In the News

Flagging interest in foreign languages

NICK EICHER, HOST: It’s Thursday the 21st of February, 2019. Glad to have you along for today’s edition of The World and Everything in It. Good morning, I’m Nick Eicher.

MARY REICHARD, HOST: And I’m Mary Reichard. First up: learning a second language.

Enrollment in foreign language programs at the university level had grown steadily since the late 1950s. In 2009, more students than ever took up learning a foreign language.


Learning a language means failure, embarrassment and the enrichment of your life

A reader recently wrote to ask about a language-immersion program. How in the world do you narrow the choices and figure out whether that program is right for you? Will the Spanish you learn in Mexico be comprehensible in Spain and vice versa? What if you make horrible mistakes and embarrass yourself?

Learning a second language puts you in good company these days, Francois Grosjean wrote in Psychology Today: In 1980, about 11% of the U.S. population was bilingual. Today it’s nearly double that.