• Neha Agrawal

5 Steps to Improve Your Communication Skills in College

We all want to improve our communication skills when we are in college, but we are either too busy with college assignments, chatting with our friends on social media or binge-watching Netflix that we have no time to work on our communication skills.

In this article, I am going to share with you 5 actionable steps which you can take to improve your communication skills while going through your normal routine as a college student. You can either watch the video or continue reading the post below.

1. Initiate conversations with your peers

When you attend a seminar or guest lecture in your college and are seated around people from different branches or programs, how often have you spoken to the person to your left or right? Almost never, right? I know I never did it. When I was in college, I used to have a small circle of friends. I never bothered to know people outside of it and that’s a mistake I always regretted later. When you speak to new people, not only do you learn how to greet someone, how to break the ice, but you also build a network connection that can be useful to you in the future.

2. Pay attention to the subtitles while watching TV shows

We as the millennial generation are hooked to watching English TV shows and movies nowadays and I’m sure you feel a tinge of guilt when you spend way more time than you planned to. You can now utilize this time to improve your communication skills. Read the subtitles carefully along with listening to the audio of the show. This will not only help you understand important parts of speech like voice modulation, pace of speaking, how and when to take pauses, but reading subtitles will also improve your grammar without you even knowing it!

3. Build peer-to-peer tutor relationships

Whenever you have to write a college assignment, catch hold of a friend and ask them to review your assignment for you, while you do the same for them. Instead of focusing on the technical aspects, try and identify grammar and language mistakes. When you review the assignment, you are training your brain to evaluate things critically which will help in improving your writing skills. Moreover, when your friend gets back to you with your assignment, you can look at your mistakes and work towards overcoming them.

4. Read books/articles/newspapers on a daily basis

Make it a habit to spend at least 30 minutes of your day reading something, and by that I don’t mean posts on Instagram or Facebook. Read a story book or an online article or simply the newspaper. This will not only improve your communication skills, but also enhance your general knowledge which will be useful when you appear for interviews or Group Discussions in future.

5. Join clubs or participate in competitions

Go out of your way to join public speaking clubs like Toastmasters, drama clubs or participate in competitions like debates or MUNs. These clubs and competitions will help you to improve your speaking skills, get rid of stage fright and boost your confidence. Also, as a part of these clubs or competitions, you will get a chance to meet new people and make new friends.

Do remember!

These action steps will bear results if you do them on a regular basis and make it a part of your daily routine. If you have a job interview next week, and you think you want to improve your communication skills immediately, it might not work that way. All you need to do here is to be conscious everyday. Talk to new people, pay attention to subtitles when you watch your TV shows, engage with a friend for peer-to-peer tutoring, read books, articles, or newspapers everyday, and lastly, go that extra mile to join a public speaking club or a debating competition to conquer your stage fright and boost your confidence!

Arnold Palmer once said, "The more I practice, the luckier I get"

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