Upgrading your tongue strengthens family ties
2012 September, 26
To mark the occasion of the European Day of Languages today, Rosetta Stone, a leading provider of technology-based language-learning solutions, uncovers major drivers for adult language learning today, citing an interest in family heritage and a desire to connect better with overseas relatives as a major driver.
In their recent research into the major driving forces behind the decision to learn a new language, Rosetta Stone has found that one answer lies in our family roots. Among the reasons given for opting to learn a new language, or to improve existing language skills, the concept of heritage was one of the top four motivations. Sylke Riester, Managing Director Europe at Rosetta Stonesays: "The internet makes it easier than ever before to explore our family roots, and quite often we will find lines of ancestry – and family members - from outside the British Isles. This sense of heritage is incredibly powerful, and in many cases this translates into wanting to speak the language of our relatives overseas."
Several pieces of academic research into identity, heritage and language reveal that in order to understand a culture or community, it is beneficial to understand the language too.1
Rosetta Stone provides e- learning to individuals and corporates in over 20 languages. "Typically, an individual may subscribe to one of our language courses after they have researched their family tree and discovered more about relatives from say, Sweden," explains Sylke Riester. "By learning Swedish with us, they can quite quickly start to immerse in their relatives' culture and build up conversational skills fast, so that even that longed-for reunion is all the more realistic and special . Speaking the language of family we haven't yet met truly reinforces a feeling of heritage and belonging."
Other major drivers for language learning which Rosetta Stone has identified are: Career prospects; travel and culture; and relationships and self development.
About Rosetta Stone:
Rosetta Stone is changing the way the world learns languages providing interactive solutions that unlock the natural language-learning ability in everyone. Available in more than 20 languages, Rosetta Stone is used by schools, organisations and millions of individuals in over 150 countries throughout the world. The company was founded in 1992 on the core beliefs that learning a language should be natural and instinctive and that interactive technology can replicate and activate the immersion method powerfully for learners of any age. With the new version TOTALe learners practise speaking in live sessions tutored by native speakers in an interactive, online environment, play in an exclusive online community dedicated to language learning and reinforce language skills with an innovative mobile application built for iPhone®, iPad® and Android phones.
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Ultimately, to make sense of a community's identity, we need to look at its language
Reference: Crystal, D. (2000) Language Death (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press)
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