At Linguistic, we build our products atop a simple three word motto:

Immerse. Rehearse. Converse.

Catchy, I know.

These three words encapsulate our core philosophy on language learning. As described in our introductory blog post, language learning is typically divided into two main buckets: inputs and outputs. Inputs typically refer to anything that requires reading or listening, whereas outputs refer to anything that require speaking or writing.

There is oftentimes a third bucket nestled in between inputs and outputs: review (or study). Not going to lie, it is pretty impossible to see or hear a new word then immediately use it in conversation without taking time to understand its meaning or usage. If you can do that then color me impressed.

The Big Picture

The Language Learning Lifecycle

As you can probably already tell, we’ve mapped each word of our motto to one of these three buckets:

Our goal is to provide best in-class support for each of these three categories.

  1. First, we provide you with the tools to not only immerse yourself in a breadth of real-world foreign content, but to also acquire new vocabulary while doing so.
  2. Next, we help you retain what you’ve acquired via state-of-the-art, personalized study experience.
  3. Lastly, we provide you with an outlet for output by connecting you with other learners and native speakers (suitable to your skill level, of course) to converse with. We also plan to provide curated, freeform writing prompts in the future (if online chatrooms aren’t your thing).

Considering the fact that the most common form of output is conversational (whether written or spoken) and therefore two-sided, there is an opportunity to receive input while outputting. When conversing with someone, they might use a word or phrase you’ve never heard before. Linguistic enables you to use the same tools you use on other immersive content on conversations, so you can acquire new words while outputting, study them, then output those same words in future conversations.

This kind of circular pedagogy we refer to as the Language Learning Lifecycle (L3 for short).

The Small(er) Picture

While L3 can be summed up on a macro level with “immerse, rehearse, converse”, there also exists within it a technique we use to determine if a word has been fully learned. This technique contains five stages that learners must pass through before a word can be confirmed as “learned”:

  1. Acquisition: The learner becomes aware of the new word through some form of immersion (movie, book etc.).
  2. Recognition: Can the learner recognize the word? If they saw it, would they recognize its meaning? Its sound?
  3. Reflection: Can the learner pronounce the word correctly? Can they write it correctly? Do they know its stroke order?
  4. Retention: Can the learner recall the term from memory without seeing or hearing it?
  5. Integration: Can the learner use the word in a sentence or conversation correctly?

Learners can be between two stages at once. For example, perhaps they know a word’s meaning at first glance and can write it easily but forget how it is pronounced. While Linguistic currently follows a simple spaced repetition model for its word review, we plan to more expand our study experience to more closely reflect the process outlined here.

Wrapping Up

We hope this post gave you a bit more insight into our general philosophy in how we approach languages. We truly aim to help learners own their language learning process end-to-end, starting with first exposure to a new language and carrying them through to speaking it themselves.

Our current offerings are a step in the right direction, but we still have a long way to go before our mission is fulfilled and we fully encapsulate the pedagogy outlined here.

We look forward to having you along for the ride.