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Best foreign languages to learn

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  • Best foreign languages to learn

    Hell Gents,

    I am strongly considering getting my 4 yr degree before I enlist and try to get a seat at BUD/s. If I do so, I may major in a foreign language. Or two. I believe this would make me more valuable to the Navy, and SEALs, and several ways. Do you think I'm correct? And most importantly, which language do you feel would be the best to learn? I am already well on my way to speaking Spanish, though many people know that langauge.

    PLEASE I do not need input from a bunch of 14 yr old wanna be's. Thanks.

  • #2
    Re: Best foreign languages to learn

    This should answer your questions.

    http://www.sealswcc.com/forums/showt...1147#post11147

    Hope this helps and best of luck.
    Fortitude is the guard and support of the other virtues.

    John Locke (1632-1704)

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Best foreign languages to learn

      The best language I think to learn would be chinese. If you read the job description for being a SEAL I believe you will learn foreign languages. But for you I'd stick with Spanish. Because you do need a foreign language to get into a university I believe.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Best foreign languages to learn

        Originally posted by Ryknow View Post
        The best language I think to learn would be chinese... ...Because you do need a foreign language to get into a university I believe.
        Please explain why Chinese would be the best language to learn. And are you saying that if you don't know a foreign language you can't go to college??
        "Continuous effort--not strength or intelligence--is the key to unlocking our potential." --Winston Churchill

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        • #5
          Re: Best foreign languages to learn

          I have a related question. To receive foreign language proficiency pay, one has to score at least a 2/2 on the DLPT. For a category 4 language this is the equivalent of 12 college courses. My question is, to the teams, would it be more valuable to speak one language at a 2/2 level or three languages at a 1/1 level (assuming all are category 3 or 4 languages)? For something along the lines of Army SF, where communication with natives is more prominent, it makes sense that near-fluency is necessary.

          I would guess that SEALs are more likely to use a language in a brief, spontaneous, interrogation than in an in depth foreign internal defense scenario. What's more beneficial, variety or specificity?

          I forgot to mention that a 1/1 level on the DLPT is the equivalent of 4 college courses. Clearly there is a point of diminishing return.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Best foreign languages to learn

            I don't want to go officer, however I am learning Russian, decided to learn Russian because I am 2nd generation Kozak, and my swim coach a former NCIS special agent that worked in the ONI said that the Naval Special Warfare community would love that and that it would be a good language to know. Just what I see from my little corner of the world.
            "Do the right thing even if it means dying like a dog when no one's there to see you do it." Vice Admiral James Stockdale, Navy Pilot

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            • #7
              Re: Best foreign languages to learn

              Learning a foreign language is a smart idea. Those who are multi-lingual will have an edge against others competing for a SEAL contract.
              Navy SEAL & SWCC Scout Team

              "The cost of freedom is always high, but Americans have always paid it. And one path we shall never choose, and that is the path of surrender, or submission."

              John F. Kennedy
              35th President of U.S. 1961-1963 (1917 - 1963)

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Best foreign languages to learn

                Originally posted by NotNuke View Post
                I have a related question. To receive foreign language proficiency pay, one has to score at least a 2/2 on the DLPT. For a category 4 language this is the equivalent of 12 college courses. My question is, to the teams, would it be more valuable to speak one language at a 2/2 level or three languages at a 1/1 level (assuming all are category 3 or 4 languages)? For something along the lines of Army SF, where communication with natives is more prominent, it makes sense that near-fluency is necessary.

                I would guess that SEALs are more likely to use a language in a brief, spontaneous, interrogation than in an in depth foreign internal defense scenario. What's more beneficial, variety or specificity?

                I forgot to mention that a 1/1 level on the DLPT is the equivalent of 4 college courses. Clearly there is a point of diminishing return.
                Proficiency is one language is preferable. You will pick up some other languages as you deploy in foreign countries, and language school is now a mandatory part of training that comes immediately after graduation from SQT. The SEAL mission is evolving and there is more interaction with foreigners than ever befoer.
                Navy SEAL & SWCC Scout Team

                "The cost of freedom is always high, but Americans have always paid it. And one path we shall never choose, and that is the path of surrender, or submission."

                John F. Kennedy
                35th President of U.S. 1961-1963 (1917 - 1963)

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Best foreign languages to learn

                  Originally posted by JonK View Post
                  Hell Gents,

                  I am strongly considering getting my 4 yr degree before I enlist and try to get a seat at BUD/s. If I do so, I may major in a foreign language. Or two. I believe this would make me more valuable to the Navy, and SEALs, and several ways. Do you think I'm correct? And most importantly, which language do you feel would be the best to learn? I am already well on my way to speaking Spanish, though many people know that langauge.

                  PLEASE I do not need input from a bunch of 14 yr old wanna be's. Thanks.
                  SEALs operate almost everywhere, so knowing a foreign language is very important. That's why we've incorporated language school into mandatory training. If you want to get a head start, which is advisable, try a Chinese dialect, or Tagalog, or an Arabic dialect such as Urdu. African languages would be another good choice. Even Spanish.
                  Navy SEAL & SWCC Scout Team

                  "The cost of freedom is always high, but Americans have always paid it. And one path we shall never choose, and that is the path of surrender, or submission."

                  John F. Kennedy
                  35th President of U.S. 1961-1963 (1917 - 1963)

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Best foreign languages to learn

                    Mr. Williams,
                    How are language skills taken into account when giving out SO contracts? Do you bring it up to a recruiter and are you then given a test of some sort? If you are given a test, what appropriate scores are needed to be considered proficient and have that on your file come draft time?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Best foreign languages to learn

                      To add onto thegriffin45's query to Mr. Williams,

                      When do they test you on your language skills? At MEPS? RTC? I can speak at a basic conversational level in three other languages (Spanish, French, Chinese), but I don't remember much of the grammar, so I wouldn't mind brushing up on my writing and reading skills before getting tested.
                      "But the bravest are surely those who have the clearest vision of what is before them, glory and danger alike, and yet notwithstanding go out to meet it." - Thucydides
                      *08APR2013 SO Contract*

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Best foreign languages to learn

                        There are two types of language skills tests. One, the DLAB, tests your ability to learn or understand a language. The other is a specific language proficiency test. You can take care of this at the same time you are taking your ASVAB and going through medical exams at the MEPS station. Just mention it to your recruiter.
                        The MEPS station may have to order a test for you if you are asking for a proficiency test in say, Italian or Swahili. If you meet the minimum criteria (I don't have the latest threshold score available, but your recruiter will know) you may qualify for additional language pay after you enlist, but in the short term a documented proficiency in a foreign language will be looked upon favorably in the SEAL draft. It could potentially give you an edge over another candidate with similar traits but no foreign language proficiency. In this era of highly competitive drafts, any advantage is important.
                        Navy SEAL & SWCC Scout Team

                        "The cost of freedom is always high, but Americans have always paid it. And one path we shall never choose, and that is the path of surrender, or submission."

                        John F. Kennedy
                        35th President of U.S. 1961-1963 (1917 - 1963)

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Best foreign languages to learn

                          The test is usually administered at MEPS.
                          Navy SEAL & SWCC Scout Team

                          "The cost of freedom is always high, but Americans have always paid it. And one path we shall never choose, and that is the path of surrender, or submission."

                          John F. Kennedy
                          35th President of U.S. 1961-1963 (1917 - 1963)

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Best foreign languages to learn

                            I realize that any language is better than no language but would you put french in that same category of importance. its used in a lot of african countries i know

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Best foreign languages to learn

                              If you're looking for a valuable language to learn, type "Critical Languages" into your search engine and it should give you a list.

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