5 Free Apps For Learning a Foreign Language
Learning a new language can be difficult, but fear no more. Applications have long been used for flinging birds across the screen to hit a pile of armless and legless pigs or cutting fruit with a samurai sword, but there’s nothing saying that they can’t also be used for making your day easier. Or, in this case, trying to pick up a language while you’re on the go.
5. BBC Languages
This one is mostly for comparing yourself to someone native and fluent in the language while covering the basics, but is most definitely inventive and very immersive. It covers French, Spanish, German, and Italian, with an impressive layout that easily conforms to your iPhone. I’m most definitely holding my breath for an Android version!
Check out BBC Languages here for the iOS: http://www.bbcactivequickstart.co.uk/
Byki is a system that relies mostly on flashcards and word matching capabilities – free, but it does have an upgradable version that they only ask you to join a few times (thankfully). While that may seem basic, it has a very good learning curve, along with the fact that it has over fifty languages that you can begin learning! It helps you along with vocalized fluent speakers to help you pronounce the words properly, and if nothing else, will teach you important phrases that you might need to learn fast.
Available on Android and iOS: http://www.byki.com/mobile/
3. 50 languages
This program helps you focus on the basics, but is also a very handy tool for bilingual speakers, as it offers over 1600 cross-language combinations, being able to translate from English to Spanish, or Spanish to Greek, Greek to English and right back over again with an extensive list of different combinations between the languages. It’s helpful in both learning the languages through the tried and true method of both text and vocalization, but also for refreshing the minds of people who may be a little rusty, without being spoken down to.
Available on Android: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.goethe.f50languages&hl=en
Currently, Duolingo offers online courses in Spanish, English, French, German, Portuguese, and Italian, with several other languages becoming available soon! One of the best things about this is not only their scientifically proven method of teaching you the language in a smooth, streamlined program, but it also has no ads. I don’t have to see a car slide across my screen when I’m trying to learn the difference between ‘Nosotros’ and ‘Usted.’ They offer games to help you grasp the language as well as helping you with phrasing and grammar, which is always a big one.
Available on iOS and on Android: http://www.duolingo.com/#/mobile
This app is most definitely jam packed with information that is both useful and entertaining. Using Memrise is like getting pop culture, history, geography, and languages all in one basic free package! It’s not all just basic tiers of the language either, but rather a compilation of several different ways to learn based on your preference, along with miniature tests to help you along, and helpful phrases. Useful for in depth knowledge that one might want to learn, as well as people out there that want to skate by on the minimal amount possible in order to work your way around a new place and a new language, or as some call it, the ‘Tourist’s Guide to a New Language.’
Available on Android and iOS: http://www.memrise.com/
Have you tried any of these apps? Let us know what ones worked best for you and what languages you’ve learned in the comments!