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11
votes
2answers
76 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 ...
11
votes
1answer
154 views

What techniques can I use to master nasal vowel pronunciation?

I'm referring to those encountered often in French and Portuguese for example. In Portuguese they may be denoted by "ão" or "õe". When first learning these new pronunciations from my native English, ...
11
votes
2answers
183 views

How does one go from “understanding each word” to “understanding the sentence.”

I've been learning Italian for the past 2 years, and I've reached a point where in the average sentence (in introductory material) I understand over half of the words. This usually allows me to ...
11
votes
2answers
210 views

Evidence that learning radicals speeds up character learning in Chinese?

Characters — in Chinese or Japanese (or Korean Hanja) — can be learnt in various ways, and it is plausible that paying attention to radicals helps memorisation and retention. But is there any hard ...
11
votes
1answer
163 views

How to start hearing the difference between similar sounds

The question I have is something that every student of a second language should have. That is about not being able to hear the difference between similar sounds, because of the first language. For ...
11
votes
2answers
4k views

Best way to learn Hebrew verb conjugations?

I am attempting to teach myself Biblical Hebrew, and I have lately been memorizing the verb conjugations for strong verbs. I have found this chart extremely helpful in my endeavor. Through the help ...
11
votes
3answers
186 views

Where can I find people to practice Scottish Gaelic with?

I'm learning Scottish Gaelic but without anyone to talk to and practice with it's tricky. Are there any free sites where I can chat to people in Scottish Gaelic to improve? NOTE: Free is very ...
11
votes
1answer
89 views

Resources for Advanced Vedic Sanskrit

I have learnt Sanskrit in school from class 5th to class 10th. Now I am in my second year of college and I want to learn Vedic Sanskrit to study some Hindu texts and not their translated version. Can ...
11
votes
1answer
2k views

Is there a certification in English beyond C2 that a foreign speaker could pursue?

I got my C2 certification in English language proficiency over 10 years ago. Since then, I believe my grasp on the language has improved significantly, but that improvement is not reflected anywhere ...
11
votes
1answer
201 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 ...
11
votes
1answer
85 views

Updated versions of FSI courses

The Foreign Service Institute (FSI) courses (found here, here or here) are free, thorough, and an amazing resource for language learners. But they are quite old - many of the courses are well over 50 ...
11
votes
3answers
106 views

Improving my English Skills (CAE) without a language trip

I'm learning English in my 8th year now and want to take the CAE exam (Cambridge, level C1) in one year. I am already taking an extra course at school; in normal lessons we are between level B1 and B2....
11
votes
2answers
86 views

Learn to read and write for a multilingual pre-school child

My child is 4 year old and is reasonably fluent in 3 languages (based on the same alphabet). He is now interested to learn to read and write. The problem being that alphabet, and reading approaches ...
11
votes
1answer
81 views

How do you master adpositions, besides memorisation?

Summary of Question: Many popular books only suggest memorisation (useless for many) and do not explain adpositions and their uses. Beyond memorisation, how else can a language learner master the ...
11
votes
2answers
99 views

When to start encouraging my bilingual child not to mix languages?

I am a native English speaker and my wife is a native Spanish speaker and we both speak the others' language fluently. We live in a predominently English-speaking country. We have been raising our two-...
11
votes
1answer
61 views

Can learning a new language help with speech impairment?

I'm not a linguist, but I can see a connection between speech impairment and language learning. I'm asking because I have a slight speech impairment myself (unable to pronounce guttural sounds like ...
11
votes
0answers
79 views

How can English language teaching research be more relevant to teachers?

I have been teaching English as a foreign language for nearly 40 years, the last thirty-one years at universities in Japan. I have researched and published on a range of topics that include "the ...
11
votes
0answers
241 views

Learning L3 through L1, L2 or L1+L2? [closed]

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 ...
11
votes
0answers
76 views

Do any studies show what the effect is of skipping daily language practice for one day? [closed]

Most language teachers that you talk to strongly recommend daily practice. Some applications, like Duolingo, add incentives to encourage users to practice every day. Is there actually evidence that ...
11
votes
1answer
99 views

Evidence that translating L2 into L1 improves L2 acquisition

I run a project where young bilingual volunteers translate English-language media into the home language for their families. I believe one of the benefits is that, because our volunteers have to ...
10
votes
3answers
145 views

Phonetic typing for any language

I have studied a few languages not using the Latin alphabet, namely Japanese, Chinese, and most recently Russian. If you are familiar with Japanese/Chinese, you know that typing on a computer works ...
10
votes
3answers
122 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 ...
10
votes
2answers
137 views

Is there an online resource that show which languages share the same alphabets?

Recently I've been to Russia and therefore decided to learn how to read the Cyrillic alphabet. After that I discovered that the Cyrillic alphabet is also used in other languages, like Belorussian or ...
10
votes
4answers
126 views

When is Google Translate good for in the learning process?

Google Translate is a fairly well-known online translation service that is fairly notorious for giving out-of-context or just incorrect translations for phrases or sentences. Google Translate does ...
10
votes
2answers
418 views

According to scientific evidence, how many languages can the average human retain in their mind and still communicate fluently in?

Note: I'm not asking about how many languages the average human knows. Rather, I'm asking how many languages the average human brain can hold, and still allow the person to speak all of them fluently. ...
10
votes
4answers
148 views

What are the implications of reading texts beyond my level?

Most texts, articles, books, novels, etc. that interest me in L2 are well above my level, requiring an intimate relationship with a dictionary in order to read. I can painstakingly plod through, but I ...
10
votes
2answers
138 views

Does learning the stroke order in Chinese help with learning that language?

In Chinese, there are several different strokes, and they should be written in a specific order. For example, you write a horizontal stroke first, then a vertical stroke. When there are characters ...
10
votes
3answers
82 views

Is it more effective to review existing knowledge every day or occasionally?

When using Duolingo to learn German, I'm often torn between the choice of reviewing existing language skills that I've already learned and continuing on to new skills. Is it more effective to review ...
10
votes
2answers
174 views

Is there a web site for minimal pairs in arbitrary languages?

Gabriel Wyner puts a strong emphasis on studying minimal pairs to improve pronunciation. But I have yet to find a good resource for actually finding minimal pair lists. It seems I'm not alone. When ...
10
votes
3answers
135 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. ...
10
votes
2answers
198 views

What differences are there in the difficulty of learning Ukrainian and Russian to a very basic level?

I'm considering learning either Russian or Ukrainian to a very basic level. Basically, to be able to read out loud written text (at least that written in print), and learn a few phrases. I've already ...
10
votes
3answers
390 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 ...
10
votes
1answer
304 views

How many new words at a time?

I have a 1000 flash cards of new words. I pick a flash card at random to test if I remember the word. If not, I take a moment to try to remember it. With a 1000 flash cards I feel that I see too many ...
10
votes
2answers
247 views

Are there any free online resources for learning Tamazight?

I'd like to learn Tamazight or any related Berber language by self-learning, in a first step. As far as I know they are similar to some extent, therefore I'm not excluding the possibility to use ...
10
votes
1answer
261 views

How to learn the vocabulary of an ancient language like Aramaic, which is based on scripture only?

I've lately attended a series of lectures on the history of Christianity held by a Coptic scholar. He gave a few examples of Aramaic or Syriac sentences (translated from the Bible) which might be ...
10
votes
1answer
147 views

Are there studies on the effectiveness of Rosetta Stone as a language learning tool?

Rosetta Stone gets a lot of publicity, perhaps because of its large marketing budget. And finding individual reviews is easy--some people love it, some hate it, some have mixed feelings. But has any ...
10
votes
2answers
205 views

How to teach someone to correctly pronounce tones in tonal languages such as Standard Chinese?

I regularly meet with a small group of other learners of Standard Chinese. They have been learning Chinese for several years, though not as long as me. One of their problems is pronunciation, ...
10
votes
3answers
753 views

Which SRS algorithm yields greatest evidence-based remembering

Spaced Repetition Systems (SRS) such as Anki, SuperMemo, Mnemosyne, Memrise, etc, use their own specific algorithms for increasing your ability to remember new words and sentences. Is there evidence ...
10
votes
1answer
185 views

Does ethnic background affect the speed of foreign language acquisition?

Are there any studies proving that language learners of a certain ethnic background have an advantage in learning languages over people of other ethnicities?
10
votes
2answers
525 views

Good resources for learning Croatian?

I've been looking for years for a good, comprehensive guide to learning Croatian that can take me through all the basic steps and get me started in speaking with my mother in her native tongue. Does ...
10
votes
2answers
1k views

Repetition interval during initial learning within a day

I found that some words hard to recall after several minutes or on next day when learned them from flash cards. With longer period of time between recalls (5/10/60 min) and after working with another ...
10
votes
3answers
245 views

Is it necessary to learn the characters of a language that uses logograms [Japanese]?

I want to learn Japanese and most books or guides begin with how to draw an logogram and to repeat the process of "writing" and single character dozens of times. And learning hundreds of those signs ...
10
votes
3answers
180 views

How to avoid an English accent in Hebrew

I speak fairly fluent Hebrew as a second language, and I have a UK English accent. I want to know what pronunciation issues generally would be an issue for English speakers and would sound strange/be ...
10
votes
2answers
98 views

Is there a term for the prestige language that's learned more-or-less natively?

I've seen here a lot of use of L1 and L2 to distinguish between the mother tongue, and the language learned later in life. This makes me wonder if there is any good terminology to refer to the ...
10
votes
1answer
418 views

What is the Representational Deficit Hypothesis?

I've been reading about second language acquisition, and I've come across the Representational Deficit Hypothesis (also known as the Failed Functional Features Hypothesis). What is it? And where can I ...
10
votes
1answer
93 views

Are there any studies on what motivates people to learn artistic languages such as Klingon, Dothraki and the Middle-earth languages?

The fictional worlds created in science fiction and fantasy sometimes contain characters that speak languages invented for these fictional worlds. These fictional languages are a category of ...
10
votes
1answer
80 views

Grammar and language learning books/software for Irish

I am currently learning Irish with the help of the Android application "Duolingo". It doesn't teach me the grammar; it works with translating sentences. I don't think the app is very useful; ...
10
votes
2answers
87 views

Is it beneficial to learn vocabulary by words by lexical class?

Is it beneficial to learn vocabulary by words by lexical class? For example, learn a list of nouns first, then a list of verbs, then a list of adjectives. (There are, of course, more classes). I've ...
10
votes
1answer
91 views

Impacts of speaking a language without knowing to read/write

My English teacher happened to teach a truck driver who wanted to speak English but was not interested in reading or writing it. My teacher found an interesting way to teach spoken English by asking ...
10
votes
1answer
103 views

Are there any studies showing that absolute pitch affects second language acquisition?

I recently became aware of the phenomenon of absolute pitch--the ability to identify a pitch without external reference. I am almost certain I have this ability--I get annoyed by out-of-tune pianos, ...

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