Most people who have mastered Turkish say that it’s not a complex language to learn and that you can understand and speak it in one year. Obtaining fluency and learning to understand the grammar can take up to four years.
It’ll take up to six months to understand the Turkish language. Speaking in an understandable manner can take up to one year. Immersion in the culture is the best way to learn. You can learn Turkish through digital apps and conversations with Turkish speakers when immersion isn’t an option.
There are two ways to learn Turkish. The first is through living in a city where Turkish is the primary language, and the second is by enrolling in a Turkish language course and using apps to supplement your study.
Learning Turkish Through Natives
Ideally, it would be best to learn Turkish through natives who live in Turkey. This method is the quickest way to learn to speak and understand any language, including Turkish. If you can find a Turkish community where you live, spend time conversing with them.
Learning Turkish in Turkey
Before moving to Turkey, you can apply to study the Turkish language through Yunus Emre Institutes, which introduces you to Turkish culture, dialogue, and art. This institute offers opportunities to learn Turkish through centers located in multiple countries.
Once you arrive in Turkey, you can apply to study Turkish through Ankara University, which has branches in Istanbul, Antalya, Alanya, Izmir, Bursa, and Ankara. They offer introductory courses for a nominal fee.
Learning Turkish Without Immersion
Learning the Turkish language without immersing yourself in the culture is more challenging but still manageable. There are several ways to practice listening to and speaking the language that’ll help you converse, but you’ll need a formal course to learn the grammar.
Here are some suggestions for learning to understand and speak Turkish:
- Access Reddit, which has a forum where those who want to learn Turkish can converse with native speakers. Finding someone fluent in Turkish is as easy as searching the app under “speak Turkish.”
- Join Disboard for their server with high ratings for learning and speaking the Turkish language. They aim to talk to one another in Turkish rather than focus on grammar.
- Watch Turkish soap operas and television series on YouTube and Netflix. A Reddit user said she found them helpful to learn conversational Turkish.*
- Use a Turkish language app like Babbel or Turkish Class 101. Turkish Class 101 offers short videos and audio lessons to teach you how to converse in the language. It’ll teach you pronunciations of words and quiz you at the beginning of each lesson to help with retention of phrases and sentences.
*Here’s a YouTube video of the top ten unmissable Turkish dramas that’ll help you learn the language faster:
How long it takes to learn Turkish depends on the amount of effort you’re willing to put into learning this language. While Turkish language immersion is best, using digital resources is an excellent start to understanding and speaking Turkish.
Within six months, you should be able to understand spoken Turkish, and by one year, your conversational skills can be proficient.