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What are the most useful skills to learn while social distancing? Show more Show less
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All this time alone can be frustrating. But let's not forget that Shakespeare allegedly wrote his masterpiece 'King Lear' while in quarantine from the Bubonic Plague. As the titular character in that great play states “Nothing can come of nothing.” Don't despair - use this time to learn valuable skills, so when you do emerge from this pandemic period, you do so stronger, wiser and ready to take on the new world.

Language skills Show more Show less

An irony of the coronavirus is that as individuals are increasingly isolated, the world becomes more united. Learning a new language is the perfect way to sustain our global community long after the coronavirus has disappeared.
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Get a basic working knowledge of a foreign language

When else will a person have so much free time to dedicate to language learning? When lockdowns are lifted and people reenter the job market, knowledge of a foreign language will be a desirable skill which may improve employability.

The Argument

Language learning has been a popular lockdown pass time, evidenced by a marked rise in language learning app downloads as well as registration for online language courses.[1] Learning a foreign language is a practical way to spend time while home in lockdown. While not working, people are turning to language learning to fill their time in the hope of emerging from lockdown with practical and marketable skill. In an increasingly global world, knowing more than one language is a highly desirable skill is many job markets. Other benefits include improved memory as well as developing problem-solving and cognitive skills.[2]

Counter arguments

Proponents

Premises

[P1] People have enough free time during the pandemic to dedicate to language learning. [P2] Knowing a foreign language is a desirable skill in many job markets. [P3] Knowledge of a foreign language can improve cognitive skills.

Rejecting the premises

References

  1. https://www.research.ox.ac.uk/Article/2020-03-30-coronavirus-lockdown-linked-to-surge-in-language-learning
  2. https://www.uclan.ac.uk/news/ask-an-expert-how-covid-19-could-help-language-skills.php

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This page was last edited on Sunday, 14 Jun 2020 at 17:02 UTC