Simulation-based learning is an immersive technique used to replace or amplify real life experience with guided experiences. Widely used to structure learning experiences in emergency preparedness, complex decision-making, negotiation and technical training, many of us overlook the usefulness of simulation-based learning as it pertains to learning a second language.
In this blog, we will divulge the challenges in learning a second language and how simulation-based learning can help.
Navigating the Challenges of Learning English
Learning a new language is full of challenges. As the world continues to become more accessible, having access to one or more languages in your arsenal will open many doors, both professionally and personally. The old adage practice makes perfect is one of the most important factors to consider when trying to master a new craft. Without adequate time and opportunity to practice, the risk of failure is high.
Some common challenges that we experience when learning a new language include:
Lack of Time
Mastering a new language takes daily repetition. Set aside some time everyday to listen and speak the new language.
Lack of Opportunity
If time is not a concern, you may simply feel that there are not enough opportunities in your area to learn the language. Maybe you do not live close to a language learning school or do not have friends to practice with. Lack of opportunity is a major barrier for those learning a second language.
Lack of Confidence
Fear is one of the largest barriers that makes learning a new language difficult. It is common for new learners to feel embarrassment or shame when practicing a new language, especially amongst others who speak the language well. Lack of confidence may discourage you from practicing, but as we mentioned before – practice makes perfect.
Vocabulary and Grammar Need Targeted Practice
Picking up new vocabulary requires exposure and repetition, with an understanding of sentence structure acquired by listening and interacting with others. While we can rely on some common grammar rules to make inferences about some areas of vocabulary and grammar, rehearsing certain words and sentences is the best way to ensure that they stick.
The Benefits of Simulation-Based Learning
Taking in the challenges above, it’s fairly clear that one of the biggest obstacles to learning a second or new language is lack of practice. Simulation-based learning techniques offer a safe and risk-free environment to improve hard and soft skills. Simulation offers an interactive learning technique that can be used in group environments to experiment with new vocabulary and structures, reinforce proper pronunciation and instill a sense of mastery and confidence amongst those that use it.
Learning a new language can be difficult, but leveraging a wide variety of tools available at your disposal will open more doors in both your career and personal life in a world where globalization has made the planet so much more accessible.