I am going to show you how long does it take to learn a language and why language learning is more like a marathon than a sprint.
If you want to learn a second language, it’s going to be a long process and a long commitment. If you really want to fluent in a language, you need to understand the five different stages of language acquisition and how long you can expect to be in each stage.
Learning a language takes time and commitment, but how long do you actually meet?
Language acquisition stages
I wrote briefly about each of the stages and how long you can expect to be in each stage. We’re going to really go in-depth with each of the stages and what you can expect in terms of comprehension and production in each stage.
- Stage 1 – Preproduction.
As the name implies, this is the time before you speak, before you produce. This can last from zero to six months:
- Stage 2 – Early production.
Early production can last about a year. So you can expect from the beginning of your journey to that point to be about a year and a half into your language learning. You start producing short sentences, short phrases that are familiar.
- Stage 3 – Speech emergence.
This stage can last two years. During this stage, you’re starting to produce more structured sentences, and your comprehension is a lot higher.
- Stage 4 – Intermediate fluency
It also will last about two years. Within this stage, and during this stage, you’re able to complete full sentences, Understand. The majority of the things that you’re hearing, however, you may still make grammatical mistakes. You’re not going to have a native fluency or native comprehension.
- Stage 5 – Advanced fluency
Congratulations! You’ve made it. This stage also lasts about two years. So from the very beginning of your language-learning journey until two all the way up to. Advanced fluency.
It’s for about seven years. This depends completely on the amount of input that you receive and how consistent you are with your language learning.
So, I hope that by learning about the five stages of language acquisition. you can really see the whole journey, and you can commit, truly commit to learning the language.
Well. It all depends on what you mean. I am speaking a language. For me, learning a foreign language is all about being able to communicate. So, you need to cover those two things.
Importance of communication skills
Speaking is a bit of a challenge at the stop when you’ve done know a lot of vocabulary, but you can option get by trying to explain different concepts with the words that you already know.
In terms of listening, that’s more challenging because you don’t have control over what somebody else is telling you. So, they might be using the vocabulary that you don’t understand, and that will basically impair your communication.
Mostly what I’m trying to say is you have control over. I bet you’re speaking, but you don’t have as much control over your listening comprehension, so
I’m going to give you a Very general recipe for language learning
How long does it take to learn a language
If you spent an hour every day to learn a language, that would make it seven hours a week and 30 hours a month. It’s not a lot.
It’s enough to give you a very basic understanding of the most important language and grammar structures in the language you’re learning also to equip you with the basic vocabulary that you can then use to have a conversation in the language you’re learning.
So after the first month doing that, if you really commit to studying in a structured way. For an hour every day, you can begin to see progress at the end of the month. So, what I mean by progress is you will be able to build basic sentences.
You will be able to explain fundamental things about yourself, depending on what type of vocabulary do you learn. You might be able to describe different objects or describe your surroundings, and you might be able to ask some basic questions.
In addition, you will be able to say things, but it might be more difficult for you at this point to understand what other people are saying. So, you might be able to understand some basics questions that people ask you or some basic things that they tell you.
As you continue beyond the first month, you will probably start to focus on vocabulary rather than focusing on grammar or structure because the way I learn languages, I like to be able to understand the kind of basic concepts of the language.
Does it follow the same syntax with my native language?
That is it. Use verbs do it conjugate these are the kinds of things that I like to know myself. You might be different.
However, for me, I would spend the first month familiarizing myself with the structure of the language and doing some vocabulary work as well.
So, in the second month, I would definitely focus on vocabulary. The reason I would do that is so that I can really stop expressing more complicated or more complex messages, and also to enable myself to understand other people.
So, you need to build vocabulary to be able to understand what other people are saying, because that’s an essential element of communication, speaking, and listening.
There is no right or wrong way of learning. It is just a question of choosing whatever works for you.
If you focus on developing your vocabulary for another month or two, you might get to the stage why you just become a little bit more fluent and a little bit more confident.
This is basically the first three months, I’m sure you’ve seen, not of different courses that teach you the basics of the language in three months.
Learning to relax and enjoy life
So, for somebody who works or goes to school, who is not able to find a lot of time in the day, one hour every day, definitely gives you good foundations and probably takes you up to a sort of intermediate level after three months, I would say that depending on the language you’re learning.
If you’re English and you’re learning French, you might be able to get to that pre-intermediate level by the end of the three-month period.
With some other languages, it might be more difficult. It might take you longer. Like if the language is entirely different from language.
in terms of getting beyond that kind of pre-intermediate level, I would suggest that you spend another three months to try and really develop your vocabulary in a more natural way.
It’s basically about developing an ability, two sounds naturally to understand when people speak to you in a more kind of complicated way.
So what I mean by that is learning about what words go with. In other words, what kind of expressions exist in the language you’re learning? How you can produce sentences, which are natural.
After six months, I think you can expect to get to possibly the intermediate level. That is considered the most challenging level to get through once you get back, just because progress is less obvious when you get to that point.
The reason for that is because you already understand the basics and basic concepts of language and grammar. You know, a lot of vocabulary, but somehow you still con speak fluently and often you still struggle with listening.
The next stage is going to take you a little bit longer
This is assuming that you still study for one hour every day or most days for every single day pretty much.
So I would say take another six months to get to that upper intermediate level if you’re studying it that pace to get completely fluent, I think it’s a very individual question. Some people obviously will take longer than others.
It all depends on how structured, how well structured your learning is, how much you can really invest in terms of time, and how much speaking practice you are getting.
Some people will do a lot of studying, and they will have a lot of knowledge in the head, but they want to be able to use it.
I would say try to get as much speaking practice as possible. To speed up that progress, but mostly, as I said, I am a month to get the basics out of the way.
Three months to get to that pre-intermediate level. Six months to get to intermediate. Then probably another six months to go to the kind of top of that intermediate level towards upper-intermediate. Then to get too advanced also kind of fluency.
You would probably need another 6 or 12 months, depending on your individual learning style. So, This is it. I would really appreciate it if you could share your experiences with me in the comments below. So just share it with me. About how long it took you to have your first conversation in the language you’re learning.
How to stay motivated to learn a language
You’ve always dreamed about learning another language, but somehow you’re just too busy. Sound familiar. You’re not alone. I always used to tell people which language I was going to learn next, but somehow ended up binge-watching another TV series instead.
What do you think? Is it really a question of time, or is it actually motivation.
Identifying your motivation is essential for success in all types of learning, language learning included.
- What do you want to learn?
- What do you want to achieve?
Now let’s look at the science behind motivation.
Types of motivation in psychology
- Extrinsic motivation – can take either stick forms out or carrot form, and guess what? It comes from the outside. You do something to avoid punishment or to get a reward.
- Intrinsic motivation – on the other hand, comes from within you do something because you enjoy it. Like watching those Nordic crime thrillers, it’s not that hard to guess, which is better for learning, right? If you’re intrinsically motivated, you’re much more likely to succeed.
You can trick yourself into being intrinsically motivated. If you struggle with language learning, try to find something that connects you to your target language.
You love Italian food, and then cook using recipes in Italian. In any case, goals definitely help your learning progress.
Focus on your reasons to learn a language and visualize as vividly as possible the positive impact it will have when you reach your goal.
Imagine giving directions in Swedish for that attractive stranger during your stay. In Stockholm or the satisfaction and praise for your boss when you strike a deal with your company’s German client.
That’s not enough. Nothing’s working. Well, perhaps the potential reward is too far in the future. Do what I do and give yourself smaller, regular rewards along the way.
This could be as small as a cup of tea or watching your favorite film after finishing the first beginner’s language course
This positive reinforcement, the feeling that you can actually use what you’ve learned. You’re having fun, and people understand you. That will help you stay motivated and continue learning.