How Long Does it Take?
In just two weeks, you’ll be fluent in French. The Top Secrets to Easily Learn French quickly. Learning French is a breeze. What’s the catch, exactly?
Students who are just learning French frequently ask me, “How long does it take to learn French?”
” How many hours each day should I spend studying French?
“Can you tell me the quickest way to learn French?”.
These are understandable concerns, especially since so many websites now advertise “Learn French in X weeks/months.”
However, you must exercise caution when making these claims… If it seems too good to be true, it is most definitely clickbait!!
So, let’s brainstorm how long it takes to learn French… I’m not sure if learning French “fast” is the greatest option.
Let’s start with the statistics on how long it takes to learn French published by official organizations.
HOW LONG DO YOU THINK IT WILL TAKE?
You’ll need between 500 and 600 hours to become fluent in French.
- According to the consensus on the internet, learning French takes between 500 and 600 hours of classroom time.
- Adult native English speakers needed 600 classroom hours to learn French at an advanced level, according to research by the US Department of State’s Foreign Service Institute.
- According to the American Council on Teaching Foreign Languages (ACTFL), speaking French at a high intermediate level requires 500-600 hours of study with an instructor.
- An article on language acquisition was published by Cambridge Press. It claims that reaching a high intermediate level in French needs 530 to 750 hours of study time. How precise are you? (LOL)
- According to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFRL), learning French at a high intermediate level requires 500 to 600 hours (B2). To become fluent, you’ll need between 1000 and 2000 words (C2).
WHAT DOES IT REALLY MEAN TO FINISH A FRENCH CLASS?
Finishing a French Instruction Doesn’t Mean You’ve Mastered It These figures represent the average time it took a student to complete a level of French class.
However, it does not provide answers to the following questions:
- The student completed the class successfully. Did he/she also pass the formal test? Or did s/he simply take the class and receive a “class completion diploma”?
- Did s/he grasp the material or did s/he simply go on to the next level after paying for it?
- How are these organizations going to account for the time spent studying on their own?
HOW LONG DID IT TAKE YOU TO TRAIN FOR A 5-MILE RUN?
If you’re really curious about how long it takes to learn French, consider this: how long would it take you to train for a 5-mile run?
Maybe you’re a real athlete and could just go for a run right now. You might be able to achieve it in a few weeks, months, or even years.
However, most of us can’t just go out and run 5 miles after seeing a technical video on how to run or reading a list of advice on how to become a better runner.
It takes time and effort to get good at it, and it takes practice.
Also, does running 5 miles qualify you as an “excellent runner”? Would it enable you to become a “proficient” runner?
A sports coach may be able to tell you how long it will take you – personally – to train before you can run 5 kilometers easily after observing you run and testing you.
But you can’t just ask a random person or rely on an online search for an answer.
It’s the same with learning French. Do you believe that all French students are alike? That is, after all, a question worth posing.
WHAT ARE THE CHARACTERISTICS OF A TYPICAL FRENCH STUDENT?
There isn’t such a thing as a typical French student.
- Some of us are multilingual, which makes learning a new language easier.
- If you have a strong command of English grammar, learning French will be much easier.
- Many artists appear to be capable of imitating the sounds of other languages.
- People who are younger have a better memory than those who are older.
- Those who are committed to learning French on a regular basis have a better chance of mastering the language.
- Some people have sponge-like abilities when it comes to absorbing knowledge.
However, based on the hundreds of pupils I’ve taught, I’ve found that the vast majority of individuals will take years to learn French and will frequently never be satisfied with their current level – which is part of the problem!
Now I’d like to tell you about my experience teaching a particularly exceptional pupil – and what we can learn from him.
IS IT POSSIBLE TO LEARN FRENCH IN THREE MONTHS?
I had had a student who was able to master French in three months. So… it’s a possibility. What was the secret to this student’s success?
- How Long Does It Take To Learn French In Three Months?
- What my student did was as follows:
- He spent roughly 14 hours per day self-studying (he didn’t work), he attended two hours of private French lessons with me five times a week, he had an incredible memory,
- He was a whiz in arithmetic and coding. I’m also a musician.
OBSERVING A GENIUS’S BRAIN AT WORK
His brain functioned in a completely different way than that of any of my previous students.
As a teacher, I was familiar with the information I was ‘feeding’ him, and I could practically see how he organized and accessed it. And it was fantastic!
He had formed linkages between themes that were likely to be utilized together as if he had enormous French flashcards in his head. For example, clothing vocabulary and colors.
He completed a lot of repetitions as well. He basically memorized the lines from my French audiobooks and then had a lot of fun recreating them but shifting things around, like changing the time to the past or converting affirmative sentences to negative…
He primarily desired to learn French in order to communicate in it. As a result, we emphasized reading aloud and chatting with one another in our classes. He couldn’t give a damn about the spelling in French. The student states, “I want to be able to talk in French and comprehend what others are saying.” He used to say, “I’m not interested in reading French.”
He was sluggish at first. True, he never forgets a new word, but it takes effort to locate it and incorporate it into his phrases. Some words, particularly liaisons, are difficult for me to pronounce.
After two months, his level skyrocketed: everything fell into place for him: French had become a code that he had cracked. It made sense.
Then he assimilated a massive amount of vocabulary, phrases, and verb conjugations (just the pronunciation, not the spelling). Really, it’s a super-human brain!
I’ve only had one student like this in my 20 years of teaching French.
HOW CAN “AN ORDINARY STUDENT” LEARN FRENCH QUICKLY?
We’re back to being a typical student. How are you going to learn French “quickly” if you aren’t a genius or willing to devote 30 hours per week to your studies?
Step 1: Fall in Love with French Lesson: First, Ask “Why” – NOT “How/What” What is the secret to speaking French? Passion.
French is the language of love. And in order to speak a language, you must first fall in love with it. Or, at the very least, come up with a compelling reason to keep going when things aren’t going well.
Your primary motivation for learning French will sustain you through the ups and downs of learning a new language. It will serve as a reminder to you whenever you are frustrated with your French studies and ask, “What was I thinking?”: the chance to go around the world French is an official language in over 25 countries, and it is widely spoken in many more.
• To converse with family members who are fluent in French.
• To immerse oneself in traditional French literature (think Victor Hugo, Alexandre Dumas, and Gustave Flaubert).
• Make contact with people who are natural French speakers.
• To broaden one’s understanding of French culture.
What makes you want to learn French in the first place? Find your own particular, meaningful reason for studying French and utilize it to stay on track throughout your language learning experience.
It’ll be easier to stick to the following steps in learning French once you know why you’re doing it.
Step 2: Create a Mini-France in Your Home: It’s easier to speak French when you’re surrounded by it. However, you do not need to live in France to learn the language. In fact, wherever you live, you will be surrounded by French.
Here are some of my favorite ways to immerse oneself in the French language.
• Transform your smartphone into a French-speaking device. Let French be the language of your phone. You can use your computer in the same way.
• In your city, look for French speakers. French speakers can be found in almost every city in the world, big or little. There’s a good chance there’s one near you.
• View movies and TV in French. Turn on the subtitles to help you learn faster.
• Read French articles and novels. LingQ is an excellent tool for this.
• French radio and podcasts are available to listen to (my favorite is FrenchPod101). Listening to French songs might help you learn a lot of the language.
Would you like to learn more about the immersion from the home method? Then read about how I learned Japanese living in Spain and Brazil, respectively.
Step 3: Create a French Phrasebook of Your Own.
You will learn French considerably faster if you concentrate on words and phrases that are relevant to your life.
Plus, you’ll be able to talk about yourself in real-life interactions in French (more on that later).
As a result, I suggest that you make your own French phrasebook for your convenience.
Step 4: Accept That When You Speak French, You Will Sound Funny at First
Lesson: French Pronunciation Guide: How to Sound More Like a Native French Speaker If you’ve never spoken out loud in a foreign language before, it can be unpleasant.
This is particularly true when it comes to speaking French.
There are sounds in French that do not exist in English. Forming your lips and tongue into different shapes to generate unexpected sounds can feel jarring when you’ve only ever spoken one language, similar to hearing an incorrect note in a well-known song.
Some language learners are hampered by this. They get humiliated when they express things incorrectly or make mistakes.
Face your fears by speaking French, even if it makes you feel ridiculous. That way, you’ll learn French much more quickly.
And believe me when I say that no one will make fun of you.
Step 5: Use Language Hacks to Speed up Your French
Language hacks are shortcuts that help you learn a language more quickly. If you wish to study French, they are great.
Here are a few of my favorite language shortcuts for learning French faster:
• Spaced Repetition Systems (SRS) is a type of spaced repetition system (SRS). SRS is an excellent way to memorize vocabulary and phrases with the help of virtual flashcards. Anki, my favorite SRS application, is free and allows you to make your own flashcards, so you can make a deck out of your own French phrasebook.
• Mnemonics. A memory palace is a great technique to commit French words to memory.
• The Technique called Pomodoro is a method of time management. Divide your study sessions into 25-minute increments. This improves your focus, allowing you to study more in less time.
Step 6: Engage in genuine dialogue with native French speakers.
Lesson: Speak up from the start.
Speaking from the start is the most effective technique to learn a language. This is particularly important if you wish to converse with native French speakers.
Where can you practice with native French speakers? It’s actually quite straightforward.
You can still find people to speak French with, whether online or offline, no matter where you live. I like to look for native French speakers on the following websites:
• Italki. This is where I first look for French tutors and pay for private courses (reasonably priced).
• Meetup.com. A Meetup for French speakers or learners can be found in almost every major city. Another of my favorite ways to meet French people is through CouchSurfing.
• HelloTalk. This free smartphone app can help you locate French speakers who are interested in studying your original tongue.
Step 7: Use Conversational Connectors to Make Conversations More Natural.
Conversations include a lot more than just exchanging data. It would be quite dull if they did. In such a scenario, a chat with a coworker may go something like this: You: “How was your weekend? “It was fine,” they say. “It wasn’t fine for me,” you answer. “Oh,” they say. I’m sure you don’t speak in this manner in your native tongue. The following is a more natural version of the same conversation:
“Have you had a good weekend? ” you wonder. ” Them: “Thank you for inquiring; it wasn’t too bad. So, how about you? They: “Oh, I’m sorry to hear that. To be honest, it wasn’t that great.” You: “To be honest, it wasn’t that great.” They: “Oh, I’m sorry to hear that. What went wrong, exactly? ” Have you noticed how much more natural the conversation has become?
Despite the fact that both discussions contain the same material, the second makes use of conversational connections. Short phrases that make the conversation appear more natural, less abrupt, and less “staccato.”
Step 8: Concentrate on the Basics of French
Why French is Simple: How to Understand Spoken French is a lesson on why French is simple.
French isn’t any easier or harder to learn than any other language, but if you only focus on the tough aspects of the language, you’ll quickly forget that.
- When you’re feeling down, remember all of the reasons why French is a simple language to learn: It has no cases (nominative, accusative, etc.), unlike Russian.
- Unlike many African and Asian languages, it is not a tonal language.
- Because of their connected histories, they share a lot of lexicon.
- The Latin alphabet is used.
- Unlike German, which has three noun genders, English only has two.
Remember these truths while you learn to speak French, and the more difficult components of the language will seem less daunting!
YOU’VE GOT THIS!
Everyone who has ever learned to speak French (including native speakers who learned as children) was once a complete novice. They’ve all succeeded in becoming fluent in French, and you can too.
All you have to do now is practice your French as much as possible. Spend as much time as possible engrossed in French. Most essential, have faith in yourself.
Remember to find your “Big Why” for learning French and immerse yourself in the language by building a Mini-France in your house. Take advantage of language hacks and use conversational connections to seem more natural. Speak from the start – especially with native speakers.
Recognize that learning French is a lot easy than you may believe.
CONCENTRATE YOUR RESEARCH ON WHAT YOU REALLY NEED.
To pass French examinations or prepare for your next trip to France, you should not study in the same way.
So, before you spend hours memorizing the French subjunctive, consider how important it is to communicate in French. It may be a great intellectual challenge, but is it necessary?
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO LEARN FRENCH?
You’ll need a strategy to learn French. A severe study schedule.
A systematic strategy that begins at the beginning and gradually but steadily develops on a strong and sturdy foundation.
LEARN FRENCH FAST: THE FOUR PILLARS OF FRENCH STUDIES
The four most important factors to consider when learning French are stated here.
- Both modern and traditional pronunciations in French necessitate the use of audio.
- The French language’s grammar is described in an easy-to-understand manner. Because many English speakers did not receive formal grammar education in school, the technique cannot assume that they understand the difference between an adjective and an adverb, or what a direct object pronoun is. Don’t even get me started on teaching French to complete beginners who have never heard the language before…
- French verb conjugations, which require a clear explanation of when to use the different French tenses, a comparison with your native language, and many, many examples in French to develop a feel for the language (i.e. a method specifically written for English speakers and using English to explain French).
- Traditional and common modern slang (not obscene slang, but daily terms) are both included in the French vocabulary.
It’s a serious situation. To become a skilled French teacher, it takes years of experience, as well as a vision to become a French method writer.
WHY DO SO MANY STUDENTS FEEL THEY AREN’T MAKING ENOUGH PROGRESS?
With so many various French resources promising “fun” and “quick” French studies, it’s simple to jump from one video to the next, one podcast to the next, but lacking a rational and progressive method.
If you aren’t already familiar with my audiobooks for learning French, I will of course recommend them at this point. This method, which will prepare you for both traditional and current spoken French, is based on my 20 years of experience teaching French to adults.
ASKING THE RIGHT QUERIES
There are some questions that are completely meaningless.
An experienced French teacher may be able to tell you how long it will take you to achieve the next level after spending time examining your level of French and observing how you learn French. But, more significantly, they will tell you what you need to study, what you should focus on, and how you may learn French quickly.
So, rather than asking, “How long would it take me to learn French?” I recommend asking, “How can I learn French efficiently?” I have 12 specific ideas to assist you.
However, I must caution you that there is no loophole – no hidden magic pass. Simply good suggestions on how to proceed with your French study.