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Learning one language at a time versus learning several together?

I've noticed that a few people on here seem to be learning several languages at the same time and have gotten fairly high up the tree in all of them. I was wondering if any of those people have found this difficult (getting different languages confused with each other and the like)? I've just been learning Spanish up to this point but would love to try my hand at some French too while still keeping up the Spanish.

April 19, 2013



If you have extreme amounts of time, many hours a day, then 2 languages is possible, and good in my opinion. You seem to be far enough along (in my opinion) in Spanish to not get French and Spanish mixed up at all, seeing how you know a fair majority of Spanish already. So if you have the time, I wouldn't worry about it as long as you don't kick the Spanish to the curb.

I still wouldn't recommend learning French seeing as it's in the same language group, yet at least least. However, I doubt it'd be an issue regardless simply because of how far along you are in Spanish.

Just don't abandon Spanish simply because you're liking french, get a good 1100words in Spanish down or simply be able to type/read Spanish very nicely, and (maybe) speak it fluently, then you can dump it. Don't just dump it for no reason.

Just make sure you have the time to manage them both a fair amount every day or two, or even three days, depending on your memory. If you're in middle-highschool, then you should be safe seeing as you'd have tons of time over the summer free unless you go to a camp or something of such to occupy it.


I'd say the most effective method is to learn one language for a few months or half a year until you get a fairly intermediate level. Then, if you need another language, add it, but be aware that you still have to practice the first language not to forget it.

I've finished the French tree and returned to learn German a few months after that (i.e. about half a year from the beginning of learning French). Now I have German on Duolingo and French elsewhere. It is manageable and not very difficult if you ask about confusion. The hardest thing is to find time and energy to do both. While it was French alone, I gave it all the time I had for languages, now I have to share this time between two languages.

I would not take two languages on Duolingo at the same time, but that's just my opinion.


Cool, thanks for all the help. I think I'll stick with just Spanish for another couple of months. Maybe if I complete the tree I'll start using something like Verbling to chat to people and keep my Spanish practice up that way while starting French on Duolingo :-D


I've been using DL for more languages as well, but usually this means devoting 90% of the time to one language (which was German for the past year) and 10% to get a hold of the basics in another. I'm currently in the transition from German to French, as I am now competent enough int he former to use it in real-life (reading books, watching movies, having conversations...).

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