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How long will it take to learn the language?

I recently started Swahili with the intent to become conversation-able (basically, passable but not necessarily fluent), and I'm a teenager. I'm wondering, assuming that I practised for fifteen to thirty minutes a day every day (or almost every day), how long roughly would it take for me to reach that level? Assuming that there are no course problems, obviously.

If you have a rough idea because you know from study or experience that would be very helpful. Currently I'm assuming that it will take about eighteen months, is this too long or too short?

October 22, 2018



For a language as difficult as Swahili it will take you 75 days of 24/7 studying. If you study five hours a day, it should take about a year. If you spend 30 minutes every day, it will take you about 5 years to become 100% fluent.


Thank you, that's actually very helpful.


I've been more or less focused on it for the last two years. things are starting to sink in. But it'll take a while for it to stick. I'd say try to give it an hour a day (or a half hour a day then 2 on saturday and 2 on sunday). just a half hour a day might take 5 years as stated before me


Well it depends on how serious you are about it. Everyone learns at a different pace and it takes more than just vocabulary and grammar if you want to become fluent in a language, you also should study some of the cultures and slang. How do people phrase this casually? What are some of the traditions in Kenya/Ethiopia/Tanzania/etc. For some people it could only take 6 months, for others, it could take years. Try to find out how fast a learner you are and set a realistic goal to how much to learn (example: I will learn stuff by the end of this month). There are also many other ways to study than Duolingo. If you can, practice with a native speaker. If you don’t know any Native Speakers like me, you can listen to podcasts or watch YouTube videos to help with listening skill and read out loud to yourself to work on pronunciation and speaking skills. You could also listen to music and watch tv in Kiswahili. Hope this helps!

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