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English Mentors Tips

Jen’s English Tip’s – Expressing a Lack of Understanding





Expressing lack of understanding and asking for a clear answer

Here is a list of useful English phrases you can use to express that you don’t understand what has been said and seek clearer answer from the person you are talking to.

How to express lack of understanding:
When you do not what has been said you can use these expressions:

•I beg your pardon?

•I beg your pardon, but I don’t quite understand.

•I’m not quite sure I know what you mean.

•I’m not quite sure I follow you.

• I don’t quite see what you mean.

•I’m not sure I got your point.

•Sorry, I didn’t quite hear what you said.

•Sorry, I didn’t get your point.

•I don’t quite see what you’re getting at.

How to ask for a clearer answer:
When you don’t understand what someone has said, you can ask for clarification using the following expressions
•What do you mean by…?

•Do you mean…?

•Could you say that again, please?

•Could you repeat please?

•Could you clarify that, please?

•Would you elaborate on
that , please?
•Could you be more explicit?

•Could you explain what you mean by…?

•Could you give us an example?

•I wonder if you could say that in a different way.

•Could you put it differently, please?

•Could you be more specific, please?

Clarifying one’s point or idea:

To make your idea clearer you can use the following expressions:
•Let me explain that…

•Let me explain that in more detail…

•Let me put it in another way…

•Sorry let me explain…

•In other words…

•To say this differently…

•To put it differently…

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