How to learn Arabic words– tips from our language learner

Why did you choose to learn Arabic? Actually, I was originally just learning French. But because I have many friends from North Africa, it bothered me that I was always missing out on half of their sentences when they code-switched between French and Arabic. So, I decided to start studying both! What’s the most difficult […]

Choosing the right test to measure your vocabulary

Vocabulary in a second language seems like a relatively straightforward entity to assess. You either know a word or you don’t, right? Unfortunately, that’s not really the case. There are many ways to know a word and not all language assessments measure the same kind of knowledge. So, have a read through this post to ensure […]

What’s the best foreign language to learn?

A few weeks ago I received an email from a friend asking which foreign language his daughter should learn. She was entering high school and had several options, including Spanish, French and Chinese. He wanted to know which language was the best. While I specialize in language learning and work in world languages, I still found his question hard to answer. Here’s why. […]

Why is it so difficult to remember words in another language?

You’ve probably only encountered a word like the English ‘platypus’ a handful of times in your life, but that doesn’t mean you initially had trouble remembering it or that you’re ever going to forget it. So what is it about a foreign language that makes words so difficult to capture, transfer, and recall? More importantly, […]

Teaching words with multiple meanings

A word doesn’t always have just one meaning. From time to time, native speakers and language learners must contend with words that have multiple meanings. It could be a word that is either spelled or said in the same way but means two different things. There are also terms that both look and sound the same but have opposite meanings. Lexical […]

Is English a hard language to learn?

There are more second language speakers of English in the world than there are native speakers– that means a lot of people have been successful learning the English language. Nonetheless, English can still be considered a hard language to learn. It all depends on your existing language background, motivation, resources and ability to break the […]

Is Portuguese a hard language to learn?

Portuguese and English: One happy language family People interested in language learning are always asking me: “Is Portuguese a hard language to learn?” My answer remains the same: “Well, it depends.” That’s because there are 7,102 distinct living languages estimated to exist in the world (Ethnologue, 2015). Both English and Portuguese belong to the Indo-European family, which contains […]

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