For example, to learn studying - учиться учиться.

note: in Russian sounds pretty obvious and precise
Попросить сходить купить поесть, i.e.
verb + verb + verb + verb + ....


5 Answers 5


The difference in English is discussed here:
Is there any subtle difference between “to study” and “to learn”?

Some people are easily influenced by an opinion, that there is practically no difference in Russian. It would be untrue to say that. The best way to improve our solid knowledge is to treat yourself as a teacher. The best practice in teaching "how to", IMHO, is to show by examples.

to learn studying                                учиться учиться

I'm learning to study                            я учусь учиться

you learn studying                               ́учитесь учиться / учишься учиться

how psychologists study learning and studying    как психологи изучают обучение и изучение

to study the learning process                    изучать учебный процесс

you will learn studying                          нау́читесь изучая

learn studying!                                  учи́тесь учиться!

to study learning                                изучать обучение

What do students learn studying these words?     Чему научатся студенты, изучая эти слова?

So, as you can see above, in Russian we have one root (or stem, if you prefer) уч for both. We build a new verb with a prepositional prefix. E.g., из- is a prefix that give us the new meaning out of

 учить -  изучать        to learn     - to study
 влечь -  извлечь        to draw (to) - draw out; extract
 дать  -  издать         to give      - give forth, give out
 ложить - изложить       to lay       - to lay open (to lay the case)
 брать  - избрать        to take      - to take up (What one thing to take up and master?)
 гнать  - изгнать        to drive     - to drive out (drive a herd - drive out of doors) 

----- not so furthered and linearly -----

 менять - изменять      to change -
                      - to exchange; to vary; to modify; + to betray, break one's oath 
 бежать - избежать      to run -
                      - to escape (officers had a narrow escape their car) 
                                + (had narrowly escaped arrest)

I humbly hope you see the pattern.


If your example 'to learn studying' doesn't suggest overlapping English meanings of the two words, let's suppose their most typical meanings: ( http://www.differencebetween.com/difference-between-learn-and-vs-study/ )

to learn: to get knowledge in the process of studying something - учиться результативно, научиться

to study: to be in the process of getting knowledge - учиться, проходить обучение;

studying: the process for getting knowledge - учёба, процесс изучения

Literal translation (while a correct phrase, it sounds like a slogan): (На)учиться учёбе.

More naturally sounding Russian version: Научиться рациональным методам учёбы.

  • Научиться рациональным методам учёбы is the quintessential opposite of "naturally sounding". May 19, 2015 at 3:23
  • А как же тогда переведёте complete one's studies?
    – Avtokod
    May 20, 2015 at 18:22

study in the meaning 'devote time and attention to gaining knowledge of (an academic subject), especially by means of books' (the Oxford English dictionary) can be translated as изучать

study mathematics - изучать математику

он изучает математику - this is one of his main subjects, his major. That usually means he attends some school.

By the way when we say in a colloquial speech: он учит математику in some context that could mean that some pupil is preparing for his math class tomorrow.

learn studying - учиться изучать sounds more or less legal but of course if you mean by that учиться рациональным методам учёбы better use the latter variant because in Russian изучать is a transitive verb and you kind of ask 'learn studying what?' when you hear this.


learn - учиться study - заниматься

  • 1
    Вопрос сформулирован не "как перевести", а какие механизмы используют в русском для различения. При том, что русский очень яркий и емкий язык из-за того, что в нем один корень используется по максимуму, и корень этот — каждодневного употребления. Математики-иностранцы это замечают сразу.
    – Avtokod
    May 20, 2015 at 16:28

IMHO, "to study" refers to some academic work. While studying you do different researches, go through some specific literature, etc.

"To learn" is to gain rather some skill than some knowledge. For instance, toddlers, they learn how to walk. They are NOT doing any researches about how gravitation affect them or how many calories is necessary for making a single step. They just practice some movements.

For example, you can study literature(history, writer bio, modernism or realism etc.) but you learn how to read.

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