When you’re a self-starter and an independent-minded person, it can be hard to accept that there are some things for which you need the help of others to achieve. You can climb the mountain alone, you can start your new business by yourself, and who bothers with a personal trainer at the gym, right? Get it done!
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Okay, well, it’s an admirable mindset and we’ll concede that it does work for many things, but just not for everything, and definitely not for language learning. You may have downloaded a fun app, or watched some free YouTube videos and think you have it all figured out. Just like everything else, you’ll handle your language learning by yourself. We hate to burst your bubble, but you’re going to need help, and most of all you’re going to need a professional tutor.
Reason 1: The Tutor Has Knowledge and Skills That You Badly Need
Professional tutors are not just random people who happen to know the language that you want to learn. They are trained specifically to teach that language to other people, with many of them carrying certifications proving that training and background. As they accumulate experience, they come to know dozens, even hundreds of tricks and methods that help students of all stripes learn languages better.
Language learning is a complex and tricky business to get right. You need a professional tutor to help make sure you learn in the right way and that you get the best-possible information. They specifically know how to help people just like you with your personality, and that’s because you aren’t their first student!
Reason 2: The Tutor Will Point Out Your Mistakes
One of the most important and valuable services that a professional tutor will deliver to you is to help point out all the places where you’re going wrong in your language learning. You might think that’s quite a negative experience that you’d not like to go through, but actually it’s the foundation of how we learn and improve in language learning, as well as with life in general.
For language learning, to make an uncorrected mistake is essentially to form a bad habit. It might be a pronunciation point, a grammatical structure, a vocabulary choice, or even the way you use intonation to speak in your target language. When we get it wrong, a tutor helps us see how to do it right, and we correct it to build good habits.
Reason 3: You’ll Get Structure and Direction
To learn a language well, we benefit hugely from having a proper learning structure and framework. There’s a logical order in which to learn certain things in a new language, starting with common and everyday language, and steadily building and progressing to more challenging material. We also gain clear goals and milestones as set out by our tutor. Using these goals as waypoints, we can determine if we’re really making progress or not.
When you try to learn a language by yourself, you’ll most likely meander through a few sets of materials, pick up some odd phrases, maybe memorize some words at sight, but you’ll never really know if you’re making progress because you’ll never feel yourself genuinely getting better. With structure, you can compare how you do on a task one week to the next, and the feeling of making real progress then fuels your will to keep going.
Reason 4: It’s the Best Way to Master Pronunciation
Many professional tutors in your target language will be native speakers, and they are the best people to learn from when it comes to pronunciation. Self-taught individuals can only try to look at pronunciation as a whole and attempt to imitate it, and it very rarely works. When you learn with a tutor, they can break down the pronunciation to show you its base elements. When you’ve mastered these, the rest of the language starts to fall into place and you will learn much faster to speak like a native.
Reason 5: It’s the Best Way to Learn the “Real” Language
Finally, professional tutors will also steer you in the right direction when it comes to language and vocabulary choices. If you try to learn from old books or educational videos, you might find that the language examples used in it are either outdated or otherwise obsolete. Tutors will teach you the language that the real native speakers of that language are using here and now. Therefore, to sound your most authentic self in a new language, you’d better call a tutor!
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