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The Language Edge

Updated: Jun 16, 2020

With their outsourcing businesses getting affected due to changing US policies, Indian businesses have been looking to establish themselves in Europe, with a focus on the two major Economies in Europe viz. Germany and France, and since both these countries are non-English speaking, there is a great demand in the job market for people who know German or French, and in some cases both. European countries see Indian Students as intelligent and hardworking, and with a view to internationalize their campuses, in a

globalized world, have started attracting them. Many Universities in Europe especially those that are situated in Germany and France, offer top class education at a nominal cost and Indian students have started looking beyond English-speaking countries for their education. Should students want to take full advantage of what is on offer in Germany or France they have to learn their respective languages, this is not such a difficult proposition for Indians as some people might be led to believe.

Indians have better language acquisition skills than most others and acquire new languages with ease, since from very early on, Indians speak at least two languages. In the south, they speak a Dravidian language – which would be their mother tongue – and English, and in the north, they speak an Aryan language such as Gujarati,Marathi, Bhojpuri etc. and, either Hindi or English. Some Indians are fluent in more than two languages, this often happens when families shift to a different state for their livelihood.

If Indians want to learn German for educational or business reasons, they would be pleasantly surprised by the similarities they would find between Hindi and German, as well as English and German. This is because German belongs to the Indo-Aryan group of languages and is distantly related to Sanskrit and Hindi and closely related to English. The other obvious advantage for Indians who know English is the script, since German and English share the same script, with the exception of a few additional symbols, such as modified vowels – ä, ö, ü and the double ss symbolized by ‘ß’, found in German.

North Indians, that is more than 75% of Indians, speaking languages from the Aryan family, would also find German strangely familiar, due to the fact that German Nouns have genders, not unlike Sanskrit, Hindi and other similar languages.

Thus, as made clear above, learning German, would be, an asset to people, who want to get involved in German Projects at work, and students who want to take advantage of the educational possibilities in Germany. And as regards the learning process itself, the innate ability of Indians to easily acquire new languages and German’s similarities to the English language, make it worth taking a shot at.

Ravichandran Ivan

Language Head

Solomon Languages

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