Leo comments:

In terms of language learning so much depends on the teaching methods being used.

Pimsleur’s methods ( http://www.iapsych.com/wmfhcaarchive/LinkedDocuments/PIMS01_02.pdf )

were better than those devised by the US Army in WWII,

Those were better than those used Berlitz, etc.;

those better than the systems of the nineteenth century.


So much depends on the learners. Those who approach an eidetic memory (or hypermnesia) can gain vocabulary at an amazing speed. 



Since vocabulary attainment is one of the most difficult aspects of language learning, all this factors in.


Regards,                LEO


-----Original Message-----
From: International Auxiliary Languages [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Kjell Rehnström
Sent: Thursday, January 12, 2017 7:43 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: SLA Speed Tests


Den 2017-01-12 kl. 08:48, skrev

Robert South:

> Has there been scientific research done on comparative second language acquisition?

Probably there is lots and lots of

scientific research out there about

second language learning. As for

schools you might find it

interesting to see how much English

children are supposed to learn in

one, two or more years in various

countries. In Sweden children begin

English in year 3 (they begin at 7

years of age. To begin with they

learn simple words and easy songs.

Through computer games and TV most

children have got some knowledge of

English when they begin.


I used to teach Swedish to adult

learners for about 20 years,

Swedish is easier for Icelanders

and Dutch learners. I have met

students from The Netherlands who

are quite fluent in Swedish after

just some 3 or 4 months. Russians

who have had some English are also

very quick.


Arab and Iranian speakers who know

some English are also very quick.

After a year they can communicate

in Swedish. If they have not had

English it will be tougher for

them, and pronunciation can be a



If I recall correctly those who

want to follow a university course

where Swedish is the language of

instruction, they take a course of

Swedish during one year. Then they

are supposed to understand everything!


An adult Chinese or Japanese who is

adult and has had no English at

all, Swedish is terribly difficult.


For English, German, Dutch,

Russian, Polish and Spanish

learners there are good

dictionaries, and that helps a lot.


As for auxiliary languages there

has been some tests – i think in

the US – where groups have been

taught Ido and Esperanto and the

results have been compared. I doubt

about the scientific value of these

tests. Paul most certainly knows

more about that.


The learners situation, motivation,

contact with the language is



In countries where English films

ant TV programs are subtitled, not

dubbed, the skills in English are

better than in countries where

everything is dubbed (or with

voiceover) in the national language.


This is my contribution.


Kjell R