The majority of the question asked on Language Learning Stack Exchange are answered by other language learners. These participants are typically learners who have experience learning at least one foreign language, not necessarily through formal education.

Only a minority of our questions have been answered by people who studied applied linguistics. I think our site could benefit from the participation by people who studied second-language acquisition and/or who were trained as teachers.

While we have a number of ideas for general site promotion, it would be good to come up with ideas to specifically target language learning experts. Please post your suggestions as answers to this question.

1 Answer 1


This problem concerns me, too. In my understanding, a successful site also needs avid newbies who would ask questions. Quite often, experts already know things and don't ask. However, if they encounter an interesting question, they would come up and answer.

I'm writing this off-topic answer and I would be glad to move it once there is a question like "How can we attract more newbies?" :-)

I was thinking about allowing questions asked in other languages, not only in English.

Here's the problem: Stack Exchange sites only allow questions asked in English (with the exception made for language-specific sites, e.g. Ukrainian Language allows both English and Ukrainian).

In many countries, English is taught in school, so, the vast majority of Germans, French, or Swedes have a good grasp of English by the age of 12 or so.

However, in other countries, like Ukraine, an average school graduate has dramatically low level of their English. Leave alone older people whose English is even worse.

In other words, they don't use LL.SE because of their poor English,
and they don't improve their English because they can't ask or read answers here at LL.SE.

Allowing questions in other languages can break this dead loop and let newcomers "bootstrap" their English. This would pave the way to further studying languages for these people.

I am quite aware that this suggestion is way too revolutionary (please downvote if you think it is not viable at all). For example, it assumes writing Help/FAQ pages in many languages, makes the moderation and participation in Meta more complicated, and so on.

However, if we work through these obstacles, this could make LL.SE a unique site among the SE network.

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    That would be an interesting answer to a question such as, "How can we attract more newbies to our site?" or "Should we allow questions in other languages?" The latter question is very tricky, since you can't review questions in a language you can't read.
    – Tsundoku Mod
    Commented Dec 18, 2018 at 15:24
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    How would one approach duplicates in other languages? If same question/different language is not considered a duplicate, every question now has an arbitrarily large number of alternative translations, but if they are considered duplicates, we need reviewers who can read XYZ language. With a limited scope of languages (e.g. Ukrainian & English) it's a non-issue.
    – Hatchet
    Commented Dec 20, 2018 at 4:29
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    @Hatchet, Language sites have this problem, too. We at Ukrainian.SE solve it this way — keep both and make a stick note with links. Commented Dec 20, 2018 at 14:15
  • @Hatchet It's not just a matter of how to deal with duplicates. On sites like Ukrainian SE and German SE, you simply need bilingual mods to review the questions. But here, which languages would we allow and who would review them? This requires a different process (and I already have something in mind).
    – Tsundoku Mod
    Commented Dec 20, 2018 at 18:23

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