Learning heritage language

I grew up in the United States, but my family is from a certain Eastern European Country. We moved here around the age of 3, and we were constantly surrounded by other family members(grandparents/cousins) who all spoke the eastern European language. Because of this, at a young age (birth to kindergardenen, the eastern european language was my main tongue) Eventually English became the main spoken language in our house because I went to school and my parents learned english, we still live around a diaspora community so I have been exposed to my heritage language for most of my life. I am 22 now I recently took an ACTFL OPI exam and scored "advanced low" in my heritage language(about b2, maybe b1 on the CEFR scale) (this is with no formal language education in that language) and very limited use of the language in recent times.

-I want to know if anyone has similar experience with this?

-I believe that if my household begins speaking the language, i brush up on grammar using online grammar textbooks, and began speaking in the language, I can reach a high level VERY quickly

-Is it possible for me to ever pass for a native? or will i always have an "accent" no matter how long I study?

-I am going to start reading grammar books and began speaking in my heritage language, and my main question is will i ever be able to pass for a native? OR will i always have an accent

February 4, 2018


Unless you've had different feedback, I expect that your accent will be the least of your worries, since you learned to make all the relevant sounds at a really young age.

I would advise not only speaking, but also doing as much reading as possible in your heritage language, as that will grow your vocabulary. It would probably be best, if you have the option, to choose material that is challenging, but not so hard as to be frustrating.

February 5, 2018

You shouldn't post this in troubleshooting topic.

February 4, 2018

The OP has not yet leveled up to level 2 and thus can only post in the troubleshooting section.

February 5, 2018

Hey guys! I am actually doing some research into this specific case for my degree at Leiden university as part of my Bachelor. It would be really useful if you could fill out this short survey (7 minutes) about your experience. All answers are anonymous Thank you

November 9, 2018
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