Do you want to be more rational and take the right decision? Learn a second language!

Don’t waist your time, you need to learn a new language not just because you’ll be able to different people. Learning a foreign language may boost your ability to make rational decisions. This is what some researchers from the University of Chicago found out.

language learning helps to make rational decisions

Researchers conducted six experiments in four languages: English, Korean, French, and Spanish and examined two different cognitive biases, both based on how risk-averse humans are. According to one of these biases if two situations are equivalent and impersonal, people have a greater aversion to risk if the situation is presented as a potential gain rather than a potential loss.

The researchers starts their studies by using a famous example of problem created by Tversky and Kahnemans in 1981, posed to a panel of doctors:


Imagine that the US is preparing for the outbreak of an unusual Asian disease, which is expected to kill 600 people.  Two alternative programs to combat the disease have been proposed.  Assume that the exact scientific estimates of the consequences of the programs are as follows.Program A:  If Program A is adopted, 200 people will be saved [72%].

Program B:  If Program B is adopted, there is 1/3 probability that 600 people will be saved, and 2/3 probability that no people will be saved [28%].

Which of the two programs would you favor?

The researchers found that the majority choice in this problem was risk averse: the prospect of saving 200 lives with certainty was more promising than the probability of a one-in-three chance of saving 600 lives.  This risky prospect B was of equal expected value as the first prospect A.

A second group of respondents were given the same story of the Asian disease problem, but were provided with different program options.



Program C:  If Program C is adopted 400 people will die [22%].Program D:  If Program D is adopted there is 1/3 probability that nobody will die, and 2/3 probability that 600 people will die [78%].

Which of the two programs would you favor?

This time  the majority of the same group of doctors choice risk taking: the certain death of 400 people is less acceptable than the two-in-three chance that 600 people will die.

When these problems were given to American students, nearly 80% chose the safe option when it was presented positively, in English. But when they were given the same choice in Japanese, that percentage plummeted to 40 percent.

A second language can help people think more rationally because reduces decision-making biases. “We propose that these effects arise because a foreign language provides greater cognitive and emotional distance than a native tongue does,” the researchers write in the journal Psychological Science.

If you think about it bilingual people need to hold multiple languages in their brain and this means an increased control ability.

So, you have a really good reason to start learning a language! We are also making it funny and easy. Please, no excuses, start your PLAYFUL LANGUAGE LEARNING.



12speak! is a global language learning community serving its members an easy and fun way to learn a language in a playful online environment. 12speak! is connecting language learners with native speakers and providing a personalized language vocabulary to be trained with integrated and fun language games. 12speak! believes language learning can be fun and entertaining. Our goal is to provide an online environment where global language learners can meet, chat and practice their individual language skills and have fun learning languages. We provide a way to meet native speakers and learn a language naturally. We provide a way to manage your individual vocabulary and track your progress. We provide a way to train your vocabulary with entertaining language games. We want our members to have fun while learning! Your 12speak! team “Vocabulary games from 12speak! are an exciting way to improve my English online!” - Marina (12speak! member) “I enjoy chatting to native speakers from all over the world, I met a lot of French, German and Spanish native speakers online!” - Stefano (12speak! member) “12speak! gives me the opportunity to be on top of my vocabulary progress!” - Andrea (12speak! member)

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