Why is Word Stress Important?
You might think that as long as you can communicate with English speakers (and you are probably already able to do so), it is not necessary to know which syllable should be stressed. However, word stress is an important part of speech. Here are some reasons why:
- Native speakers rely on stress to process what they hear and use it to identify words.
- Word stress affects the sounds of the vowels in the word.
- Learners who know where to stress words are more confident in speaking and reading English.
- Miscommunication between non-native speakers and native speakers of English can be the result of incorrect word stress patterns by the non-native speakers.
- Knowing about word stress helps learners to identify words when listening.
- Knowing the stress pattern of words can help you remember the pronunciation of new words.
- Knowing stress rules will help you pronounce new words that you come across.
- Once you know which syllable to stress in a word, it will be much easier to apply vowel reductions.