7 Benefits Of Learning A Second Language

In today’s increasingly globalised world, proficiency in a second language (particularly English) is a vital skill that allows you to engage with the world in a more meaningful and rewarding way.

That being said, what are the top 7 benefits of acquiring knowledge of a second language?

#1 Advance your career

Employers will love you if you are able to speak English as a foreign language. Why? Because English is a global language and could, therefore, take you or your job absolutely anywhere!

Having English under your belt will give you an unfair advantage over other candidates whose language skills are probably not up to scratch. Potential employers will idealise your language skills as a valuable asset because you will be able to connect and communicate with new partners, communities or customers, for example. Additionally, if you aspire to work overseas, then mastering English will guarantee an exciting new career.

#2 Deepen your connection with other cultures

Language is a direct connection to culture. In other words, when you learn English, you will foster a natural appreciation and understanding of the history, the mindset, the traditions and of the people associated with the language. Did you know that studies have indicated that children who learn a second language are more empathetic and open towards those who are from different cultures or backgrounds?

#3 Travel the world

This is an obvious one! But travelling as a speaker of the local language or English can revolutionise your trips and holidays. Although monolingual travellers are more than capable of visiting new places, being able to speak an additional language will enable you to travel outside of tourist hotspots and connect with people and places that may have otherwise been inaccessible. Not only will doors to new destinations be opened, but locals will develop profound respect as you try to communicate with them in their local language or in a language that they relate to.

#4 Feed your brain

There are numerous cognitive benefits to learning a second language. For example, people who speak two languages or more have improved memory, problem solving, and critical thinking skills. In addition to that, they have enhanced concentration, the ability to multitask, as well as better listening and communication skills in general. Now, toggling between two languages is difficult, however, learning English will positively challenge your mind and prove to be great exercise for your brain.

#5 Makes it easier to learn a third language

During your journey of learning English, you will soon realise that the techniques you are using can be applied to learning additional languages.

Following on from benefit #4, the positive cognitive effects of learning to speak a second language can train your brain to start processing different and new linguistic structures. Your brain will intrinsically comprehend how languages are learnt and the ways in which different languages are put together. In other words, foreign languages will just start to seamlessly make sense!

#6 Confidence

Psychology suggests that confidence is boosted once a skill has been mastered or is in progress. Also, making mistakes is part of the language learning process. As such, during your journey, you will often find yourself breaking out of your comfort zone by using your foreign language despite the fear of making errors. To illustrate, if you want to master English, then conversations with native or fluent speakers are essential. This experience may be extremely daunting at first, however, once you have broken the ice and participated in a few conversations, you will be oozing with confidence in no time!

#7 Better understanding of your native language

Let’s face it, how many monolinguals know what articles and the present perfect are? Truth is, not very many at all, unless you study linguistics. In fact, learning a second language draws your attention to the abstract rules behind your target AND native languages. As you establish comparisons, you will gain a new perspective on how your mother tongue is structured and the ways in which it differs to your target language.

So there we have 7 benefits of learning a second language. How has learning English benefited you? Let us know your thoughts!