Emma Maerz

    1.  Where, when and how did you start learning a second language?

    I started learning French when I was in the first year at secondary school. Italian when I was 16, also at school.  Finally, I started learning German in taught classes when I moved to Austria 17 years ago. German is my L2 now.

    2.  What did you find difficult about learning a second language?  How did you try to overcome those difficulties?

    After six months of intensive German lessons I felt a lot more confident.  However, my motivation started to wane.  I stopped taking the classes and tried to experience the language through more natural channels like listening to the radio etc and experiencing more of the Austrian culture.  Since then, my German has improved a lot.

    3.  Did you learn the language successfully?  Why? why not?

    I can speak German to B2, but I’m not yet fluent and still make mistakes.  We are a bilingual household and I only speak German when I interact with the locals. I feel I am at the point where I need to go back and focus on the language to improve this.