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What's the difference between second language acquisition and foreign language acquisition?


For learning: English
Base language: English
Category: Uncategorized



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    I dunno exactly, but i guess that a second language could also be a language also spoken in your country, maybe a dialect or you have two official languages in your country, then that would differ it from a foreign language.

    Ni hao Hisun,
    There has been many discrepancies in defining the 2 terms. In general the previous explanations are valid. The second language acquisition would be the acquistion of the language that follows the maternal language ( 1st language),regardless from the place of birth or the current residence.
    If you are a Chinese born in England, English would be your second language acquired. If you are British born in India, learning Hindu would be your acquisition of a second language. Your second language is that one where you use more cognitive skills like reasoning ,perception to learn it than your 1st mother tongue,that you start to learn very early. At that stage your acquisition is more dependent on intuition and implicit subconscious acquirement. At a later stage at school you will be developing more and more cognitive skills in improving both your 1st and 2nd language,but your maternal language will usually be better because of the initial acquisition at a very early stage.
    This is one of the possible definitions of the 2nd language acquisition. Accordingly a second language is also a foreign language, but marked by an early childhood learning process due to residence in the country speaking the language for example.
    Every foreign language is not a second language though. The foreign language could be defined as the language one didn't learn at home at early stages, where its acquisition depends more on developing cognitive skills than merely on early childhood intuitive acquisition such as taking language courses, learning a new language as an adult etc. I hope this definition helps you distinguish between the 2 terms :)

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