PM’s French Adventures in the Matrix

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PeterMollenburg
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Re: PM's French Target: C1 2018

Postby PeterMollenburg » Tue Dec 19, 2017 12:49 am

Xenops wrote:I would think that your working experience would easily make up the one of training, if that comes up. For medical lab people the U.S., there's the four year and the two year degrees, and while the two year degree is being phased out, people with that degree and with work experience are being "grandfathered in".

In short, I think you are worrying about hypotheticals, when you don't know for sure. I would pass your French test, apply to Belgium, and see what they have to say. Or even better, maybe have someone from Belgium look at your resume, and be able to give you professional advice on what you need to be competitive. But I don't know how to find such a person, so I would just apply and see what points they give you.


Yeah a valid point. I have six years hospital experience and 2 years correctional. Likely to add more hospital experience soon. You’re right it will factor in, I had considered it but perhaps not enough. Thanks xenops.

I’ve been in contact with the kiwi nurse who works in Brussels, trying to ascertain which skills/ nursing fields are more sought after/ in shortage, but unfortunately she doesn’t seem to be getting back to me as she stated. She might yet, but in the meantime, I’ll keep digging.
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basica
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Re: PM's French Target: C1 2018

Postby basica » Tue Dec 19, 2017 12:53 am

Good luck with it, like Xenops has stated your work experience should factor in considerably. Any particular reason you're waiting a while before applying though? Surely a C1 level in French would be enough to work in a Walloon area?

EDIT: Misread your currently level, ignore.
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PeterMollenburg
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Re: PM's French Target: C1 2018

Postby PeterMollenburg » Tue Dec 19, 2017 1:27 am

basica wrote:Good luck with it, like Xenops has stated your work experience should factor in considerably. Any particular reason you're waiting a while before applying though? Surely a C1 level in French would be enough to work in a Walloon area?

EDIT: Misread your currently level, ignore.


Hey basica, thanks for dropping by. You’ve prompted me to elaborate a little anyway.

For nurses who have trained outside the EU, Norway or Switzerland, the general rule is, to be able to gain employment in one of those countries you must provide proof of, or be able to pass a test to the level of B2. I have a B2 in French, passed in May this year, thus no drama. I’m very pleased about that :) Still, my desire to pass a B2 in French was not about nursing, it was about loving the language, but I also have ambitions to live and work in a francophone country, so it did become a necessity by default.

For those with EU citizenship AND having trained within the EU/Switz/NO, then the language level is lowered. I am not sure what happens here whether the law is different for each country, or whether it’s a professional standard, or even just a job by job selection criteria set by the employer at the time. I have seen agencies advertising for work in Belgium in aged care asking that nurses applying have at least a B1 level of French and for Flemish/Dutch an A2 minimum. Much lower than B2. And since the NZ nurse I have been in contact with stated her French was poor, it also seems that non-EU/Switz/NO trained nurses can fall under the same more lax rules only once they have their nursing qualfications deemed equivalent in any one European country.

Theoretically therefore, I could get a job in Belgium, then go and work in -insert random European country- with only requiring a much lower level of local language ability. I don’t necessarily advocate poor language ability for nurses in Europe, this is just a point of interest. It would mean I could go and work in -random European country- and work hard on location to raise my language level as opposed to studying harder and longer outside the country.

Why C1? I want to get there from a language perspective because I’ve had this aim for a long time: to reach C1 (maybe C2) in French before returning to study another/more language(s). And now I have the extra motivation in that I feel it will look pretty awesome from an employer perspective as well to have an Australian nurse speaking excellent advanced French when applying for a nursing position in Belgium. That can only help my chances of employment and diminish the likelihood of having to do a considerably longer conversion course (they seem to stipulate how much of a ‘gap’ you may have in your ability to function in the European country in question by a combination of educational background, experience, assessment of nursing skills and language ability). From a plethora of blogs I’ve read on such topics, the better your language skills, the more confidence they’ll have in you and the more chance you’ll have of passing any form of assessment if required.

If I do end up in the favourable position of being able to bring my Dutch up to a higher level again (post French), this will only help me in terms of gaining employment in Belgium too. And in contrast to doing further nursing studies here in Australia, I have a buring desire to pass those French exams so that I can power through some Dutch again and bring it up to scratch. That’s the long and the short of it :)

EDIT: Also the reason for the wait is financial. With a family expenses are higher, so saving takes longer and on arrival we want to have a bit of room to move. And thanks for the ‘good luck’! ;)
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Re: PM's French Target: C1 2018

Postby rdearman » Tue Dec 19, 2017 9:41 am

Personally I think you should just packup and move. You appear to have all the qualifications you need. You might have to go alaone first and family follow, but moving overseas means that kinda stress. BTW the uk is crying out for care nurses, you could register here and " move back" to holland with your Dutch passport.
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Re: PM's French Target: C1 2018

Postby James29 » Tue Dec 19, 2017 9:42 pm

Peter, you motivate me! I don't often read your log anymore (I've been very busy lately and French is on the back burner for me) but every now and then I'll check in and see what you are up to. You are always there slugging away at that French. Keep it up. Persistence.
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PeterMollenburg
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Re: PM's French Target: C1 2018

Postby PeterMollenburg » Tue Dec 19, 2017 10:23 pm

rdearman wrote:Personally I think you should just packup and move. You appear to have all the qualifications you need. You might have to go alaone first and family follow, but moving overseas means that kinda stress. BTW the uk is crying out for care nurses, you could register here and " move back" to holland with your Dutch passport.


This is something I have heard a number of times. It’s not a bad thing, repetition, especially with language learning and when it comes to a message that is not getting through. Perhaps I am mentally blocking myself here, perhaps I am not, I really don’t know, but I’ll elaborate a little anyway.

My wife isn’t ready to move overseas just yet and doesn’t want to take the plunge with 2 young children and no money, but debts, as that’s what we’d be facing if I left right now - credit card debt, other debts, no recognition of my qualifications = no nursing job and so on. Perhaps you are not saying to leave right this minute, but the timing is off. It’s not through bad financial planning necessarily, as living off one wage for a year with 2 young children while trying to eat healthy and then going to New Caledonia when we probably shouldn’t (financially) have can have such effects. I don’t regret the trip, nor does my wife. We attempted a move to NL in 2011, there are things to take away from that and things we don’t want to repeat. I agree I may need to leave for wherever before the rest of the family follow, but right this minute would not be great timing. I have said that before though, and perhaps there’ll seemingly never be a right time.

Still, for now the plan is - erase debt, save, study French like I’ve never studied it before in 2018. 2018 will put all previous years to shame. My/our plans are edging tantalisingly closer to fruition, and I’m determined to push hard to reach that C1/C2 objective so Dutch can come and play.

While we are not moving forward financially our house is growing in value and we may use that to attempt to create more wealth for us in the future. So a house move may occur in the coming year or so. Leaving Australia with some strong financial foundations will allow us over years to come to potentially travel back and forth to Europe much easier. Perhaps I over plan things, perhaps my wife does, perhaps I’m fearful, perhaps I should’ve left 10 years ago, perhaps we should’ve stayed in Holland. I say all this with a philosphical air, not negative, but all in all in due course we will up and move and that ‘due course’ appears to be, as mentioned becoming tantalisingly closer. And my plans do change, I reserve that right :)

I appreciate your words rdearman, and there could be something I”m not hearing, so I’ll put my ESP feelers out there and remain open to me changing my mind. But one thing is certain I am thoroughly determined to smash 2018 to bits with a massive crusty French baguette (gluten free, sugar free, keto, baguette free, but not French free!)
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PeterMollenburg
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Re: PM's French Target: C1 2018

Postby PeterMollenburg » Tue Dec 19, 2017 10:31 pm

James29 wrote:Peter, you motivate me! I don't often read your log anymore (I've been very busy lately and French is on the back burner for me) but every now and then I'll check in and see what you are up to. You are always there slugging away at that French. Keep it up. Persistence.


Thank you James :) Watch this space in 2018 (could I sound any more rediculous?). I hope 2018 is the most productive year for EVERYONE on this forum, including yourself and myself James. No I’m not James, I mean myself and James. Let’s make it happen! No no no! Not the stupid upbeat motivating music, noooo! okay okay, just as a joke... but only in some stupidly stupid over stupid Dutch comedy set in... let’s say Groningen, just to be different... waffle waffle... mmmm waffles, Belgium, Flemish and what? French! Yes you better watch yourself French in 2018 I’m on a mission!
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Re: PM's French Target: C1 2018

Postby rdearman » Tue Dec 19, 2017 11:17 pm

PeterMollenburg wrote:I appreciate your words rdearman, and there could be something I”m not hearing, so I’ll put my ESP feelers out there and remain open to me changing my mind.

No, I think you got my meaning. My concern was that frequently people "wait for a better time" to do something when in fact there isn't one.

When is the best time to plant a tree? 20 years ago. When is the next best time? Now.
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PeterMollenburg
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Re: PM's French Target: C1 2018

Postby PeterMollenburg » Wed Dec 27, 2017 11:46 am

Further musings...

I doubt that I have above average intelligence. And I don't mind that. Then again, the number of books I've read is not necessarily indicative of one's intelligence... or is it? I don't think it would be a bad thing to know I was a bit stupid. It would just be factual, even humbling. As for my behaviour, yes I am stupid... often.

:) As for my plans... I'm thinking, probably like I thought last year (when I analyse my thoughts and realise the repetitive cycles that play over and over and over, I may as well be listening to a broken record of a limited number of tracks playing over and over - is this really what the human mind is like? I mean c'mon, yes it is! We, the vast majority of us are exactly like this - we respond to urges/needs much like maslow's hierarchy of needs, all the while broken records play.... unless we step back - what's the first step they say? recognition/ownership/acknowledgement? Pfft... and the record plays on... ), that I might aim to go course and Yabla crazy through the early parts of 2018 and then go native crazy with the new Super Challenge. I don't know, whatever. I'm changing my mind every 20 seconds or so as I change my mood and move to the next repetitive song.

I sometimes doubt my French abilities. I think, am I really approaching C1? Or is it utter BS and I'm many years off. What could hold me back here is my massive lack of literature knowledge, my reluctance to devour books.... bla bla bla I don't know, but all in all I will sit that C1 exam come November.

Rough plan (to change in 20 seconds):
Work on French in Action, Yabla and Assimil through the initial months of 2018. My Yabla subscription finishes end of March, then I could focus on the 2 courses plus something else, or another course, or... blah... I truly am rediculous, and I don't mean to say this in an attempt for sympathy, I'm honestly just analyzing myself here. You're probably as ridiculous as me!
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Re: PM's French Target: C1 2018

Postby rdearman » Wed Dec 27, 2017 12:28 pm

PeterMollenburg wrote:I'm honestly just analyzing myself here. You're probably as ridiculous as me!

I'm probably more actually! Still I know what you mean about constantly going in circles. I know you do listen to peoples advice here, you just don't always take it. (Quite rightly). But I'd like to chip in again.

You aren't ready to move, financially. However, my recommendation is that you pick a date. Something which would be hard to achieve but possible. Let's just say you decide you're going to move after school breaks up in 2019, and let me assume that would be in July in Australia. This deadline forces you to do things which you might be procrastinating with at the moment. For example, you might not be putting as much money toward credit card debit as you really could if pushed. (These are only examples, since I don't know your situation). But I feel that having a concrete deadline means you have to re-evaluate the plan based on the new deadline.

I collect self-help and management books like you collect French courses and one thing I know is this:
A goal without a deadline is just a wish.


So you and your wife agree the deadline, you might even make a real commitment like buying airline tickets. But really nothing clarifies a plan like a deadline. If we return to my example; you might evaluate your plan against the July 2019 date and decide to change the date.

It might be that having selected the date of 14th of July 2019 ( ;) ) you think you could do it quicker and set your sights on January. This change in date with bump up other problems like changing schools mid-year. Or you might evaluate the 14th of July 2019 and work out you'd need another 3 months to get your debt paid, etc.

What I'm saying to you is you need to evaluate your goal and set a deadline for its accomplishment. Once you have the date set you can work backwards to determine if it is possible, check dependencies, etc.
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