What is the best, fastest and most effective way to learn a new language?
It's best to do everything you can and "surround" yourself with the new language. Listen to music, watch movies, try to "get" the language on an audio level before trying to look at the books or tutorials. This was the best way for me to learn foreign languages, and I think it is generally an idea that can do wonders when trying to familiarize yourself with a new language.
I think that the audio patterns form the said language enter our mind on an subconscious level, thus making it easy for use to adapt to the new language when we actually start learning it the old-fashioned way.
By immersing yourself in it. That has been my experience as a result of living in Poland, Europe for the past year or so.
I wrote a hub about this (The Best Way to Become Fluent in Another Language). My hub is based on research in part learning about "The Linguist" (creator of www.lingq.com) who has learned about 10 languages, most of them to fluency. The problem with most language learning programs/classes is that they do not give you enough "input" ~ you need thousands and thousands of sentences/phrases in your head in the new language so you're able to communicate. Great courses that do this include Assimil, audiobooks/movies that you absorb at your understanding level, exposure to the language, of course, and memorizing "input" phrases on your own.
The best, fastest and most effective way to learn a new language is to move to the country in question and communicate with the natives (without the help of English).
I agree with all that was said so far, and I would add that listening to audio-books, speeches, interviews or podcasts are extremely valuable, too. As is watching movies (if you're a beginner, watch one that you already know quite well in the other language, first with your language subtitles, later with the original one's), and reading books.
I also wrote a hub about it, check it out, there are a few more tips!
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