By Vaishnavi Warrier
All of us are encompassed by a large number of languages. Learning them does not necessarily have to be a hard task, provided the learners dedicate the required time and passion to it. In the earlier times, a common set of languages were observed to be learnt by the people. However, a number of trends have been observed among the language learning preferences of people in recent times- it not only bases itself on the atmosphere they are in, but also the kind of culture they plan to specifically look into. Along with the advantage of understanding what is being talked about in a place where the particular language is prevalent, this sector is characterized by multiple kinds of jobs that a person can take up too.
We interviewed Ms. Mitali Parmar, a passionate language teacher, to gain an insight about the world of languages and the field of language learning. Read on to find out what we talked about…
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I had a curve of learning languages since my grade 11 started, with French for two years. It took me 5 years to cope with Japanese and now I’m learning Korean. It’s been three years; I’m teaching Japanese basics at two different institutions. I’m a simple working person- I love to teach the youth and craft out new things to decorate my home. Apart from this I read a lot which helps me build my confidence, so that I can encourage the others around me.
Which languages do people mostly like to learn in recent times?
There are no such preferences by the youth to learn a specific language; but what’s more trending even after big revolutions is English followed by Spanish, Japanese, German, and French and so on. The youngsters prefer trending languages to know their comics, series, movies, travelling etc., whereas the working class learns new languages for the new trends in their work atmosphere.
Which languages were commonly learnt by students earlier?
Languages like English, Spanish, French and German were commonly learnt by students earlier. The reason for learning these were because, the trade (since centuries) with these countries were quite better and thus plenty of people would travel and helped in learning these languages in a better way. This also led these languages to become the highest spoken languages for the near future.
Do you think there’s a change in the preferences? Why do you think so?
I do think there’s a change in people’s preferences in learning languages, prior it used to be that only rich people or people who traveled abroad used to learn languages, but now every third school as well as third person is opting to learn a language. Also, prior people used to learn language for a part of their interest but now it’s like an essential to be worked on. Languages like Korean, Japanese, Chinese, Portuguese, Arabic, etc. were not that influenced in previous generations, but now due to the excess demands of web series, comics, movies and songs, many people are opting to learn them. Not just foreign languages, many foreigners are opting to learn Indian languages as well.
Is there something called an ‘easy language to learn’?
In this fast forward and energetic generation nothing is difficult as every language needs equal time and dedication for it to be learned and worked on well. If one practices it well, it’s very easy for them to achieve their command.
What kind of jobs can a person take up with an undergraduate degree in a particular language?
Teaching a language is the most common one and requires the appropriate knowledge of the language hence a graduate degree doesn’t matter for the same. Dubbing is another thing in which one can excel through a language.
Do any languages have a particularly good scope for career options?
All languages are having equal scope but to be more specific, Japanese and German have more scope in further future. As technology is getting advanced day by day, further career options are also being availed to the community like translation, interpretation, language teaching, subtitling, dubbing, language technology and tools development, international conference organization, making software and websites for the same. Apart from these the main motive currently for most people is having promotions at their workplace, and as second source of income.
How does language learning help a person?
The most important part of learning a language is making your international travel easy as you already know the language to the core you can go in debt and wonder the most. It’s also said that learning languages helps you building your decision power and puts you outside your comfort zone.