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Vietnamese Pronunciation

When one hears the Vietnamese language spoken fluently, it has a fast pace and a singsong quality to it. Those wanting to learn the Vietnamese language may believe that learning proper pronunciation is going to be difficult, or even impossible, since they haven’t spent their lives learning and listening to the language. Fortunately, that’s not the case. Even though the sounds of the language might be a bit different from English, it is possible to learn proper Vietnamese pronunciation so you can speak like a native speaker in no time.

Sounds and Syllables

The Vietnamese alphabet is large and can seem cumbersome when one first tries to learn the language. You will have to learn consonants, consonant clusters, final consonants, and vowels, each of which has a specific pronunciation. One of the other things that you will need to know when you are learning Vietnamese pronunciation is that the dialect can change based on where you are in the country. This means that some of the words that you pronounce might sound a bit different when you speak in a different dialect. In addition, you have digraphs and trigraphs, which are groupings of letters.

Even though most speakers of the language in the country will be able to understand a different dialect, you have to be aware of the dialect changes when you are listening to speakers in the country so that you will be able to grasp their words. With practice and when it comes to Vietnamese grammar, you should be able to understand other dialects.

The letters “f”, “j”, “w”, and “z” are not a part of the Vietnamese alphabet, but you will find those letters in foreign loan words. In some cases, the letter “w” instead of “u” in abbreviations when you see someone write Vietnamese.


Vietnamese is a tonal language, and it has 6 separate tones within it. Understanding tones is another area that might seem difficult at first, but you can get the hang of it. Being able to understand the tones is going to help you understand the speakers much better. The six tones include ghost, cheek, but, tomb, horse, and rice seedling.

When you are learning Vietnamese pronunciation, it is in your best interest to take things slowly at first and to practice whenever you have the opportunity. Practice is going to help make sure that you have the right inflection and the right sound.