Lockdown sees a heightened interest in learning Catalan online
Number of students up from 8,500 in March to over 18,000, with a third not residing in Catalonia
Quite a few people have been using lockdown to polish up on their skills, from cooking to painting or writing and more, and language learning is no different.
As evidenced by figures from the free online language-learning site Parla.cat as well as other language schools, this has definitely been the case with Catalan, as it has seen the number of active students increase from 8,500 in March to over 18,000 that now take classes from home.
And although many of these students live in Catalonia, about a third of those who have taken an interest in the language live in other parts of Spain or even abroad.
Consorci per a la Normalització Lingüística (Consortium for Linguistic Standardisation, or CPNL in Catalan), the public body set up in 1989 to foster the use of Catalan that is also partially behind Parla.cat, has also noticed this trend among its students.
While all CPNL Catalan lessons were forced online due to the Covid-19 pandemic, before lockdown around 93% of all students attended in-person classes, and only 7% signed up for online courses. That means that 2019 saw 3,887 students taking online lessons, while in the month and a half of lockdown they have already had over 6,000.