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    #1

    the difference between second Lang.and foreign lang.

    Hi there, How things go with you all?


    I have a question and i hope to find an answer for it.


    what is the difference between teaching English as a second language

    and as a foreign language ?


    regards

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    #2

    Re: the difference between second Lang.and foreign lang.

    I think "English as a foreign language" is more appropriate because many people speak more than two languages, and English may be their third, fourth, etc. language.

  1. euncu's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: the difference between second Lang.and foreign lang.

    As far as I know, if non-native speakers are learning English in a native-speaking country, this is called ESL. If they are not learning in a native-speaking country, this time, this is called EFL.

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    #4

    Re: the difference between second Lang.and foreign lang.

    If a Spanish woman is learning English in Spain, she is learning a foreign language. English is a foreign language in Spain.

    If a Spanish woman is learning English in England, she is learning a second* language. English is not a foreign language in England.

    * Of course it could be her third language, or more.


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    #5

    Re: the difference between second Lang.and foreign lang.

    I'm not a teacher, so I'm certainly not the best to say what teachers do. The definitions given above are also what I'd say is correct.

    In terms of differences of teaching method - Teaching English as a Foreign Language is much more 'traditional' teaching. Probably the way most people learn a language - starting with basics of grammar, vocabulary etc and progressing that way.

    Teaching English as a Second Language, as far as I know, is more about teaching people what they require to know to live in that country. A person who is living in Britain probably cares more about knowing how to ask for help in a supermarket than they do about learning 1st, 2nd, and 3rd conditionals. ESL is more concerned with what a person is required to know in order to live an active and fulfilling life in which language is not a barrier to communication.

    You'd do well to wait for a teacher of English to correct me, as I'm not a teacher in the slightest.

    EDIT - Also, to address the issue of English perhaps being a third, or fourth language, I've seen 'English as a Second or Other Language' used.

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    #6

    Re: the difference between second Lang.and foreign lang.

    i appreciate your help friends

  2. Raymott's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: the difference between second Lang.and foreign lang.

    Quote Originally Posted by euncu View Post
    As far as I know, if non-native speakers are learning English in a native-speaking country, this is called ESL. If they are not learning in a native-speaking country, this time, this is called EFL.
    I would say this is the closest to the right answer, at least as far as linguists use the terms.
    If a language is spoken in the community, it's a second language; if not, it's foreign.
    A native Hindi-speaking Indian would learn ESL in India, because English is an official language in India, but still his L2.
    On the other hand, if he wanted to learn Italian in India, that would be a foreign language.

    A Singaporean in Singapore might learn English or Malayam or Chinese (or a few others) as a second language, but German would be called a foreign language.

    Of course these distinctions only exist if you want to make them. "Second language" or L2 applies also to 3rd and 4th etc. languages, unless you really need to make the distinction.
    I'm sure many people learn ETL.

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