What is more important in learning a foreign language? Fluency or accuracy?
The answer may not be as straightforward as you think, because it all depends on the situation you are in as a language learner and what your goals are.
First, let’s clarify what each skill actually means and what it requires from you.
Fluency is the flow and efficiency with which you express your ideas, particularly when speaking. A few grammar mistakes may appear here and there in the explanation, but it should be delivered in a way that is easy to understand and shows how comfortable you are with the language.
In an academic or even professional setting, this is one of the skills to focus on for an oral presentation or debate. The way you explain your topic or prove your point – smooth, clear and concise without too many pauses or hesitations – is as important as the content of your presentation.
Outside of the classroom, fluency can help you socialize with native English speakers and avoid misunderstandings.
To improve your fluency in English, practice speaking every day by engaging in a conversation with someone. Every now and then, throw in the new word or phrase you have just learned. But remember, don’t let the fear of making grammar mistakes hold you back.