Translation-related know-how, examples and latest news.

What We Can Learn from People who Study Japanese: Tips for Learning a Language and Improving Your Foreign Language Skills

November 9, 2015

Foreign language, learning

More and more people are learning Japanese, mainly in Asia. You often meet non-native speakers with very good Japanese who were inspired to learn the language out of a strong interest in Japanese animation, manga or business. Doesn't it make you want to learn a foreign language, in the same way that they learnt Japanese?

An ability to converse confidently with people from other countries is helpful in understanding the views and culture in those countries. In business, language ability enables you to obtain information right from the source, without relying on translations, and to negotiate and interact with non-Japanese people directly without needing an interpreter.

A lot of people who study Japanese appear to motivate themselves by focusing on their reasons and goals for studying. They can give us ideas on efficient and effective methods for language study that Japanese people can implement as well.

You Need to Have Clear Goals and the Desire to Convey Your Own Ideas

Students of foreign languages make better progress if they have a clear goal: many who are proficient at Japanese have a strong interest in Japanese culture and history. For the Japanese, on the other hand, study is often something that is done without a clear purpose. The key is asking yourself why you want to learn that language.

It's Easier to Learn Languages Similar to Your Own: Korean, an easy language for Japanese people

November 2, 2015

Korean, Korean language, South Korea

Readers may remember Winter Sonata, the show that sparked Japan's Korean boom, and the subsequent K-Pop (Korean pop music) craze that took the world by storm is still a relatively recent memory. South Korea, a country with a reputation as a beauty location, is also easily accessible from Japan. K-Pop stars, traveling South Korea: there are a myriad of things that could inspire someone to study Korean. Korean is an easy language for Japanese people to learn, and South Korea is well suited as a hub for overseas business expansion. Here we look at the Korean language from the perspective of Japanese people and the South Korean market from the perspective of Japanese companies.

What is Korean?

Mention the Korean language and a lot of Japanese people think of the Korean alphabet (hangul). Most people will recognize text such as "안녕하세요" as being written in Korean, even if they have no idea what it says. It is important to realize that the Korean language and hangul are not the same thing: one is a language and the other is a writing system. You can think of the relationship as being like that between Japanese (the language) and hiragana (a writing system).

November 2015

Japanese Translation Agency Arc Communications

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