Audacity to the rescue!

January 25, 2012

I often find that listening is a skill that many of my learners find difficult, often because they find the speed of what is spoken is simply too fast.  They become so fixated with not being able to understand that they switch off and give up.  This is particularly an issue when using authentic resources.  Recently I’ve been using Audacity to slow audio files down to make them more accessible, then once the learners are happy with the slower speed and can understand what is being said,  they can have a go at listening to the files at the normal speed.

It’s incredibly easy to use the “effects” menu in Audacity to “change speed”, decreasing by anything between 10 and 20% (or more if you want it to be really slow).  The only thing to remember is also to “change pitch” increasing by the same percentage amount.

These are some simple instructions: