A new study suggests that retaining the learning of a foreign language is a lifelong process for most people.
The study was conducted at the University of York and included 500 participants who took French courses between the 1970s and 2020.
The findings were published in Language Teaching.
The participants were provided an exam in French to test their vocabulary and grammar skills.
The study led to the assumption that language proficiency does not change at all over time and is a lifelong memorical retainment.
“This is likely because of the way language is stored in memory. Vocabulary is memorized in the same way that facts, dates and names are, for example, and whilst this memory is vulnerable to erosion, grammar is learned in a similar way to riding a bike—a kind of muscle memory, which is much more stable,” an author of the study asserted in a news release.