Discuss:why do you learn a second language?

Actually my first purpose to learn a second language(english) is that I could find a better job and salary in the future. And my major in college is also english. I have been studying english for nearly 10 years since I attended my middle school.

Now english seems to be my mother tounge, every day I use it in my work, though I still can not say my english is perfect. Once I dream I could be a translator in the future. It seems that most people studying english in my country have a similar purpose.

So I wonder why do you learn a second language? does a more language can bring you a better job or higher salary?

I’ve always been interested in languages. When I was a child I noticed that people spoke other languages and it bothered me because I couldn’t understand them.

I don’t know if I’ve ever been given a higher salary, but I suspect that my language skills helped get me in the door for an interview.

I have never been motivated to learn languages for utilitarian reasons, certainly not to get a better job, and I find pleasure in the task essentially for its own sake. I’ve tried to explain this elsewhere in other threads, but the truth is I’m not entirely sure why I’m attracted to them so much. I guess it’s like stamp collecting. I love the idea of “collecting” languages and building up different worlds in my head. Sorry, I know that’s probably a pretty pretentious and esoteric explanation, but that’s simply the way it is for me. Certainly my life would be no more or less privileged practically speaking if I had never studied a foreign language before.

The heading sounds like a school assignment to me: are you being creative, cajndon? Like Maitee’s, my fascination stems from childhood.

Do you all have fun learning languages or it’s a toil?
Is there more fun in it than to drink beer and watch TV?
Maybe it’s a vanity fair or just nothing to do?
How long can your passion last?
If not forever then why it dies?
What you can change it for?
Is it a sport?
Or an art?

The reason why I study a second language( for me, it’s English)…
That is what I have been thinking about these days.
I might be losing the reason for that, it is becoming more and more fun to use English, though.

I am interested in languages. I look at it as a challenge. I want to accomplish something. If someone else can do it, why not me?

My three brothers have graduated from American universities and I have a plan in future to pursue my higher studies from there. So Understanding English is a must in my case.

Also, I am a movie buff.

Learning English has enabled me to enjoy different kinds of movies from those I am accustomed to in my native language.

Also, I like the challenge of understanding something new, alien. It is like unlocking the code.

So there you go

Because I sometimes want to escape into a different symbolic environment.

I just do.

Well the languages I have been learning is solely because I plan to move to those countries in the future where they speak it. Also there’s a sense of pride knowing you know over 2 languages.

Are you tutoring in English or Spanish? Both?

I am fluent in:

  1. working to “remember” my greek (cause saying “oh, I used to speak fluent greek but now I forgot” just sounds so silly)
  2. studying japanese - cause it’s such a crazy language and you can act/say stuff on youtube in it in a crazy fassion and it will still be regarded as “normal”. Also cause there is a lot of interesting content in japanese.

What do you mean by a crazy fashion? The word order?

I have been interested in learning German since I was a child. My grandmother was born in the US, but her parents were not. She went to German Lutheran school as a child. By the time I came along, and showed interest, she had forgotten most of her German. She could remember some expressions and some songs that her mother had sung to her. I took German in high school and some in college. My comprehension was fair, but could never speak more than a few memorized phrases. I decided in January of 2009 that I would work on refreshing my German from forty years ago. I jumped around trying to find some method that I liked better than an other. Finally found my way to LingQ, and have been having an enjoyable time learning since then. I have been reading numerous Grimm Fairytales since coming to this sight, and it has brought me emense pleasure to be able to read them in the original-since the flavor of the original-is not at all what it is in the sweetened versions that have been translated into English. When I really feel good about where I have progressed to in German, then possibly it will be time to tackle Spanish, since we have so many Spanish speaking people in the US.

Like Maitee, I was also interested in languages at an early age. I remember when my family and I took a trip to Canada and there were these little cards in many different languages at our hotel. My brother and I picked up the Japanese one, because at that time, we were both fans of anime.

I remember skipping around a store reading random phrases. The two ladies working there, well, I am not sure if they were Japanese or not, but they looked really suprised.

I really didn’t start to learn languages until I started high school when I had the opportunity to take Spanish.

Another thing that got me interested was my grandpa. Since he has traveled all over the world, I got to learn about all the places he’d gone, which got me interested in many cultures. =)

I was thinking in the main reasons why I always wanted to learn English. And after a few minutes the answer was found.
I like to have the ability to communicate with other people and cultures, but the fact is that my English have become a little bit rusty since I moved to Spain, perhaps because since I arrived to Spain I have not talked in English.
luckily that situation have changed since I found the Linguist

Since I have read your purposes of learning a second language, I just find that my purpose is quite small, only something concerning better job, better salary, then I chose english as my major in my university. After graduation, I found that actually a more language does not bring me a better job or better salary as I thought. It seems that a better skill like design, marketing, sales is more important. Now I try to learn everyday to improve myself, hope one day english will make a its work in my career.

Unlike some people here, I didn’t really have an interest in languages when I was young, in fact I didn’t even care to learn another language until I went to Europe and especially Poland where some people spoke French,English,German, and Polish. When I started studying Polish, it slowly made me interested in other languages too, then it made me interested in what the best way to speak another language would be, and eventually I found Lingq and find it to be the most enjoyable way to learn… That’s why I here…

@cajndon No offense. But it seems to me that it might be kinda funny if you* ask Chinese** students*** the question of “Why did you learn English”" What is your motivation" whatsoever , since they simply did NOT have any alternative at the very beginning, nor could they make a choice before they consciously perceived the fact that they are going to acquire a new language.


  • by which I mean some outsiders or just say ppl who are unfamiliar with how the edu syst in mainland China works
    ** mainland China , at least
    *** those who are required to learn English in Schools, including preschool, elementary, secondary , post-secondary school, etc etc (I do know there are certain secondary schools offer language courses other than English. However, still minority, I presume)