Motivation is the primary factor which determines whether or not we will be successful in learning a second language. It sustains you through the tedious study of complex conjugations and keeps you showing up to that Wednesday evening class on the other side of town after a long day at work. Motivation is the key element of follow through.

In any new endeavor, motivation is easy to find, but difficult to maintain.

At the early stages of language learning, you are full of optimism and enthusiasm. This can quickly disappear as the enormity of the task hits home.

This article provides tips on how to stay motivated through the difficult times and achieve your linguistic goals. …


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Having a rigid classroom structure is a great way to learn French for some people — but its not for everyone. In fact, many people prefer to learn languages entirely on their own. If you’ve dreamed about becoming a fluent, self-taught French speaker, here’s how to learn French on your own.

A Guide for Self-Taught French

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll define and explore the three essential steps for how to learn French on your own. This guide provides a framework that you adjust and expand depending on previous knowledge and needs. …


When you decide to start studying a foreign language, it’s usually because of a dream.

You may be a literature student who dreams of reading original Russian copies of Dostoevsky’s famous literary works. You may be an importer who dreams of haggling with a feisty Moroccan carpet seller in perfect Arabic. Or you may simply be an anime fan who dreams of watching your favorite anime shows without having to rely on subtitles.

No matter what your goal is when learning a new language, you’re going to need to become fluent to achieve it. This means becoming proficient in all aspects of your target language, such as grammar, vocabulary, idiomatic expressions, writing systems, and phonology. …


Achieving fluency in a language is a goal of every serious language learner. However, achieving fluency is a daunting proposition. You may, for example, have heard friends or colleagues effortlessly switch between languages. You feel that there is no way that you can emulate them. As far as you are concerned, they have a special talent for languages and only those who are so gifted can hope to reach fluency in a language. This type of thinking can demotivate a learner. Achieving fluency in a language is certainly a daunting task, but it can be demystified. …


The English language, with its modest origins on a rainy island in the North Atlantic, has always punched above its weight. The English language was the British Empire’s most successful export. Its adoption as the first language in the United States played a major role in rise to prominence. With the advent of the internet, the language has gained the status of international lingua franca. Now that English has become a linguistic monolith, you might consider whether it is worth it to learn another language. This article argues that there are benefits to learning a language which go beyond simply acquiring a new communication system. This article delineates the social benefits of learning a language. …


You’ve finished the entire Duolingo tree — congratulations! But now you’re faced with the inevitable question — what to do after Duolingo?

If you want to keep improving after Duolingo and get the best return on your time, you’ll need to get a little creative and customize your learning experience to match your goals and needs.

This article will give you some actionable ideas to help you build your own post-Duolingo strategy that will propel you towards fluency.

Contents

  1. Where you stand after Duolingo
  2. Vocabulary: Improving your vocabulary after Duolingo
  3. Grammar: Improving your grammar skills after Duolingo
  4. Reading: Improving your reading skills after…


A cloze test is a way of testing comprehension by removing words (usually every 5th word or so) from a passage or sentence and then asking the reader/learner to supply the missing elements. For this reason, it is also sometimes referred to as a gap-fill exercise.

This learning tool has been used in the classroom since the 1950’s. The educational background of this test is from the theory of ‘closure’ in the Gestalt school of psychology, which says that the brain sees things as a whole unit and will naturally and easily fill in missing elements (Walter 1974). …


Clozemaster boasts thousands of sentences in over 50 languages. But the number of sentences can seem like a rather meaningless metric. Just what does it mean to play 1,000 sentences on Clozemaster? Is that a lot or a little? Have I made significant progress, or am I fooling myself? How about 5,000 sentences? 10,000?

What we need is a reference point, a number that almost everyone can relate to and that allows us to give meaning to the sentence counts on Clozemaster.

Most people across the world have heard of, if not read or seen, Harry Potter. Harry Potter and The Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling (1998), the first book in the series, has 6,619 sentences.

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