What science says about dating and learning English
If someone asked you to name the ‘language of love’, you probably wouldn’t say English. In fact, a poll of language experts found that Italian is considered the world’s most romantic language, closely followed by French.
While English may not sound as romantic as some other languages, it is one of the very best to learn for dating. With nearly 370 million native speakers and just over 978 million second language speakers, you can use your English language skills to date people across the world!
But how can you date effectively while improving your English at the same time? We took a look at what scientists have discovered about language learning and successful dating – both online and in the real world. We hope our findings will help you find your English-speaking soulmate!
1. Double check your spelling and grammar
Unless you are completely fluent, it can be difficult to write accurate English. Words like ‘yacht’ and ‘cupboard’ sound nothing like the way they are spelled. It can be hard to get tenses right – the present perfect is particularly tricky. Then there are all those words that sound the same, but mean different things (think ‘there’, ‘their’ and ‘they’re’!)
However, if you are planning to create a profile on an online dating app or website, it is a really good idea to check your English is correct. Why? Because research has found that people are less likely to find you attractive if there are errors in your profile!
Two studies published in 2019 found that people who had “profile texts containing errors were evaluated as less socially and romantically attractive by participants than profile owners without errors in their profiles”.
So, when you’ve written your online dating profile, it’s a good idea to ask a native English speaker to check it for errors. A simple mistake could result in fewer dates!
2. Use the 70:30 rule
Did you know the researchers have discovered a simple rule for writing online dating profiles? A 2015 study published in the British Medical Journal found that, if you want to create the most effective profile, approximately 70% of it should be about you and 30% should explain what you are looking for. In other words, don’t just write about yourself – also write about the type of person you’d like to meet!
This example given in the study shows how the 70:30 rule can work. The bold text is about the dater and the underlined text is about the person they’d like to meet.
“Genuine, attractive, outgoing, professional female, good sense of humour, into keeping fit, socialising, music and travel, seeks like-minded, good-natured guy to share quality times”.
3. Use simple language – and humour
The same study also discovered that the most successful dating profiles use simple language and humour to get people interested.
Why? The research says that people prefer words that are easy to remember and pronounce. It also found that readers who find your profile text attractive are more likely to find your profile picture attractive.
So, when you write your dating profile, keep it simple. And if you can add humour too, it can give you an advantage. Being funny is more attractive than simply saying you’re funny!
4. Ditch the pick-up lines
Whether you are dating online or in-person, try to avoid using pick-up lines. This 2019 study found that clichéd or flirtatious pick-up lines are not very effective. This is because phrases like these seem generic and insincere:
Do you like raisins? Then how about a date?
I think I must have died. I’ve just met an angel.
If I could change the alphabet, I’d put ‘I’ and ‘U’ together.
Instead of using lines like these, talk about the other person’s interests. It will come across as more sincere and attractive.
5. Try to talk more like your date!
This is a great idea for two reasons. First, it’s a really good way of practising your English, whether online or in person. Secondly, this 2010 study found that people on speed dates who used similar language styles were more likely to be attracted to each other. Better still, people who ‘mirrored’ each other’s language were more likely to be together after three months!
If you want to find romance while improving your English, science gives you some helpful tips for success. Keep your English simple and humorous. Don’t forget the 70:30 rule. Ditch clichéd pick-up lines and try to talk more like your date. Finally, always check your English for errors – mistakes can make you appear less attractive.
In short, the more you work at improving your English, the better the dating experience will be. So, why not give your language skills a boost with live online classes with English Online? They could help you find the love of your life!