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High school German to C2 in 3 months!

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irishpolyglot
Nonaglot
Senior Member
Ireland
fluentin3months
Joined 3818 days ago

285 posts - 892 votes 
Speaks: Irish, English*, French, Esperanto, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, German, Sign Language
Studies: Mandarin

 
 Message 65 of 73
13 July 2010 at 9:41am | IP Logged 
GOT MY RESULTS!! :)
As always, I will be fully transparent with the progress and results of the mission. So here you go:
Overall result: Based on four out of the five sections I would have passed safely. However I did NOT pass the Listening Comprehension section so they will not be rewarding me with the certificate. This would be unfortunate if I needed it for work/study purposes, but I have achieved precisely what I wanted when I set out with this: to do as well as possible and improve the academic side of my German in a tight deadline.
INDIVIDUAL SECTION RESULTS:
ORAL Result: 60/80 (75%: ‘good’ grade)
WRITTEN Result: 52/70 (74%: ‘good’ grade)
GRAMMAR Result: 43/70 (61%: ‘satisfactory’ grade)
READING Result: 25/50 (50%: would just be ‘pass’ grade due to ‘good’ in written)
LISTENING Result: 15/40 (37%: not a pass)

You can read an in-depth analysis of each of these points and what I would have done differently, as well as a comparison with my Spanish DELE C2 in the equivalent sections on the blog post about it.

I hope you've enjoyed following me in this experiment! I will remain in Berlin for 2 more weeks to chill out a bit, work on various other projects and make a video or two in German.

However, I will already begin my next 3-month mission later this week! I will study for two weeks and then move to the destination to begin immersion for 2.5 months. I'll start a new thread about that and hopefully you'll enjoy following that story too. Thanks!
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brian91
Senior Member
Ireland
Joined 3629 days ago

335 posts - 437 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: French

 
 Message 66 of 73
13 July 2010 at 10:10am | IP Logged 
Herzlichen Glückwunsch, Benny! You are an inspiration to us all. :)

Edit: How many times more difficult is C2 German than Higher Level Leaving Cert German? A hundred? :D What
equivalent would HL Leaving Cert German be? A2?

Edited by brian91 on 13 July 2010 at 10:39am

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irishpolyglot
Nonaglot
Senior Member
Ireland
fluentin3months
Joined 3818 days ago

285 posts - 892 votes 
Speaks: Irish, English*, French, Esperanto, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, German, Sign Language
Studies: Mandarin

 
 Message 67 of 73
13 July 2010 at 8:18pm | IP Logged 
ahaha, the Leaving Cert was a JOKE. I didn't put any work at all into it and I still passed it. I took that C level German with me to Germany a few years ago and couldn't even order a train ticket for the love of Dog.

A2 is flattery for what passes as acceptable in Ireland and many countries after school. I suppose if you get an A result in the exam I took then you may have a B1 level, but just passing it as I did, it's barely worth awarding you a level.

Glad you enjoyed joining me in this adventure!
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Andrew~
Groupie
United States
howlearnspanish.com
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42 posts - 67 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: Spanish, Japanese

 
 Message 68 of 73
14 July 2010 at 4:35pm | IP Logged 
Congratulations, that is genuinely, truly impressive.

Frankly, I find the most valuable aspect of this, by far, to be that you've proven to me just how much progress can be made in such little time if you're motivated properly (and especially if you've got a bit of experience learning languages and know what you're doing). It's quite inspiring, to be honest, thank you for doing it.

Are you familiar at all with Tim Ferriss? He claims to be able to achieve what he calls "conversational fluency" (I'll define that in a moment) in any language within 30 days.

I actually really like his objective that he uses, "conversational fluency", and have adopted it myself as my own personal objective for what I want when learning a language. He defines it as being able to converse about everyday topics with a native speaker for 15 minutes straight at a normal conversational rate of speed without having to refer to any dictionaries, translators, etc.
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irishpolyglot
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Senior Member
Ireland
fluentin3months
Joined 3818 days ago

285 posts - 892 votes 
Speaks: Irish, English*, French, Esperanto, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, German, Sign Language
Studies: Mandarin

 
 Message 69 of 73
14 July 2010 at 4:53pm | IP Logged 
Thanks Andrew! Glad you can see how we should always aim high! :D

Yes, I'm familiar with Tim! I missed him by 10 minutes at Burning Man a few years ago! Pity, I'd really like to have a chat with him. I contacted him for an interview but it took his ASSISTANT *two months* to reply to me to say that he's too busy :P I found it hilarious that his assistant was too busy to tell me that he himself was too busy!! (He was writing a new book he's due to release soon)

I've read his book and love his ideas and have met many people encouraged by his book to travel the world in unconventional ways. Like me he has a lot of sceptics online, but I have to say that he is doing fantastically positive work, especially when I meet people that he has touched through his writing. I've learned a lot from his blog and book, although I had already established most of my own language learning approach by the time I had come across him.

As far as languages go, he's way more analytical than I am! He has a thing for deconstructing the technical aspects of a language and that can definitely give him shortcuts to speaking quicker, however my approach is quite different - I simply find more ways to force myself to speak the language by meeting natives, even if I'm speaking wrong, and even if I'm not in the country. Improvement comes out of social necessity rather than out of any kind of advanced analytics. You'll notice that most of my blog is about attitude and ways to get people talking. Tim will be happy to discuss grammar and vocabulary techniques, whereas I prefer to not think in those terms when I'm focused on fluency in a language.

Tim is just a bit older than me (33), but he has much more experience with languages since he got to immerse himself in Japanese while he was still in high school. (So about 20 years, compared to my 7) This works to his advantage, and I'm sure he has learned things that I will soon realise myself. Although he didn't do well in Spanish up until then, so he maintains that it is technique rather than natural talent.

We do have a lot of mentalities in our approaches that are similar though. We both use Parkinson's Law to assign ourselves very tight time limits to achieve as much as possible in that time. The premise of my website and future missions I'll also mention in this forum is based on that! I'd also have similar objectives to him, like conversational fluency. This C2 exam was a once off thing and quite unlike what I usually aim for.

I do hope to meet him some day to talk about this! He has a few videos and posts about the topic online, but I think a fellow language learner needs to pick his brains about it ;)

Edited by irishpolyglot on 14 July 2010 at 5:01pm

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mrhenrik
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Norway
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 Message 70 of 73
14 July 2010 at 8:55pm | IP Logged 
Congratulations on the results, that's very impressive! It's been really interesting
reading about your progress, hopefully I'll be able to try something similar one day. ^^
1 person has voted this message useful



Andrew~
Groupie
United States
howlearnspanish.com
Joined 3453 days ago

42 posts - 67 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: Spanish, Japanese

 
 Message 71 of 73
15 July 2010 at 3:33pm | IP Logged 
Haha, I saw your tweet about people comparing your method to Tim Ferriss and was like "Oh, that was me!", and clicked on over (I'm Andrew_the_Odd on twitter, btw).

Yeah, Ferriss is putting out a book very, very shortly about weight lifting or bodybuilding or some such thing, should be interesting. If you haven't read the 4 Hour Workweek you certainly should, by the way, it's excellent and addresses a lot of stuff that applies to guys like us who work for themselves, really good stuff.
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Teango
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United States
teango.wordpress.comRegistered users can see my Skype Name
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Speaks: English*, German, Russian
Studies: Hawaiian, French, Toki Pona

 
 Message 72 of 73
19 July 2010 at 5:19pm | IP Logged 
Superb results, Benny! :) The ZOP is a really tough challenge, and you did more than admirably. I'm sure with a bit more time you could have clinched the listening and reading sections as well. Was there a reading list to prepare for your exam by the way (I recall that the C2 exams include reading some literature beforehand)?


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