Knowing a foreign language can be a great asset to possess. It allows you to travel the world and effectively communicate with people in other cultures. It also sets you up to receive a promotion at work if your company conducts international business. Plus, it’s just something nice to cross off your bucket list.
However, when it comes time to learning a foreign language, some people truly don’t know where to start. If you really want to learn a new language, the following five tips will help you know exactly where to begin.
1. Take a class.
There are plenty of basic language classes you can take at your local community college. Check out different colleges in the area and find a class that fits your needs and budget. Oftentimes, these schools will also allow you to take additional language classes after you pass certain ones, so you can easily become fluent in another language by sticking with the same program.
2. Look into your local library.
Sometimes your local library will offer language classes that you can take for much less than a traditional college class. If not, you can also see if they have books, DVDs or computer programs you can take out in order to learn a new language. This is much more cost effective than taking a class, and it will allow you to learn at your own pace.
3. Get a tutor.
You can also privately learn a new language from a personal tutor. Look online for tutors in your area, or you can even use an online tutor through Tutor.com. You can also post your needs on sites like Craigslist or on job boards at local colleges. You may be able to snag a great tutor deal by having a college student majoring in foreign language teach you what you need to know.
4. Use computer programs.
There are plenty of computer programs out there that can help you learn a new language. One of the most popular is Rosetta Stone, which allows you to learn a new language at your own pace and in the comfort of your own home. There are plenty of different languages to choose from, so this may be your best option if you want to learn a new language that’s not entirely popular.
5. Travel to another country.
All the training in the world will not educate you the same way learning from native speakers will. If you have the opportunity, travel to a country where your desired language is spoken and learn from native speakers. You’ll be able to hear their dialect, learn slang words and learn effectively through regular communication with people who know the language. Immerse yourself in as many native conversations as you can in order to increase your comprehension.
There are a lot of ways that you can learn a new language. Just keep in mind that you’re not going to become fluent in that language overnight, so be prepared to put in some hard work and effort. You also need to remember that you’re going to make some mistakes when learning a new language, but it’s important not to become upset. You will actually learn much more through the mistakes you make than you will through traditional studying. Don’t become discouraged, and instead stay focused in order to successfully learn a new language.