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#AskSteve

Over the years I have created a vast amount of videos and articles where I talk about language learning. Find them here.

For example, type "english" to search items about english.
  • People often ask me how I learned 15 languages. I will tell you what works for me; you’ll have to decide if this can work for you. Here are the first four secrets to language learning success…

  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/2CsYWA My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve In this video I talk...
  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/f6faos My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve I received some great...
  • The goal of fluency in a foreign language can often seem vague and elusive. It is not always clear what fluency means. Those who have not experienced the feeling of achieving fluency in another language doubt they can get there, and doubt they would know if they did. Learners often feel they are not making […]

  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/PNoHJL My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve.
  • Tips for Learning Russian February 7 2018

    I wanted give some important tips for learning Russian. First I’ll explain about the writing system, then some interesting things to remember about Russian verbs of motion, aspects of verbs and cases.

  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/mngD6M My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve It's important to...
  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/qduzjb My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve Make sure your language...
  • When I wrote my book The Linguist: A Personal Guide to Language Learning, I began with what I called ‘The Parable of the Crooked Tree’. The author of the parable was Zhuangzi, an early exponent of Taoism, a school of Chinese philosophy from over 2,000 years ago. I referred to Taoism on a number of occasions in my book. Zhuangzi’s basic principle in life was to follow what was natural, what was effortless and not try to force things.

  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/3tGfxJ My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve It's important to...
  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/3aEKk7 My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve Finish the following...
  • I believe that listening comprehension is an important skill in language learning. That is what you should drive for first of all. If you develop good listening comprehension, the other skills will come, the speaking will come, even your grammar, your accuracy.

  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/udg6do My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve This video is a response...
  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/Dt5a6X My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve Some people are all...
  • French was my first love when it comes to languages. In fact, there’s an expression in French: “On revient toujours a son premier amour.” It means you always go back to your first love. I love French; I love all the languages that I learn, but I have a special affection for French.
    I highly recommend learning French for beginners. There’s a whole world that you can access so much better if you speak French. The language is spoken in other countries like Canada.

  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/2DR9k7 My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve When starting out in...
  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/QWPmvn My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve I was recently asked...
  • I hear all the time that Google Translate doesn’t work. It’s not accurate. It’s this and that. I think Google Translate is a tremendous resource and not only for language learners. It’s not 100% and it’s better for some languages than others, but I find it extremely useful.

  • What Makes a Polyglot? January 8 2018
    Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/djvnEn My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve What makes a polyglot?...
  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/fGyz67 My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve Context is a big part...
  • Can I become fluent in a foreign language? If your answer to this question is no, then you are best to stop trying. If you don’t believe that you can reach the destination in your journey, why start? On the other hand, if you believe you can become fluent in a foreign language, you are well on your way to achieving fluency.

  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/7fbFbU My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve The brain needs repetition...
  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/RsL64q My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve The KISS Principle...
  • How to Learn Vocabulary Fast December 26 2017

    The most important task in language learning, in my opinion, is the acquisition of vocabulary. If we have enough words, we can make sense of what we’re reading or listening to and we can somehow express ourselves. Vocabulary is much more important than grammar. The grammar you acquire gradually as you become familiar with the language, […]

  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/DRQGT6 My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve For me learning a language...
  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/SbASbJ My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve Which kind of learner...
  • I love learning languages. When I start a new language I am motivated by the sense of anticipation that after a period of sustained effort, I will be able to connect with a new culture, and express myself in a new language. I am probably more motivated than most people. Nevertheless, there are many moments […]

  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/BGjKfF My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve One of the most common...
  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/UxAXhS My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve My Arabic learning...
  • Create Your Own Dictionary December 12 2017

    When it comes to learning a new language, some learners like dictionaries. They read them. They treasure them. They worry about getting the best possible dictionary. I don’t like using dictionaries. Using them is like one-way love.

  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/AdQrd2 My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve I'm just beginning...
  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/Ggir2z My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve.
  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/aQoWKm My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve Thank you to those...
  • I studied Czech a few years ago so my statistics at LingQ for that language are not current. However, the statistics from my recent Polish challenge illustrate the fact that we can learn or add to our “known words” total well over 100 words a day. In fact in the case of Polish (since I know other Slavic languages) it is over 300 words a day. You can learn 100 words a day, if you are willing to put in the time.

  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/icphvd My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve The results are in!...
  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/3kvyUR My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve In my view, there are...
  • It is tempting to believe that we can just acquire a small number of very useful words and sort of get a jump start in a foreign language. I have never found that to be the case. Of course we need to learn key words like “I”, “you”, “he” and “she” and the like, or […]

  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/xwTc5T My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve 1:29 - My motivation...
  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/osYdFt My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve I recently read an...
  • Why English is Important November 21 2017

    People often want to know the best language to learn to get ahead in life. Many think that learning English, the international language, is the best option. English is of course an excellent choice, but I have to say it’s difficult for me to suggest just one language when my successes in life have come from […]

  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/ZaozsW My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve While in Greece I bought...
  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/HNRvAU My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve Famous linguist Kató...
  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/fNGZyW My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve Our driver in Jordan...
  • What is active and passive vocabulary? A learner’s passive vocabulary is the words that they understand but don’t use yet. Active vocabulary, on the other hand, is the words that learners understand and use in speaking or writing.

    When learning a language, should we focus more on developing an ability to speak or on building up our understanding of the language? This is a common question language learners ask, especially at the beginning of their language learning journey. Here are my views.

  • Visit LingQ: https://goo.gl/hCMj8h My Blog: http://blog.thelinguist.com My Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/lingosteve My Twitter: https://twitter.com/lingosteve Being able to speak...
  • 5 Reasons to Learn Greek November 7 2017

    There are many reasons to learn a language. Some people learn a language for professional reasons, because they need the language for their job. Some people learn a language because they have a relative or special person who speaks that language. Sometimes, though, we need to take the time to learn a language simply for […]

  • I think Spanish is one of the most attractive languages to learn. We can all be motivated to learn a specific language like Mongolian or Finnish because we have a friend or a particular interest. Spanish is different: there are a number of real big advantages to learning Spanish.

  • Listening comprehension is the base skill, in my view. We have to understand in order to be able to have conversations with people. If we have good listening skills, speaking skills are easier to develop. Here is an exchange on this subject from our Forum at LingQ.   Hi Steve: I have a few weeks […]

  • I want to cover the issue of input-based learning that I have spoken about in two past YouTube videos in Chinese and Japanese. It goes by different names but basically amounts to spending most of your time on listening, reading, working on your vocabulary and becoming familiar with the language rather than on output-activities or grammar-focused activities.

  • What are the similarities and differences between Japanese, Chinese and Korean, and how should we go about learning them? To what extent can learning one help you with the others? Let me share my experience in learning these three Asian languages. Mandarin Chinese: Intense and Structured I spent almost a year studying Mandarin full time […]

  • French was the first language where I was able to transform myself into a fluent speaker of another language, other than English. I love listening to French when it is spoken well. I think acquiring good French pronunciation is one of the challenges that French learners face, and so I would like to offer a […]

  • I am asked this question regularly from my YouTube and blog viewers. if I would recommend learning two languages at the same time or not. Well, first of all, a person who is learning one language and wants to learn another language or even a third language is something that I fully understand and fully endorse.

  • Ser Vs Estar in Spanish September 19 2017

    Every language has some issues, often grammar issues, that cause learners difficulty. In the case of Spanish, one thing that gives people special trouble is the existence of two forms of the verb “to be”. Both ser and estar translate into English as “to be”. Here’s how to get them straight.   What’s the Problem? […]

  • I recently watched a video which features polyglots Luca Lampariello and Anthony Lauder. In it they make the point that you don’t need to have a large vocabulary in order to be fluent. Anthony has said in the past that even with a few hundred words you can be fluent, or you can be fluent at a relatively low level of proficiency in a language. I don’t agree at all.

  • This summer, from August 25-27, language enthusiasts from all over North America, and even some from Europe, gathered at Concordia University in Montreal for the second annual Montreal LangFest.   What is the LangFest? LangFest is a place for people to indulge their interest in languages and learn from each other. There were workshops on […]

  • The most popularly spoken Slavic languages are Russian, Belarusian and Ukrainian in the east, Polish, Czech and Slovakian in the west and then the the languages of the former Yugoslavia in the south.

  • We live in the golden age of language learning. The Internet brings us an unprecedented cornucopia of language learning resources, tools, communities, exchange websites and more. We can buy audiobooks, ebooks, access online newspapers and magazines in the language of our choice. We can follow these resources on our iPhones and iPads, and have them […]

  • Human beings are learning machines. We spend our lives learning. We can’t help but learn. The only question is what we will learn and how it will affect our lives.

  • Sometimes I wonder if I am just spinning my wheels writing and doing videos about language learning. Maybe I am beginning to sound like a broken record. And then there are moments that make it all worthwhile. This was in response to a Tweet from Roman Waschuk, the Canadian Ambassador to Ukraine. I immediately remembered […]

  • How To Learn Portuguese August 1 2017

    Many of us are watching the Olympics in Brazil. Despite all of the bad reports that we always get in the lead up to any Olympic Games – some British newspaper called the 2010 Vancouver Winter games the worst Olympics in the world ever, then there were all the problems with toilets in Sochi and now pollution in Rio – it looks like actually things are proceeding swimmingly, so to speak.

    People ask, if I go to Brazil, can I communicate? What language do they speak? First of all, some may not know that Brazilians speak Portuguese. There’s no Brazilian language, there is Portuguese.