Teacher Certification Program



Knight-Thompson Speechwork is pleased to announce we will be offering our next three-week Teacher Certification program in Knight-Thompson Speechwork, Certification Group 5, in June/July 2019, at UC Irvine. We will begin accepting applications in June 2018. Details on how to apply are forthcoming. Meantime, make sure you have completed the three prerequisite courses, teach KTS in any and every context that you can, be a part of the ongoing conversation by joining us for our monthly webinars for the KTS community, and send questions to knightthompsonspeechwork@gmail.com

Program Goals

The purpose of the Certification is to make sure that its participants possess:

  • A thorough understanding of the Knight-Thompson approach to speech training.
  • A thorough knowledge of the International Phonetic Alphabet and an ability to use it effectively in teaching.
  • A thorough understanding of the Knight-Thompson approach to the methodology of accent training.
  • An ability to productively use research resources for accent acquisition, as well as efficiently learn and effectively model new accents
  • A demonstrated ability to teach this material effectively and with full understanding.
  • A demonstrated ability to use this approach creatively in teaching.


The emphasis in the Certification program is be on individual development and all participants receive substantial individual attention and mentoring. Participation in the Certification program does not guarantee certification: in some cases we may require additional work to demonstrate understanding and teaching skill. Admission to the Teacher Certification Program is open only to participants who have already taken Experiencing Speech, Experiencing Accents and a Phonetics Intensive*, though completion of prerequisites does not guarantee admission into the Certification program. Prospective participants in the Teacher Certification Program also must have some experience incorporating this approach in their own teaching before going on to Certification.

*Participants who feel they have a strong and thorough understanding of the IPA and narrow transcription may try to “test-out” of this requirement, if desired.



Prospective participants are required to read and work through the following three texts before the beginning of the program:


In addition to the three required texts, the following book is strongly recommended.

This is a lively read, aimed at a general audience, but manages to be a solid introduction to the principles of language change and variety and the view of linguistic relativity that these follows ineluctably from these facts. If you feel you have a strong, detailed understanding of this subject already, then this text is not absolutely necessary. (Nor is it the only text by which you can acquire this understanding—there are several other books by John McWhorter that may fit the bill. There are precious few by other writers that are as accessible, though you may wish to browse through the books listed here.)

The following books are also recommended.


There is a Facebook discussion group set up specifically to allow prospective participants to discuss the reading, teaching, and anything else pertaining to the work. Active participation in the discussion forum through the year leading up to the program is strongly encouraged (though not required). Prospective participants in the Teacher Certification workshop should request an invitation to the Facebook discussion group. Prospective participants, are, of course, also encouraged to participate in discussions on the regular KTS Facebook group and on the KTS blog.


Program Costs

The enrollment fee for the Certification is $3,200.

In order to plan effectively for these workshops, it’s important to have a clear sense of the commitment of potential participants. For that reason we ask for a deposit of $500 to secure your place in the workshop. This is due by February 1, 2019. The full payment is due May 1, 2019. If your plans change, and you are unable to attend, we will refund any payment less $100 if you inform us before June 1, 2019. After that date, however, no refunds are possible. Please plan accordingly.

To apply for the next Teacher Certification workshop click on the link below.

Upcoming Workshops

Our next Teacher Certification Course is listed below. Click on the link to get more details for that workshop and to register.



I feel confident referring Knight-Thompson Speechwork certified coaches to my very best clients.

Pamela Vanderway

Participating in the Certification not only encouraged a comprehensive and deep understanding of the skills required to teach and coach speech, it also provided a variety of ways to engage with this material; which consistently allows me to work with actors and students from diverse learning styles and to tailor the work quickly to suit the individual.  This is extremely beneficial when production coaching.

Shannon Vickers
University of Winnipeg

This work has a great sense of humor about its serious commitment to real speech skills. You will build an ear to assess how you and people around the world are actually making the sounds of speech. And then you’ll build the skills to make all those sounds yourself. It is a critical foundation for character study, development, and performance. There is no substitute for real speech of real people from which to mold a character.

Liam Joynt
Miller Voice Method

I use the Knight-Thompson Speechwork approach with all my clients–from professional actors who need to speak in a dialect or foreign accent to international scholars and business leaders who want to “sound more American.” Whenever one of my clients says, “I just don’t have a good ear” I say, “You haven’t tried the KTS approach yet.” Using a physical approach to the mechanics of speech, Knight-Thompson is the fastest, most practical, thorough, and fun way to gain an accent or “lose” an accent.

Rebekah Maggor
Rowan University
VWI Communications

Knight-Thompson Speechwork catapulted my career. The theoretical, practical, and anatomical foundation in voice and speech that I received allowed me to grow as an artist and as a teacher.

Rockford Sansom
HB Studios