Learning a language from scratch at uniWatch
We have a mixture of lectures and seminars most days.
Lectures are primarily designed to teach the whole year group and introduce new grammar, vocabulary, structures, conjugations etc....
Seminars are taught in much smaller groups, predominantly for speaking practice and to exercise the new grammar and vocabulary from the previous lectures. (With some new vocabulary introduced too)
For example, Monday morning could feature a lecture on the alphabet, basic phrases and grammar. This will be typically followed by a seminar in the afternoon. In the seminar, you’ll be using/speaking the material from the previous lecture and taught additional vocabulary & grammar in the seminar.
In order to learn your desired language to fluency, it will take a lot of self-study outside of your normal university ‘contact’ hours. You may already know this and so apologies in advance. Lots of student language learners rely too heavily on the contact hours to ‘teach’ them the language. It’s better to actively learn outside of University hours too. Find a language partner to teach you a broader range of vocabulary, to revise over old vocabulary, help with pronunciation and get them to always speak with you in your target language, learn to make mistakes and allow that partner to correct you. Self-study and partner language exchange contribute immensely to foreign language success at University.
Your University lecturers will probably tell you to find a language partner early on for maximum benefit.
If you need any tips, advice or anything else regarding language learning at University, don’t hesitate to reach out
Best of luck!
I'm thinking of studying from scratch languages at uni but I'm interested in how they teach you, what is expected, how much Vocabulary is thrown at you to learn everyday, how do they drill and help you retain what you have just learnt?
I'm doing Spanish and art history (2nd year from this October). I would say that the course is quite intensive but it depends on how many languages you will be doing. During my first year (Spanish advanced) I had 5 seminars and we practised vocabulary at the beginning of every session. I was positively surprised how they actually taught us because our study is very interactive. We use Quzlet and Kahoot very frequently (also, we have all they links to them on Canvas, in modules cards) and we have some group presentations (using PowerPoint) too. During study skill classes we also practise our oral exam presentation which is super helpful! (+a lecturer can improve and correct your work)
The main aim is that we get about the same level at the end of the 1st year so that we can start the 2nd year easly I hope that's helpful for you!
Karolina, Spanish and art history at UoB