4 Tips for Learning a New Language as an Adult

Learning a new language can be a fun and exciting adventure, especially if you need to learn it for travel, business, or personal pleasure. Unfortunately, some adults fear that they may be a failure at learning a new language because studies more than two decades ago “proved” that learning a language as a child made a person more fluent in a language, and this is not so.

So, get ready to prove them wrong by utilizing these helpful, guiding tips.

1) Know your own learning style.

If you are taking a course with a professor, it is important that you as an adult know your learning style.

According to Mary Schleppegrell, “exercises such as oral drills and memorization which rely on short-term memory also discriminates the adult learner” (“The Older Language Learner,” 1989).

This is because children rely on their short-term memory more so than adults. So writing down grammar notes and repeating definitions does not work for the busy adult learner.

If you have a certain way of learning such as group style learning, audio versus textual, etc. find a school which fits that need or have a talk with your instructor.

2) Make an investment in learning.

Right now, the two popular and well-known language learning systems are the Rosetta Stone (highly recommended) and the hugely popular Berlitz system. Each system allows a person to learn on the go. Complete with CDs and software packages that are now mobile.

For instance, the Berlitz learning system comes with a software for your PC to download reading, writing, listening, and speaking modules and includes mini videos of people speaking to you in their native language. Rosetta Stone offers this, and much more but will cost you a pretty penny.

3) Practice time management.

Now that you have invested in the expenses to learning a new language, why not practice it every day?

Each day, make it a habit to carve out at least twenty-five to thirty minutes of learning the language. This could simply be listening to the audio of a language while you are driving to work or every morning/evening, study and apply the lessons from your teacher or if you are using the software, use it every day at a time convenient for you.

Learning a new language means nothing if you cannot at least invest a few minutes every day to learning it.

4) Keep your goals set.

As an adult, you know how important it is to meet deadlines and keep a promise. Well, keep a promise to yourself. Set a goal to study your chosen language thirty minutes a day, every day for one year and see how you come out the victor and master your language!


As an adult learner, you have acquired strengths and skills in learning new things and making worthwhile investments.

Children may develop the fluency but an adult mind knows how to organize, make time, and realize the benefits of learning a new skill.

Enjoy the road to becoming bilingual.

Leave a Comment