I am an intermediate level English learner and I wish to be fluent in English in order to be able to easily read academic subjects, books, novels, and researches written in not simple English, so I need to know what I should do to reach that level.


I don't have the opportunity to immerse myself in an English-speaking community.

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    Keep reading. Keep notes. Take an advanced grammar course. Learns lots of idioms. – Lambie Jul 25 '17 at 22:23
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    Read. Read. Read. Try to read whole paragraphs without resorting to a dictionary and see if you can get the gist of what you're read. Then go and look up the vocabulary you don't know and reassess. Keep doing that, over and over. Eventually it will come. – Robusto Jul 26 '17 at 0:56

For reading academic and technical studies it is probably more important to be intimately familiar with the subject matter than to have mastered the subtleties of English expression. When you are reading about topics you understand you will have a much stronger sense of what the author ought to mean, and the English will 'creep' into your unconscious mind without your noticing—you will be learning academic English the same way a native speaker learns it, by experience rather than application.

By the same token, I recommend reading English translations of works by writers from your own speech community whom you enjoy: it is much easier to read stories which deal with people and situations you know and with genre conventions you already understand.


As I am not a native English speaker, I use several methods to improve my reading and communication skills. These are basically:

  • Make a habit of reading as much as you can in English. There are thousands of books out there, choose one and read it. You can also link the process of learning English with developing new skills or enhancing your professional expertise. As I am interested in programming I tend to look for English versions of the books I needed for given project. That way in a very short period of time I haven't only improved my programming skills, but I became proficient in this field when it comes to communication.
  • Try to Google in English. It is not easy to transform from native-language blogs or websites to their English equivalents, but I found this way to work for me.
  • I don't always have time to learn new vocabulary. However, I found a way in which I can painlessly learn essential "higher", more advanced words, idioms or sayings. I bought a collection of those flashcards. Every morning I take one of them from the box and then during the day I try to find a usage for this one word/idiom. It is just one phrase, that way it is easy to remember. I bet it may become your addiction.
  • Watch movies. I find translated films less funny than original ex. American movies. You may find a hidden subtext in many jokes.
  • I'd also suggest watching as much television as possible, especially legal or medical dramas, or forensic crime shows, like the classic series "Law and Order". These use a lot of technical jargon, and while you won't understand every word, you might get good at picking out the technical stuff so you can look them up later. – Andrew Jul 26 '17 at 0:15

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