Questions with this tag are about the acquisition of one or more second languages. In other words any language other than the mother tongue or native language of a given speaker.

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2
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0answers
30 views

comparative study of spoken language complexity or irregularity

Could you recommend a publicly accessible study/article that quantitatively compares languages by their complexity or irregularity? I am interested in spoken languages only. Not writing/spelling. ...
0
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0answers
10 views

Inforgraphic or data/stats for 2nd language speakers

Is there an inforgraphic/map or statistics about languages spoken as 2nd langauages. for example in Pakistan about 10 million people have Urdu as native language but 10 times more people have it as ...
2
votes
1answer
46 views

Sources on average retention rate of language based on time [closed]

I am creating a language learning app and am interested in sources/publications which offer statistics on retention rate of languages over time. For example, I have data that my product taught ...
0
votes
3answers
101 views

Where is American English not chosen as the dialect of English taught as a second language? [closed]

Apart from countries where English is taught as a second language only to immigrants and indigenous peoples (eg Australia), where is American English not chosen as the dialect taught when teaching ...
0
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0answers
65 views

Can someone explain this sentence from Dartmouth's German page?

Was perusing the page (you can find it here), I came across the paragraph "That said, word order is a complex aspect of language, never wholly mastered by non-native speakers. What is the idea ...
1
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0answers
103 views

The barrier of intuitively using a second language’s word order

I am learning German and a big hurdle I am facing is word placement. For example, the last half of a sentence is: […], aber ich werde es nicht verstehen. (but I would not understand it.) I ...
0
votes
1answer
95 views

Beginner to Dutch language: should I translate Dutch to English or to German?

I am a fluent English speaker (lvl C2) and a decent German speaker (lvl B2 and fully prepared for C1). I recently started following a Dutch course for beginners. My fear is that I will eventually ...
1
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0answers
11 views

Please recommend books or resources written in Spanish, for learning Latin for the first time? [duplicate]

This question restricts the second (unanswered) part here, with the additional stipulation that the reader has studied and knows no Latin whatsoever (but who knows that Spanish is a Romance language ...
0
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1answer
80 views

Are there resources that exploit phones of English, to teach how to phonate all IPA phones?

Preface: I use 'phonate' to mean: `to produce or to utter a phone'. After 5 years, I finally learned to phonate the Alveolar Trill [r], from an explanation that cleverly exploited English phonology ...
9
votes
1answer
233 views

How come I cannot get my “oral” English to a native speaker level after 25 years of trying?

I was born in Russia and moved to the US at the adolescent and prepubescent age of 12. Before my relocation to the US I had never really been exposed to the English language at large, and after my ...
0
votes
0answers
58 views

How can you learn to read older dialects of your first language(s)?

(TL;DR) Abbreviate ED as earlier dialects of your modern first language(s). I desire to read writing written in only ED (eg: philosophy written in English or French dated from 1400) and NOT in ...
1
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0answers
33 views

second-language phonology/L1 influence on L2 acquisition

I'm a writer, and I want to write a poem about how one's native language can interfere with the acquisition of a second language. I understand that this is studied in the field of second-language ...
0
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1answer
56 views

Which linguistic theories account for non native accent?

Clearly, there is a lot known about acquisition of second language by adults, and the different degrees of fluency (at least on the phonetic and phonological levels) which are obtainable. What ...
1
vote
1answer
27 views

Are there any tools on the market that employ prosodic research to help overcome speech impediments?

I see a lot of language learning software, apps, intelligent games on the market, but nearly all of them focuses on grammar and lexical aspects of linguistics. I wonder if any techniques are dedicated ...
2
votes
2answers
116 views

What stats are available to estimate the possibly coming “World language”?

My definition of the "World language" is the language most people can understand and use as an international language—not necessarily the language most spoken. Background: A hater of English argued ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

Which sign language should I learn first? [closed]

I want to start learning sign language. The Wikipedia lists several sign languages depending on real spoken languages, and they all have their origins and families and classifications just like spoken ...
2
votes
2answers
360 views

Opposite of “intensifier”?

I really like apples. I don't really like apples. In sentences #1, 'really' acts as an intensifier. Using "teacher talk", I would say that 'really' softens the sentence, but I can't think of a ...
2
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0answers
84 views

Learning two closely related languages

This is a follow-up, and hopefully an improvement, to my question on German and Yiddish that was migrated to German from Linguistics: http://german.stackexchange.com/questions/18895/learning-german-...
1
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0answers
66 views

Learning German and Yiddish at the same time [closed]

I need to learn German for professional reasons to a relatively high level (say C1 on the standard European scale). At the same time (or within a couple of years, say), I would like to learn Yiddish ...
4
votes
1answer
123 views

What method of teaching foreign languages is more effective?

In wikipedia i found a list of methods of teaching foreign languages - language pedagogy. But it's seems that we not have a well recognized method or methods, or more effective then others, or at ...
2
votes
1answer
81 views

What are the benefits of learning Latin using Spanish?

I am a native speaker of Spanish. I also learned English. I am now trying to learn Latin. Obviously, the Spanish --> Latin route is a lot more preferable than the English --> Latin route given that ...
3
votes
4answers
213 views

What sub-field in linguistics should I study to help me learn foreign languages? [closed]

I'm interested in languages and linguistics, can speak a few languages (English, French, Mandarin, some German, Japanese, and Esperanto) and would like to eventually learn more (Japanese, Spanish, ...
1
vote
1answer
107 views

Way to learn foreign languages

I'd like to start with "Hi!" since it's my first post here. I'm coming here with some questions, but before I ask it, I'd like to tell you what made me come here. So I was planning for a long time to ...
2
votes
1answer
142 views

How can I improve my writing fluency in English? [closed]

So this is a problem I've been struggling with for quite some time now. English is a second language for me despite the fact that I've spend a lot of my childhood years in Australia (grades 1 through ...
0
votes
1answer
132 views

Does your dominant language proficiency determine the degree of possible proficiency in L2?

People who aren't english native speakers often tell me that their English is better than their native tongue, which is kinda odd since they use their native tongue most of the time. Because of this,...
2
votes
0answers
194 views

Two tasks in one experiment design (self-paced-reading & grammaticality judgment)

For experiment design experts, I want to know if it's possible to design an experiment on PsychoPy or Open Sesame in which the subject does a self paced reading (with measuring the reading times for ...
1
vote
5answers
2k views

Why might English be considered easy to learn and why might it be considered difficult?

I have heard claims of English being both very easy and very difficult to learn for L2 learners (in adulthood). Is it that the English writing system is difficult to learn while the language itself ...
1
vote
2answers
366 views

Teaching children Spanish and Esperanto at home from non-native speakers

A question has already been asked on teaching a child a foreign language if you aren't a native speaker, but the answers are mixed - the 'right' answer says languages can be taught by a non-native ...
2
votes
2answers
293 views

Am I a native English speaker? (born I Hungary, lived in US from age 3)

I'm not sure if I'm going to get any answers, but I am trying to find out whether I can qualify as a native english speaker. Here's my story: born in Hungary moved to US at age 3 spoke Hungarian ...
0
votes
3answers
301 views

Languages where the prestige or standard variety is not “clear” or “distinct”?

When learning a language you generally want to have a teach with clear pronunciation. If you're planning to learn by immersion, if it's a language spoken in several places, you want to choose the ...
3
votes
0answers
104 views

L1 memories being recalled in my L2

The situation is as follows: I have been studying my L2 for approximately 4 years. I have spent a total of 10 months immersed in the L2 environment. My current stint has been for 5 months and counting....
2
votes
2answers
81 views

Besides lexicon and phonology, what are the biggest differences in Mandarin that are hard for Westerners to learn?

I'm dabbling in Chinese lately and of course most of the vocabulary is new and the phonology is difficult, including tones, tone sandhi, unstressed syllables, and even some aspects of the vowels and ...
3
votes
1answer
176 views

Mastering a foreign language without staying in a country to which the language is native [closed]

I am not a native English speaker. What I would like to understand is - if a non native speaker who’s got a fairly decent command on the language (in this case say English) speaks to his or her kid in ...
1
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0answers
122 views

Does being educated affect the rate and the quality of second language acquisition?

People move a lot and become immigrants in other countries. Many immigrants, in every historical time frame, come to countries without an prior knowledge of the language. However, they usually learn ...
5
votes
1answer
223 views

Ranking sentences

I have a list of 15000 sentences for a new language I wish to learn. I also have the English translation of each of these sentences. Additionally, I have a 30 million word corpus for the new language. ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Are there marked/“hard” phonemes that are acquired very late or never by a substantial number of speakers?

Marked phonemes are those that require more effort during articulation or are "harder" to articulate. For example, the interdental fricatives /θ/ and /ð/ are considered to be marked. Marked phonemes ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

Common problems in second language pronunciation

Transfer of some phonetic/phonological features from the first language to a second language is common in second language acquisition. For example, aspiration is not phonemic in English. Voiceless ...
2
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0answers
1k views

Theories on L1 transfer/interference in L2 pronunciation/phonetics/phonology

What theories explain the transfer of phonetic and phonological features from the first language to a second or foreign language? How do these theories differ from each other? Such theories should ...
5
votes
2answers
624 views

What are the differences between the French and English [i] and how does it affect the perception?

I'm rephrasing my question after (very helpful) comments to my initial version: What are the differences between the [i] produced by French speakers (in French) and English speakers (in English)? ...
1
vote
1answer
65 views

How to measure importance of language? [closed]

My question is especially about how we can measure importance and choose a second language for us. It is not a secret that in a variety of aspects English is first language by its importance. So how ...
2
votes
0answers
239 views

To what extent do children adapt to a language which is not their mother-tongue?

In following when talking about 'native speaker' I refer to what is considered as 'mother tongue' rather than reaching a level of fluency. For the purpose of this question think of an average person ...
4
votes
2answers
279 views

What language do children think in?

If a child born in Canada is spoken to strictly in another foreign tongue other than english (ie. Italian), it is inevitable that this child will also think in Italian. When this child starts going ...
8
votes
2answers
616 views

Which makes more more effective vocabulary practice: L1 -> L2 or L2 -> L1?

Note: Please don't assume that because I'm asking about vocabulary, that my only method of language study is vocabulary memorization. I'm in the process of learning a couple of new languages, and am ...
-2
votes
2answers
252 views

What Second Language Confers the Greatest Cognitive Benefit [closed]

If I were to learn a second language which language in the world would confer the greatest cognitive benefit to a native English speaker? Would, say, Japanese confer greater benefit than Spanish due ...
5
votes
2answers
3k views

What are some of the disadvantages of learning a language through book-study as opposed to immersion?

I have been told that the best way to learn a new language is through immersion, i.e. placing oneself in an environment in which only the target language is spoken and making constant use of the ...
10
votes
2answers
506 views

What research has been done on the effects of learning Esperanto on acquiring other languages?

I have recently started learning Esperanto because I thought it would be an interesting exercise to compare and contrast it with the natural languages I speak. Anyone who has done even light research ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

How many words do we hear in a day?

With regard to the English language, how many words is the average person likely to hear (not read) on an average day. By "how many words" I don't mean how many unique words. In other words if I hear ...
9
votes
4answers
14k views

How many “words” do I need to learn?

I am interested in learning a second language. To do this I have created a list of the 1000 most common words and phrases for a given language. I've also established sentences which contains each of ...
7
votes
3answers
1k views

Do native speakers of language with lexical tone have difficulty learning another language with more or different lexical tones?

Have there been any studies done on say Mandarin native speakers who learn as adults other languages which have more lexical tones or which have lexical tones different to Mandarin? I believe for ...
8
votes
6answers
10k views

Is learning German easier for people who know Sanskrit, and vice versa?

I've heard many times that learning German is easier for those who speak Sanskrit, and vice versa. Is there any linguistic basis for this? What similarities exist between the two languages that may be ...