My Favorite Free Language Learning Program on the Web

May the fourth be with you!

Sorry, I couldn’t help myself.

Since today is my favorite day I decided to write about one of my favorite things – Language!

Specifically foreign language, as I have a bad habit of starting a new language before I am proficient in the first one.

For example, in high school I studied French but tried to teach myself Japanese. I continued to study French in college and added official Japanese courses but decided to try and learn Russian over spring break.

Currently, I am committed to reach fluency in French and Japanese (no matter how long it takes) and study Swedish for fun and heritage. The point is that I love language, I love learning language, and I am always looking for new, fun, and efficient ways to learn/study. .

1. Duolingo

I love this little green owl. A classmate told me about this wonderful site when I lived in New York City. It is completely free and well designed by native and fluent speakers contributing the programming. You can create goals, set reminders, and learn multiple languages. If you fall off the horse for a month it is easy to hop back on and continue learning. Each session integrates reading, writing, grammar, vocab, listening, and speaking (though the last is optional). You can join discussions and practice your interpretation skills as well as peer review others’ work. The sight is user friendly and you can download their app to practice on your smartphone (great for those long subway rides or short work breaks).

The Downside – Doesn’t have all the languages I want

It is still a new program and they are constantly creating and adding new languages (this is a plus!). It’s a personal downside to me because while I love their French and Swedish programs I wish they would add Japanese. However I do appreciate that any language is welcome – they just started working on Klingon and are almost ready to beta Esperanto.

The Upside – It feels natural

Unlike a classroom and many other language learning programs Duolingo doesn’t shy away from the complexity of the language. It is hard to explain…out of all the classes and courses I have completed this program feels the most natural. It builds

Check them out at

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