People in Scotland are impossible to understand, right? Wrong! But if you are not used to listening to them, it may feel that way.
If you're new to Scotland, coming to Scotland for work or study, or are simply interested in tuning in to Scottish speech, this is the place for you. This website provides audio, video, and written explanations, highlighting what makes Scottish speech and sounds unique, and most importantly, pinpointing where Scottish English and the Scots language meet and mix; an area where most learners start to struggle.
Scottish speakers are not as common in the media as other nationalities, so why not spend some time with The Scottish Sound School and open your ears to the sounds of our nation's speakers!
My name is Gemma Archer and I'm a Scottish teacher of English language. Since qualifying to teach in 2005, I've been working with international students both in Scotland and around the world, and since 2010 at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow.
I have a Master's in Linguistics, specialise in pronunciation and accent, and actively conduct research in this field. I have been giving presentations, leading workshops, and running teacher training sessions on Scottish English and Scots in the ESOL/EAL/ EAP/EFL classroom since 2018.
This collection of resources began life in 2018 after many years of my international students (and colleagues) asking me where they could learn more about how people speak in Scotland and get used to hearing it. Unfortunately, there are few resources which break down Scottish speech for international learners , so I chose to share the resources I came across, and point out the features which might be unfamiliar or challenging to new listeners. I hope you find it useful!
Creator of The Scottish Sound School, Gemma Archer
M.res Linguistics, DipTESOL, CELTA, BA Hons