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#1
Took Spanish Guys!

Well i am about to choose my foreign language for next 4 years in college and kinda confused!!! I want to learn japanese but scared if its hard (Like chinese is hard, i've heard). So confused between german, french and japanese (Wont choose spanish). Please help me... Which one to choose?
I am doing B.Tech Computer science and Engineering, live in India. Know Hindi, English and a bit of Sanskrit.

EDIT:
For French - I like France, cheese, chicks and locations... For German - I live German cars... But i dont have anything for Spanish or Spain in my mind except those idiotic bull fights in Tom and Jerry!
My syllabus - http://amity.edu/Admission/course_structure/A23052.html

So according to my current situation i'd like to say -
First of all, i 'Love' Japan and japanese people, they seem friendly (I haven't met them personally).
I saw around half a dozen of lessons (Youtube) and it seems sexy language, i didnt had much problem.... But Spanish seems 'Extremely' easy, Literally!! Other reason for Japanese is that Japanese companies are coming to India - http://www.dnaindia.com/money/1750020/r ... are-coming
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/busi ... 940395.cms
You can say me as a complete techno-geek... If i buy/use something, i want to know how it works and more than that - 'how it was built', I created my own websites and earned more than $3000 from then when i was in 9th grade, i am learning to make android apps now (I am 19 years old) and will learning Japanese help me with these companies at all? My college isn't even started and i have already stared to learn japanese like - hajimemashite, i can also write it in japanese but dont have fonts for it in my laptop.... Also also have subscribed word of the day, today's was noto, notebook What should i do? Now there are only two options i have ruled out - Japanese and Spanish (I changed my mind :P)
Last edited by varundbest at Jul 17, 2013,
#2
Well the main reason why some people consider Japanese hard is the kanji characters, and the sentence structure is a lot different from English.

I don't know anything about Hindi, so I can't vouch on the difficulty of learning Japanese if you're a native Hindi speaker.
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#4
I'd go with German. That's also a biased suggestion because I have also studied German for almost two years, and I've been to Germany three times already.
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#5
I am not interested in spanish... I want to learn japanese for tech background but scared of Kanji which have around 50k alphabets!!! and 2k a must to be a good reader...
#6
It will be far harder than French and German for an English speaker. As Hindi is also an Indo-European language I doubt that it will help you much.
#7
Quote by varundbest
I am not interested in spanish... I want to learn japanese for tech background but scared of Kanji which have around 50k alphabets!!! and 2k a must to be a good reader...


More like 80K, but I doubt most people know all 80K
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#9
When I was in high school, I got the pleasure of being 'made' to tutor the japanese exchange student in Spelling/Grammar. In two semesters I wasn't able to pick up more than a few phrases from her. Its so different. Its like, 'how the hell is that words?' sometimes
#11
Pick a language that you have the most interest in , whose country of origin has a culture that you enjoy. It makes the learning experience easier, and more fun, as you will easily immerse yourself into learning the language, rather than just doing it because you have to.

If you pick a language based on difficulty, you could end up with a language that you hate and will never use, which will make learning it pointless and not enjoyable.

Just my advice.
#13
Not very hard to pick up if you're good at linguistics in general. I'm in an engineering program and we're not recommended to take language classes because they won't be worth degree credit and generally don't fit in schedules. Yay.
#14
Quote by varundbest
I am not interested in spanish...

Then why do you habitually choose it?
#18
Quote by metal4eva_22
Then why did you say so in the OP?


Unless you don't know English very well...

what the fuck are you talking about
#19
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what the fuck are you talking about

I think he's trying to make a joke that he is wont to choose Spanish... but I'm not sure.
#20
No such thing as too hard... only too stupid or too unmotivated.
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#21
Quote by metal4eva_22
Then why did you say so in the OP?


Unless you don't know English very well...

Well now you're being a dick.
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#22
For French - I like France, cheese, chicks and locations... For German - I live German cars... But i dont have anything for Spanish or Spain in my mind except those idiotic bull fights in Tom and Jerry!
Last edited by varundbest at Jul 13, 2013,
#23
Although it kind of depends where you want to work, if you every plan to go to Canada french would be a better language to learn. If you went to the US Spanish would be a better choice opposed to french.

If your not to worried about learning the written language than Japanese isn't so bad, but from a practical standpoint German would probably be the most useful in Europe.
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#24
Quote by TheChaz
I think he's trying to make a joke that he is wont to choose Spanish... but I'm not sure.

oh, well that's brutally unfunny
#25
It's not too hard to learn. I took lessons for like two months and got the hang of it pretty easily, and I'm someone who could barely learn Spanish and German.
#26
Quote by Skodward714
It's not too hard to learn. I took lessons for like two months and got the hang of it pretty easily, and I'm someone who could barely learn Spanish and German.

How is the scoring? For exams....
#27
Quote by ChemicalFire
No such thing as too hard... only too stupid or too unmotivated.

No such thing as too stupid, either.

OP I'm learning French and it's not too bad. The hardest things are the conjugations (with all their exceptions) and the pronunciation. Even my French teacher makes mistakes because of the conjugations, and he's a PhD in linguistics/French language.
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#30
Spain is more than bullfights on Tom and Jerry. With that said, if you have no interest in Spain/Spanish then don't study it. French and German would be relatively useful depending on where you plan on working. Japanese outside of Japan is rather uncommon and, from what I gather, is a really difficult language to learn. It's your choice.
#31
Can't be too hard. The Japanese speak it.
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#32
Personally I've taken four languages in my academic career and I now know five to six different languages. I took Japanese, French, German, and Spanish. The languages I know are English, Dutch (grew up around it), German, Luxembourgish (also grew up around it), French (kinda suck nuts at it, but I can understand what you're saying) and Spanish (not 100% fluent, but pretty good. Enough to where I'd be comfortable holding a conversation).

So out of all of those languages, Japanese was the hardest. The sentence structure wasn't too bad (although a bit strange. Definitely something to get used to), and I'll even admit that speaking wasn't too bad (in fact, that's the easiest part considering there's no rolling r's or the 'nasal' sound found in other languages), but the worst part was definitely the written, which I'm assuming is going to be a large part of the class you're taking. You'll easily pick up the Hiragana (this is where most language lessons usually start), but going into Katakana and Kanji and where and when to use them is where it gets very confusing. If you're ok with that, than go ahead, but I'll say that the easiest languages were Dutch and German (for me), and after learning those, Luxembourgish, which is a combo of the two with some French words too, because they fit so easily into my knowledge of my native tongue (English). Spanish wasn't too bad either because it's also derived from Latin (although English, Dutch, and German aren't as much as the romance languages. It still helped).

I guess TL;DR: Aside from something like Farsi, Japanese is probably one of the hardest languages you can take. Be ready for that if you plan on taking it. You have to really have a desire to take it. My japanese teacher said this, and it's pretty true (so keep it in mind): "Taking four years of Japanese is like taking a year of any other language". She was talking about the other languages they offered at my school, of course, but just think French, German, Spanish.
Last edited by mjones1992 at Jul 13, 2013,
#33
A little insight into Japanese. I was lucky enough to spend 5 months in Japan in 2011, and started learning Japanese then. I thought it was a pretty cool language, and I continued to study after returning to the US and completed all the Japanese courses my uni had to offer, and passed JLPT N4 (not great, but its something).

I would say I struggle to get through newspapers, and sometimes get stuck during conversation, even after 3 years of study. The kanji isn't that bad if you are a visual learner and decent at memorization. The hardest part about Japanese is the shear volume of content you have to memorize.

Bottom line is, if you are really passionate about Japanese and are willing to dedicate hours a week for several years, then you can master it. 90% of the people in my class though just watched anime, knew a few phrases and BSed their way though class. If you really want to learn it, it takes immense self motivation.

I really wouldn't recommend it for anything more than a hobby. I don't know about India, but I have only randomly encountered a Japanese person 1 time in the US so I wouldn't say it is a useful language unless you get the chance to work in Japan.
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#36
I'm in the midst of learning Japanese (although my motivation these few weeks has been at an all-time low), and I'm a native speaker of Mandarin.

I'd say Japanese is quite different from Chinese. Chinese actually has somewhat similar grammatical structure to English, but there are an estimated 80,000 characters in the language. Obviously you don't have to learn all 80,000, and it's estimated about 2,000 will suffice for a standard newspaper article, though having grown up around Chinese, I'd have to say I don't buy that estimate.

Japanese on the other hand has a vastly different grammatical structure. They mark functions of a sentence using particles, such as using を (wo) to mark an object of the sentence. Kanji is quite a pain in the ass, yes, but you only need about 2,000 characters (at least that's what I'm getting from people like AJAT, which was linked earlier) to get through most situations. The 2 syllabaries of the kana alphabet may take a bit of effort to get down, but they're relatively easy.

However, like Chinese, if you don't know something, you don't, unlike in English where you can still use phonics to read something. You're pretty much screwed when it comes to the Asian characters.

IMO though, learn Japanese if you're interested. According to the websites linked, Italian is supposed to be pretty easy, but I personally would find it exceptionally difficult because I have absolutely no interest in learning it.

A system used for learning the Kanji is this thing called Spaced Repetition System .
Last edited by triface at Jul 13, 2013,
#37
Is Japanese hard? The answer there is the same as it is with any language you're not native in - it depends on your native language and the similarities it shares with the dialect you're looking to learn.

Is it impossible? The answer there is the same as it is with any language you're not native in - no.

Choose the language you're most interested in/attracted to. They're all going to be a struggle to learn, so go with the one you're the most passionate about learning. Just so you know I'm not talking out of my ass, I'm nearly fluent in Spanish, learning Japanese, and am conversational in Italian with English as my native language.
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Last edited by strat0blaster at Jul 13, 2013,
#38
It's a whole new alphabet, with entirely different words, structures, sounds, phrases, and is as different from English as you can get.

So yes, it will be difficult.
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#40
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I can vouch for German and French being fairly straight forward as an English speaker. French is more interesting, but also slightly more difficult.

German is so nice to learn because it's almost entirely phonetic. Read it like you see it. Grammar is similar too from what I hear.
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