StudentShould Study a Foreign Language
Thereare many different languages in different countries, with Englishbeing a common language in many regions. With the extensivedevelopment in different language skills and expansion of the numberof people speaking certain worldwide many people in the world arelearning the most common foreign language. The study of a foreignlanguage has become an important part of studies because it hasincreasingly become part of the students’ studying contents. It isnot only an important element of the student’s language extension,but also part of the curriculum. To explore this aspect, this paperwill discuss the need for studying such a language as it benefits thestudent.
Thediscussion in this paper will illustrate that students should study aforeign language. Taking English as the main foreign language in thediscussion, this paper will show that students should take the timeto learn a foreign language because of its use in high school,college, jobs and traveling.
Studyinga foreign language makes it easy for a person to travel by providinghim with the ability to communicate with other people, especiallystrangers. When travelling, it is always an expectation to meet withstrangers and people who do not share with a person’s language.Such strangers may be very important to the success of the trip aperson is taking, therefore communication between the two partiesvery important. Since the two sides speak different languages, themost appropriate common ground is the use of a foreign language(Benjamin 1). In addition, if either of the two sides uses thelanguage of the other, then they would have exchanged a foreignlanguage.
Inaddition, studying a foreign language makes the process ofassociation between two or more people simple and more humanistic.Human beings are created to be social beings and require a languageof common understanding to enhance their association. The process ofsocializing and making of friends requires a language that willfacilitate the association between, or among the communicators(Benjamin 1). As the world is gradually becoming a global village,communication between people for informal and social reasons isregularly becoming a necessity. Therefore, the study of a foreignlanguage makes it easier for people to share ideas, experiences andinformation that bring them closer.
Additionally,the understanding of a foreign language opens career opportunities tothe learner. By studying a foreign language, a student is given thechance to work in all the careers that are available in the countriesthat speak the language that he or she has leant (Anderson 1). Forinstance, a native Chinese is not open to take career opportunitiesin English speaking countries until that student learn English as aforeign language (Marcos 1). On the other side, a native Englishperson cannot take opportunities that require him to use Chinese asthe official language, in China or elsewhere. In addition, theunderstanding of a foreign language opens a person to another careeras a translator, just by virtue of understanding two languages.
Moreover,studying a foreign language helps a student to use new technology andtechnological applications that use foreign languages in theircreations. The current world is developing and people are usingtechnology to convert the globe into a village. Most computerapplications and software use English as the language ofcommunicating with users (Roitman 1). In addition, most of thetechnology being applied in the modern world uses foreign language asthe mode of interaction between the technology and the users. Thismakes it a necessity for modern students to learn and understandforeign languages, in order to benefit from the technology (Morris1). For instance, most of the internet applications use English asthe language of interaction between the user and the internetresources. Most websites and web databases use English as thelanguage of presenting information and content. This necessitates allnon-English speaking students to learn English as the foreignlanguage, in order to keep up with the developing technology.
However,there are several disadvantages of studying a new language. One ofthe main disadvantages of studying a foreign language is theinterruption of the learning schedule or a person. This is becausethe time taken to learn the language is spent at the expense oflearning other core parts of the student’s curriculum (Morgan 1).Even if studying a foreign language is an important aspect of extralearning, there are other important sections of the student’scurriculum that are more important (Gendreau 1). For instance, it isimportant for a doctor to learn and understand the surgicalprocedures more, using his language of instruction, then studying afreeing language. The study of a foreign language does not wastetime, but it takes crucial time that a student could study other moreimportant things.
Thestudy of a foreign language is an optional element of a student’slife and not a compulsory part. This is because a foreign language isan extra piece of knowledge and skills and not the central part of astudent’s career. Therefore, it should be at the choice of thestudents to study such foreign languages (Morris 1). However, some ofthe courses and careers require the use of particular languages bythe student, which disadvantages the learner. The use of foreignlanguage as the language of instruction also disadvantages thestudents who are not speakers of the language (Gendreau 1). Forinstance, some courses are offered in English only, to internationalstudents in English speaking countries. This inconveniences them andhighly disadvantages them by requiring those to learn English first,before enrolling in the courses.
Therefore,students should learn a foreign language and follow the steps oflearning a language. The first aspect of learning a foreign languageis developing a basic vocabulary. The basic vocabulary is importantin the understanding the foreign language, since it uses the alreadyexisting understanding of the student to build new knowledge. Thestudent can take advantage of the use of flash cards as the learningtools that make him or her understand the vocabulary more (Catherine1). In addition, the student can make use of a language softwareprogram that is designed for beginners. This will help a student tounderstand and internalize the basic concepts of the new language andthe basic vocabulary.
Thesecond part of learning a foreign language is by starting to usecommon phrases in the other language. This helps a student to makeuse of the basic vocabulary that he or she has learnt in the basicstages. Through the use of common phrases, a student develops a skillof applying different words at different times and in differentcircumstances (Anderson 1). For instance, a student learns how togreet people, and later how to greet people of the different agelevels and different genders. This gives a student the necessaryconfidence that he or she understands the new language.
Thenext level in exploring the understanding of the new language is bylearning the basics of grammar in addition to sentence structure inthe foreign language. The student learns how the words in the newlanguage are arranged and how they change the meaning of sentences.This is done by understanding the correct ways of communicating andstructuring the message of the learner when communicating (Merritt1). In addition, the student learns how to place different words insentences. Therefore, the student develops basic listening of thelanguage being spoken and can tell the message in most of thesentences. This helps the student to internalize the new language andconstruct correct sentences to pass a message.
Thenewly acquired language is utilized well by practicing it regularlyin speaking and internalizing ideas and information. This is done bythe learner’s effort of finding a person who knows the languagewell and then practicing the language with him or her (Pimsleur 5).This will give the student a chance to understand the language bydoing it. According to Catherine (1), a person understands the art ofspeaking a new language by doing through the practical communication,and not just knowing. In addition, the two can interact with eachother and share social skills, values, ideas and knowledge. Throughpractice, the student changes to prove his or her understanding ofthe foreign language, which is important in the application of thelanguage. Moreover, the learning student can be corrected by theperson he or he chooses to practice the language with.
Thestudent should then continue to build the vocabulary which developsthe knowledge of the language. The building of the vocabulary of thenew language involves learning new words, new phrases, and new stylesof speaking and application of the learnt words. The student canexpand the vocabulary by reading literature, such as books andnewspaper articles written in the other language. In addition, thestudent can learn more vocabulary by watching television andlistening to radio programs presented in the foreign language(Pimsleur 15). Such programs provide the student with a variety ofknowledge, and vocabulary based on the context of the program andcontent being communicated. This expands the student’s knowledge ofthe language and allows him to understand more information presentedwith the foreign language.
Inaddition, the student should use the newly acquired language toexplore advanced opportunities to learn the language at advancedlevels. This will open the student to advanced levels of learning andunderstanding of the language. The student can achieve this byfinding a person who speaks the new language and can learn from himin different ways. For instance, the student can imitate him and usehis or her style of communicating as a way of understanding advancedlanguage skills (Pimsleur 27). This means that a student cancontinually increase his or her vocabulary and understanding of thelanguage. In addition, the student learns how to avoid the accentthat is associated with the speaking of a foreign language withnon-native speakers.
Studyinga foreign language develops different concepts than those who do notlearn such languages. This is because the understanding of the newlanguage changes a person’s perspective and outlook about life(Campbell1). Such people develop ideas that have internationallook and subscribe to ideologies that are internationally accepted(Benjamin 1). This is because the learning of a new language opens aperson to think with a global perspective and evaluate life with aforeign perspective, which is mostly international (Morris1).For instance, a Chinese or an Asian native who understands and speaksEnglish will understand the English calendar different from thenatives who have not learnt the language.
Moreimportantly, the learning of a foreign language changes the behaviorof a person and the way of doing things in the modern way. Whilemodernity is a complex aspect of human beings in terms, judging whatis modern or what is not, the behavior or a person judge a person’sinclination to modernity (Morris 1). In this case, modernity reflectsthe appreciation of new behavior and ideas that are universallyassociated with the current times. The learning of a foreign languagemakes a person modern by changing his behavior to the currentuniversal behavior of the new language (Ferriss 1). In addition, thelanguage opens a person to new ways of doing things that are not partof the old or conventional behavior of his native language orculture.
Learningof a foreign language changes a person’s dealings with other peopleby giving him or her new competitors. Through the understanding ofthe new language, a student is opened to a new world with newcompetitors as well as new players in the completion at all levels oflife (Ford 1). For instance, a musician who learns a new language andstarts singing using the foreign language is opened up to newcompetitors singing in the language. In addition, the musician isalso open to new audience that listens to the music played in the newlanguage. Therefore a person is open to new perspectives and theplaygrounds of practicing the new language, with the competition thatsuch opportunity presents.
Consequently,the learning of a new language develops the use of creativity by thepeople who learn the language. Such creativity is developed when aperson starts using the ideas, values and knowledge presented by thenew language (Campbell1). Through the development of new languageskills, a person may start using such foreign skills to enrich hisold practice or language as a way of developing his career of histrade. In addition, creativity is developed when a person is openedup to the new competition as well as new challenges. This isparticularly common with the practice of career talents such asmusic, acting or artwork.
Learninga foreign language is important to a student because it presentsseveral benefits that surpass the challenges of the process ofacquiring the language skill. Learning a foreign language helps astudent to study, socialize well, travel and explore new careers.However, the process of acquiring foreign language skills takes timethat could be used to learn other things by disrupting the student’sschedule. The process involves learning basic vocabulary, developinggrammar and practicing fluency of speech. Despite the challenges oflearning, learning foreign languages is important because it changesthe behavior of a student, opens to new opportunities, competitionand new ideas that develop his or her creativity. Consequently,students should study a foreign language.
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