by Denise Doty 06/28/16
How many times have you filled a job application out or created a resume and found yourself putting your language skills at the bottom under insignificant titles such as other skills or interests. It’s time to change that. Language skills are in high demand and deserve to be treated with such respect. Knowing a second language is a well sought after skill that needs to take a prominent place. No longer should it be buried at the end under “Other”. Even if your target job/career is not one where you will use your language a lot, still highlight these skills.
When you study a foreign language you inherently learn about the culture. Learning about the culture teaches you to see different points of view. It also teaches you to be more tolerant of those that are different from you. It gives you a global understanding of the world.
Remember all that vocabulary you memorized? Well, that was great training. Training your brain to memorize vocabulary will help you remember things for your job.
Every time you speak in a foreign language you are making decisions. Should this word be plural, is it masculine or feminine, which verb tense do I use. Decisions, decisions, decisions. Again this is great practice for any decision making that you would need to do.
Language is part science. There are grammar rules that must be followed. Knowing these rules and the inevitable exceptions, aids in preparing you to think in a logical and analytical manner.
Language is part art. Art allows you to be creative. By being creative with language you can see how a different word order or different punctuation or different inflections can change the meaning of a word or a phrase. This transfers over to the job by allowing you to look at projects from different angles.
When studying a second language you focus a lot on grammar rules and construction. By doing so many language learners improve their first language. This experience allows language learners to take a fresh look at their native tongue.
As you can see when you are studying a foreign language you develop more skills than simply learning new words. From better decision-making skills to an improved first language these skills should be and deserve to be highlighted. Next time you type up your resume make sure your language skills are duly noted as they may be the factor that sets you apart.