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Saturday, November 24, 2018

The Best Websites for Learning a New Language

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You’d think that with the vast amount of information on the Internet, learning a new language would be easy. But the availability of all that information is part of the problem. We’ve scoured the depths of the Internet to compile this list of the best websites for learning a new language.

Duolingo: Best for Most People

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Duolingo is one of the most popular websites to learn a new language for free. Designed primarily for hobbyists, Duolingo starts by teaching you the most basic words in the language of your choice. Once you’re familiar with the words, simple sentences follow. It’s the more natural way of learning a language compared to a standard learning process.

Duolingo’s strength is in the way it presents the material. You’ll go through lessons with native speakers, followed by quizzes to help you strengthen your learning. The app listens to you speak so that it can determine how you’re progressing. It even uses spaced repetition (where you review previous material at gradually decreasing intervals) to help strengthen your learning. The addition of gamification elements like learning streaks and in-lesson grading help keep things interesting.

However, Duoling does have its downsides. While it’s great for helping you get started with the basics of a new language, it’s not great at the more advanced stuff. If you’re after any level of fluency, you’ll eventually need to move on to another service.

Duolingo is free on the web, iOS, Android, and Windows phone.

FluentU: Learn by Watching Foreign Language Videos

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FluentU teaches you new languages using videos. The videos are not instructional, but rather regular videos featuring the foreign language. For example, you might see a movie clip, a music video, or a just a person talking. The videos have interactive captions to help you learn the language. The captions are presented in both languages (the one you know and the one you’re trying to learn), and you can hover any word to understand its meaning. Interactive quizzes help you measure your progress.

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