Is Hindi Really Hard to Learn? Verdict and Learning Tools

How hard is it to learn Hindi? A simple question with a lot of ground to cover in order to actually answer it. Generally, Hindi is rather hard to learn for English speakers considering aspects such as the script itself is rather complicated, but the benefits of learning this language make it worth it! The fact of the matter is— in order to learn Hindi or any language for that matter, you must put in time and energy. Figuring out the best way to learn a language is also important, and being prepared is key.

In this article, we will be discussing why Hindi is so hard for English speakers, but also highlight the easier parts of learning the language and why you should take the time to study it!

Why is Hindi Hard to Learn?

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Some languages share certain aspects with each other, for example, a native Italian speaker will have an easier time learning Spanish. When it comes to English speakers wanting to learn Hindi, this is not the case. Since, unlike Italian and Spanish, English and Hindi do not share origin, culture, and writing characters. This is what makes it hard. 

1. Script

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The Hindi script is called Devanagari and is rather hard to get the hang of if you are an English speaker. The script is also called an abugida since lone characters represent a consonant and vowel combination rather than a single vowel or consonant. To make things more complicated, the script will sometimes not contain certain phonetic markers to help a non-native know how a word is pronounced. Also, slight changes in sound when pronouncing a word can completely change the meaning!

2. Enunciation

There are many sounds in Hindi that is unfamiliar to an English speaker, which makes it hard to properly pronounce words. You should first focus on how to pronounce these sounds as it will come in handy later on!

Take the unique sound, for example, it sounds similar to the t in “pasta” and is used in words such as तेज़ (Tez) which is pronounced as “tease”.

3. Grammar

Following unique pronunciation, Hindi grammar is next! Diacritic is an important aspect of Hindi grammar, where the accent is located in a word drastically changes the way said word is pronounced. It is ridiculously sensitive.

For example, let’s take टी which is pronounced as “Tee”. In the word घंटी (Pronounced as gone-tea) it means “bell”, however, if you take away the squiggly bit and from the word घंटा the pronunciation changes to gone-tah and the meaning to “hour”.

Why is Hindi Easy to Learn?

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It’s not all hard! Some aspects of the Hindi language are actually easier to get the hang of!

1. Phonetic Language

Luckily, Hindi is a phonetic language. This means that words are pronounced exactly as they are written! There isn’t any ambiguity in pronunciation either!

For example, take the English words “put” and “bush”, both words have “u” in them, but it is pronounced differently between the two. In Hindi however, you won’t get this. Every letter or symbol has one way of pronouncing it. For example, (gh as in ghost) is pronounced the same way in घर (ghar) and घंटी (ghanti).

2. Similar Sounds

Despite Hindi containing some unique sounds, the language also contains some sounds that are fairly similar to those found in English!

Familiar Sound Hindi Example English Example
अ (a) Sound अनोखा pronounced as a-noh-kah, it means “strange”. Pronounced the same as the A in words like apple or abandon.
इ (i) Sound इतवार pronounced as i-twah-r, it means “sunday”. Pronounced the same as the i in words like lit or live.
च (c) Sound चाँद pronounced as ch-ah-nd, it means “moon”. Pronounced the same as the c in words like chat and cherry.
ज (j) Sound जानवर pronounced as j-ahn-were, it means “animal”. Pronounced the same as the j in words like jog or jump

3. Several Common English Words

Hindi contains some borrowed words from English and can be heard in daily Hindi phrases. Words such as:

  • जबाब देना, pronounced as cha-bob-din-na and it means “reply”.
  • मिलना, pronounced as me-lah and it means “meet”.
  • खाना, pronounced as kah-nah and it means “eat”.
  • आदर करना, pronounced as ah-dur kur-nah and it means “respect”.

Is it Possible to Become Fluent in Hindi?

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Hindi is rather hard to learn for an English speaker when looking at the reasons given above, but it is not impossible! With any language, if you dedicate time and energy to understand the language, you can be fluent in no time and Hindi is no exception! Besides, if you got the hang of the Hindi language, other languages such as Arabic (which is similar to Hindi) will be easier to learn, since you have already done most of the legwork. Plus, a lot of new doors, such as employment or studying opportunities, will open for you!

5 Tools to Become Fluent in Hindi

Learning a language such as Hindi is no easy feat— luckily there are some steps you can take in order to make it easier for yourself to learn. Below we have listed 5 tips and tricks that can help you become fluent in Hindi!

1. Watch Movies or TV shows

Watching Hindi TV shows or movies with subtitles on is a nice and relaxing way to learn the Hindi language! You will expand your vocabulary with new Hindi words and expressions that can be used daily. Reading the subtitles while the actor speaks can improve your reading and can also help with how you pronounce words.

2. Practice with Native Speakers

In order to become fluent in a language, you actually have to speak it! Chatting with a native Hindi speaker will enable you to quickly sharpen your Hindi fluency and help you carry out real-life conversations in the long run. Also, hey, a new friend!

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3. Use Language Learning Apps

Using **language learning apps** to learn Hindi is a fun and interactive way to introduce you to some key concepts of the Hindi language. These apps will help you build a daily routine around learning, consistency is key after all. One such app is the ever-popular Duolingo. It should be noted that apps are only helpful to get a grip of the language in the beginning or serve as a reminder of the basics further along your learning journey. To achieve further fluency you’d need to do more, like getting a tutor.

4. Try Hindi Language Textbooks

Textbooks are the literal foundation of studying, whether it be on your own or when joining a class. Textbooks contain everything you need to know about a language, most books these days even come with DVDs or CDs that show you how to pronounce words! Not to mention textbooks contain a lot of exercises that will help you learn concepts of a language!

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5. Try Learning with an Online Tutor

To learn a new language by yourself is.. daunting. Getting a tutor is proven to be one of the efficient ways to quickly learn a language. You will adequately learn how to pronounce words and form sentences from the get-go. Problems that might arise can also be quickly corrected.

To find good tutors is a bit of a challenge though, luckily AmazingTalker has a lot of quality tutors to choose from that will suit your needs. From online Hindi classes to Hindi tutors — studying with tutors at AmazingTalker is the best way to quickly become fluent in Hindi!

Why Should you Learn Hindi?

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Why should you the time and effort to learn Hindi? There are actually many good reasons:

1. Widely Popular

Hindi is the 3rd most spoken language in the world with over 602.2 million speakers! The language itself is the official language in a total of nine Indian states, but is also spoken in Mauritius, Suriname, Nepal, Trinidad and Tobago, the United States, South Africa, and many more! Hindi is insanely popular. Knowing how to communicate with all those people will definitely create new and exciting opportunities.

2. Professional Gains

Speaking of new and exciting opportunities, knowing how to speak Hindi will create a lot of new job opportunities. If you ever find yourself moving to India, you will be sure to thrive considering employers are more willing to hire someone that can speak the language— and you will be able to mix well with the locals!

3. Practical Advantages

You will be able to communicate with native Hindi speakers with ease, which is important if you find yourself in a Hindi-speaking country. This makes social gatherings all the more fun as you won’t feel left out. Being able to speak the language can also help when answering directions, doing groceries, or even trying to bargain for a better price.

अलविदा (alavida) — bye! (Remember, the अ sound is similar to “a” in apple!)

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So yes, getting the hang of Hindi will be a bit difficult, but it is definitely not impossible! Besides, the reward is far greater than the struggle.

As mentioned previously, getting a tutor to help you learn a new language, such as Hindi, is far better than struggling on your own. AmazingTalker has a wide variety of language tutors, whether you want to figure out how to learn mandarin or learn an easier language such as Indonesian— tutors at AmazingTalker will guide you through your language learning journey, and you will be chatting with native speakers in no time. All of this and more, at AmazingTalker!

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