Learn a language abroad ? Many people ask us every day. Although the answer can be compared to an infomercial for weight loss, the results could be different. A few elements can speed up or slow down the rate at which the new language you learn into your mind!
We’ll examine which elements affect the time it takes to master the language, such as the instances when language learning is either acquired or lost, the reasons why or not certain languages require longer to learn, as well as the questions you should consider to determine the meaning of “language learned” means to you!
Although the amount of effort as well as your environment will definitely affect the time it takes to learn a new language, certain languages require more time to master than other languages.
If you’re trying to find out how you can determine how long you’ll have to study an international language or to be curious, Let’s look at a few of these elements to help you know how long it’ll be to master a foreign language.
Some Languages Take Longer to Learn
The level of effort and your environment will certainly affect how long it takes to master a language; certain languages take longer to master than other languages. But how long?
The U.S. State Department has classified the most-loved world languages into various difficulty levels for English users to master. The easiest category comprises Spanish, French, Italian, Swedish, and Portuguese. The toughest (or “Superhard” languages (yes, they do refer to them as Superhard Languages) comprise Chinese, Japanese, Korean and Arabic.
The Department of State has provided their estimates of studies required to reach “superior proficiency” (basically fluent however not perfect) in reading and speaking in these languages. However, keep in mind that your results could be different. These estimations are also based on someone with no prior experience with the languages mentioned, so if you already have a high school course or two, there is a chance that you are less than the amount of time to learn.
Learn a language abroad ? Easy Languages for 23 weeks (575 total hours to master):
Five hundred seventy-five hours of learning translate into seven months of studying the English language, 20 hours a week.
Medium Languages 30 to 36 weeks (750-900 total hours to study):
To help you figure out what kind, of course, you need to take, Consider the languages you will be learning as taking 9 to 11.5 months and requiring 20 hours each week in class.
The Hard Languages Course: 44 Weeks (1,100 total hours to master)
Particularly if you’re beginning initially, it’s not realistic to take less than a full year studying at least one language. One thousand one hundred hours equals almost 14 months of continuous 20 hours of study per week.
Superhard Languages (2,200 hours total of study to master):
State Department officials are usually given 88 weeks to master these languages. However, remember that they generally view learning a language as a full-time occupation. So, if you’re willing to dedicate the time to it, then 88 weeks is a good idea. But, you shouldn’t be expecting to be spending under two years mastering these languages.
They estimate that the previously mentioned “Superhard” languages require 88 weeks or approximately one-and-a-half years, plus another year of study in the country. The State Department recognizes how important immersion and learning a language in foreign countries is.
Like a great camera, you must focus!
What Level of Fluency Are You Trying to Achieve?
Are you working towards near-native proficiency? Do you require this language to get a job in another country? Are you trying to improve your language skills to order food without making yourself look like a fool… and maybe have a conversation?
Naturally, the smaller the skill level you’re aiming to reach, the shorter time it’ll take you to achieve it. We’ve already mentioned that these estimates are for getting truly, amazingly good at the language. For example, you could work for an embassy overseas type.
If you’re trying to communicate casually, you’ll need to estimate 50% of the time allotted. That means that at the end of 3.5 months of consistent Spanish learning in an environment of immersion, You’ll be confident enough to make it through eating out, request meals, ask for directions to a hotel room or even meet friends -with no prior experience.Many people are glad to be able to communicate in a different language and also to do it in a foreign land! But, for those who aren’t, I recommend: you’ll feel the satisfaction of learning the language quicker than you thought!
Immersion and Necessity Speed Up Language Learning
No matter if you’re taking classes as an intern, working in a foreign country, or simply living there and need to speak a foreign language, the times that the language will stay the most are the “Oh sh*t!” moments of anxiety. Are you worried that your bus is delayed? Do you have to contact someone to find directions? Does the waiter at your cafe shouting at you for an unknown reason?
The moments in which your brain’s frightened and desperately looking for a language to protect itself is the time it’s crucial to train your brain to be able to see the new pathways to the language you’ve constructed and establish the new routes as legitimate.
The amount of time you’ll be capable of investing in the study of a foreign language is contingent on the amount of spare time you’re willing to put aside.
Additionally, by having to speak in a foreign language in a foreign country and not being capable of reverting to your language, you are prevented from saying things such as “Je voudrais un …. glass of beer?” Instead, you’re being forced to overcome the language gap that you don’t yet understand. This builds confidence flow, confidence, and often people you’re talking to will provide you with the exact word you were looking for. You’ll also learn an entirely new way to say something while doing it.
Learning a language in a country where lots of people speak your language, and you’re able to use it as a backup plan and delay the studying process if you do not fight it. In contrast, a complete immersion setting can help increase the number of hours or days it will take you to master the language.
How Much Free Time Will You Spend Solidifying Your Learnings?
If you continue to stay language-learning regardless of when you are resting or relaxing, your comfort level and the ease of recalling the new language is enhanced and strengthened. This convenience is what makes us feel as if we are familiar with the language.
The process of learning a language is hard, and you’ll need to keep your brain in “French mode” or “Spanish mode” even when at home, doing nothing. It’s not about the hours of classes you attend such as watching films and listening to music, talking with your people you know, reading books and taking the time to search for the words you’re not familiar with make up the total input required for learning the language.
Do not think that taking 20hrs of Spanish classes in Colombia will make you proficient. It is important to conduct your study too!
Language isn’t only an active and focused task. It’s also the most active thing for our brains; we can’t help but think, think, and help to speak, or even identify things by their names, in the “passive” moments that your brain’s language processing needs to learn to choose your second language and not merely default to the first.
How Much Time Do You Have?
Of course, it’s not always the case that we are lucky enough to be granted a grant from the U.S. State Department to spend 88 weeks in a row learning an extremely difficult language. The amount of time you’re able to dedicate to learning abroad will depend on the amount of time you’ve got.
It’s hoped that you’ll find out something that is compatible with your schedule. Also, do not overlook the importance of improving the retention of your language when you return home