Benefits of Language Learning

Published: 27th January 2009
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Other than the obvious benefits of learning a new language (visiting another country, business reasons) there are many others. Learning a new language is a personally rewarding experience in terms of functionality and self confidence. Many people are under the assumption that the easiest way to learn a new language is when you are a child. This assumption is based on the Critical Period Hypothesis. This hypothesis states that the ability to learn language is biologically linked to age, thus, making language acquisition as adults impossible. Although there are many differing hypothesis and theories that challenge this "cut off period." (Genesee, 1981; Harley, 1989; Newport, 1990). What scientists and researchers declare not withstanding, there are many adults learning new languages every day. Common sense tells us that obviously it is, in fact, possible to learn another language as an adult.

Perhaps the optimal time is to learn language when you are young, however, it does not mean that learning language for an adult is any more frustrating as it is for a child. In today's world it is becoming increasingly easy to learn another language. In years past the only ways to learn an additional language would have been through a school, sometimes special schools and possibly through LP and phonograph recordings. Today, in our modern technological era, the possibilities of learning a new language are virtually limitless. Maybe you'd like to learn chinese. You can do it online! While many more languages are being offered not only in secondary schools but grammar schools as well are adding more languages. There are also schools that specialize in specific languages as in the past; however these schools are becoming more and more prolific. Language learning from recordings is also still available and offering more languages than ever to learn.

Also, there is a wide variety of language learning software that is very comprehensive, there is a large number of online language courses, and allows the student to take their study at their own pace instead of having to "keep up with the class." These programs are ideal for people that may not have a lot of extra time to devote to a standard classroom, the money to attend a special college or class and it allows them to go over each language lesson as many times as they need to. Not to mention that everyone in the household young and old can benefit from the software. There are also many free sites available on the internet that offer language learning tools for free. By using these you are able to actually "test out" a language that you would like to learn before investing in software or a class.
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