With some 350 million native speakers and around 70 million secondary speakers, Spanish is the third or fourth most commonly spoken language in the world. Only Mandarin, and Hindi (and according to some sources, English) have more speakers. Spanish is an official language on four continents and is the mother tongue in 21 countries. It is the third most used language on the Internet. The stage is set for a further enormous increase in the usage of the language. There are currently 41 million native Spanish speakers living in the US today — and another 11.6 million people who are bilingual. In fact, there are more Spanish speakers in the United States than there are speakers of Chinese, French, Italian, Hawaiian, and the Native American languages combined.
As well as making you more marketable, learning Spanish will enable you to keep pace with the powerful Hispanic influence on today’s popular culture. In addition, while it is certainly possible to travel to a Spanish-speaking country without knowing any Spanish, knowing Spanish will completely transform your travel experience.
Spanish has been described as a language that is “almost phonetically perfect”, meaning that once you know the basic rules of pronunciation, you can correctly pronounce any word you see. It is also a gateway to other languages that you might want to learn at university or later in life, such as Italian or Portuguese.
Staff: Ms B. Fahy, Mrs R. McIntosh, Mrs R. Crawford