The Internet: a language student’s best friend

This article, prepared by the Centro para el Desarrollo de Lenguas Extranjeras, explains the multiple options and advantages offered by online platforms for those who wish to learn English or any other foreign language

The Internet: a language student’s best friend

The online world is almost like the universe: infinite. The possibilities to find anything are endless. Therefore, studying with tools such as virtual lessons has become a major trend amongst young people because of its benefits. Which ones? You may ask and you may even wonder if you can afford them. Again, the answer is yes. Yes, you can learn new languages at home; or, if you are a wonderer, learning is still an option with your cellphone or tablet.

Virtual lessons are very attractive for many reasons; one of them is the variety of languages you can learn. Another is that they are usually autonomous and self-paced. This allows the students to repeat lessons and have a flexible schedule during their learning process which is a major plus for people with limited time. The internet is effective for learning language and can become your best friend if you use it wisely.

There is no trick here. It is very simple: many web pages offer lessons for free; others have chat rooms with native speakers so you can practice writing, speaking, reading and at the same time share your experience. Some of those pages specialize only in written content, but if you’re looking for other type of learning there are also many options for you.

For instance, one of these multiplatform places, and perhaps the most common app around, is Duolingo. With interactive activities and user-friendly experience, Duolingo is one of the best apps today for learning languages for free. Besides, the amount of languages they offer is so vast you could learn more than 20 languages.

Some people learn better through visual and listening methods. For them, Youtube is the best site to practice. They have, literally, millions of videos of anything and everything. Finding a Channel that matches your interests requires a little search, but the results are mesmerizing. The CDLE has been witness of dozens of students who speak fluently and have good grammar thanks to the hours spent watching Youtube videos. Give it a chance and see how it goes.

The web page PolyglotClub is another option for language learners. Within their many ways to practice, you will find a very wide range of languages to learn and not only English. For this club there’s no cost at all and, if you join it, you will be part of an online community devoted exclusively to languages.

Other platforms are design for mobile devices only. Some of them are: Busuu, Babbel, Memrise and Quizlet. But as a tech person, you can do some research on your own phone’s appstore and see if there’s a particular app that you might find interesting.

Even though it might seem like a perfect scenario, one common mishap is that some students need external motivation to stay in track. So, if that’s your case the CDLE has various options to keep you focused. As part of their regular offer, they feature conversational clubs in English and French. This semester, they will also offer Polish classes and, soon to begin, German Initiation Lessons (October 14).

If you’re interested in attending other events or finding out who are the CDLE’s external allies and their cultural offer, check their social media accounts Instagram and Twitter @CDLE_UCAB; write an email to [email protected], or visit their office (Vox Lounge), located at first floor, EC-18, Cincuentenario Building, campus Montalbán.

*This article is available in spanish. You can read it by clicking here: Internet, el mejor amigo de los estudiantes de idiomas

♦By: Grace Lafontant/Image: freepik.es