Spanish is not only one of the most predominant languages in the world, but it is also the oldest and fastest-growing language on the North American continent. With how vast the Spanish speaking population is growing, you may have realized that possession of the ability to speak the language could be a powerful tool for cultural and financial benefits in the future, as well as simply being fulfilling.
Most of us lead busy lives and certainly do not have the time or energy to devote hours of our week to take Spanish lessons. Luckily, learning Spanish does not need to be a laborious, dragged out process. The best way to learn Spanish is by making a point of listening, reading, speaking, and writing as you learn. This will help you catch on Spanish in no time at all.
Better yet, there are many apps in existence that serve the explicit purpose of educating users, even those who are complete beginners. These apps take different approaches to Spanish tutoring, some basing lessons on a gamified approach, while others focus on a more direct word, grammar, and verbal expression approaches.
And here is a list of the 10 best apps to learn Spanish. Check them out now, and you’ll thank us later.
Babbel is a free to try, subscription-based app that gears its format more to the conversational variety with pre-recorded content.
The language-learning app stance is that no one speaks a language like a robot, so people learning Spanish should not have to sound like machines when they speak it.
Broken down into easily digestible 10-15 minute lessons, these short but effective bits of content are based on real-life conversations, and leverage speech recognition technology to assist in pronunciation. Babble teaches more than just Spanish, but it is certainly their most popular offering.
After an initial free month, Babbel charges $12.95 per each subsequent month. Babbel claims that after the first month, the student will be able to have basic conversational Spanish skills firmly in hand.
The approach Memrise takes to teaching you a language is based on memory. We often remember things better when they have had some type of jovial impact on us. The Memrise creators cleverly recognize that fact and put it into practice with their humor based methodology by teaching you Spanish words by English words that sound like it, in the context of the word’s actual meaning embedded in funny phrases.
The app teaches 16 languages, including Spanish (both as spoken in Mexico and Spain), with each lesson consisting of roughly 15 words. Each word contains the Spanish word, the English translation, and an audio recording.
The purpose of the audio is to help the person learning to pronounce the word as a native speaker would. They even have the option of recording the word’s pronunciation and comparing the audio to the actual way it is pronounced.
The first lesson from Memrise is free, with each subsequent month costing $8.99. You can also purchase it for $90 annually, or $139.99 for a lifetime subscription.
Duolingo is one of the most prominently known language learning apps on the market, winning the 2013 Best App Award in both the Google Play Store and the AppStore. It offers lessons in 26 languages, including Spanish. Duolingo focuses on the 1500 most common and important Spanish words, and their units are split up into themes and broken down into either tenses or word types (nouns, verbs, pronouns, etc.).
Each study unit consists of sub-unit, each of which consists of 7 to 10 words, and there can be anywhere between 2 and 10 subunits. Within each subunit are typically 6 exercise types including a vocal pronunciation of a word, the translation of a phrase with the word (both from English to Spanish to English, and vice versa), matching photos to the word, multiple-choice questions, and rearranging words in a sentence.
Each subunit contains about 20 questions. This hyper-focused, drill-down approach focuses on the essentials. With twenty dedicated minutes per day, you can work your way through about 3 lessons, which means that all of the lessons can be completed in under 4 months. The pacing is great and some features allow one to track the progress and word loss.
Duolingo is a free app, getting their funding through ad revenue, but has a $6.99 premium monthly option that will negate the ads and includes some extra features on top of that.
Rosetta Stone, a leading language learning system, is available now as a mobile app. Their methodology is that language learning should be an immersive experience.
This means that instead of having everything translated for you, the focus is on an instinctual approach of figuring out which words and phrases should be used, as Rosetta Stone experts believe this to be a more natural way of learning.
They help improve your learning and pronunciation by leveraging speech recognition technology and provide instant feedback on your pronunciation. The app uses games and other fun activities to keep the language student engaged in their learning.
The app is free to try for 3 days, at which point a subscription for either 3 months ($11.99/mo) or 1 year ($6.99/mo) needs to be purchased.
Fluencia utilizes a highly visual method for teaching Spanish. In place of a lot of text-based teaching mechanisms, there are visual tools to help one learn the language.
The lesson plan is broken down into 5 levels, with 10 lesson units within each level. The lessons cover vocabulary, grammar, communication, culture, and conversational tools. The lessons all vary in style as well. Some will have conversations that can be read along with while listening, some require an English translation to a Spanish phrase, and there are pictures to word matching exercises as well.
Each lesson is also customized. There is a review that follows and uses your abilities at that point to frame lessons going forward. It is estimated that after completing the 50 lessons, the student will have about a year’s worth of Spanish education (at the college level).
Fluencia has a $14.95/month subscription tag and it does not have an app. However, its website can be utilized from a computer or a mobile device with equal efficacy.
MosaLingua is a platform for learning languages, including apps specifically designed for Spanish students. It is a well-organized app that utilizes an SRS (Spaced Repetition System) which promotes long-term memorization by utilizing a lot of repetition and reviews of former lessons.
The easy-to-understand app teaches vocabulary (with a focus on the 3,000 most commonly used words), verb conjugations, phrases, and adapts to the student’s needs with both audio and visual tools.
Included in the app are thousands of flashcards with essential grammar points, audio pronunciation clips, pre-recorded voice interactions, and even an online Spanish dictionary for reference.
As students advance through the lessons they can unlock additional learning content, all of which are available offline as well. The app can be purchased for $4.99.
FluentU takes an especially unique approach to learning a language. Instead of using scripted, game-based content, FluentU compiles many actual videos (music, movie trailers, speeches, and news) and utilizes those as language learning lessons to teach nine languages, including Spanish.
That way, the student is learning the Spanish language as it is actually spoken by people, making FluentU a great choice for audio-visual learners.
The videos are of a wide variety of topics and each comes with an interactive transcript. Every word in the transcript can be clicked on to find out its definition and to see examples of how it is commonly used in Spanish. If one was to run into a word they did not know, they could add it to the long vocabulary list in the app.
The app also features a lot of grammar and vocabulary tips, as well as personalized quizzes to help to test the student’s knowledge and progress. The first 2 weeks of FluentU are free, with a $30 a month fee that follows for those seeking to continue monthly. An annual subscription can be purchased for $240 as well.
With over a thousand hours of audio lessons, the app also uses the SRS system, utilizing repeated reviews to help memorization, within context. The app is based on podcasts and texts designed for users to read or listen to for their particular ability levels and at their own pace.
Students are even able to import their own content, which will be converted into Spanish lessons to use with the app. LingQ also uses mini-stories that can be listened to in Spanish, narrated by native speakers, and supplemented with translations.
By listening to the stories, users will begin to recognize more vocabulary terms and grammatical patterns to further promote learning the language. You can use a note-taking app to write down new terms as you learn. The app is available for android and iOS platforms and is free of charge.
Busuu is a progressive language learning platform with a high concentration on the component of speaking the Spanish language. Busuu has a community of active users who make the platform a very vibrant environment.
The lessons are simple, structured, and tailored to the appropriate difficulty levels. The lesson begins with basic key vocabulary which prepares the student for simple dialog lessons. The students are then given a chance to practice with the topic, and other members of the Busuu community can see and edit this writing.
The next step is to interact and practice Spanish with native speakers on the platform, record phrases indicated on the screen, and review all of the lessons. In this way, this method covers reading, writing, audio, and verbal components of learning a language.
Busuu is an easy way to learn Spanish when you have time and the lessons can be downloaded to your mobile device to be studied at any convenient time.
While Spanish is their most popular language choice, Mondly offers lessons for 33 languages, using a methodology focused on speech recognition, conversational aspects, and utilizes augmented reality for its fun lesson structures.
There are reading, writing, speaking, and listening exercises, as well as a built-in dictionary and verb-conjugator. The focus is primarily on listening to native speakers in a repeating system that promotes better memorization.
The idea is to teach Spanish not through disjointed Spanish terms, but rather through usable phrases that incorporate both vocabulary and context into the learning process.
With this approach, the student becomes better equipped not just to understand the language but to be able to apply it in conversation. The app can be purchased with a $9.99 monthly subscription, or for a $47.99 annual one.
There you have it: our list of the best apps for learning Spanish.
Now I’d like to hear what you have to say:
Which app on this list are you going to give a try?
Regardless of what type of learner you’re, this list got something that fits your learning style.
Please let us know in the comments section below.
The best of luck with learning Spanish!
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