Hi there. Welcome back to my blog!
Today we are going to look at a very interesting question which is: How can you measure your progress when you are learning English?
Lots of you have asked me this question, so that's why I've decided to write this blog post because we all want to know how much we are progressing and how much we are moving forward.
Measuring progress is vitally important for our self-motivation but before we do that we need to answer some important questions!
1. ¿Cómo funciona realmente el progreso en el aprendizaje de idiomas?
This is an interesting question because it is not exactly as we might think!
Progress with languages is not a uniform line. It is not linear! It is a step by step process. You improve and then you normally hit a plateau and then it might take a long time before you improve again. And even after that you hit another plateau.
So, for that reason, language learning and the progress that you perceive in terms of language learning can be extremely frustrating. And that is why it is important to know that your progress will be connected to these plateaus.
So you need to expect these plateaus. Don't get worried about them. Just keep going. Make sure that you keep motivated.
2. Percibir nuestro propio progreso es difícil
It is very likely that you are not very good at assessing your progress. If you ask language learners who have learnt two or three languages, they might be good at understanding how they're progressing. They have experience. So, it is easier for them.
But if you are dealing with your first foreign language, then it's very difficult to perceive your progress because you are not sure where to look! You might think that you're not progressing at all and that something is not working!
But be careful, because that might not be the case!
You might be doing a really good job and it is just your false perception that you are not progressing.
So, that's the difficult situation here! It is often unclear! Make sure that you're not too hard on yourself, don’t blame yourself and only make changes if you are 100% sure that you are not moving forward.
3. ¿Cómo medir tu progreso con tu inglés?
The way that you test yourself will largely depend on what type of learner profile you have. There are many different types of learner profiles.
There are people who like to listen.
There are people who like to read.
There are people who just learn through doing.
There are a whole variety of different profiles. But in language learning you can create two particular groups and I call them: the scientists and the artists and it's very important to understand which group you are in.
Are you a scientist or are you an artist?
If you are a scientist then you probably like to measure everything in great detail and you like numbers. If you're an artist then you are creative. You are intuitive. Everything is connected to feelings.
So, those two profiles are extremely, extremely different. Let’s discover them!
The scientist, as I was saying before, likes to measure, likes to analyze and for that reason most scientific profiles like to test themselves in a very scientific way!
That might be through an official level test. It might be a test on a website. It might be a test on an app. It might be measuring the number of hours that you speak in English per day or per week.
All of those things can be measured and for scientific profiles that is going to be extremely rewarding because it will give you a strong perception of progress and when you gain or see that progress, then motivation will naturally come from that.
The artist is completely different! No measurements are required! Artistic profiles are not interested in numerics. Everything is connected to feelings and progress might come in the form of feeling more confident!
A feeling of progression, even though it's not scientifically measured, is enough. The feeling is positive, you are confident and you know almost instinctively that you are going in the right direction!
So, if you have an artistic profile then it's important that you understand that you don't need measurements. You are looking for a feeling and when you get that feeling you will be motivated just because of that feeling.
4. ¿Cual es tu perfil?
Are you clear in your mind about which of these two profiles you are? Remember there are no winners or losers here! Both profiles are equally valid!
Are you the artist?
Are you the scientist?
Once you know, you can start getting to grips with how you should measure your progress!
Let me know whether you think you are an artist or a scientist! It’s very interesting for me and if you have any other questions, please get in contact with me in the comments section below or reply to my email! It's always really fantastic to hear from my followers!
I hope that helps!
Daniel – Tu coach inglés
Soy el director de Daniel Smith + Partners. Tengo más de 10 años de experiencia enseñando inglés a españoles.