T Nation

Learning a Second Language


Does anyone have any advice for learning a 2nd language. I would like to start learning spanish. I have seen mixed reviews about rosetta stone. Does any anyone have an opinion?


You can 'find' it online i'm sure. Give it a try, had a friend use it and learn Spanish with it very quickly.

your best bet no matter what is to listen to the language constantly. Spanish tv/radio/*, just to get your self used to the sounds. That worked for me when i learned german.


Thanks, any suggestions as to where I can "find" it?


You could probably find it as a torrent if you looked hard enough.


I've never used torrent. How does that work?


Michel Thomas was the breakthrough set for me in terms of getting conversational. He has a really easy to follow system, load it on an ipod and off you go.

That said, I only really learned the language when I moved here.


Total immersion seems like the best way but I can't move to mexico just yet.


x2 Michel Thomas was a revelation for languages for me, conversational in spoken french, italian and japanese all thanks to his CDs (and too much free time :P)!! Not sure about torrents for MT but you can download a 20 minute demo on iTunes if you have it.


I learned Dutch by immersion and German through Dutch school. The key is to practice daily. You have to use it a lot or you will forget. Also having friends/relatives who speak the language helps as well. As they can help with the more finer points, i.e. proper pronunciation etc...


take a class. you won't learn shit from Rosetta Stone.

immersion sucks, if you get dropped off in a place where you speak ZERO of the language your just going to get robbed or raped. especially if it's a South/Central American country.

you could either go find a random place that offers classes or go to like a community college where the courses will be less expensive. if you do the latter:

you get books, you have a teacher who is fluent in both English and Spanish and you have a group of peers to practice with. it might run you like $700 bucks ($200 for materials) and then maybe 500 for each class afterwards but you'll actually learn something and you do it over 3 months. so if it was 500 bucks thats really only $21 a day if you're going 2x a week. which is like 3 Jagerbombs x Friday + Saturday night at the club/bar - tip. just to put it in perspective.


I don't understand why people take the time to respond to threads that they feel are stupid. I would prefer it if only people with useful information would respond to my question.

To everyone that has provided or will provide useful information. Thanks ahead of time.


I lived in Miami for over 10+ years and now live in Costa Rica. I have used Rosetta Stone, college level classes, as well as daily practice through basic interaction with anyone and everyone I could. I have also traveled to Mexico, Panama, Nicaragua and Colombia.


Rosetta Stone, if you are getting it free, via a download or through a friend, it's better than nothing.
But looking at 4 to 6 pictures at a time and then clicking on the correct vocabulary term is barely beyond basic.

College level courses, or their adult, continuing education equivalents are good, solid method to learn the basics - grammar, syntax, verb conjugations, etc.

Beyond that....you must...absolutely must find a native speaker and practice.....forget about being embarrassed or 'messing up'..or whatever......practice speaking AND comprehending......there is no substitute for this experience.

buenas suerte mae, pura vida.


Immersion works. I lived in Moscow for 3 years and within the fisrt six months I was speaking fluent Russian, German came alittle slower.
Find someone who you can speak to every day. It's much more practical.
The guys in my school who messed with Russian girls picked up the language faster than the rest of us :slight_smile:


whoa skye!! that's impressive! how were you able to be in Moscow for two years? i am really envious!!!


meanwhile you could find a friend who speaks spanish, i speak spanish and i learned english on the school and practicing a lot with friends


I have a rebel streak :stuck_out_tongue: Don't get me wrong, it was tough but I wouldn't trade that experience for anything.


i have a similar streak! what did you do though? when i lived in the UK it was hard enough, and i had connections, how did you live in russia?! what kind of job did you do?? sorry, i'm just way impressed, jealous and curious!


Move to a Mexican neighborhood.


Guys shhhh. Don't talk to loud Joe84 will report you.


it looks like it worked really well