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Spanish pronunciation is fairly straight-forward, because there are regular rules for the pronunciation of each letter and letter combination, with very few exceptions. Most letters represent a single sound. The pronunciation of some letters depends on the location of the letter in the word and the letters beside it. 

Please note that these lessons are only a guideline for the Spanish that I know, which is Castilian Spanish. There are many regional variations in Spanish pronunciation.

Acute Accent - Á, É, Í, Ó, Ú
The Spanish acute accent, or tilde, has two different uses. Leaving off the accent on a word is a spelling mistake, and may even cause confusion, so it's important to learn what it's there for.

Alphabet
The Spanish alphabet has 30 letters - learn 'em all. Lesson includes a sound file for each letter as well as a single (long!) sound file with the entire alphabet.

All About Vowels
An introduction to the pronunciation of Spanish vowels, with sound files.

All Letters
Learn, practice, or review Spanish pronunciation with this detailed explanation of and sound files for each Spanish letter.

And + Or
The words "and" and "or" have different forms in Spanish depending on the pronunciation of the word that follows.

Audio Dictionary
The Spanish audio dictionary contains more than 700 alphabetical entries, each with a Spanish word or expression, sound file, English translation, and link to additional information.

Dieresis - Ü
The Spanish dieresis is used to obtain a W sound in front of certain vowels.

Diphthongs and Hiatus
When a Spanish word has two vowels side by side, various pronunciation issues come into play: syllable division, diphthongs, and hiatus. In terms of syllable division, Spanish vowels are divided into two categories: strong and weak. To pronounce Spanish correctly, you need to understand strong and weak vowels and how they affect pronunciation.

Enlace/Encadenamiento
Enlace or encadenamiento is the phenomenon in Spanish whereby each word seems to run into the next, as if there are no boundaries between them. In fact, this is exactly the case: there are no phonetic boundaries in Spanish, and words do run together, in three different ways.

Hard and Soft Vowels
Spanish vowels are divided into two categories: hard and soft. Hard vowels cause the consonant that precedes them to be pronounced with a hard sound, while soft vowels are preceded by a soft sound.

Silent Letters
Figuring out how to pronounce a new Spanish word is fairly easy, because there are consistent rules about how to pronounce each letter, and only two silent letters.

Spelling Change Verbs
Spelling change verbs undergo consonant changes in certain conjugations, due to a certain aspect of Spanish pronunciation.

Stressed A
When a feminine Spanish noun begins with a stressed A sound, it may require a masculine article.

Syllabification / Word Division
Spanish words are divided into syllables according to fairly simple rules.

U
The Spanish letter U has some unique characteristics. Learn about weak vowels, hard vowels, dieresis, diphthongs, and more in this lesson (with sound files).

Advanced Pronunciation
Spanish pronunciation is what I like to call phonetic, meaning that according to the pronunciation rules, in a given use, each letter is always pronounced a certain way. Many Spanish letters have only one pronunciation, making them especially easy to learn. But certain consonants have two or more pronunciations depending on where/how they are used.

  

Recommended Resources

Spanish audiomagazineAudiomagazine
Think Spanish is an excellent learning tool for all levels of Spanish students. The monthly magazine is filled with articles related to Spanish-speaking countries and cultures - topics like travel, art, and history - with a Spanish-English glossary next to each one. Other features include a lesson and crossword puzzle.

Audio Materials and Resources
Work on your Spanish by listening to Spanish audio. This page includes links to language tapes/CDs, audio books, and more.

How to Pronounce Spanish Correctly
CD and booklet with detailed instructions to help you improve your Spanish accent.

Pronounce It Perfectly in Spanish
This book and two-tape set will help you master Spanish pronunciation. It includes information on the accents from different parts of the Spanish-speaking world.

Upcoming Lessons

  • Spanish rhythm

  

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