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Thread: учиться vs. изучать vs. заниматься

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    учиться vs. изучать vs. заниматься

    I don't really understand the difference. Understand you'd say:

    "я учусь в московском университете."
    я изучаю Физику or any subject.

    And it appears that заниматься is talking about actual studying. As in reading the book actually in the process of study. I think I understand this one.

    What I don't understand is учиться vs. изучать.

    Is изучать used when talking about subjects only? And учиться when talking about schools? I really don't get it.

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    Старший оракул
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    I would have to say that изучать is for a general study. Like "я изучаю русский язык" would be I study russian, be it in school or at home.

    учиться talks about where or how you study. "я учусь плохо/хорошо." or "я учусь в школе."

    учить is a study verb meaning like a serious study, in a university perhaps. "я учу математику в МГУ." meaning you are studying it for a degree kinda.

    i hope that helped a bit

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    I pulled these definitions from the "Russian Dictionary Tree"

    изучать
    to study, to be learning something, as in He studies history.

    учиться
    1. to be in training for a profession, to study a specific field, as in He is studying to be a doctor.
    2. to study, to attend school, to be a student
    3. to study something, to be learning to do something, as in He studies Russian. He is learning to speak Russian.

    "учить" means to learn or teach depending on context.

    учить + Accusative inanimate
    1. to cram, to memorize, as in to cram Russian verbs, to memorize a poem
    2. to study, to be learning, as in He is learning Russian.

    Он учит Физику (Acc)
    He is learning physics

    учить + Dative or учить + Accusative animate
    1. to teach, to say, to tell, as in Marxism tells one to look to social causes for everything.
    2. to train; to teach, as in He is teaching his sister Russian. He is teaching his sister to speak Russian.

    Он учит Физике (Dat)
    He teaches physics.

    Он учит сестру (Acc animate)
    He teaches his sister. (Since he can't "learn" his sister")

    Он учит сестру (Acc animate) Физике (Dat)
    He teaches his sister physics.

    Here is the link to the Dictionary Tree.
    http://russian.dmll.cornell.edu/rdt/
    Какая разница, умереть богатым или бедным?

    Какой толк от богатства если ты не счастлив.

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    Thanks both of you. That helps a lot. And you're so prompt too. So as I understand it my confusion came from not understanding that учиться was talking of formal study. That would explain why one could have учил Русский yet also изучаю Русский. I was confused.

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    Somehow I don't think it is that simple.
    Let me be a free man, free to travel, free to stop, free to work, free to trade where I choose, free to choose my own teachers, free to follow the religion of my fathers, free to talk, think and act for myself. - Chief Joseph, Nez Perce

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    Well I don't mean that it is really. It's just from my book it seemed that учиться could only refer to schools, universities etc. and изучать refered to only subjects. Yet my teacher had written учил Русский which didn't make any sense to me and I hadn't caught it at the time to ask about it.

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    I said that because I don't know why your teacher wrote "учил Русский " . I must be missing something.
    Let me be a free man, free to travel, free to stop, free to work, free to trade where I choose, free to choose my own teachers, free to follow the religion of my fathers, free to talk, think and act for myself. - Chief Joseph, Nez Perce

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    Hmm Is that not right? What she actually wrote I now see is: я учила Немецкий. But I doubt that makes a difference for what you are talking about. What is the problem? Немецкий by itself without язык? Or something else? Does that sentence not actually work?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Morella
    Hmm Is that not right? What she actually wrote I now see is: я учила Немецкий. But I doubt that makes a difference for what you are talking about. What is the problem? Немецкий by itself without язык? Or something else? Does that sentence not actually work?
    Maybe
    Я учила немецкому языку
    I taught German (language).

    Я учила немецкий язык
    I learned German (language)
    Какая разница, умереть богатым или бедным?

    Какой толк от богатства если ты не счастлив.

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    So язык is needed? I though my last teacher said it was.

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    Властелин
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morella
    So язык is needed? I though my last teacher said it was.
    No. "Я учила немецкий" is quite correct.
    "Happy new year, happy new year
    May we all have a vision now and then
    Of a world where every neighbour is a friend"

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    Ok thanks.

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