3 Points to Consider When Choosing a Language to Learn

December 13, 2018

For some people, language learning is a hobby. They find joy in widening their knowledge of different languages and cultures. But for others, it can be difficult. There are, however, some considerations to make things a bit easier for yourself in the long term.

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Some things that might sometimes be a second thought may actually be an important element in your ability to learn the language. They affect anything from your ability to practise to your actual desire to start your studies. Here are some points to consider when choosing a language to learn and the impact they have.

1. Why You Want to Learn

The reason behind your decision to learn a language plays a surprisingly important role in your overall success. People learn languages for a wide variety of different reasons, whether it be for work or fun. Generally, those who choose a language they feel passionate about or have a particular interest in will be in the best position to succeed.

Since language learning requires a lot of time, work and input, it can greatly improve your prospects if you are learning for yourself. There is much more motivation and willpower when you are learning from your own passion rather than as a requirement. Picturing your end goal in your mind is a great way to stay on track with your learning.

Fully committing to learning a language to its fullest is different than just learning a few key phrases for traveling. It requires much more studying and time commitment. The challenge can understandably deter people but, after taking the first steps, it does get easier.

When you have a true desire to learn, it can really reflect in your work ethic and make it more interesting or even fun to put in the time and study. Ultimately, it is the time you take to study and your ability to retain the vocabulary that will lead to your success.

2. How You Will Learn

As we have talked about before, there are many different methods to learn a language. While a combination of different methods is ideal, there is still the challenge of finding out your own personal learning style. Some people are more adept to reading while others prefer to listen. 

When you find the methods that suit you best, you can then start creating a timetable and structuring your time. This will make your language learning more efficient and make it much easier to track progress. While this may seem boring, it is highly recommended to do. It will allow you to see how much you have learnt which can be very motivating.

Think about the resources you have available to you. Perhaps there is a class you can attend or a community you can practise with. Thankfully, with the internet, you can find information about even the most obscure languages. 

Of course, a popular method for learning is by listening to music or watching films in the language you are learning. Finding films or music that fit your style will make this a much more enjoyable experience. It will also help you to memorize the different words and phrases you will hear.

3. When You Can Use It

Looking back at the reasons why you want to learn, you should have a particular purpose for setting out on your journey. At the same time, you should also be thinking about use cases for your new skills. The more you use these skills, the more fluent you will become, so the ability to use your new language in some kind of situation will help tremendously.

Unfortunately, for many people, it is also difficult to remain fluent in a language that they do not use on a regular basis. Being in an environment where you can actively use what you have learnt helps tremendously. This is true both before and after you have studied. While you are unlikely to completely forget everything you have learnt, you can start to get rusty and need to touch up on your skills every so often.

Since you will be devoting months of your time - and your life - it should be for a worthy reason. You should outline from the beginning when you will be able to use the language and how much you will benefit from it in those situations. Do you plan to travel long term in that country or is are you learning for your significant others? Both of these reasons, for example, will provide ample opportunity to practise and so lead you on the path to success in your learning.

Choosing The Right Language For You

It is no secret that learning a language is difficult. It is easy to think that you can simply choose on a whim. That doesn’t always work out the best, however. Don’t let this deter you from trying, part of achieving your goals is the passion you feel toward the language. Putting some forethought into the reasons why and how you intend to go about it can really help you in the long term.  

After making these considerations, you can then start to delve in and embrace learning to the fullest. One suggestion to help you learn is with Ling - the language learning app. Whether you are studying Khmer, Japanese, or Korean, Ling is the perfect companion.

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