Subliminal language learning works in two different ways. The first way is to insert subliminal language learning messages into other lesson material. This material could be either audio or video lessons. The second method is through the playing of vocabulary or other lesson material during sleep, allowing the subconscious to absorb the new language.
Audio Subliminal Language Learning
Audio subliminal learning places either positive, motivational messages or vocabulary words just beneath the conscious hearing level. This allows the subconscious to hear and retain the information. In some cases, the subliminal messages are placed over music; in other cases the subliminal messages may be placed under other lesson material, such as wordplays. A good example of audio subliminal messaging is the InnerTalk CDs, which place language learning material under soothing wave sounds that can be played at night when one is sleeping, or while one is studying other lesson material or watching TV.
Video Subliminal Language Learning
Video subliminal information learning is similar to audio learning. It places information and messages in the subconscious, sometimes by the same technique, by placing the information in the video's audio track, just below the level where it will be consciously noticed by the learner. With video, however, words can be flashed quickly on the screen to imprint on the viewer's consciousness. This can help with vocabulary learning or other aspects of language learning. Video subliminal language systems work in a similar way to the self-help videos produced by Trans4Mind.
Sleep Language Learning
A common method of subliminal learning is to play lesson materials while you sleep. To be effective, the materials must be at a high enough volume to hear but not so loud as to interfere with sleep. Using a CD or an MP3 player's repeat function is a useful way to take advantage of the full potential of sleep learning. A good sleep learning technique is to make vocabulary recordings by reading the word in the target language followed by the word in your native language. By setting this to repeat with an MP3 player, the vocabulary will enter the subconscious, making it easier to learn the words in the target language.
Does Subliminal Language Learning Work?
On a small scale, subliminal language learning appears to help. However, it appears to work better for learning vocabulary words or numbers than for learning more complex language concepts. Verb conjugations may be a good candidate for subliminal language learning, but it may not be as effective for learning entire sentences or paragraphs.
Although he grew up in Latin America, Mr. Ma is a writer based in Denver. He has been writing since 1987 and has written for NPR, AP, Boeing, Ford New Holland, Microsoft, RAHCO International, Umax Data Systems and other manufacturers in Taiwan. He studied creative writing at Mankato State University in Minnesota. He speaks fluent Mandarin Chinese, English and reads Spanish.