Becoming Fluent

How Cognitive Science Can Help Adults Learn a Foreign Language
Narrated by: P. J. Ochlan
Length: 5 hrs and 34 mins
4.2 out of 5 stars (94 ratings)

Audible Plus

$7.95 a month

Try our newest plan – unlimited listening to select audiobooks, Audible Originals, and podcasts.
You will get an email reminder before your trial ends.
$7.95 a month after 30 day trial. Upgrade or cancel anytime.
Buy for $20.97

Buy for $20.97

Pay using card ending in
By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Publisher's Summary

Adults who want to learn a foreign language are often discouraged because they believe they cannot acquire a language as easily as children. Once they begin to learn a language, students may be further discouraged when they find the methods used to teach children don't seem to work for them. What is an adult language learner to do?

In Becoming Fluent, Richard Roberts and Roger Kreuz draw on insights from psychology and cognitive science to show that adults can master a foreign language if they bring to bear the skills and knowledge they have honed over a lifetime. Adults shouldn't try to learn as children do, they should learn like adults. Roberts and Kreuz report evidence that adults can learn new languages even more easily than children. Children appear to have only two advantages over adults in learning a language: they acquire a native accent more easily, and they do not suffer from self-defeating anxiety about learning a language. Adults, on the other hand, have the greater advantages - gained from experience - of an understanding of their own mental processes and knowing how to use language to do things. Adults have an especially advantageous grasp of pragmatics, the social use of language, and Roberts and Kreuz show how to leverage this metalinguistic ability in learning a new language.

Learning a language takes effort. But if adult learners apply the tools acquired over a lifetime, it can be enjoyable and rewarding.

©2015 Richard Roberts, Roger Kreuz (P)2015 Blackstone Audio

More from the same

What listeners say about Becoming Fluent

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    42
  • 4 Stars
    32
  • 3 Stars
    17
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    3
Performance
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    40
  • 4 Stars
    29
  • 3 Stars
    9
  • 2 Stars
    6
  • 1 Stars
    2
Story
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    38
  • 4 Stars
    29
  • 3 Stars
    14
  • 2 Stars
    3
  • 1 Stars
    1

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Learning strategies

This book had plenty of information of how NOT TO study foreign language but very little in the way of learning strategies. There are a few, and maybe there are more but they are easily forgotten due to complicated, vague, convoluted explanations. If you're looking for how the mind works when acquiring a foreign language, benefits of studying a foreign language, or why certain things you've done in the past have often times been helpful, this book is fine. Just don't expect the authors to give you examples of best practices to retain conversational foreign language competencies in long term memory.

13 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Interesting audiobook for language learners

One of the best audiobook about learning new language. The techniques in the book also can be used to study and prepare for new materials. Using cognitive science in order to recall old and new memories learned through the years. I do recommend it for all the learners.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Humorous and Enjoyable

Either I'm a huge nerd or this book really is as entertaining and informative as I think it is. The perfect blend of examples and stories of Richard paired with the scientific topics make for a really enjoyable listen.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

terrible narrator

good info, poor narration. hard to get past the tone of delivery. oh well, eh?

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Nothing too groundbreaking

If you've never researched or learned about memorization techniques you'd find this interesting. The narrator was also quite robotic sounding.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Useful, simple, and practical

The information in this book is science-based and encouraging for anyone struggling to learn a new language.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Waste of time

As one who has some ability in several languages and having taken several courses in linguistics, I looked forward to this book. However it was so useless and boring that I stopped halfway through. The speaker is terrible. He goes on and on about the foreign service institute which is useless to the average person who probably isn’t joining the state department. All he does is talk about psychological terms. Nothing practical. If he were teaching a linguistics course I’d want a refund.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Useful material not helped by the reader.

I thought the material was interesting and, possibly, very useful. I’ll certainly keep lots of it in mind while I’m studying. The presentation seemed to me very “professional”, each sentence interestingly inflected and rhythmic but not reflecting the point being made by the material. Listening to an author reading his/her own work kind of showed me this difference (e.g.: Michael Lewis reading his own stuff.)

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Very helpful

If you want to understand how the brain works when you are learning a new language this is for you. There are not magic tricks to become fluent but a lot of us make mistakes that can be avoided and also having the right tools helps a lot.