The official top 10 HARDEST languages in the world to learn list. (unesco list)

Nice! not sure if I agree with French being harder than Vietnamese though…
also, here is a very useful chart comparing the difficulty ( hours required to learn for a native English speaker ) of languages for anyone who is interested

I believe the only thing that should be considered in making these global language difficulty comparisons is the total time needed to acquire them. Nothing else can be quantified. So saying that German is more difficult than Russian even though it doesn’t take as long to learn is a contradiction imo.

Yeah. I don’t think the exact figures are really things one can go by.

However I suspect they are right on the money with being able to broadly categorize the languages into 4 difficulty groups. It seems reasonable to me that one could do so, and that tier 4 languages take many times longer than tier 1.

In any case when I first began to learn Korean it let me know that my original expectation of ‘hundreds of hours of exposure’ would probably not be sufficient for my goals - I’d have to shoot for something easier because my original target would likely take thousands of hours to achieve.

Again though, remember that these are hours based on gifted individuals attending FSI as a full time job. For your average learner it might take much much longer.

I’m sure french is more difficult than vietnamese if your native language is thai or chinese.

I thought french was completely easy for some reason. It seemed like half the words were just the same words in english except with a french accent.

Maybe it’s because so many people are forced to learn French in the high school education system in US and Canada so as a result its reputation as a grueling hard language becomes inflated.

“I’m sure french is more difficult than vietnamese if your native language is thai or chinese.”

Unlikely. Neither Thai nor Chinese has any linguistic relation with Vietnamese; just because they are all spoken in the Far East doesn’t mean they are all grouped into one family.

This could be a point. 100’s of 1000’s of school kids uninterested in French being made to learn French in a poor and inefficient way = nobody can speak or understand French when they leave and so it gets painted as hard.

Also to usablefiber - half the words in French ARE the same or similar to English i think. Vocab is incredibly easy.

Hard indeed… :slight_smile:

Lol. That reminds me of when Benny Lewis was blogging “I’m going to learn an Asian language!”, implying that they are all created equal.

He would be better off learning half the languages he pretends to speak first.

Thanks very much. Can you recommend any material with audio and transcripts??