How to use podcasts to boost your listening skills

Podcasts are a great way to improve your listening skills and get used to hearing different native-speaker accents, while building your vocabulary resources.

The beauty of the podcast is that you can listen to one anywhere – at home, on the bus, on the train, while walking or jogging, sitting in a taxi or car, and at any time you want – and you can choose the topics that most interest you.

It’s easy to download podcasts to your Android or IOS phone – here’s a useful guide for beginners.

Listening to podcasts can help you get used to different native-speaker accents. In the IELTS Listening module, you can expect to hear a range of native-speakers talking – it uses accents from the British Isles to North America, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand.

The wider range of accents you listen to, the easier it will be for you follow the listening tasks as your ear gets used to hearing different vowel sounds and pronunciation of words. To get started, this website has some clips of different native-speakers talking.   

Do you already listen to podcasts to improve your listening abilities. We'd love to know what ones you listen to - tell us about your favourites in the comments box at the bottom of this page or click on the icon at the end of this sentence.

If your a newbie, then All4ielts has compiled a list of some of its favourites to get you started with the world of podcasts:

Learning English

The BBC has two podcasts aimed at people learning English with its 6 Minute Vocabulary  and 6 Minute Grammar series that deal with interesting aspects of English

Digital Culture

Chips with Everything is The Guardian’s weekly look at the strange world of digital culture and technology

Science and History

Curious Minds, presented by Ran Levi, is the place where science, technology and history intersect. It draws on fascinating tales from a wide range of subjects: from Physics and Astronomy to Medicine, Art and Science Fiction.

Current Affairs

Since its inception in 1984, TED (the meeting place of Technology, Entertainment and Design) has been pushing the boundaries of knowledge, bringing together inquisitive minds from across the globe. TEDTalks has a wide range of cutting-edge talks on a diverse range of topics and issues.


Sport fans will love The Guardian’s Football Weekly podcast, with all the latest news and gossip on the English Premier League.



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