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One of the most common questions when you want to start studying a language is: how long will it take to learn it? Spanish is one of the top 5 most spoken languages in the world, which is why this question is often asked by students.
This question is a recurring concern among people who want to study Spanish and is very present during the learning process. Here, we will answer this question and tell you how long it takes a person to learn to speak Spanish fluently. Click here if you prefer reading the article in Spanish.
The process of learning Spanish can be very complex. The hours you dedicate to study it, the objectives you have or the resources you use are some of the determining factors to become a Spanish speaker.
The mother tongue is another factor in whether your learning progress will be fast or slower. Romance languages such as Italian, Portuguese or French have more similarities with Spanish, as they all come from Latin. Therefore, if your mother tongue is one of these, the structures and the words will be more similar, and the process will be easier.
On the other hand, if your mother tongue is German, Dutch, Arabic or comes from Asia, such as Chinese or Japanese, you may find it more difficult to learn Spanish grammar or phonetics, for example.
However, this does not have to be a problem, since in Spanish, the pronunciation is identical to how the words are spelled. For this reason, some students which their mother tongue is English find it very easy to learn Spanish.
Another factor that influences the process of learning Spanish is the amount of time you invest in it. Spending an hour or three hours a day will vary the level, as well as the materials you use. Native teachers, books, Spanish movies, or music can help you improve your pronunciation or understanding of the language.
Even the objective you set for yourself is fundamental to learning Spanish. Because reaching an A2 level does not require the same effort as achieving a C1. Thus, it also depends on what you want to achieve: understanding yourself in a foreign country, reading a classic novel or speaking fluently with native people.
The number of hours per week you spend in studying Spanish is the key factor in determining how fast you will learn the language. It is estimated that to speak and understand Spanish you need a minimum of 250 to 350 hours, that is, between 8 to 12 months. You can achieve this considering that you spend at least one hour a day studying Spanish, and depending on the methods you choose.
However, the U.S. Foreign Service estimates that to learn Spanish fluently you need to spend between 600 and 700 hours, that is, 24 to 30 weeks.
All these data are subject to variations and to the characteristics of each person because everyone has a different ease in learning a language. And, as we have seen, it also depends on your mother tongue, the hours you invest and how you decide to learn it.
Although, learning Spanish in a country where it is the mother tongue and being able to practice daily with native speakers is one of the best options. Make a difference and immerse yourself in the culture, join Don Quijote to learn Spanish in Spain and live a unique experience.