language learning

Advantages of multilingualism you might not know

In a context of increased globalization, be it trade, political or cultural interactions, mastery of one or more languages ​​is a stepping stone to your career. Keep in mind that it’s never too late to learn a new language or improve your level in a language you already know.

There is no such thing as a perfect age for learning a language because at different stages of life people count with different tools for learning. With motivation, whether for work or personal reasons, learning a new language is always possible.

You can even plan to stay for a few months and get your skills to a new level, e.g. going to a Spanish school in Barcelona. If you want more information, click here.

Improve your work skills

source: medium.com

The qualities involved in learning a language are often as important as the language itself. Being capable of speak one or more shows adaptability and open-mindedness.

By mastering the language of another country, you also learn about its customs and culture. Talking Mandarin, for example, could help you better understand the culture of your new Chinese customers.

Facilities to multitask at the same time

By switching frequently from one language to another, you are obliged to pay attention to what surrounds you in order to adapt quickly to changes in their environment.

Your brain develops an ability that makes you able to perform multiple tasks at the same time compared to monolingual people of the same age.

Language skills

Image source: inside.isb.ac.th

Multilingual people have a better understanding of the concept of language and can, therefore, more easily acquire a new language during childhood or adulthood.

Already used to switching from one language to another, you will be able to talk about others while maintaining this ability to “switch” between languages.

Languages keep your brain fit

Learning languages ​​is good for the brain! Multilingual people have greater malleability and cognitive flexibility than monolinguals.

The knowledge of a second language would thus make it possible to develop a verbal intelligence, a conceptual formation, global reasoning and to stimulate the discovery of rules underlying the solution of problems.

In other words, learning a new language is a cerebral gymnastics that can only improve your intellectual faculties, your creativity or even your self-confidence, whatever your professional ambitions. But how does this organ behave when we use a foreign language?

According to recent research, brain synchronization would not be the same depending on the language used. Conducted in the Basque Center on Cognition, Brain, and Language (BCBL), this study is the first to see a different connection of brains according to the language spoken.

Results obtained thanks to brain waves

Image source: inside.isb.ac.th

In 2017, the research team has already studied the phenomenon of brain synchronization on volunteers speaking the same language. For this new study, they recruited 60 people, who did not know each other and who were grouped in pairs.

Separated by a screen, they held a conversation already written for them, which alternated between mother tongue and a foreign language. During all these exchanges, the scientists realized electroencephalograms to study the cerebral activity.

When both people spoke their native language, their brainwaves aligned in a certain way, but this synchronization differed when they used a foreign language.

A way to better understand others

“The brains of two people speaking a foreign language establish a different neural link (…) to understand their interlocutor,” details Alejandro Perez, one of the authors of this research.

The exact causes of this phenomenon remain mysterious, but for researchers, this would probably be related to attention strategies. These are tools that allow two people to understand each other and communicate.

When speaking our native language, our attention is focused on the sentences and their overall meaning. Conversely, exchanging in a foreign language shifts our focus to sounds and words. Mastering another language would stimulate the brain by mobilizing different processes.

In 2014, researchers found that people who could speak several languages ​​had better cognitive abilities than others. These benefits are seen both in bilingual people since childhood and in those who have learned a second language as adults.

Don’t Just Read About Learning English, Actually Do It

There is more than one way to learn English, anyone can do it, regardless of time, monetary or talent concerns. Indeed, there are conventional and unconventional methods to learn any foreign language, methods that can help anyone, regardless of their strong suits or not so strong suits. The most important part, however, is to actually apply what you learn, to use these methods, regardless of which one you decide to go with.

Start learning, Stop postponing

source: fluentin3months.com

Some students might make the mistake of over-researching study methods without doing any real studying. Yes, there are innovative ways of learning English, easier than the classic course or learning tape, and yes, there are blogs, and websites that cover language learning, from the very basics to practical day to day tips. However, don’t get stuck in the innovative renaissance of language learning that is going on these days and actually tries to learn something.

The first step is always the most difficult one to take, but also the most important. Don’t waste too much time over thinking about what learning method to choose, as it will just slow you down in the long run. There is no perfect method to start your learning with, it is more a matter of experimenting as you go along.

source: englishlive.ef.com

Once you start learning, you can try other methods to help you progress faster, from getting a tutor, to learning while you watch TV or listening to music, everything can work, it only depends how you want your learning process to go. The most important part is to stop delaying, even if you think it’s smartly invested time and start learning.

Another important part that gets left out by many students during their English learning process is to actually use what you learn. Create the opportunity if its not readily available and use whatever you learn. For example, you could talk to native speakers, if you don’t have the opportunity to meet them create it by going online on specially designed websites.

Use what you learn in any way you can

source: familyfuncanada.com

Try to test yourself by writing a letter in your newly learned language. You could also try to watch an English movie without dubbing or subtitles and see what you can make of it. Another way you could actually try to use what you learn is to read a book in English. This can be a great way to establish a real relationship with a writer as you will read his words, without losing any of the feel and emotion through translation.

source: fluentin3months.com

In conclusion, don’t over think the English learning process before you start it. It’s not that big of a decision to make, and it’s something you can always modify in the future into a form that best suits you. Also remember, there are several ways to learn English, the best way in terms of both time, as well as personal experience, is to mix classical methods of learning like taking a course or learning from specially designed textbooks with a modern approach like learning from native speakers or improving your language by watching movies or listening to music.