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18
votes
2answers
31k views

What are the advantages and disadvantages of direct methods (using only the target language)?

Native speakers do not learn their native language with the help of an other language. Maybe direct methods are better to reach similar level of proficiency. But books that use a direct method are ...
2
votes
0answers
98 views

Does this language still exist or is it extinct? [closed]

I found (and bought) a book called "A descriptive phonology of Thaqovelith" but when I search thaqovelith on the internet, I find nothing except the reference to that book. It was published in 1980 so ...
4
votes
1answer
82 views

An article that has no problem, but sounds unnatural to the native speakers. Would non-native readers perceive it unnatural too?

I wrote an article in a L2 (English), with the target in my mind is not a native English speaker. My native English friend proofread it, and after fixing common mistakes like grammar or phrasal verbs, ...
18
votes
3answers
569 views

What resources are there for learning Toki Pona?

I recently started using Memrise to learn Toki Pona, because I find that language to be very interesting. Memrise is indeed useful regarding vocabulary, but I think it is not enough. Are there other ...
14
votes
3answers
232 views

Explaining the difference between 'very' and 'too' to native Chinese speakers

The Indo-European languages that I know (Dutch, English, German, French, Spanish) all make a distinction between "too" (meaning "to a higher degree than is desirable, acceptable or allowed") and "very"...
8
votes
1answer
51 views

Downloadable recordings of individual Mongolian words

I'm working on an Anki deck for Mongolian. The book "Fluent Forever" suggests including recordings of words if possible. The book suggests using forvo.com for recordings, and it's pretty good, except ...
9
votes
3answers
833 views

Open-source English-French Dictionary

I'm looking for an English to French dictionary in a plain text file (.txt for example). I already found some dictionaries but a lot of definitions are wrong or incomplete: know; savons, sache, ...
9
votes
2answers
380 views

Is there an assumption you've learnt something before putting it on Anki?

I'm putting vocabulary on Anki, using the "Add" option, and I just add the material without trying to memorise it first. (I'm using the deck created for "Fluent Forever") When I go to study it with "...
2
votes
1answer
135 views

How do I measure the importance of a language? [closed]

At a couple of bookshops with dedicated areas for language learning, some languages get entire aisles, while other languages get just one or two books. The number of speakers can't be the sole ...
18
votes
1answer
181 views

What makes a language propaedeutic?

Learning any language helps learning another language after faster. This propaedeutic value is found in all language, but is more noticeable for some languages and combinations. For exemple, for ...
9
votes
0answers
106 views

What are the benefits of learning Slovianto or Interslavic as an introduction to Slavic languages? [duplicate]

I don't plan to learn a specific Slavic language, but I want to be able to grasp the subject of any text written in any Slavic language. The constructed languages Slovianto and Interslavic look ...
13
votes
3answers
87 views

Image search for languages with a weak internet presence

I'm setting up flash cards with the word in the L2, and an image of the object, as suggested in "Fluent Forever". The book suggests doing the search in the L2: If you’re actually learning a word ...
6
votes
1answer
70 views

Minimal pairs for Mongolian

What minimal pairs are available for a native speaker of English learning Mongolian? Ideally, they should be based on real words, have spelling in Mongolian Cyrillic available, and have pronunciation ...
12
votes
2answers
143 views

What are the benefits and drawbacks to using subtitles when you have a reasonable proficiency in a language?

I'd like to know whether there is any known benefits or drawbacks in watching movies with subtitles, considering movies spoken in a language you're learning. I mean, subtitles in the movie language ...
14
votes
1answer
66 views

What is the term for language lessons in which the native and foreign language are spoken simultaneously?

I recall a style of language learning where you listen to CDs in which your language and the foreign language are spoken simeltaneously. For example "Hello" is said in one earbud while "Bonjour" is ...
9
votes
2answers
131 views

Seeking an Arabic dictionary with colloquialisms

There are words in colloquial Arabic that Google Translate won't understand and which are not even an Arabic dictionary! This problem is noticeably worse than for, say, Spanish or English, where many ...
18
votes
5answers
533 views

Able to understand conversation but not speak

This is my problem: If an Englishman is speaking, I can understand him well. I've read many English novels and stories, I can understand English movies without subtitles, and when I need subtitles, ...
11
votes
1answer
166 views

Seeking sources for learning Aramaic

I am interested in learning Aramaic on my own. I would like to be able to have just a basic working usage of the language. I am more interested in learning its pronunciation than being able to read ...
15
votes
3answers
173 views

Is “difficulty” an inherent trait in language?

It's quite common to talk about the relative difficulty(1, 2, 3, etc) of languages. But do languages have an inherent difficulty? Put another way, perhaps, are some languages easier or more ...
12
votes
1answer
114 views

Do difficult native languages slow down early education?

Do students from countries that teach native languages considered to be quite difficult (e.g. Japanese) generally take longer to master that language? Or does the power of being surrounded by a ...
10
votes
4answers
2k views

Anything similar to Duolingo for learning Tagalog?

I think the way Duolingo executes language learning is great. It's a really fun way to understand the basics/vocabulary and the gamification keeps you interested. Unfortunately, as most users have ...
7
votes
5answers
153 views

Online platform for learning Greek

I'm searching for an online platform for learning the Greek language. It's important for me to learn spelling and writing with both the old and new Greek alphabets. Is there a platform for this? And ...
8
votes
3answers
156 views

How to personalize a vocabulary flashcard deck without spending too much time on it?

I understand that SRS programs like Anki is for review what you learn, not to learn the card completely new. However, for learners who require to learn a lot of new words (to pass a test for example), ...
3
votes
1answer
121 views

Where can I find lists that rank the difficulty of learning other languages based on your native language?

I found a language learning difficulty study/grouping for native English speakers by the US Foreign Service Institute copied all over the web. Do you know of something similar for native speakers of ...
10
votes
3answers
126 views

Online resource to study Russian language vocabulary

I'm looking for a website to study new Russian vocabulary. Not any site teaches the right vocabulary for russian language. I speak Russian a little bit and a lot of sites tend to translate wrong. ...
7
votes
2answers
87 views

Is there an online resource to exchange grammar corrections in one's native and target languages?

I have a text written in English (scientific). I want to ask somebody to give me some advice in writing and grammar. I have time to do the same for other persons in Spanish, my native language. Is ...
9
votes
1answer
190 views

What resources can I use to master German word order?

There are a number of tricky parts to learning German, but for this question I'm particularly concerned about word order. I'm using Duolingo and I often miss questions where this is the only thing I ...
8
votes
2answers
351 views

Is there an online resource that transliterates from IPA into different writing systems?

I am trying to transliterate the pronunciation (i.e. I do not mind the actual meaning of the sentence) of a French sentence (e.g. "Qui est Kaélé ?") into other writing systems (like simplified Chinese,...
8
votes
3answers
87 views

Slightly Incomplete Sequential Acquisition, Possible to Fix?

I have had my first exposure to English at about six years of age (and have used it ever since), and I generally consider myself a native speaker since I use it a lot (even if this is probably ...
16
votes
6answers
194 views

Do Esperanto audio recordings with English translations exist?

Do you know about any Esperanto audio recordings with English translation? By audio recordings I do not mean language lessons. I would like something more like audio versions of journal/magazine ...
8
votes
1answer
67 views

How can I improve my ability to find the definition of unknown words using the context?

Most people can easily determine the definitions of words they've never seen before in their L1 because of contextual clues that surround the unknown word. I'd like to do the same with an L2 that I'm ...
2
votes
1answer
149 views

Why retain vocabulary when there are dictionaries?

Usually, when we come across an unknown word, we can guess its meaning based on the text around it (assuming that all the words around are known). However, there are cases that the meaning of the word ...
2
votes
1answer
339 views

What are the advantages of using physical materials over electronic materials?

I notice that many language learners have many books with materials for studying languages. This question discusses the advantages of a paper dictionary over an online dictionary, however I want to ...
20
votes
4answers
742 views

How can I expand my active vocabulary in a foreign language?

I’ve been learning a foreign language for 5 years. Now, I easily understand everything I read, I know lots of words and everything seems to be alright, but I still have a problem. My active vocabulary ...
12
votes
2answers
2k views

Why does anki remove 'leeches'?

In anki the strategy when a word is being continously mistranslated is to mark the word as 'leech' and remove it from future repetitions. In contrast - Memrise will offer a special cramming sessions ...
7
votes
1answer
71 views

Are there any online courses for learning Slovenian?

I am trying to learn Slovenian as I have family who speak it and in all my time visiting them I've never picked up more than a few words. I'm looking for some online courses that teach Slovenian. It ...
12
votes
3answers
145 views

How can I stop myself from pronouncing abbreviations and numbers in an L2 in my L1?

(The question title is clumsy. Any help to improve it is appreciated.) When reading a text in English, occasionally I will meet a symbol. I of course know how to speak that symbol in English, but ...
13
votes
3answers
744 views

Does forcing students to speak English in school affect the students' knowledge of their native language?

In places where I live some private institutions are forcing students (of age 6 to 17) to speak only in English, regardless of their native language. This restriction is not only placed in English ...
8
votes
1answer
55 views

Should I review recently learned concepts before concepts learned a while ago?

Duolingo simulates the deterioration of your vocabulary over time by unstrengthening previously learned skills over time, as shown below. As you can see, the skills that are not golden are not fully ...
10
votes
3answers
363 views

What advantages do standard dictionaries have over learners' dictionaries in defining a word?

There are two main kinds of dictionary: standard and learner's. The standard dictionary is made mainly for native speakers, where readers are expected to be fluent in the language. The learner's, as ...
11
votes
2answers
75 views

Is there a term for the language in which a language is taught?

If someone is a native speaker of Khmer, is living in New Zealand and is learning Russian from a tutor speaking English, I'd know how to refer to Khmer (the "native language"), and how to refer to ...
4
votes
1answer
116 views

How to find Mongolian tutors in Sydney

How do I find Mongolian tutors in Sydney, Australia? I'm trying to find a tutor for Mongolian in Sydney, but haven't had much luck. I managed to find one tutor who is a native speaker, but she'll ...
16
votes
4answers
343 views

Positive vs. negative reinforcement in Duolingo

I've run into a problem that I imagine most Duolingo users have run into at some point in their language learning experience. Assume I'm in the process of reviewing already learned vocabulary (as ...
10
votes
3answers
118 views

Speaking in English in class

Educational institution compels the non-native students to speak only in English inside the classroom. While this might help a few smart students, I found many students are anxious about attending the ...
14
votes
1answer
118 views

How to get the most out of story-reading as a learning technique

I am going to look for a native speaker on Italki to practice my English in this way: First I get a story, which is new to me. This story is a little bit hard for me like I can understand 80-90 ...
5
votes
2answers
99 views

Is there any evidence that vocabulary level is a good measure for predicting high economy income later?

In the Wikipedia page of Johnson O' Connor, there is a sentence says (I add the boldness): A person’s vocabulary level was the best single measure for predicting occupational success in every area. ...
15
votes
3answers
333 views

How can I stop/prevent conversations from switching to English?

I've oft experienced (and heard stories about) conversation participants switching to English when noting some lack of fluidity in the target language. In a similar vein, I've heard anecdotally of ...
2
votes
0answers
21 views

How to render proper names having a hidden overtone in their semantic structure as it has essential meaning for prose fiction? [closed]

Should a translator create a new name using a potential of the target language and save its meaning, or omit this feature applying method of traditional transliteration?
16
votes
1answer
231 views

Can listening during sleep help language learning?

What are the effects of sleep listening on language skills and aren't there any negative effects of it on overall physiological health? Are there any studies or your personal experiences proving that ...
20
votes
3answers
209 views

Tips on raising bilingual children

My wife and I have been discussing how our kids (whenever that may happen) will properly learn both her native language (Russian) and mine (English) while likely growing up in the US or the UK, ...

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