How long would it take to learn japanese (or any other language)?

December 29, 2008 by admin 

I’ve always wanted to learn Japanese but never had time to do it, or was committed to it. I plan to practice 1 hour a day with rosetta stone…for how long I don’t know. But how long do you think it would take me to be able to keep up a conversation? Not perfect, but at least to keep one going.

If you go to the National Virtual Translation Center – nvtc.gov, there is a page listing the language difficulties for English speaking people of different languages. It shows the approximate time it would take an average person to learn the desired language in a classroom setting. (Japanese being 88 weeks or 2200 classroom hours).

But the time to learn depends on if you want to just be able to listen to and speak the language, or if you also want to learn how to read and write the language.

I’ve heard Rosetta Stone was good, would like to try it myself someday. You may want to try recordedbooks.com. You can rent audio books from them. They have Pimsleur language CDs (and tapes) for many languages. You can rent Pimsleur Japanese Course I, II and III for $15.95/month each. (Note that each Course come in parts A and B, but you still get a lot of lessons for the price. I used the Japanese lesson a few years ago and it was like 17 lessons on 8 CDs just for part A)

For some free resources check out:

http://japanese.about.com/ – has some grammar & writing lessons
http://www.japan-zone.com/forum/ – great forum to learn more about japanese culture and get help with your language questions
http://www.japaneselearning.com/ – lessons & forum
http://www.learn-japanese.info/indexg.html – lessons

Stick with Rosetta Stone and consider using Pimsleur audio CDs. Those together will really help.

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Comments

8 Responses to “How long would it take to learn japanese (or any other language)?”

  1. capitalgentleman on December 29th, 2008 8:33 pm

    The Canadian Forces Language School teaches various languages to military and government people. The length of course depended a lot on the language. Russian took a year (full time study). Spanish about 8 months, and Chinese about two years. French is up to a year. I am not sure about the others, but it does vary.

    But, there are quite a few foreign kids in my daughter’s school, and the kids pick up English in what seems like months. Of course, they are immersed in it. Many kids here learn French, and after a few hours a week for 12 years, not all of them are really fluent at all!

    It depends on how much work you put into it. I would suggest watching Japanese tv shows and movies (online if you have to). Immerse yourself in the language as much as you can. That helps!

    Good luck! Bonne chance!
    References :

  2. player123 on December 29th, 2008 8:47 pm

    it would take about a life time
    References :

  3. Haruka T on December 29th, 2008 9:11 pm

    I was exactly like you, I really wanted to learn Japanese by myself. There’s nothing wrong with learning from books and software but If you really want to get fluent you should find yourself a tutor who is a native Japanese speaker. This will help you so much! If you really want to learn the Language and don’t get frustrated when you make mistakes, you will be able to faster than you may think!

    Here’s a great tutor: http://www.thelanguageexperts.net/
    References :

  4. Yggdrasil on December 29th, 2008 9:32 pm

    Well, I've been studying Japanese language and culture for about three years…and I am still a very basic learner. It is a beautiful, poetic, expressive language…and it is also a byatch to learn. LOL

    This may sound stupid, but find some dual language anime, or films by Kurosawa. Listen in Japanese and read the subs. A lot of people crack on me for that approach, but it works for me.

    A good alternative commercial program is Rocket Japanese. NIce people, fun lessons, comprehensive, and cheap $169. You can even download it. Also, they have people that answer your questions on line. I have Pimsleur, Rosetta Stone, and Rocket…as well as traditional textbooks and Kanji/Kana/Hiragana books. A good starter book is called "Remembering the Kanji." Don't just learn the Romanji…it cripples your development as a Japanese speaker.

    EDIT FOR ASDF: Hey, I like that guy…that is how I am learning it.

    EDIT FOR JAMES P: Great answer!!!
    References :

  5. asdf on December 29th, 2008 9:52 pm

    This guy became fluent (Japanese people thought he was Japanese when they talked to him on the phone, he could read advanced texts in Japanese, he could have a serious discussion in Japanese, etc) in 18 months: http://www.alljapaneseallthetime.com

    I agree with the suggestion for as much immersion as possible because that’s basically what the method he used is, except he used other things like learning sentences (which he got from the immersion).
    References :

  6. JamesP on December 29th, 2008 10:28 pm

    If you go to the National Virtual Translation Center – nvtc.gov, there is a page listing the language difficulties for English speaking people of different languages. It shows the approximate time it would take an average person to learn the desired language in a classroom setting. (Japanese being 88 weeks or 2200 classroom hours).

    But the time to learn depends on if you want to just be able to listen to and speak the language, or if you also want to learn how to read and write the language.

    I’ve heard Rosetta Stone was good, would like to try it myself someday. You may want to try recordedbooks.com. You can rent audio books from them. They have Pimsleur language CDs (and tapes) for many languages. You can rent Pimsleur Japanese Course I, II and III for $15.95/month each. (Note that each Course come in parts A and B, but you still get a lot of lessons for the price. I used the Japanese lesson a few years ago and it was like 17 lessons on 8 CDs just for part A)

    For some free resources check out:

    http://japanese.about.com/ – has some grammar & writing lessons
    http://www.japan-zone.com/forum/ – great forum to learn more about japanese culture and get help with your language questions
    http://www.japaneselearning.com/ – lessons & forum
    http://www.learn-japanese.info/indexg.html – lessons

    Stick with Rosetta Stone and consider using Pimsleur audio CDs. Those together will really help.
    References :
    http://www.nvtc.gov/lotw/months/november/learningExpectations.html
    http://www.recordedbooks.com/

  7. Peter on December 29th, 2008 11:15 pm

    I recommend you this website to Learn Japanese Faster.

    http://consumer-expert.com/learn_japanese_courses_reviews.html

    it is very good.

    Greetings
    References :

  8. Japanese learning on June 18th, 2010 6:59 am

    You have to start from basic Japanese alpha bates.so learn some basic.this not as difficult as other language..best luck

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