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I can study L3 with L1 or L2 material/textbooks/dictionaries, or combination of L1 and L2 materials (switching daily for instance). Which will be most beneficial?

My main concern is retention of new words as I look up the translation. I don't use monolingual/explanatory dictionaries since they distract from the reading material.

I'm mostly interested in studies that touch the subject. But I would also appreciate an overview and comparison of these methods from members of the community.

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    Welcome to Language Learning! "Which is most beneficial?" is somewhat broad. A rephrased question along the lines of "Is it more effective in terms of vocabulary retention to study L3 with L1 or L2 resources?", for example, would be more specific and easier to understand and answer. – Hatchet Sep 28 '16 at 15:48
  • Each approach is likely to have strengths and weaknesses, making "most beneficial" impossible to define. Can you clarify what specific criteria you're concerned with? Or broaden the question to ask for an overview of the strengths and weaknesses of each of your three proposed methods. – Flimzy Sep 28 '16 at 17:25
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    I'm mostly interested in studies that touch the subject. But I would also appreciate overview and comparison of these methods from members of the community. – user3529406 Sep 28 '16 at 18:32
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    I think the question is too general. Individual studies cannot cover such a broad topic, because studies are about specific languages. And this place is not suitable for doing big meta-analysis of many studies. A few questions to narrow down the topic: Is L3 related to L2? L2 to L1? L3 to L1? What is the availability of L3 learning materials in L2 and L1? – michau Oct 3 '16 at 13:30
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    If you are still interested in getting an answer to this question, could you please add some details to it, especially regarding language families (whether some L1, L2 or L3 are related)? Studies normally focus on specific languages. – Tsundoku Jan 6 '17 at 22:10