I have been watching a lot of French-language shows on Netflix lately but with French subtitles. I find that the subtitles rarely match what is actually being spoken!

For example someone will say, "bien sûr" orally, but the subtitles will say, "d'accord".

That is one of many examples; long sentences will usually be completely different.

Despite this, is this technique still effective for passive learning?


1 Answer 1


Yes, it is definitely helpful to have the French subtitles even if they don't match the verbal text. The fact that you are hearing the difference is showing it's less passive than active. I do the same thing and find it spurs questions like "is there a subtlety in the dialog that's missed in the subtitles?" Luckily, my wife is French, so I have a ready source for the answer! By the way, do the same thing in English once in a while to see how those are different for a comparison.

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