Have you ever wanted to learn a new language so that you can explore the world someday? If so, you are not the only one to do so. Learning a new language can be exciting and fun, and can add a significantly appreciable character to your resume. Moreover, learning a new language can open up a wealth of opportunities for your career and travel, be it in your native country or another country.
Fortunately, learning a new language in this era of digitization is easier than ever before. With the internet easily accessible even in remote locations, you can learn a new language wherever you want. Add to that many of the online tutorials and applications available on the Play Stores, that can aid you in learning a new language at your own pace and choice.
So, why exactly is learning a new language important in 2024? And how can you learn a new language the easy way? Read on to find out.
The Best Way to Learn a New Language in 2024
Did you know that among the best ways to learn a new language, socializing with native speakers is at the top? Although there are other ways to learn new languages, interacting with native speakers seems to be the best way. This is because a native speaker knows the nuances of his/her language inside and out. He can also explain these language particulates as needed. Nevertheless, there are significant other best ways to learn a new language in 2024, some of which are:
1. Socialize and Make New Friends
As mentioned before, socializing is one of the best ways to learn a new language. If you want to learn a language that is spoken by a community in your locality, you can easily take this as a golden opportunity for learning a new language. Start by attending social events and gatherings. This will ensure you develop meaningful friendships with speakers of other languages and get comfortable with the slang, innovations, and mannerisms of the new language.
The best part of developing friendships with speakers of other languages is that you will be able to practice freely with them without getting self-conscious.
2. Watch a Movie
Another good way to learn a new language is to watch a movie in that language with subtitles on. You can test your language skills later by removing the subtitles as well. This is not only a guaranteed way of learning a new language, but it will also give you a greater sense of that language’s culture. You can even set challenges for yourself by keeping a list of new vocabulary words you hear and judging what they might mean. Of course, you can look them up later for their real meaning.
3. Search for Online Resources
With the spread and usage of the internet, learning a new skill is easier than ever before. This goes for a new language as well. If you intend to learn a new language, you can search for online resources with just a few clicks!
Although you can fall back on your old reliable Google Translate anytime, there are some significantly reliable browser extensions such as Toucan to help you along the way. Moreover, you can connect with other language learners like you through online chats, browsing YouTube videos, and reading articles.
4. Try Online Courses
Online courses can also aid you in getting acquainted with a new language. Online courses such as LingoDeer, Udemy, and Coursera are useful resources that can open gateways to learning new languages for you. The curricula of these language courses are built especially by language teachers. Moreover, the apps deliver a built-in flashcard function. You can also test your language skills by actually “speaking” it through these courses. Some online courses even provide fun activities such as interaction with native speakers through online chats as a means to hone your language-learning skills.
5. Teach Yourself
Nothing can teach you a new language better than taking the initiative of teaching your own self. You can teach and learn a new language by taking out time every day to write out a sentence in your target language. Try constructing the sentence by yourself, and take help from a language partner. You can ask them to double-check your sentences to judge their accuracy. Most importantly, make small goals to attain every day for learning the new language. This will significantly help you in understanding the new language and get well accustomed to the vocabulary and tone of the new language.
6. Stay Organized
Learning a new language should be a fun activity for you and staying organized is the best way to achieve that fluency. Focus on one area of vocabulary for each week, for example, transport or food names. Then, move on to another topic for the next week, and so on. This is similar to teaching yourself a new language. Furthermore, the organized routine will make learning new words and phrases easy and manageable for you.
7. Grab a Radio
The radio may have become an obsolete technology in 2024, but making use of this small device can make learning a new language extremely easy. Try listening to a radio station in your targeted language–be it n the car, online, or on a podcast. Test to see how much you can understand and jot down the words that you recognize. Moreover, listening to the news in a foreign language is an incredible way to start learning vocabulary and conversational sentences.
8. Travel Abroad
This is probably the best way to learn a new language and one that has been tested by linguistic experts. You can start off by visiting a country that speaks your target language and living with a family that does not speak your native language. Traveling to other locations will ensure you can communicate and interact with people there. Furthermore, you will be able to exchange information in your targeted language whenever you want. You can even learn multiple languages if you choose your country wisely!
How Long does it Take to Learn a New Language?
Language enthusiasts across the world are always looking for opportunities to learn a new language or hone their native language skills. This is the reason why so many people enroll in language courses in order to know more about other languages.
Learning a new language may seem fun, but it can be a tiresome task for many as well. The answer to how long it takes to learn a language simply lies in the fact that it depends on a number of factors. Since every language is different, each language requires different skills and time. Nevertheless, a person approximately takes three months to two years to completely learn a new language.
Apart from the language itself, there are various other factors that influence how long it takes to learn a new language:
1. The Language Itself
According to Foreign Service Institute, there are approximately five types of languages, based on the level of difficulty and the study time required. The simplicity of learning a new language essentially depends on the “build” of each language–its vocabulary, alphabet, grammar, pronunciation, and rhythm.
Depending on how long it will take you to learn a new language, here are the five categories of languages:
–Category 1: This category includes languages closely related to English, such as Italian, French, and Spanish. These languages take 600 hours to learn, or 6 months. This means that a person can attain General Professional Proficiency in about 6 months with Category 1 languages.
–Category 2: These languages are slightly more complex than category 1 languages, such as German and Portuguese. Learning category 2 languages can take an additional 2 months or 750 hours to attain a high level of proficiency.
–Category 3: Possessing a moderate level of complexity, the languages in this category take about 900 hours, or 9 months, to attain a level of proficiency.
–Category 4: Most languages falling in category 4 belong to languages spoken in Asian countries. These take approximately 1100 hours or an entire year, to attain proficiency.
–Category 5: The most complex languages in the world belong to this category, such as Chinese, Japanese, Arabic, and Korean. These languages require 2200 hours, or a total of 2 years to learn them properly for fluent communication.
2. Your Goals and Expectations
The time you need to learn a new language depends on what language you want to learn. Every language is different and each requires a different level of proficiency and skill. It depends on which language you are trying to pursue and what goals you have in your mind.
If you intend to become a language expert or a polyglot, you need to have a strong understanding of the language you are studying.
Every language learner should keep an end goal in mind. If you intend to travel, basic vocabulary and grammar are enough to acquaint yourself with a new language. Plus, if you are a traveler, learning basic vocabulary and grammar will be enough for you. However, if you intend to become a translator, you will need to have access to advanced learning resources to be able to attain a level of proficiency.
3. Mentors, Techniques, and Tools
Just like any other skill, learning a new language requires proper teachers, practice, and tools to get going. It all requires patience, practice, and mentorship of language experts to get fluent in a foreign language. Before you start on the journey to learn a new language, you first need to get help from a certified and professional language mentor or teacher. Decide how you will get knowledge about a new language–through online techniques, or with the help of a mentor. Plus, you can also take help from online applications dedicated to teaching foreign languages.
Reasons to Learn a New Language in 2024
There are a number of reasons why one should learn a new language in recent times. As the digital revolution takes place, learning a new language is easier than ever before. With so many applications and online platforms providing linguistic guidance, it comes as no surprise that many people want to learn a new language in 2024.
Here are all the reasons why you should learn a new language in 2024:
1. Helps in Communication
Perhaps the greatest advantage that learning a new language provides is the aid in communication. If you’re a travel enthusiast or a student seeking foreign education, you probably know the importance of communication. Learning a new language eases correspondence and communication, allowing interaction between people of different linguistic backgrounds.
2. Leads to Cultural Knowledge
Suppose you are a traveler wanting to explore the cultures of Spain. If you know Spanish, chances are you will not have a hard time understanding the culture and norms of Spanish people. Moreover, this cultural knowledge will allow you to be more receptive to other cultures and practices.
3. Aids in Foreign Education
One of the major reasons why people opt to learn a new language is that it helps them attain education in a foreign language. If you are a Japanese native applying for a university degree in the USA, you will need to have fluency in the English language so that you can communicate and study without any hassle. Other than this, learning a new language can be a rewarding experience, as it will allow you to interact and connect with people around you in a foreign land.
4. Advances in Career Growth
As companies and businesses seek to explore international markets for expanding their global appeal, learning a new language can lend enormous benefits to career growth. Today, businesses are not just confined to a single country, city, or region. They need to connect and expand beyond borders in order to grow. This is the reason why learning a new language can advance your career growth significantly, allowing you to seek opportunities in foreign lands.
5. Strengthens Decision-making Power
According to studies, learning a second language can significantly strengthen decision-making power. This is because when we deliberate in a second or third language, we distance ourselves from emotional responses and biases that are ingrained in us. This results in systematic decision-making that is based only on facts.
6. Useful in Foreign Trips
Traveling to other countries requires a person to be able to communicate in more than one language. Learning a new language opens doors for traveling and vacations in other countries where you can interact with the locals, and visit areas of your choice without getting lost.
Tips and Tricks for Learning a Language
Learning a new language can be fun, but there are certain tips and tricks you can use to learn a new language.
1. Explore and Explore
To learn a new language, the best tactic is to explore as much as you can. Start by exploring online resources and platforms. Search for online courses or simply interact with foreigners on social media platforms to get the “feel” of the new language.
2. Read in a Foreign Language
Although it may seem hard at first, reading in a foreign language of your choice can significantly help you learn a new language. Read magazines, books, and reviews in a foreign language to understand the nuances of the foreign language better.
3. Get Help from Language Experts
Language experts and linguists are probably one of the most useful resources you can use to learn a new language. A professional language expert or translator can aid you in conversation with individuals of other languages easily. They can also translate and interpret your messages to other people without missing out on any detail and without making any mistakes.
The year 2024 has arrived, bringing along with it some greater opportunities for growth and progress. Learning a new language can significantly aid in opening up these opportunities for you as you will not be confined to a single language or region.
The biggest advantage is that it will help you to communicate with people of different linguistic backgrounds and cultures, creating a unified experience that is unique and beautiful. Lastly, learning a new language in 2024 can aid you in advancing your career for more fulfilling growth and success in the future.
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