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Thread: the right language for me?

  1. #1
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    the right language for me?

    hi

    im applying for university at the moment and am considering a joint honours degree in english literature and russian, starting russian as a complete beginner. the 'master russian' website has been very helpful in showing me the basics of the language.

    however, i was wondering if any native english speakers could give me some advice. i already speak german, and some french. how hard a language to pick up is russian? has anyone else started it at level 1 at university? if so how did they find it?

    any help would be greatly appreciated.

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    Увлечённый спикер
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    I am currently a Russian Studies major at a university and started at Level 1. However my grandfather was a Russian immigrant and I did have some experience hearing it when I was growing up.

    Russian is a difficult language. But if you were able to learn other languages I am certain that you will be able to learn Russian. Consistancy and regular practice are of vital importance to the success of learning the language.

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    Завсегдатай kalinka_vinnie's Avatar
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    Yeah, knowing french and german is going to help you. The biggest problem for English native speakers is that they suddenly have to conjugate verbs and think about different cases.

    Luckily, your combination of german and french covers them both
    Hei, rett norsken min og du er død.
    I am a notourriouse misspeller. Be easy on me.
    Пожалуйста! Исправляйте мои глупые ошибки (но оставьте умные)!
    Yo hablo español mejor que tú.
    Trusnse kal'rt eturule sikay!!! ))

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    Personally I think that the biggest obstacle is being able to learn enough vocabulary. One can always refresh ones knowlege of the cases if needed by simply referring to a book. But, trying to cram new words into ones brain and keep them there is excrutiating!
    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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    Moderator Lampada's Avatar
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    Re: the right language for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fiona
    ...
    however, i was wondering if any native english speakers could give me some advice. .... any help would be greatly appreciated.
    http://www.blogthings.com/whatlanguages ... learnquiz/
    "...Важно, чтобы форум оставался местом, объединяющим людей, для которых интересны русский язык и культура. ..." - MasterАdmin (из переписки)



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    Завсегдатай chaika's Avatar
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    I studied Spanish 4 years in high school.
    In my 4th year I also started Russian, from zero.
    I went through college (proed out of Russian 1), ran out of Russian language courses and took a couple years of German. When I graduated, I could speak German fluently, and Russian haltingly. Went to grad school in slavic linguistics, focus on Russian. Now about 40 years later I find I can speak Russian fluently, though I constantly find myself making errors of all kinds. But I can still get the gist of what the Spanish folks are saying on the radio and TV!

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    Quote Originally Posted by chaika
    ....... Now about 40 years later I find I can speak Russian fluently, though I constantly find myself making errors of all kinds. But I can still get the gist of what the Spanish folks are saying on the radio and TV!
    Ohh no!!! 40 years!! Any advice for someone who wants to be able to hold a conversation, read a book and watch televsion in Russian. I do not want to take 40 years....
    美丽

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    Почтенный гражданин
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    It doesn't take 40 years to be able to read a book or watch television or even to hold a conversation! Maybe it would take that long to be able to hold an intelligent political debate or something, but not for an ordinary conversation. I've only been studying Russian for three years and I can hold a conversation, albeit with less-than brilliant vocabulary and grammar. I can read any book and watch TV and movies and understand most everything (except for poetry). You just have to practice regularly and often.
    P.S. - Исправление ошибок в моих текстах на русском всегда приветствуется

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    Завсегдатай kalinka_vinnie's Avatar
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    You can do it in 2 years, it has been done and is continuing to being done. Fluency, I suspect, does not take 40 years either, but it really depends on how you study, if you study, how often you practice and how many beers you drink on a given week day.
    Hei, rett norsken min og du er død.
    I am a notourriouse misspeller. Be easy on me.
    Пожалуйста! Исправляйте мои глупые ошибки (но оставьте умные)!
    Yo hablo español mejor que tú.
    Trusnse kal'rt eturule sikay!!! ))

  10. #10
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    thanks for the advice everybody, it has been very helpful

  11. #11
    Подающий надежды оратор
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    How much do you all believe that immersion expedites the process of gaining fluency? For an intermediate/advanced student, that is.

  12. #12
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    I am "not there" in regards to fluency. However I believe that I will never be there without immersion. My goal is to try to take a trip every year to Russia and study.
    美丽

  13. #13
    Почтенный гражданин
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    Quote Originally Posted by oatmealia
    How much do you all believe that immersion expedites the process of gaining fluency? For an intermediate/advanced student, that is.
    1,000,000,000%!!!! I personally believe that without immersion, you will never (or almost never) become fluent. But fluency actually comes very quickly when you're immersed. Take my wife, for example. When she came to America, she did not speak one English word. Within 6 months, she could have reasonable conversations. WIthin a year, I'd say she's 90% fluent. Now, after 7 years, most people do not even notice that she's foriegn. Of course, she came to America at age 17. If you start later, it takes longer, and you retain you accent longer.
    Платинов

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