Learning a new language is a big investment in both time and energy, so to ask yourself whether your resource of choice is worth the effort is a valid question!
You may have tried picking up another language before through various tools but ultimately failed as the course, textbook or CD did not manage to keep your attention or was just not fun and engaging.
Luckily for you there are tons of materials out there nowadays – and some are available to your wherever you go – apps! But do language apps increase your fluency?
If you are unsure of the definition of the word ‘fluent’, here is a great article by BBC that looks into it: https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20190903-linguistic-fluency-proficiency-second-language-learning
Why language apps make you fluent:
- 1 Why language apps make you fluent:
- 1.1 1. Ask yourself: Why do I want to get out of it?
- 1.2 2. Find an app that motivates you and brings joy!
- 1.3 3. Find out what type you are!
- 1.4 4. Identify your environment!
- 1.5 5. Use apps where other resources do not work!
- 1.6 6. Use language apps whenever you have some spare time!
Todays language learning apps and websites of this kind can be far more than simple vocabulary trainers. With these tools you have a full language course in your pocket that you can access anytime and anywhere.
You´ll be thaught solid basics and – if you keep using it regularily – will build upon them with additional lessons later on. But as any other tool these apps got to be used right in order to be effective.
Here is our list of six simple tricks that will increase your progress in any given language app!
1. Ask yourself: Why do I want to get out of it?
Most people who start out using any language app do not have a clear idea in mind of where they want to get.
Key questions: What am I trying to learn? Why am I using the app?
Sure, you might say my goal is to speak languae X or Y fluent – but as with every skill you aquire there are many small steps on the way to mastery and it´s crucial to define the direction in which you are doing these steps in order to not get lost.
Which brings us to our next point: How do you define flueny? Is it speaking like a native?
Is it ordering at a restaurant when being on holiday without making any mistakes? Or do you want to have conversations in your target language while being aware that there are mistakes here and there.
We advice to set certain milestones and build from there. Try to get yourself to a level where you can comfortable deal with a waiter in a restaurant. Keep on improving until you can strike up a conversation with a stranger. And who knows – at some point you may be able to speak without any mistakes.
So you see that you have got to set a goal for a specific time and decide upon that whether a chosen app or textbook will fit your needs.
The only people that do not benefit from any of the countless ways of learning a language online or on their phone are the ones who did not define the areas they needed assistance in and therefore were set up to fail.
2. Find an app that motivates you and brings joy!
The average user looks up “top five language apps”, then downloads one that will not be opened later more than once as it does not fit their personal needs or simply can not motivate them to keep going.
I learned the russian alphabet with a children app that worked like memory – it was fun and engaging. I put out the goal that by the end of the week I could read russian words.
I was going to Moscow soon I had a clear goal in my mind and looked for a sufficient tool that would get me to where I wanted. The app had silly music playing and looked ridiculous but it worked for me as I was trying to beat the game without any mistakes – I was motivated!
Now when I am speaking russian no one cares that I used an app for children – neither should you. Find and use what is fun to you!
3. Find out what type you are!
Perhaps you’re someone who has never learned a new language before and therefore have no clue what to actually look for in a language learning app.
By clearly defining where you are in your learing journey you will be able to filter through all the possible options and find quickly what you need.
Maybe you need 15 minutes every evening of a type of flash card style system to broaden your vocabulary or you need a fully fledged language course that takes you slowly through every aspect of the language.
4. Identify your environment!
The best way to get fluent using an online resource is to recognize your environment of language learning first. Do you have troubles understanding your foreign friends – find a tool that gives you loads of listening and understanding experience.
Do you find yourself in the situation that the right word is on the tip of your tongue but it just won’t come out – then go and find an app or course that will give you load of speaking exercises and experience.
Whatever it is you are struggling with in your current situation – there is an online tool or app that will exactly match your needs.
Finding complementary resources to supplement your situation is key to creating a well rounded and efficient language learning experience.
5. Use apps where other resources do not work!
Most adults struggle quite a lot when trying to learn a new language because they are hesitant to use it in front of other people in fear of making mistakes. Language learning apps are actually really great for creating a private setting.
Why this fear is a problem of its own that might hinder your progress – as long as this issue is not resolved you can work around it with a big selection of online resources that actually make you speak.
They give a great alternative of speaking publicly, in a language you barely know, for someone that is not confident enough yet.
Very often confidence comes from from preparation and practice. So language apps, online courses and other tools can be wonderful to overcome this hesitance.
6. Use language apps whenever you have some spare time!
Another amazing aspect of learning a language with these relatively new instruments is that they can fill gaps of your day with productive training that otherwise would have been lost time. For example while waiting for the train or literally any situation where you can comfortably pull out your phone.
You would be surprised to know how much volume you can fit into these unused moments each day. By using certain areas of your day that otherwise you would have done nothing you actually achieve more by having the same amount of time for work and other hobbies as before.
Just not too long time ago you had to constantly carry a book or self written flashcards with you that were either expansive or required preparation at home. Now you have a huge selection of applications for any level you might be at in order to bring you closer to your goal: Speaking another language fluently.
If you came here looking for that one magic pill magic app/course that is going to teach you everything I will have to disappoint you: No resource is going to do that! But if you follow each tip we did give you, stay persistant and understand that any app or website is another tool in your toolbox with its own purpose then you can become fluent by using an app!
HERE you can find an app or course that is going to assist you in whatever area you currently need help with. If you use it daily and understand that it is just another tool in your toolbox, you´ll sooner or later be able to speak any language fluently.