How many Known words/Listening time/Speaking time. Does it take to reach B2. (Romance Languages)

How many Known words/Listening time/Speaking time. Does it take to reach B2. (Romance Languages)

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B2 reading comprehension is roughly equivalent to completing Intermediate 2 level here on LingQ, which for romance languages is 13,200 known words I think there is a recommended listening hr associated with that benchmark, somewhere between 150 - 200 hrs – someone may correct me on that.

Speaking hours = as much as you can. I don’t know if there is a set hour benchmark for this.

The real question is this: do you mean “B2” as in you wanna take an official B2 test. Or do you mean “B2” as in you wanna be able to say you’re “around a B2.”

Because in my opinion, the term “B2” should only apply to people who have actually taken the test. Everyone else – myself included – is in the category of "intermediate proficiency " when they reach Intermediate 2 here, or some other accepted benchmark.

If you’re considering taking a B2 test, I’d recommend getting prep materials and studying specifically to the requirements of the test itself, which is somewhat different from wanting to learn the language to practically use it “around a B2 level.”

If you’re not planning on taking the test, just read, listen and LingQ until you get to 13,000 known words and you’ll be there.

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I would say to truly reach what is considered a B2 level in reading comprehension 15k known words sounds right. Until you reach around that number you will simply encounter too many unknown words in any given context you’re reading, in my opinion.

As for listening comprehension, I think that reaching a B2 level takes a bit longer, definitely a few hundred hours. In order to listen at B2 you need both the vocabulary required to understand at that level and the sufficient familiarity with the spoken language to form meaning at the same rate as a native speaker speaks.

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Im at 16,000 Known Words with 130 hours of listening. I don’t feel anywhere near a B2 in my opinion. I can watch videos of different French youtubers and understand around 80-85% maybe as low as 60% sometimes. If the YouTuber is a French Canadian then forget it! haha. I understand no joke like 20% if im lucky.
(which is really sad because this accent is the accent I was striving for when I first started French) lol.

I do feel like there’s a lot im still not understanding, because my listening skills aren’t quite at a high enough level to recognize the words. Even though I know the words if I see them written. (I think this a very common problem to have) Maybe around that 200 hours of listening mark my comprehension would be much better.

I have been uploading “La Quotidienne” TV show onto LingQ, and there are still quite a lot of words I don’t know. Do you guys have this same problem at around this level? Or am i just a little slow. haha! :slight_smile:
(I did get hit in the head really hard by a potato gun when I was younger lol no joke.)
Maybe around the 20,000 mark with 200 Hours of listening ill be at that B2 Level. I feel like I can easily achieve 20,000 known words in a few months. 200 hours of listening maybe by the end of the year.

Also when it comes to speaking im a SUPER beginner! haha :slight_smile: Which isn’t a surprise because I have done very little speaking. Its hard for me to say what exactly a B2 level looks like. I think my idea of B2 is actually higher than what it really is. What would be your definition of a B2?

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I’m at a language school in France and we’ve hit the 650 hours mark. In the advanced speed class, we’ve reached B1.2 in a full school year.

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@MarkE, are most of your 130 hours of listening in thr foreground (with your full attention) or in the background (while you are doing other things)?

All 130 Hours are full attention. I have been super strict when it comes to tracking my listening time.

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@MarkE, thanks for the clarification I only count my listening hours when I am giving it my full attention too. I have been listening for 30+ minutes daily for about seven months now. So, I am over 100 hours now… When I watch an interview, I feel like I can follow it, but I still do not understand a lot of it. I usually recognize most of the words, but I am not able to put it all together and make meaning out of it a lot of the time. And like you, if I see a transcript, I understand a lot more, and I recognize more words.

Yeah I completely agree with you. There is a huge difference between just having the language on in the background, compared to actively listening and trying to hear the individual words and struggling to get some meaning from it.

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I would guess around 25,000-30,000 words known, 400-600 hours of listening and 50-100 hours of speaking. But I can only say this from my own experience learning Spanish here on LingQ. And I’d say at least a million words read on top of that. I’m currently learning Italian and these are the numbers I keep in mind and strive to achieve in order to reach fluency.

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@johnnyGB, what is your reading speed in Spanish, and how does it compare to your reading speed in English for comparable materials? Also, can you listen to audiobooks, and have the same comprehension level as reading the book?

My reading speed in Spanish is pretty good depending on the level of content. Reading books for teenagers like the Twilight series or the Hunger Games saga are comfortable reading material for me, but nothing like reading in English. And I can understand 98-99% of the words in audiobooks that I understand when reading. But to be fair, I’ve spent the last 3 months in Mexico assimilating into the culture. As doing this, my listening comprehension jumped through the roof, especially with the accent and local phrases.

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Wow,! It sounds like the time you spent reading and listening on LingQ prepared you to make the most of your immersion experience. I am looking forward to reaching the B2 level.

Yes, keep going. LingQ will definitely help you. It’s a long road, but it’s so worth it!

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I was wondering… How were you doing before you had went to Mexico?

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I have to say that your numbers seem to be good 25K-30K just sounds about right to me. Also 400-600 also sounds pretty good to me too.

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40000 known words
10000 listening

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I’m sorry but B2 is not what people here think it is. You can pass a B2 reading exam with 13-14,000 words. I’ve done it. You don’t need 30K + words for a B2 level. 30K + words would put you in the “Advanced” levels, which is a good place to be, of course, but it’s different from B2. With 30K words you can be fluent in a language, but you don’t need to be fluent to be a B2.

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Well when I first came to Mexico, I could have basic conversations and get around. For example, I could talk to customs at the airport, tell the taxi driver when I needed to go and even understand most of what he was saying to me, enough to keep a conversation. The first movie I watched in Mexico, I could understand about 85%. but last week I saw X-Men and Toy Story and I could understand 99% which was rather incredible to me. So 3-4 months of constant exposure really improved my Spanish abilities. But all my time on LingQ was well worth it, because I think I really would have struggled without it.

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Passing a B2 exam and actually complying with the given definition of B2 are two different things.

According to the CEFR Levels, at B2 you should be able to:
“produce a detailed text on a wide range of subjects” and “interact spontaneously without much strain for either the learner or native speaker”.

This requires a large vocabulary, certainly much more than 13K. People underestimate how much time it takes to really achieve that level. 30K known words (passive) and several hundred hours of listening, in my opinion, is a more accurate indication of B2.

B1 can be achieved rather quickly, maybe between 5k-10k. But the learning curve slows exponentially at that point, and the road to B2 is much much longer.

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