Effective learning of any foreign language depends on numerous factors, but initially potential student has to properly understand whether there is a necessity in learning that foreign language. Languages can be roughly classified into TOP and other by the number of speakers around the globe. For example, the TOP 3 most spread languages in the world are English, Chinese, and Hindi, while Russian was placed on the 7th position (The most, 2017).
With its 375 million native speakers and 1,500 million of worldwide speakers, English got the 1st place in TOP 3 ranking (The most, 2017), while Russian has about 165 million of native speakers and 275 million of worldwide Russian speakers (The most, 2017). English is winning its position of “the first lingua franca” (Crystal, 2012, p. 1) as it is easier to learn compared to Russian, which is fusional (inflected) language. Word forms differ by the use of an inflectional morpheme denoting numerous semantic and grammatical features. Besides, there are three genders (masculine, feminine, and neuter), and six cases (nominative / subjective; genitive; accusative; dative; ablative; and locative / prepositional), which affect forms of verbs, pronouns, and adjectives. There is no strict word order in Russian, and in most cases the sense of the phrase / sentence will be comprehended even with the wrong order of words. Russian uses Cyrillic alphabet, which would be harder to comprehend and memorize for a native English speaker, as there are some letters that look the same as in the English alphabet, but are pronounced differently and mean different letter, for example, Russian ‘H’ is not the English ‘H’, but a ‘N’, whereas Russian ‘P’ is English ‘R’, etc. English on the contrary is easy to learn and speak as it mostly uses neutral gender for nomination of all inanimate objects and animals, while in Russian, for example, a cat can be either masculine ‘кот’ or feminine ‘кошка’, and all inanimate objects are of one of the three genders.
There are many difficulties in learning Russian as a foreign language, and all of them should be considered for proper training in it. Compared to it, English is an easy-to-learn language with irregular verbs being the major difficulty in tuition. English has only two articles, and what could be easier than English, if plenty of English words used globally.
- Crystal, D. (2012). English as a Global Language. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. Retrieved from https://books.google.com/books?id=jYoE2MGoVhQC&printsec=frontcover&hl=uk#v=onepage&q&f=false.
- The most spoken languages worldwide (speakers and native speaker in millions). (2017). [Graph illustration]. The Statistics Portal: Statistics and Studies from more than 18,000 Sources. Retrieved from https://www.statista.com/statistics/266808/the-most-spoken-languages-worldwide/.