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How Long does it Take to Learn Italian?

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When it comes to language learning, there is no one-size-fits-all answer to the question of how long it takes to learn Italian. It depends on your language skills, motivation, and learning approach. However, we can give you a general idea of how long it might take. Here, we will discuss the different factors that influence language learning and estimate how long it might take to become proficient in Italian.

Italian: A Complete Guide To Learning The Language

Italian is one of the most widely spoken languages globally, with over 70 million native speakers. It’s also one of the six official working languages of the European Union, along with French, German, English, Spanish, and Romanian. Italian is spoken as a mother tongue by some 40 million people in Italy alone! Not forgetting that it’s the official language of Venice, Rome, and Vatican City, well worth visiting if you haven’t already been.

So, you love Italian language?

We love it, too! Italian is a Romance language that is derived from Latin. It is spoken by about 60 million people worldwide, making it one of the most popular languages to learn. Italian is known for its beautiful musicality and poetic nature. If you are interested in learning this language, here are some things you need to know.

Some people might find that they can pick up Italian more quickly than others; it depends on your own learning style and preferences. If you’re someone who likes structure and sets goals when studying a language, then you might find that you’re able to progress more quickly than someone who prefers a more relaxed approach. However, it’s important to remember that language learning is gradual, and there’s no set’ time frame’ for mastering a new language. Rome wasn’t built in a day, after all.

What are the different levels of language proficiency?

First of all, how good do you want to be? There are different levels of proficiency when learning a language. The Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) defines a few levels of language ability:

  • Novice
  • Pre-Intermediate
  • Intermediate
  • Fluent
  • Advanced
  • Native

If your goal is to order food at a restaurant or carry on a basic conversation with someone, you can aim for the first levels. If your goal is to read books, watch movies, and understand the complex Italian language, your strategies will be more involved and the journey more varied. 

How much time are you willing to spend learning Italian?

Second of all, how much free time do you have? If you work full-time and have a family at home to take care of and other responsibilities, it might be more challenging for you to set aside time every day (or even every week) to practice language learning. However, if this isn’t an issue for you – super lucky for you, then you should definitely set aside a chunk of time each day or week for studying/language learning.

How To Become Fluent In Italian In Record Time? your previous experiences may help

Third of all, how good are your language skills in general? Learning Italian should be relatively easy if you already know one or two other languages well enough to speak them fluently. But if this is the first language you’ve ever attempted learning Italian from scratch (or if it’s been a while since last time), things may take longer because there are many new concepts and vocabulary words that need to be memorized before they can become second nature.

Furthermore, if English isn’t your native language either – meaning that neither language has any overlap with what was spoken at home during childhood – then things might even take longer than expected due to difficulties in pronunciation and grammar usage, which aren’t immediately apparent when just listening passively. 

How Long Does It Take To Become Fluent in a Language?

There’s no definitive answer to this question since it depends on each learner’s language proficiency, motivation, and learning style. However, on average, it takes around 500 hours of study to achieve a solid “basic fluency” level in Italian. Of course, you can learn more or less depending on how much time and effort you put into your studies.

In general, we would say that it takes around 500 hours of study to go from beginner level to intermediate, and an additional 1000 hours to reach an advanced level. Of course, it’s a rough estimate and will vary depending on the individual language learner.

It may seem like a lot, but keep in mind that even native speakers need to practice regularly to maintain their language skills.

Setting Learning Goals

It is important to set learning goals so that you know what you are trying to achieve and will be able to measure your learning against this learning goal. Having learning goals will also help you in developing learning strategies.

For learning the Italian language, it is best to learn how the sounds work, which includes learning about the linguistic structure behind what makes sounds turn into words (phonetics). It is best to go slow when starting out learning Italian, taking the time to learn one sound at a time until they become second nature. You can practice these sounds by connecting them ever so slightly with your lip movements.

How to make the most out of your Italian Language Learning journey?

It is important when learning Italian to take it one step at a time for this learning curve to be an effective learning experience. Learning how to say words in Italian gives you the foundation for learning how to say sentences in Italian, which is more like learning a language within a language.

Learning Italian culture goes hand in hand with learning the language itself. One should learn certain customs that go along with learning about this culture, just as learning about their own native culture can be beneficial when learning another tongue. You will learn what knowledge of the culture brings up each word and help build on your learning curve simultaneously.

Tips on how to make your italian learning journey an effective experience

So is there any way to speed up the Italian learning process? Definitely! Here are a few tips:

  • Start with basic phrases and vocabulary. Don’t try to learn too much at once.
  • Listen to Italian language radio, television, and podcasts.
  • Find an Italian conversation partner or online forum to practice with.
  • Use flashcards and other memory aids to help you remember words and phrases.
  • Study grammar rules systematically and practices using them in context.
  •  Use language learning tools and resources, such as textbooks, dictionaries, online courses, etc.

Once you have set your goals and learned some of these valuable tips, it is time to learn Italian. Keep these tips stored away, so they are available when you get stuck or need them most.

Myths: Obstacles stand in the way of learning Italian

It’s a commonly held belief, but it’s not TRUE! When it comes to learning, children are not the only ones who can beat adults. It’s just ok if you’re not an early age/teenager because we all learn differently and at our own pace.

What do you think? Do great teachers always come from prestigious schools or trained at the best universities? Speedo-wearing camel drivers with multiple languages skillsets are something special. Do they seem like people who had amazing coaches? The truth is that you don’t need to be with great teachers or go anywhere expensive.

Additionally, it’s not a fact that residing in a nation where the language is spoken expedites the process. Numerous people in the United States, for example, have lived there for years yet do not speak English. And I spent years in Italy before acquiring more than the bare essentials.

However, several conditions contribute to the quick advancement of some fortunate individuals.

Elements Responsible to Speed Up your Learning Italian

Being a natural Spanish or French speaker is a big advantage while studying Italian due to the similarities between the two languages. Now that I speak Italian, I can read a book written in French. I frequently talk with folks who speak Spanish (the language of Spain’s Inhabitants) but whom I can comprehend rather well.

Now is the time to learn. It’s a significant one. In reality, if you have a full-time job and a family, your development will likely be slowed. Whereas, if you’re young or on a sabbatical, you may have more time to complete your assignments and may spend your days socializing with classmates and exercising what you’ve learned. Which is beneficial.

If you have already learned a foreign language before, learning Italian should not be particularly difficult. However, as with many things, there is a higher learning curve if you have never done anything comparable before, but we all have to start from somewhere, and Italian is a relatively easy one to start! 

What might hinder your progress?

  • your Native language

A native speaker of a language that has nothing in common with Italian, say, a native speaker of any Asian region language, will have a far more challenging task than a native Spanish or French speaker. That is unpleasant but a reality.

  •  Easily Irritated

You are probably used to feeling competent at various things in your daily life, such as your work, driving a vehicle, and using a computer, and hence are not used to feeling like you know nothing at all. However, when learning a foreign language, you will encounter several mental taxing problems: you will practically have to start from scratch. You should be alright with it if you are a calm, happy-go-lucky type. If you’re a control freak who despises appearing foolish, this probably isn’t for you.

  • Poor learning method Choices

There is no single correct method for learning a foreign language, but several incorrect methods exist. It’s easy to waste time and go nowhere fast while studying anything. With something as difficult as a foreign language, the likelihood of learning inefficiently is extremely significant unless you have extensive experience with other foreign languages. Choose a reputable institution/method to minimize this mistake.

This Is Why You Should Learn Italian ASAP

There are many reasons why you should be learning Italian: because knowing multiple European languages could boost your career chances, because acquiring another language expands your mind, and simply because it would satisfy your curiosity about such an intriguing and lovely language. Here we present a few great reasons why you should learn Italian:

  • Italian will help you get a job
  • It’ll help you score soccer tickets for Euro 2024
  • Speaking Italian will get you backstage at Sanremo [The annual music competition (held in February)]
  • Once you learn Italian, you can finally understand subtitled episodes of “Skam (The Norwegian teen drama)
  • You’ll be able to converse with a huge number of people, and they will love you for trying! 
  • Italian foods are fantastic. You’ll be able to pronounce, then enjoy excellent cuisine
  • You’ll enjoy some stunningly beautiful cities even more
  • To engage with Italians wherever you go
  • Have access to hundreds of years’ worth of literature, not to mention Latin…it is so similar to Italian!
  • To travel further afield with greater ease
  • It’s one of the easiest languages for English speakers to learn

Other recommendations


Pimsleur is a language learning audio program based on linguist and psychological techniques. It was Dr. Paul Pimsleur’s idea to create a language learning course based on his research in linguistics and psychology. Pimsleur Italian primarily focuses on listening and speaking skills along with correct pronunciation. The program focuses on the active participation and concentration of the learners. Pimsleur Italian employs a spaced-out repetition method for developing oral skills. Through this approach, Pimsleur Italian concentrates on core vocabulary and phrases necessary for communication in Italian.


Italianpod101 is an online tool for learning Italian through a comprehensive teaching methodology. It provides Italian language learners with audio, video lessons, resources, and tools to learn Italian in an easy and fun way. Italianpod101 provides language learners guidance for Italian language, grammar, pronunciation, and vocabulary. For Italian language learners, there is a sufficient amount of lessons and supportive material available. Each lesson is well structured, and grammar is explained at different levels. If you feel the pace is too fast, you can slow down the audio, use flashcards and re-quizzes to pick each word in Italian. Italianpod101 provides Italian learners personal teachers to give answers, feedback, and improvements through private messenger. You will have weekly tasks and a tailored program assigned by your teacher. For learning Italian short and entertaining podcast lessons are best for beginners to keep them motivated. Each level has accurate difficulty stages which make the transition to the next level easier and smooth. Italianpod101 makes use of valuable vocabulary in their lessons so that people will learn the Italian language that is used in everyday life. The most prominent feature of Italianpod101 is communicating dialogues with translation, audio, and transcription, and adding them to personalized flashcards with just a click. Your progress on all your devices is synced and you can download podcasts to listen to when you desire.

Story Learning

The StoryLearning method developed by Olly Richards is an excellent way to learn Italian in a natural and fun way. A real-life example is required for learning a new word, grammar, and its usage. StoryLearning has employed the same technique to make language learning easy and more productive. Learning Italian through stories makes this language learning task to be rich and rewarding. StoryLearning offers an Italian Uncovered program for Italian learners at beginner and intermediate levels. Additionally, Conversations programs are offered to deal with targeted issues and grammar Hero is available to achieve fluency in Italian. While learning Italian with StoryLearning you don’t have to learn grammar rules, you will perceive it naturally through stories. Gradually, you will get hold of grammar usage and later you can improve it. StoryLearning makes maximum use of your listening and reading abilities to instill rich vocabulary, better grammar, pronunciation, and improved memorization through your brain’s natural tendency for language learning. Learning Italian with StoryLearning is an enjoyable experience with tons of material available for language learners. They offer a 7-day free trial just in case you want to give this program a try.

Bottom Line

Italian has enjoyed such widespread popularity in recent years, not just for its elegance. Languages are more than mere words strung together; they are living, breathing entities constantly evolving. That’s why you should learn Italian right away.

There are many different ways to learn the Italian language, so don’t get discouraged if you don’t see immediate results. Just keep practicing and be patient – fluency is definitely within reach! Thanks for reading!

We hope this post has helped give you a better idea of how long it might take to learn Italian. If you have any questions or anything else you would like us to cover, please let us know!

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