Why English Is Hard To Learn Essay

  • It is one of the hardest

    Most of you saying no were most likely bon and raised in an english-speaking environment, therefore as a young child, you were able to pick up words and their meanings from an early age. You're probably too used to english to even think about the tact that there still is a lot to learn and how complex it actually is. Some of you might say that it is not hard since more than half of the world's population speaks it or at least knows basic words. Well we're not debating statistics or how much english people know. If english is such an easy language why do students have to take it as a mandatory class from kindergarten all the way to grade 9 (or at least that's how it is in Canada)? Ever thought of that? It's because even in those many 18 years or so there is still so much more to learn. So many rules, requirements, forms, irregular adjectives, conjugations, etc. It is endless. There are also so many complicated words in english that other languages don't even have translated! Also, why do you think most people's first language is english? Because they know it is s much more easier to have an early start at the language since as a child, we pick up habits and learn new things easier. Also, if english is so easy and if it is spoken way too much that people are able to learn from their surroundings, why are ESL classes a perquisite for exchange students? Finally, in Canada, we have the availability of studying french as our second language but most schools do not start teaching it until grade 5 and it is only mandatory up until grade 9. This should say something about the difference of the difficulty level of both languages. I am not trying to insult any french-speakers, i personally love the language and i am still studying it to this day.

  • English is the most difficult for me, and so many Thai people can't understand it well.

    I am Thai, I have learned Thai, Laos, Chinese, Korean and English, I think I was able to approach the problem of Asian people who wants to study English language rationally, that is English has so many vocabularies, phrases, idioms etc, and it has many grammars which we are not pretty sure, what situation is right to say. However, that is not what is hard for me. In fact, it is hard because we can't understand what is the difference in meaning? e.g. correct proper right, those are ถูกต้อง in my language without any differences, and we can't also understand "why It has many rules in English grammar correctness, even that is so close in meaning"

  • We have many different sounds and verbs plus past tense present tense and past tense

    English is very difficult to learn because it is very different to lots of other countries. It has been all over the news at times about how English is such a hard language. We also have a lot of different grammar and different sounds and names for this game s

  • Because my mum told me

    If its not shes dumb or she lieing if she right she a amasing mother even thought i WILL corrected her i aam some time wrong i love mother a lot Even thought she gets mad at me all the time i correct allway from enlash is one of the hardest

  • Because my mum told me

    If its not shes dumb or she lieing if she right she a amasing mother even thought i WILL corrected her i aam some time wrong i love mother a lot Even thought she gets mad at me all the time i correct allway from enlash is one of the hardest

  • Because my mum told me

    If its not shes dumb or she lieing if she right she a amasing mother even thought i WILL corrected her i aam some time wrong i love mother a lot Even thought she gets mad at me all the time i correct allway from enlash is one of the hardest

  • Because my mum told me

    If its not shes dumb or she lieing if she right she a amasing mother even thought i WILL corrected her i aam some time wrong i love mother a lot Even thought she gets mad at me all the time i correct allway from enlash is one of the hardest

  • Pronunciation is a whole different spectrum of consistency (and other irregularities).

    For foreign people, it is extremely difficult to pronounce a new word they just encounter correctly. Although in my experience many locals will understand this, it is simply a blatant obstacle.

    It is probably also hard for many people to memorize irregular patterns: past/perfect participle verbs, phrasal verbs, Vietnam-ese vs Span-ish, etc; as to why the old and new rules (that indicate inconsistency) exist in the first place: why 'cannot' is now is counted as one word but 'would not' is not, why 'aren't I?' instead of 'am not I?', why I should use either all-British or all-American system, and the list goes on.

    The eventual difficulty is that the conclusion that it is quite far from an ideal international language and we have to use it in the present time.

  • Pronunciation is a whole different spectrum of consistency (and other irregularities).

    For foreign people, it is extremely difficult to pronounce a new word they just encounter correctly. Although in my experience many locals will understand this, it is simply a blatant obstacle.

    It is probably also hard for many people to memorize irregular patterns: past/perfect participle verbs, phrasal verbs, Vietnam-ese vs Span-ish, etc; as to why the old and new rules (that indicate inconsistency) exist in the first place: why 'cannot' is now is counted as one word but 'would not' is not, why 'aren't I?' instead of 'am not I?', why I should use either all-British or all-American system, and the list goes on.

    The eventual difficulty is that the conclusion that it is quite far from an ideal international language and we have to use it in the present time.

  • Irregularities are very prominent

    The structure of English is so random, depending on the person. For example, "What is your name", "Tell me your name", "And you are?", "Name please?", "Who are you?", "So what do people call you?", "Name?", "Who have we here?". Just some examples of how confusing it must be for newbies to english. Slang is another problem too!! Endless variations on words, even just hello. And also, what kind of language can use "That that" in a sentence and have it be grammatically correct........ The fact that that, "that that" thing is a thing is ridiculous! (And that my friends... Is English for you)

  • Tip: See my guide to the Most Common Pronunciation Errors in English. It will teach you about commonly mispronounced words, pro­nunci­ation patterns, and the basics of English phonology.

    This question may be somewhat controversial, but, in my opinion, English is a very hard language to learn. When speaking about difficulty, people generally tend to think only about some aspects of the language in question (the ones they find hard, for some reason) leaving out the rest. For example, people often say that Chinese is extremely difficult because you have to learn thousands of different characters, or that Slavic languages are difficult because of all the declensions. However, I think that it’s actually a combination several different aspects of English that makes it difficult.

    Some people say that English has complicated grammatical rules, but this really isn’t the case. For example, the verb “to be” has the most forms an English verb can possible have: be, am, are, is, were, was, been, and being (i.e. 8 different forms, while most verbs have just 4).

    On the other hand, French être (to be) has 40 different forms! (Just for fun: être, étant, été, suis, es, est, sommes, êtes, sont, étais, était, étions, étiez, étaient, fus, fut, fûmes, fûtes, furent, serai, seras, sera, serons, serez, seront, serait, serions, seriez, seraient, sois, soit, soyons, soyez, soient, fusse, fusses, fût, fussions, fussiez, fussent). Conjugation of verbs is much easier in English than in probably any other Indo-European language.

    Although many people complain about the English system of tenses, it is just necessary to understand what the grammatical constructions are supposed to express (without trying to directly translate everything into one’s mother tongue); for example, the phrase “I have been doing something” conveys the idea of doing something continually for a period of time in the past (and usually also continuing the action in the present). Once you understand the concept, it is much easier to apply it to any verb than in most other languages, simply because verb conjugation is much simpler.

    Similarly, English has no genders and only three different articles (the, a, an); or five, if you count the stressed variants separately. The form of articles doesn’t change according to the function of the noun in a sentence. Compare the two following sentences in English and in German:

    The table is big.Der Tisch ist groß.
    I like the colour of the table.Ich mag die Farbe des Tisches.
    It’s on the table.Es ist auf dem Tisch.
    I see the table.Ich sehe den Tisch.

    In English, “the table” remains the same, whereas in German “der Tisch” (the table) changes according to the function of the noun, and this was just the pattern for masculine nouns; there’s another one for the feminine, neuter, and plural ones, giving 16 forms altogether to be remembered for what would be just “the” in English. The same applies to adjectives and other parts of speech, so English grammar can actually be considered quite rudimentary in comparison to many other languages.

    English spelling is perhaps the worst in the world

    So what is it that makes English so hard for foreigners to learn? The answer is: the combination of its vocabulary, orthography, and pronunciation. Most languages have a regulatory body which issues spelling reforms as the pronunciation of the language develops (which happens much faster than one might have expected). On the other hand, English spelling is “regulated” by influential dictionaries, such as Webster’s dictionary and The Oxford English Dictionary.

    However, by the time these dictionaries were written (during the 19th century), English pronunciation had already been changing for several hundred years which, unfortunately, was mostly ignored by the creators of the dictionaries. As no surprise comes the fact that English pronunciation has diverged even further from its spelling since these dictionaries were written.

    This poses a much greater problem to learners of English than to native speakers because native speakers know how to pronounce words; they just have to be able to spell them correctly, which is not such a big problem nowadays when anyone can use a spell checker.

    Learners of English, on the other hand, meet most of their vocabulary in a written form first. It is often possible (and even appropriate) to derive the meaning of a new word from the context, but instead of looking up the correct pronunciation in a dictionary, learners tend to just guess what the pronunciation might be and then use this pronunciation internally when thinking about the word. Unfortunately, such guesses are wrong most of the time.

    Complicated pronunciation doesn’t help it

    One of the reasons they are wrong so often is an unusually large number of vowels and consonants present in English which must be distinguished in order to be understood correctly (the so called “minimal pairs”) which sound almost the same to the learner’s ear.

    For example, none of the words “bed”, “bet”, “bad”, “bat”, “bud”, “but” is pronounced the same as any of the others, and they mean completely different things (they are pronounced, in the same order: /bɛd/, /bɛt/, /bæd/, /bæt/, /bʌd/, bʌt/). Nevertheless, these are all patterns that can be learned because all the differences are indicated by the spelling of the words.

    A much greater problem is caused by spelling ambiguities and historical spellings that don’t follow current pronunciation rules at all. Why is “dear” pronounced the same as “deer” but “bear” and “beer” sound different? Or why is “colonel” pronounced the same as “kernel”?

    In addition to the problems we have already mentioned, there is no indication of stress placement in English whatsoever. In most languages, stress placement is governed by relatively simple rules; in English it is almost completely irregular, and words can even change their meaning depending on the stress position.

    Even worse, pronunciation of vowels usually changes depending on whether they are stressed, for example “angel” is pronounced /ˈeɪndʒəl/ whereas “angelic” is pronounced /ænˈdʒɛlɪk/ (i.e. not only has the stress shifted by adding the suffix “-ic”, but also the pronunciation of both of the vowels has changed).

    To make the confusion complete, there is a large number of English dialects in which pronunciation of vowels, intonation, and stress placement differ considerably (to the extent that Scottish English and American English are virtually mutually unintelligible languages). A learner of English has no other choice than to learn to understand all of the major dialects since he or she will most likely meet them sooner or later.

    And finally: Vocabulary…

    In terms of vocabulary, English is like a patchwork. It is a mixture of (mostly) Middle French, Anglo-Saxon, Latin, and Greek. As a result, there are often different words to express the same idea. For example, one doesn’t speak of “touchy feedback” but of “tactile feedback”, and not of “smelly system” but of “olfactory system” (the system in the body that perceives smells). If you do something using your hands, you don’t do it “handily”, you do it “manually”, and the “green” electricity you may be using doesn’t come from “sunny plants” but from “solar plants”.

    This process results in vocabulary size that is somewhat larger than necessary. This is not a bad thing per se; it adds some expressive power to English and makes it a good starting point for learning other European languages. However, in combination with English pronunciation and spelling problems, this can be a huge nuisance to learners, especially since spelling of such words usually reflects the original spelling in the language of origin, not their contemporary English pronunciation.

    Comments

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *