I want to pick up a new language but am unsure. Any suggestions?
Hello fellow Duolingo-ers!
I've recently been obsessed with learning languages and have just finished completing the Spanish for English speakers course. Surely learning Spanish has been taking up quite a portion of my time; but I definitely know that taking up another language would immerse me in another interesting culture.
For some background information about my language learning (to aid you with advice), I grew up speaking Chinese and English. Both two languages are very much unrelated to each other, and now Spanish.
Would it be better to learn another Romance or Asian language? Or you could tell me your experiences learning a certain language and what could be best?
We can all suggest languages till we are blue in the face, but I think you have to bear in mind that almost any language is going to end up being hard at some point, and you're going to need a reason to keep going beyond "hey, someone told me this was a a good language to learn." I can tell you what languages I study, and why, and so can other people, but you will at some point need reasons besides that to keep going.
So I say, look at the languages on offer here (and elsewhere), read up about countries, explore cultures, and find a language you can be passionate enough about to keep going when the going gets tough.
Romance languages are more common on Duolingo so if you want to study one on here it is more likely to be a romance one, if you want one similar to Spanish: portugese and catalan are the closest, and french is farther away if you dont want one too close. If you want one miles away from any language you know then i'd go for Irish, its a challenge but it is worth it and super interesting to see al the differences
It depends completely on what kind of experience you're looking for. I know next to nothing about Asian languages, so just considering your English and Spanish, these are my suggestions:
Do you want something where you can make use of your Spanish and that potentially adds some more passive understanding of Spanish, even at the risk of confusing the two languages occasionally? If so, go for something Romance. I see you already started French, so why not continue there?
Or would you really like to learn a language from a different family, but you just want to have a head start with the vocabulary? Then Germanic languages might be your choice; English is a Germanic language, so quite a few things will be familiar, but English is also the oddball among the Germanic languages, so you'll discover many new things, too. If you're up for a bit of a grammar challenge, German is your next language; otherwise, Swedish could be an interesting option.
Do you want a different language family (and you consider Germanic covered by English), but still something not completely alien? A Slavic language could be for you - for example Polish, or if you might enjoy learning a different script, Russian. Or if you don't want Slavic, but still a different alphabet, Greek is an option, too.
If you don't mind minority languages with little practical use, the Celtic languages might be worth a look. They are similarly removed from English as Slavic languages, but have somewhat unique grammatical features compared to other European languages. I found Irish to be great fun, and I've heard that Welsh isn't bad either.
Ok, so what if you still consider all of this too familiar and really want a challenge or learn something completetly new? There are a few non-Indo-European languages on Duolingo, look there. If you want to use the Latin alphabet (well, with diacritics and things), Hungarian or Turkish could be interesting options.
And finally, if you're up for the full challenge, non-Indo-European and a different script (without vowels, and right-to-left, too!), how about Hebrew?
I absolutely love Italian! After finishing the Spanish and French trees, it was very easy, and a total pleasure! I highly recommend Italian!
Which part of the world do you want to live in or work in in future? In my case, I live in Singapore, and I am Indian by blood, so I learnt Tamil and Korean. I am half way through Sanskrit, Japanese and Russian. Notice that due to my surroundings, I am leaning towards languages in my area. But due to interest, I added Russian to that list.
Similarly, see what you like. Considering the fact that you know Chinese and English, it is possible to go either way without problems. Do consider your interest as well, as eventually, that is what which will bring you through all the way.
Another thing, you can choose your language according to your career. I am not familiar with other careers, but IT careers tend to ask Chinese, Arabic and Russian. Their 2nd level languages are Hindi, Japanese, French. This list is a rough estimate I got from google job search.
If your English is better than Chinese, then romance languages may be easier to learn. Furthermore, you have your Spanish knowledge. If Chinese is better than English, obviously other Asian languages will be easier.