Foreign Language Learning Online – Best Platforms and Apps (in 2021)
Are you looking for the best ways to learn and speak a chosen foreign language online?
In this article, you will find the best online platforms and applications to improve your skills or explore a new language from the comfort of your own home.
Language influences everyday life around the world. From the global market to international travel, business, government, law, technology, medicine, and increasingly integrated global communities, it plays a significant role almost everywhere.
Learning a foreign language is essential, whether you want to live, work or travel abroad, whether you wish to increase your career prospects in your own country, raise your salary, improve your skills and brain capacity. You may also want to know other languages if you just want to enjoy a trip, try food from other countries, watch foreign movies, study poetry, literature, music, art, or be touched by any other aspect of that culture. Language opens up a world of possibilities.1
In an international business environment, communication with customers and companies in their native language is essential for competitive advantage and a stable business relationship.
Well, it seems clear why we should all learn languages, but in reality, if you don’t have strong personal inspiration, a compelling reason to learn, you’re less likely to start at all or stay motivated and continue in the long run.
Ask yourself why you are reading this article at all about online language learning? Does a second or third language give you a better chance of changing jobs or advancing in your career? Is there any business or financial reason? Are you planning to move or visit another country? Are you dating an exotic foreigner? Don’t understand your favorite foreign song? It would be best if you can find your “why” first.
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How Can You Learn Foreign Languages?
- By a Traditional language school or face-to-face meetings with a private teacher.
- Using Online Platforms: via online one-on-one tutoring, mobile applications, and online courses.
- Self-taught: through books, videos, movies, audio, TV, radio, flashcards, journaling, or communication with others when you are abroad.
Why Choose Online Language Learning?
Using online language learning applications and platforms offers an excellent opportunity to get from basic knowledge to the advanced and business levels, from the comfort of your home, on the device of your choice.
Online learning is more convenient for most adult learners, as you can learn from your home and schedule your own time.
To learn more about why learning online is a good choice, read our blog post on the 9 reasons Why is online learning important.
Let’s look at some thoughts on why you should choose online language learning.
- Don’t waste time traveling, changing clothes, staying in traffic, waiting for your late classmates. You can dedicate this block only to your studies, learn at your own pace. You don’t have to adapt to others.
- Comfortable and flexible. You can choose the method that best suits your style. If you are an early bird, you can build your language routine into your mornings. If you are a night owl, choose the late times. You can study while you do your chores or stay in the bathroom.
- You can access the curriculum from anywhere. You don’t even have to buy a booklet or book. You can only take notes and study using your computer or laptop.
- Save money on equipment and expensive books, and you can be environmentally friendly without printing materials and commuting to physical.
The Best Ways to Learn Foreign Languages Online
1-on-1 Online Tutoring Platforms
Italki is offering 1-on-1 customized language lessons with native teachers. You can learn from beginner to advanced business level.
You can join the community with over 5 million learners and choose from over 10,000 tutors for 1-on-1 lessons depending on your goals and interests. You can become fluent in any language with Italki.
It is a very efficient platform, safe, and easy to use. It is my favorite tutoring platform. I had been learning Romanian and Greek with professional and encouraging teachers.
Preply is an online private Tutoring platform. You can choose from over 49,000 online teachers from 185 countries. It is very safe and easy to use on all devices.
Skooli provides learning possibilities with professional tutors using advanced digital technology. You can learn English, Spanish, French, and Chinese.
Do you get bored or distracted easily?
Then you can use language apps free of charge. You can learn fast basic vocabulary and grammar structure.
The good news is that it doesn’t take much time. You can set up your daily goals and do your language routine wherever is most comfortable, even in the bed or in the bathroom.
Babbel is the world’s first language learning app, founded in 2007. It has millions of active subscribers and is ranked as the world’s #1 innovative company in education. It brings satisfying results in just 5 hours of using the application.
Babbel focuses more on speaking, to start to have practical, everyday conversations with confidence. The modules focus on specific situations and help learn useful terms for real-life dialogues, tourists, and business travelers. Babbel also has a special section that deals only with pronunciation.
With Babbel, I managed to get to a basic level of conversation in Spanish. I’ve learned to shop, order in restaurants and cafes, ask for directions, so I visited Spain much more confidently. Babbel provides you with skills to use immediately.
Duolingo is a free American language-learning website and mobile app with over 300 million users. It offers well-structured courses in many languages. You need just 5 minutes a day to develop your language skills from your phone. Lots of fun.
It is one of the most frequently used mobile applications for learning foreign languages. You can learn many languages on this website, including basic vocabulary, sentence structure, grammar.
I used to learn Greek on Duolingo when I moved to Cyprus. It helped me to learn to read the Greek alphabet and understand basic conversations. Sometimes the expressions often make no sense or are funny. Therefore, as I have experienced, Duolingo makes learning fun and natural.
You can start to speak right away with the help of Pimsleur.
If you are busy, you can learn while you are doing housework, cooking, commuting, or exercising in just 30 minutes a day.
The theory behind the Pimsleur method combines well-founded research, the most useful vocabulary, and a completely intuitive process to move learned information from short-term memory to long-term or permanent memory.
Busuu is a global community powered by AI on the web, iOS, and Android with over 100 million users. Learn 10 minutes a day with Busuu from your phone, and you can also get feedback on writing and pronunciation from other users.
Mondly has 60 million learners, with plenty of languages. Their method focuses on speech recognition.
There are plenty of language courses on this British platform. Uses spaced repetition of flashcards. Adapts to every individual learner’s path to keep up the motivation and make progress faster. Simple to use, and there is a larger variety of courses over specific topics in various languages.
The Rosetta Stone program is the best full-featured language learning software. With interactive activities, contextual lessons, and pronunciations. Their method is based on programming language skills into the subconscious through constantly repetitive exercises.
Learn from any device in 10 minutes a day. Get lifetime unlimited access to 24 languages.
Online Courses on Learning Platforms
You can study freely, more flexibly via these online platforms. You can plan your time, and you don’t need to adapt to a teacher so you can learn whenever you wherever you want, even in your pajama. Just take an online course and go with the lessons whenever you feel they are prerecorded videos and materials. You can always go back and repeat it as many times as you need to.
Coursera is the online education website leader, collaborating with more than 200 educational institutions and companies worldwide and offering hundreds of free language learning courses.
Skillshare is an American learning community. You can find numerous free online classes to explore your creativity. Learn grammar, pronunciation, business, and more. It is one of the best learning platforms for self-study.
Udemy is a leading global learning marketplace to obtain skills with over a 35Million students. Great place to master your foreign languages at all levels.
EdX is a non-profit and open-source organization created by professors from the best universities. You can sign up for a beginner language class, or if you are more advanced, you can take a specialized lecture.
OpenLearning is a smaller platform with over 3000 world-class courses. Partners with 143 industry-leading institutions and educators. They are also offering language lectures.
FutureLearn is the first major UK-based Europen platform of online education. It brought many UK & Australian universities and educational institutions into their programs. They are offering a powerful new way to study online, even languages.
Read more about 8 of The Best Online Learning Platforms in 2021 here.
Final Thoughts on Foreign Language Learning Platforms
Let’s see the best ways again to learn Foreign Languages Online:
- 1-on-1 Online Tutoring Platforms
- Mobile Apps
- Online Courses on Learning Platforms
Mobile applications are efficient when the goal is to quickly learn the basics of a language and use it immediately. In case you want to learn the language of your choice more thoroughly, either attending an Online Course or a private teacher can help. If you are preparing for a language exam or simply want personalized attention, 1-on-1 tutoring is the best method.
Find your “why.” Choose the method that works best for you. Start learning on these platforms today. And commit to studying your chosen language regularly as part of your daily routine.
And have fun!
If English is not your first language and you would like to improve further, read our post 10 Best Ways to Speak and Learn English from your Home Easily.
- Foreign Language in Wikipedia
- Italki, Preply, Skooli, Babbel, Duolingo, Pimsleur, Busuu, Mondly, Memrise, Rosetta Stone, Coursera, Skillshare, Udemy, EdX, OpenLearning, FutureLearn
Is there any other method to learn a foreign language online? Let us know in the comments below.