Register  Login  Active Topics  Maps  

Moving from B2 to C2

 Language Learning Forum : General discussion Post Reply
177 messages over 23 pages: 1 2 3 46 7 ... 5 ... 22 23 Next >>
robarb
Nonaglot
Senior Member
United States
languagenpluson
Joined 3222 days ago

361 posts - 921 votes 
Speaks: Portuguese, English*, German, Italian, Spanish, Dutch, Swedish, Esperanto, French
Studies: Mandarin, Danish, Russian, Norwegian, Cantonese, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Greek, Latin, Nepali, Modern Hebrew

 
 Message 33 of 177
17 February 2015 at 4:35am | IP Logged 
hobom wrote:
Thus I am asking genuinely, as a not experienced language learner, how are you supposed to
notice these small differences in meaning between near synonyms? While a tutor might not be necessary, he can
significantly accelerate the process.


This is really hard to do, regardless of having a tutor or not. What kind of tutor would be able to explain to you
all the nuances in meaning of a language? They can explain the ones that come up in lessons, but unless you do
lessons all day for a year, you'll only cover a small fraction of what's out there.

Probably, the best way to develop this kind of sense is massive input, plus at least some output. People who learn
a language and then use it as their primary language for many years often develop these nuances to the point
where they're not obviously different from a native speaker.

How many times have I heard someone say "compared to" or "compared with" in English? Probably many
thousand. I still can't tell you what the difference is, but I bet I can use them correctly.
4 persons have voted this message useful



1e4e6
Octoglot
Senior Member
United Kingdom
Joined 2453 days ago

1013 posts - 1587 votes 
Speaks: English*, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Norwegian, Dutch, Swedish, Italian
Studies: German, Danish, Russian, Catalan

 
 Message 34 of 177
17 February 2015 at 4:40am | IP Logged 
To add to the point about grammar, for C2 I would say that it has to be pristine and
basically perfect or near-perfect, especially given the academic type nature of the C2
(and CEFR in general) title. It would be bad to have a good argument that would be
articulate were it not for grammatical blunders that are the equivalent of "Me gots to
talksed about this". Even one grammatical mistake would probably raise some sort of
warning. I imagine that nervousness can be excused because it causes mistakes than
under a non-stress situation, but committing, for example, an average of 3 or 4
grammatical errors per sentence would seriously ruin everything.

I remember an old saying when I was younger that one grammar mistake could even lower
people's perceived intelligence about a speaker/writer to a factor of half. Probably
is an exaggeration, but having a text or saying a dialogue that is littered with
grammatical errors is definitely not native.

I read the entire Manual: Gramática de la lengua española, with is the RAE's
grammar manual, and things like this certainly helps a lot to improve at higher
levels. It usually is tedious (not too much for me because I like grammar), but
perfect/near-perfect grammar I would think would be a prerequistie for C2.

Edited by 1e4e6 on 17 February 2015 at 4:45am

3 persons have voted this message useful



smallwhite
Pentaglot
Senior Member
Australia
Joined 3471 days ago

537 posts - 1045 votes 
Speaks: Cantonese*, English, Mandarin, French, Spanish

 
 Message 35 of 177
17 February 2015 at 4:55am | IP Logged 
hobom wrote:
However, one area where a tutor can definitely help is correcting writing. A good teacher will tell you for instance that you cannot use this word in this context, in should rather be word B. Afterwards he will proceed to list examples for word A to clarify the usage.

Frankly, I am unable to wrap my head around how a student is supposed to acquire this knowledge without professional help.


The student is to write correctly in the first place, by mimicking what s/he has seen natives write, instead of by applying guesswork, which would be based on his/her own L1, if not random. If the student needed to use guesswork, the writing task is beyond his/her level.

Like reading the instructions before fiddling with the gadget, instead of fiddling with it and breaking it first, and needing a repairman (tutor) ;-)
3 persons have voted this message useful



hrhenry
Octoglot
Senior Member
United States
languagehopper.blogs
Joined 3293 days ago

1871 posts - 3641 votes 
Speaks: English*, SpanishC2, ItalianC2, Norwegian, Catalan, Galician, Turkish, Portuguese
Studies: Polish, Indonesian, Ojibwe

 
 Message 36 of 177
17 February 2015 at 5:03am | IP Logged 
robarb wrote:

Probably, the best way to develop this kind of sense is massive input, plus at least some output. People who learn
a language and then use it as their primary language for many years often develop these nuances to the point
where they're not obviously different from a native speaker.

I very much agree with this. If you are already at a B2 and living in-country, there's a lot of ways to do this, and simply too. Having solely friends that primarily speak the language is an obvious start.

You can also join an organization that involves one or more interests. You'll soon enough get both exposure to nuanced language and be able to apply it to your own speech. Go see movies with these friends. Talk about it and everything in between with these friends. Talk about deep, opinionated topics. You'll eventually reach a point where you can discuss and argue about topics and hold your own, even excel at it.

It's by no means a quick process and takes years, but it can definitely be done. It's absolutely no different than how we learn our own nuanced language in our native language - in other words, a little bit at a time, but constant.

R.
==
2 persons have voted this message useful



mrwarper
Diglot
Winner TAC 2012
Senior Member
Spain
forum_posts.asp?TID=Registered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3389 days ago

1490 posts - 2500 votes 
Speaks: Spanish*, EnglishC2
Studies: German, Russian, Japanese

 
 Message 37 of 177
17 February 2015 at 5:47am | IP Logged 
Stelle wrote:
I think that C1 is possible without full immersion. But I'm not sure that a person could reach a true C2 level in a language without extended immersion.

Cavesa wrote:
One of the reasons why I believe I can pass a C2 exam without living in the country is knowing others who passed like that.

Exactly. Regardless of how much I agree with the value CEFR level labels should be attributed, or what 'a true C2' might mean, I did go from high school B2-ish English to official C2 by my bootstraps, living in my country. So it's objectively and definitely possible, with no overly long in-country stays, no formal studying, and no immersion environment whatsoever.

I sure watched a ton of English movies and series back in the day, and I never avoided speaking English to whomever I needed to communicate with. All of that, however, pales in comparison to the huge volume of English I read and wrote over the years (trust me on that). Will anybody doing the same thing achieve the same result? Of course not. The key to improving over those years doing that was to 1) pay attention to how some people, my 'prestige models', expressed themselves, 2) work out the difference between that and how I would have expressed the same stuff, and 3) try to incorporate everything I learned to my own use of the language.

To me and many people I know, that is "just common sense". I know lots of other people who simply don't work like that, so perhaps it would be extraordinary to (some/many of) them.

However, judging from the comments at HTLAL alone, I am pretty convinced there are other ways to achieve the same too. I would say you can be less attentive on comparing input to your own output if you get more corrections, and that you could be more balanced in your focus on spoken and written language, or maybe even focus entirely on spoken language if you can transfer between both.

Regarding tutoring, all sorts of things can go wrong with it, just like they can with everything else in life, including self-teaching. I became a teacher myself, so been there, done that, on both sides. Assuming a reasonable competence on both parts, however, isn't it obvious that any tutors (who again are worth their salt) will make a difference for most students (except yet again those who won't learn no matter how good the tutor, and those who will regardless of how badly they're taught)? Isn't it obvious that finding tutors can only be expected to be increasingly more difficult the higher the level, and accordingly more expensive?

In other words: how many people would successfully learn any subject to a university level (roughly what the Cs represent in language study), attending university classes, and without them? What's easier? What's more effective? What's more expensive? Everything is possible, there are just different levels of probability / likeliness.

On determining exactly what to do, even those self-teaching can learn from the very people who emits pieces of paper with letters and numbers on them. If such institutions exist for one's target language (don't know about Afrikaans, sorry), there are always guiding materials, past tests, and whatnot available in spades, aimed specifically at getting those certificates.

If we disregard or can't find those materials in addition to skip tutoring, and success stories here are not enough either, well, I guess it's time to start reading other B2 → C2 stories at HTLAL for inspiration ;)
4 persons have voted this message useful



s_allard
Triglot
Senior Member
Canada
Joined 3593 days ago

2704 posts - 5424 votes 
Speaks: French*, English, Spanish
Studies: Polish

 
 Message 38 of 177
17 February 2015 at 7:03am | IP Logged 
1e4e6 wrote:
To add to the point about grammar, for C2 I would say that it has to be pristine and
basically perfect or near-perfect, especially given the academic type nature of the C2
(and CEFR in general) title. It would be bad to have a good argument that would be
articulate were it not for grammatical blunders that are the equivalent of "Me gots to
talksed about this". Even one grammatical mistake would probably raise some sort of
warning. I imagine that nervousness can be excused because it causes mistakes than
under a non-stress situation, but committing, for example, an average of 3 or 4
grammatical errors per sentence would seriously ruin everything.

I remember an old saying when I was younger that one grammar mistake could even lower
people's perceived intelligence about a speaker/writer to a factor of half. Probably
is an exaggeration, but having a text or saying a dialogue that is littered with
grammatical errors is definitely not native.

I read the entire Manual: Gramática de la lengua española, with is the RAE's
grammar manual, and things like this certainly helps a lot to improve at higher
levels. It usually is tedious (not too much for me because I like grammar), but
perfect/near-perfect grammar I would think would be a prerequistie for C2.

I want to add my voice to this position. What we are talking about at C-levels of proficiency is
impeccable grammar, nuances and subtleties of expression, fluency and general sophistication.

A number of people have expressed the idea that if you have enough input and imitate good models
you will eventually achieve this high level of proficiency. I think this is certainly possible. On the other
hand, part of the discussion here is how to speed up this process by using effective methods and tools.

This is exactly my reason for emphasizing the value of a good professional tutor, especially at the
higher levels. It boggles my mind to think that some people would forego the opportunity to get
corrective feedback about a piece of their writing from a specialist. Very simply put, you can't correct
your own writing. What professional writer does not gladly accept constructive criticism from a
respected observer?

It's the same thing with speaking. I believe that everybody here at HTLAL - even those who adamantly
believe that they can do everything on their own - would enjoy working with a specialist who can give a
good assessment, point out areas in need of improvement and suggest strategies or exercises to do
so. Suppose one could get at HTLAL 90 minutes of free online speaking assessment and tutoring in
any target language. I'm sure there would be a line-up as far as the eye can see. Who can be against
this?
1 person has voted this message useful



robarb
Nonaglot
Senior Member
United States
languagenpluson
Joined 3222 days ago

361 posts - 921 votes 
Speaks: Portuguese, English*, German, Italian, Spanish, Dutch, Swedish, Esperanto, French
Studies: Mandarin, Danish, Russian, Norwegian, Cantonese, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Greek, Latin, Nepali, Modern Hebrew

 
 Message 39 of 177
17 February 2015 at 8:07am | IP Logged 
s_allard, I more or less agree with what you say. I think most people could achieve truly amazing feats of
polyglottery if given the motivation and unlimited access to immersive environments and tutors. But I think, of those
two, immersion has the greater effect. And, if you're a professional language learner, or just really need to master
one language, and have the option, that may be the way to go. As long as you don't fool yourself into thinking a
tutor will be able to eliminate all your errors, and that you can't reach a high level without tutors and full immersion.






2 persons have voted this message useful



luke
Diglot
Senior Member
United States
Joined 5368 days ago

3133 posts - 4350 votes 
Speaks: English*, Spanish
Studies: Esperanto, French

 
 Message 40 of 177
17 February 2015 at 9:18am | IP Logged 
s_allard wrote:
What professional writer does not gladly accept constructive criticism from a respected observer?


Steven Pinker says the impetus for his book on Style (in language) was born of what he felt was bad writing advice from his publisher, such as avoid passive constructions.

Edited by luke on 17 February 2015 at 12:03pm



3 persons have voted this message useful



This discussion contains 177 messages over 23 pages: << Prev 1 2 3 46 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23  Next >>


Post ReplyPost New Topic Printable version Printable version

You cannot post new topics in this forum - You cannot reply to topics in this forum - You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum - You cannot create polls in this forum - You cannot vote in polls in this forum


This page was generated in 0.3281 seconds.


DHTML Menu By Milonic JavaScript
Copyright 2019 FX Micheloud - All rights reserved
No part of this website may be copied by any means without my written authorization.