Learning English is definitely not an easy task, especially if you want to learn the language for a very specific purpose. English for finance is quite different from English for travel or academic English which is why you will need to have the right approach to learning this language when you decide to make this step.
Fortunately, you are not alone in this and you can be certain that there are many other people just like you currently learning English for finance. That’s why you can expect to find numerous resources that will help you study and make new friends along the way. Hence, here are the seven most important tips to help you learn English for finance successfully.
#1 Choose Your Course and Textbook
First and foremost, you need to choose your course or textbook. Using either (or both) will definitely help you get started and gradually study every aspect of English for finance at your own pace. Moreover, following a specific course (e.g. Business English: Finance and Economics) can help you stay motivated and consistent with your learning so that you don’t suddenly decide to abandon the endeavor because you get lazy or discouraged for some reason.
It’s important to choose a course or textbook that will fit your current level of English, especially if you are planning to mostly self-study instead of having lessons with a tutor or attending group classes. If you choose a course or textbook that is either too easy or too difficult for you, you will end up doing less progress than you would have if you had chosen a course or textbook at an appropriate level. To determine your level, you can pass one of the many English for finance online tests or you can try to assess your level on your own.
#2 Find Relevant Video Lessons Online
Once you have chosen your course or textbook, you can begin your journey and start learning English for finance at the pace you have decided for yourself beforehand. That being said, don’t limit yourself to the course or textbook you chose because there are so many other resources that will help you learn more and maybe even process new study materials faster. One thing you can do is find and watch relevant video lessons online.
For instance, let’s say you are studying a specific topic in your textbook and you don’t understand a term you need to learn. Go on YouTube and search for that term to find videos about the topic. This will help you better understand the said word or phrase while improving your listening and comprehension skills because you will be watching a video in English. Even if you understand everything about the topic you are studying, you can still search for relevant videos that could expand your knowledge on this subject matter even further.
#3 Read Relevant Articles on Finance
In addition to watching relevant videos, you can always look for articles covering topics related to finance and business. Reading such articles will do exactly what you think – it will help you develop your reading and comprehension skills while also helping you better understand the topic you are studying. Besides, because business and finance are so important in our society, you will have an endless supply of new content in this niche.
To find relevant articles, check out reputable media outlets and online magazines such as Forbes, Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, and others. You can read anything from news to analysis to predictions. As long as it is relevant to what you are studying, it will likely be useful to you. If you are unsure about how to select the best articles for your goals, you can hire a professional writer by checking top writing reviews and then ask the writer to do the research for you and find the most appropriate articles for you to read and study with.
#4 Try Different Learning Methods
What’s interesting about language learning is that it can be quite different depending on the person. Some people are better at studying when they can hear new information while others prefer watching videos. You might be someone who likes reading and writing the most and finds it easier to memorize new information that way. This is exactly why you need to try different learning methods to identify which approaches work best for you.
For instance, you will definitely need to practice all four aspects of English (listening, reading, speaking, and writing), but how you do it and what you focus on the most is up to you. You can also try different techniques to memorize new words and phrases. One method many learners find effective is using flashcards, but if that doesn’t work for you, you can try memorizing new terms by making sentences with them or finding associations.
#5 Memorize Finance-Related Vocabulary
Speaking of memorizing new terms, you should definitely spend a lot of time learning new finance-related vocabulary. Of course, how you do this will depend on your specific situation, but you will likely fall into one of these categories of learners:
- You are an English speaker who decided to learn English for finance. In this case, you will need to understand how the financial sector works to be able to memorize relevant vocabulary.
- You are a foreign-language speaker who knows English but decided to learn English for finance (and you don’t know anything about finances). In this case, you will also need to learn about the financial sector while studying English for finance.
- You are a foreign-language speaker who knows English but decided to learn English for finance (and you know everything about finances). In this case, you can get explanations of English financial terms instead of translations.
- You are a foreign-language speaker who doesn’t know English and doesn’t know anything about finances. In this case, you will need to learn about finances while learning English for finance.
- You are a foreign-language speaker who doesn’t know English but knows everything about finances. In this case, you will likely be translating a lot of terms rather than using a thesaurus for their definitions.
Whatever the case is for you, you need to clearly understand how you can approach vocabulary learning in the most appropriate and effective way for you. You can work with a professional writer (choose one according to their ratings) to help you create your own vocabulary-learning plan and study at your own pace.
#6 Listen to English Podcasts on Finance
In addition to reading articles and watching videos, it will definitely be very useful for you to start listening to English podcasts on finance and business. This will help you develop your listening and comprehension skills while also exploring the field of finance and being up-to-date with the latest news in the industry.
You can find many relevant podcasts on platforms such as Spotify, Apple iTunes, and others. If there is an expert whose articles you enjoy reading in specific publications, do some research and see if they have their own podcast. If that is the case, you will likely enjoy listening to it.
#7 Practice as Much as You Can
Last but not least, don’t forget to practice as much as you can. Wherever you are and whatever you are doing, there is probably an opportunity for you to practice your new English for finance skills and to see if you can recall what you have learned. By practicing, you are not only perfecting your skills, but you are also making sure that you strengthen your memory and knowledge base.
Practicing is also a very important part of self-studying. Even if you are attending group or individual classes, you need to realize that the bulk of the work happens during self-studying. You can’t magically learn everything just by attending classes. Be rigorous in your studying and you will see real progress over time.
All in all, learning English for finance might be somewhat challenging, but once you get started, it will only get easier over time. Don’t be afraid to make this step and try new things – after all, learning any language is already great both for your career and for your worldview among many other things.
Rossana Yoder is a professional content writer, copywriter, content strategist, and communications consultant. She started young with her writing career from being a high school writer to a university editor, and now she is a writer in professional writing platforms— her years of expertise have honed her skills to create compelling and results-driven content every single time.