Benefits of language learning – on BBC Radio 5 Live

People are questioning why they should bother to learn a language when apps like Google Translate can do all the work for them. Antonella Sorace was interviewed by BBC Radio 5 Live recently (Friday 17th August 2018) to give her expert opinion on the benefits of language learning in this technological age. Her interview is from the 1 hour 55 minute mark and will be available for four weeks. If you are unable to access the interview, here are just a few of the points she made in the interview.

Language learning is actually very, very good for the brain, this is what research shows. Language learning opens the mind in more than one way, and not just because it makes people aware of other cultures, […] but because it can bring specific linguistic and mental benefits.

For example from a linguistic point of view, learning another language actually facilitates an understanding of how all languages work and this means not only that people who know another language are better language learners […] but they have a better understanding of their native language, English in this country, so investing in languages actually benefits English as well.

And then from a mental, or cognitive point of view, having more than one language means, for example, that […] children can understand from an earlier age that people can have different perspectives and different points of view.