Learning languages – setting yourself apart from the rest!

During your time as a language student at university, you will consistently be reminded that your course provides you with “transferable skills” that will impress any employer and that having these skills may set you apart from the other candidates applying for the same position. With high unemployment in the under 25’s in the UK, it is important to have a special “something” to increase your chances of getting employed. So, is learning another language the way forward?

 

  1. Communication skills

 

It may seem obvious, but learning another language is all about communication. It isn’t enough to master the grammatical rules on paper, you have to be able to speak, listen and understand the language in order to fully master it. Learning another language not only forces you to become a better communicator in the given language, it also helps you understand your own language more clearly, which in turn can make you a better and clearer communicator in your mother tongue. To employers, this is an appealing trait, especially if the work involves meeting and communicating with clients.

 

  1. Presentation skills

 

During a languages degree, you will be asked to give numerous presentations, not only in your native language, but also in the “target language”, i.e. the language you are learning. This improves confidence, encourages you to be spontaneous in speaking the language (preparing you for real-life situations), and also enhances a skill which you may need in your future career. This will not go unnoticed by employers.

 

  1. Study/work abroad

 

A compulsory part of any languages degree is to spend time abroad in a country where the language is spoken. The experiences and skills you will acquire during this time become invaluable and, as many will agree, really shape you as a person. Employers will value this as it proves you are someone who can adapt easily, who is outgoing, responsible, independent and aware of other cultures. It will also mean that your language level hugely improves and, in today’s increasingly globalised society, employers with contacts abroad will really value this.

 

  1. Personality

 

Having learnt a language says a lot about your personality; it proves you to be a committed, confident, driven individual who likes a challenge and who rises up to it – you can, after all, speak the language. This shows employers that they can give you responsibility and that you will work hard to complete tasks to a high standard. Furthermore, the experiences you will have gathered by working or studying abroad contribute to making you a more interesting person; use tales of your experiences during this time to make yourself stand out at the interview!

 

If you haven’t begun with language learning yet, start now and take those important steps to set yourself apart from the rest!

 

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