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Student Experiences

Alexa – second year international management student studying Spanish 2

"I chose to take an LC module since I thought it would be a nice balance amongst all the other business school modules. Furthermore, I also knew that I would like to go to Spain in my year abroad and that this course could help enhance my language skills…. Spanish is also a highly useful language to know, as about 437 million people speak Spanish as a native language.

I really appreciate the teaching style as it is very personable and reminds me more of a school than university setting.

I would advise those who are considering starting a language or taking an LC module to certainly do so! It is a particularly enriching experience and as I mentioned before it creates a nice balance to all other modules of the department you are in. I hope reading this has been helpful for you and wish you the best of luck in your language studies!"

Saskia – second year Liberal Arts student studying Russian extra continuation

"I see the language as a means of getting to know the country and the classes have completely fulfilled my expectations in that aspect. Russian traditions, art, literature, culture and history are all a part of the curriculum… It is nice that the classes are in such small groups and that there is a mix of materials and exercises: videos, audios, textbook, online resources, group work, speaking exercises in pairs, individual work…"

James - third year BAML student studying Russian

"…the more I study it the more I realise that firstly, every language has its own challenges and so there isn’t really any “easy” or “hard” language, and that secondly, misconceptions about Russian are so unjustified! It’s a really beautiful, poetic, interesting language with so much to offer if you give it the chance.
In the future, I hope to move abroad to a work environment where my languages will prove useful, and my course at the language centre has given me the confidence to include Russian in those languages."

Daria – final year student studying Spanish beginners accelerated

"I think one of the best aspects of the course is that apart from studying grammar and learning vocab, you get to learn about, in my case, Spanish or Latin American culture from your tutor, hear different stories and viewpoints, which opens the doors to new viewpoints for you."

Hannah - first year student studying Arabic

"I really benefit from and enjoy the Language Centre teaching style. You have four contact hours a week which covers everything from language and grammar to the practical side of reading and speaking. I like the style of teaching because they encourage you to go above and beyond in your use of the language. I would never have thought within just the first couple of weeks I’d be able to describe myself, my family and talk about such a range of interesting topics like professions, weather and the Middle East. I would highly recommend learning Arabic to anyone who is interested in starting a new language. It has sometimes put me out of my comfort zone however my favourite part of learning Arabic so far has been the rewarding feeling when the practice and effort pays off. Not only do you get to learn the beautiful language but you also gain an insight into the fascinating and diverse culture of the Arab world."

Matt - Chemistry PhD student taking French 2

"The best thing I have found about learning French this year is how much I’ve enjoyed it; I find myself constantly thinking of how to say different words and phrases in French and am even now open to the prospect of working or living temporarily in France, something that before this year I had never considered!
My advice to anybody who is thinking about undertaking a language module with the Language Centre at Warwick is to put all your fears and preconceptions aside and just go for it – I did and am certainly much better off for doing so."

Pietro - studying Arabic

"…the best thing about Arabic this year was learning new cultural and historical aspects of Arab countries like Bagdad and Cairo, which was fascinating. I would love to continue studying Arabic and use my language skills after graduating."

Ieva – studying Russian 4

"Studying at the Language Centre is an intense but enjoyable experience. The classes are never monotonous. The professional teachers diversify their classes so that the students have an opportunity to speak, read, and write in the language that they study. Studying here is also a culturally-enriching experience because the classes are structured to help the students learn as much as possible about the different countries and cultures, where their studied languages are being spoken."

Julian - studying Arabic

"For anyone who is considering starting any language, I would say…Go for it! It's so rewarding and the feeling of connecting with a native speaker in their native language is truly a great joy."

Lily - studying French

"…we focused more on conversation, which I grew to really enjoy towards the end of the module, despite it originally being very nerve-wracking.

I would recommend everyone take an LC module because it really made me much more confident in a very short space of time, even as a way to brush up on my rusty GCSE French. I am by no means fluent but I can communicate much more effectively than I could six months ago. It is a very intense course but, I would argue, incredibly rewarding because of that."

Ariane - currently studying Spanish for credits and Korean LLL

"I liked the way that… I was being taught in a way that encouraged a deep understanding of the way the language works and how to then use that knowledge to manipulate the language. In terms of this year, I have really appreciated the many opportunities we’ve been getting to practice our speaking skills in class. I would, therefore, recommend doing a language module at the Language Centre because I’ve only had positive experiences"

Misa - final year History student taking Level 4 Russian

I studied Russian as an outside module for all three years of my History degree and it was the best decision I made on coming to Warwick. Doing a language alongside my degree gave me a refreshing and engaging break from all my history reading, and taught me something very useful. The teachers were always very passionate both about Russia and about the language and presented language learning within a framework of culture. They offered so much help and support whenever I had extra questions or feedback. Within three years I think I've progressed a lot and I'm very happy to finish at Warwick with another language, at least as conversational level, which is not something I expected when I was applying for History degrees. I'd absolutely recommend for other students to take these opportunities to widen the scope of their learning, and consider taking Russia in particular, since it is an incredibly beautiful language. Whilst it is complex, this just adds to the satisfaction as soon as you get your head around another rule or formation.

Henry – first year student learning Chinese as part of his degree in Hispanic Studies

My first year of studying Chinese at university has been fantastic! It has allowed me the fresh and exciting new challenge of learning a new language – and one that is notoriously more difficult for English-speakers. Nevertheless, I have particularly enjoyed the accelerated pace of the course and seeing the progress we have made in such a short space of time. At times, the workload is sizeable however this is necessary due to the ambitious target of near fluency by graduation. I found that the course was set out very well with it centring around the ‘New and Practical Chinese Reader’ textbook which gives plenty of opportunity to practise speaking, reading, listening, and writing. It has also been brilliant to have such a passionate lecturer who is also a native speaker which lets us practise even more. I also got the opportunity to partake in an online cultural exchange with a Chinese student who taught me more about historical and modern Chinese culture. Year 1 Chinese has been a great challenge and I am excited to see where year 2 will take me!

Ana - Final-year Economics student studied Russian Beginners Accelerated and Russian Level 3

"To have another language is to possess a second soul." Charlemagne

As an international student, I can say that learning a new language has always been very exciting. You get to discover rules and phrases that sometimes cannot be explained in your native language, learn about a different culture and develop a new way of thinking. Eventually, you get an intuitive feeling of how a language works, which truly motivates you and provides you with a deeper understanding of the world. The language belongs not only to a nation or group of people but to every single person using it, no matter how well. Overall, learning Russian was a wonderful break from everyday routine - a way to learn more about yourself, develop valuable skills and meet new people.

I always looked forward to my language classes. The lessons were quite interactive: involved a lot of communication, talking about our interests and getting to know our classmates. This made it easy to make friends and to gain confidence when speaking Russian. Within just a few weeks you will be able to use the Cyrillic alphabet, introduce yourself and talk about your hobbies. Overall, in two academic years, my group got to a B1/B1+ level. This is quite useful as it helps you understand other Slavic languages a lot better and is a good addition to your CV. From my experience, learning a new language as part of your degree will sometimes get you out of your comfort zone, it requires effort, but it is really rewarding and sometimes even relaxing.