents an original and enormously practical approach to teaching an essential language skill that needs attention, and is clearly in need of improvement among many of our students. Highly recommended.

You can read the full review here.

Review in Modern English Teacher January 2014, by Wayne Rimmer

Wayne Rimmer (DOS, BKC-International House, Moscow, Russia; IATEFL PronSig coordinator) wrote this review in the January 2014 issue of Modern English Teacher. If you don’t have time to read the book, read this review. It gives an excellent summary of the contents and concepts and teaching ideas in the book. You can read the review in full here, or you can download a pdf here – the review begins on page 80). Below is the last paragraph of his review.

Phonology for Listening is the most important ELT book I have read this year [2013] and I read a lot of books. Such is the persistence of classroom myths like “don’t worry about getting every word”, that much of the content will make uncomfortable reading. Given that the course book is the main driver of teaching programmes, what intrigues me is whether publishers will incorporate this material into new products. It would be a brave move in a market which is notoriously conservative, but it is one that is necessary to get results. As things stand, learners become good listeners more as a matter of chance than through targeted instruction, a situation damaging to our professional integrity.

Review in MELTA News December 2013, by Jo Westcombe

Jo Westcombe wrote this review in the newsletter of the Munich English Language Teachers Association. You can read it here, or download a pdf here. She opens with one of my favourite quotes about learning listening, from Jonathan Marks:

It’s akin to stumbling through a dense fog in which only isolated features of the landscape stand out clearly.

She then closes with the following statement:

If you are a teacher, this book may “lift the fog”, as Jonathan Marks says it does, possibly even changing your listening life and that of your learners.