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  1. #1
    VIP Member CzarJunkie's Avatar
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    Question Learning a language overseas. Anyone done it?

    I want to learn a second language, either Mandarin, Thai or Japanese. None of which will be easy, so I want to immerse myself and learn in the country of origin. I'm considering a 9-12 month visit and wanted to know if anyone here had done it, or knew of anyone who had. Any information would be greatly appreciated, specifically info on language schools, visa requirements etc. and of course, cultural and socio-economic differences.

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  2. #2
    DF Moderator {{909}}'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Learning a language overseas. Anyone done it?

    One of the few foreigners I know is doing a course in mandarin here, I know a little of his situation but I can't say if its the norm or the best way to go about it.

    From what I gather, he was studying Mandarin in the US, and it was an option to go to China for a year of his course for a more intense education. He said soon after he started study in America it became obvious the only real way to get anywhere is to go and immerse yourself in it. It sounds like his course is pretty badly operated, with teachers taking every opportunity to skip classes and so on. In his case the school arranges his study visa, and I presume he needs an invite to come to China, which would be done by the school too. Saying this, there are so many variables its really hard to say anything that would steer you in any direction.

    You could of course become a teacher and learn in your spare time, but I think you'd be hard pressed to do that in a year, especially with all the pussy you'll be swimming in. If you wanted to read and write, you would add on some serious time too.

    As far as any cultural differences, you are best experiencing them first hand....in China you won't feel unwelcome though, not by far.
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    CzarJunkie (30th September 2014) 


  3. #3
    DF Jedi chesser's Avatar
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    Default Re: Learning a language overseas. Anyone done it?

    A German bird in Ibiza once taught me how to lip read on a beach if that counts?

  4. #4
    DF PwNagE GTI's Avatar
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    Default Re: Learning a language overseas. Anyone done it?

    The biggest problem I have here is that every bugger wants to speak English with me.

  5. #5
    DF VIP Member Bald Bouncer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Learning a language overseas. Anyone done it?

    Quote Originally Posted by GTI View Post
    The biggest problem I have here is that every bugger wants to speak English with me.
    That is a major problem with learning abroad, I have struggled for years to speak Tagalog which is really a bastardised mixture of all the dialects also including English but I find every filipino/a here wants to talk to me in English and when I am in the Philippines it's also the case as it is seen as a status symbol to be able to speak and converse in English, I'm guessing {{909}} would say it is the same in China.

    Edit: just to add when you do finally learn you realise all the Woman talk about is phones, food as in what they have eaten, what they are going to eat, what they would like to eat and what other people are eating, fashion, bitching about other woman, soaps and kids. so not much different to here.

    2 Thanks given to Bald Bouncer

    CzarJunkie (30th September 2014), GTI (30th September 2014) 


  6. #6
    DF Moderator {{909}}'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Learning a language overseas. Anyone done it?

    I don't get that here BB, most people seem to expect me to speak Mandarin, and then act surprised when I can.

    Food, phones and depending on age, either parents, boyfriends or babies is the topic here. Luckily there little chat of China's got talent, that bullshit seems to stay almost exclusively with students.

    I keep meaning to write an outline of coming out here to teach in the going places section, It's certainly something people should think about trying if they have few ties to the UK for a few years.
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  7. #7
    VIP Member CzarJunkie's Avatar
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    Default Re: Learning a language overseas. Anyone done it?

    Quote Originally Posted by {{909}} View Post

    I keep meaning to write an outline of coming out here to teach in the going places section, It's certainly something people should think about trying if they have few ties to the UK for a few years.
    That would be good to read. Within 12 months I hope to have the freedom to be able to up sticks and go. I haven't got a wife or children and plan on spending the rest of life hopping from place to place. With the likes of Airbnb etc. and obviously communications as they are today, the reality is I could live in a different city every 6 months and just keep moving whenever the whim takes me.

  8. #8
    DF PwNagE GTI's Avatar
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    Default Re: Learning a language overseas. Anyone done it?

    Quote Originally Posted by CzarJunkie View Post
    That would be good to read. Within 12 months I hope to have the freedom to be able to up sticks and go. I haven't got a wife or children and plan on spending the rest of life hopping from place to place. With the likes of Airbnb etc. and obviously communications as they are today, the reality is I could live in a different city every 6 months and just keep moving whenever the whim takes me.
    That's always been a dream of mine too, but I'm more enamored with the Middle East. Learning Arabic opens up 22 countries with different traditions, cultures, histories (some colonial and others ancient and uncolonised). With a beard and a nice tan I would even blend in too, which is nice

    Thanks to GTI

    CzarJunkie (1st October 2014) 


  9. #9
    DF VIP Member Bald Bouncer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Learning a language overseas. Anyone done it?

    Quote Originally Posted by {{909}} View Post
    I keep meaning to write an outline of coming out here to teach in the going places section, It's certainly something people should think about trying if they have few ties to the UK for a few years.
    Good idea, I fail to understand people who have no ties and are either sitting on the dole or in a dead end job not just taking a leap of faith and traveling and working abroad or volunteering for charity work abroad as it has to be a better life than they have now.

    Quote Originally Posted by CzarJunkie View Post
    That would be good to read. Within 12 months I hope to have the freedom to be able to up sticks and go. I haven't got a wife or children and plan on spending the rest of life hopping from place to place. With the likes of Airbnb etc. and obviously communications as they are today, the reality is I could live in a different city every 6 months and just keep moving whenever the whim takes me.
    There are a few places I haven't been I would still like to go to for example Vietnam and India, I would suggest starting in Asia to start
    Last edited by Bald Bouncer; 1st October 2014 at 02:06 PM.

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    CzarJunkie (1st October 2014) 


  10. #10
    DF Moderator {{909}}'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Learning a language overseas. Anyone done it?

    Quote Originally Posted by CzarJunkie View Post
    That would be good to read. Within 12 months I hope to have the freedom to be able to up sticks and go. I haven't got a wife or children and plan on spending the rest of life hopping from place to place. With the likes of Airbnb etc. and obviously communications as they are today, the reality is I could live in a different city every 6 months and just keep moving whenever the whim takes me.

    Many people do just that around China, its perfectly possible to get a job at a chain of schools and then just apply to transfer from city to city every 6/12 months as many of the big schools have multiple branches in cities all over the country and the school will have accom set up for you when you arrive. In the case of China, you would certainly have to expect some shitty conditions and meet a fair few streaming fucking dickheads, but where isn't that the case really?
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    Thanks to {{909}}

    CzarJunkie (1st October 2014) 


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