Hola! Encantada de conocerte. If that made no sense to you, or you recognize it but wish to improve your Spanish language skills, then you’ve come to the right place. Learning a new language can be one of the most rewarding things you can do in life. A new language opens up a whole new world and way of thinking, allowing you to talk with people who you might otherwise never get to know. It can send you across the globe on trips to unearth different cultures, foods, music and more. Getting started isn’t always easy, but we’ve been checking out Teach Yourself Spanish websites to find the best online courses available.
Spanish classes come in all shapes and sizes. You can find online courses with hundreds of video lessons, or real-life tutors who will provide live lessons using their webcam. There are courses designed for absolute beginners or proficient linguists who want to improve their business communication skills in Spanish. You can find courses which focus solely on speaking skills, or others which teach writing and grammar. Whatever your skills set and learning style, there’s a Learn Spanish website to help out.
We’ve researched the best Teach Yourself Spanish sites around today, to bring you a comprehensive set of reviews. We’ve compared each site with its peers, using our Star Ratings system to highlights the pros and cons of every program. We’ve also researched the price of each course and the features it offers, providing you with a written outline of the potential benefits and pitfalls. Before you go ahead and read some of our reviews, however, we have some advice for what to look out for and what to avoid when deciding which websites to try...
Emphasis on Speaking / Pronunciation
Some people who wish to learn Spanish aren't interested in learning to read and write, particularly when it comes to grammar. We consider the focus each website places on learning to speak, and the tools they provide to support you. If you’re keen to make sure your pronunciation is correct, seek out websites which offer voice recognition software. This will compare your pronunciation to that of a native speaker, offering instant feedback on your accuracy. Meanwhile, if you’re interested in learning a lot of useful vocabulary, seek out courses which provide extensive dictionaries and word banks. Some courses will also incorporate audio so you can listen to dialogue. If you learn best through hearing and repeating words, you should be able to find a course which places emphasis on speaking and pronunciation through a wide range of audio lessons. If you’re also interested in learning whilst you’re out of the house, look for sites which allow you to download MP3 audio lessons so you can listen to them in the car or whilst exercising.
Emphasis on Writing / Grammar
Some learners are sheepish around learning the grammar of a foreign language, but if you can understand the structure of a language then it can be easier to learn in the long run. You’re also more likely to read and write accurately, which will be important to most people (especially if you’re learning Spanish for commercial purposes). If you would like to learn to read and write accurately in Spanish, look for courses which contain reading and writing features. Some courses ignore this entirely, preferring a speaking-only model, so you’ll probably want to avoid those options. Features such as flash cards and written word banks, games which ask you to fill in missing words, writing exercises, worksheets and other written resources will prove useful.
Variety of Learning Materials
People learn in different ways, so it’s important to understand how you best absorb new information. The best sites may offer a variety of learning materials to help you improve your Spanish. For example, you might be able to download worksheets which accompany lessons. If you’re a visual learner, you may wish to find a website which offers video lessons. If you prefer to listen and repeat information, find a site which adopts this method. We generally feel that the more learning styles a site incorporates, the more likely it is to be successful for more people. If you’re not sure which style of learning best suits you, it’s safest to choose a site with plenty of learning materials in a range of formats.
Learn Spanish websites will often provide a variety of features to help you develop your Spanish skills. If you’d be interested in finding a tutor or buddy to speak with, look for a site which provides contact details, teacher pages, or even forums. Some sites allow you to communicate with tutors or members using your webcam, which is a great way to get instant feedback and regular practice. Other sites may provide e-books, interactive online exercises, videos, games and more. We suggest exploring each site to see what features it offers and whether they are likely to engage you. Our reviews also provide a list of features, which is a quick way to get an idea of what’s available.
Ease of Use
With hundreds of lessons and resources available, language websites have the potential to be confusing. We consider how simple it is to find what you’re looking for, to track your progress and continue with the next lesson on a course. It is also important that instructions are clear, particularly if you’re new to learning Spanish. Whilst tools such as voice recognition may be sophisticated, they should also be easy to use.
Whether you’re struggling with a technical glitch or you simply want help with your learning, getting support is crucial. The best sites will offer quick and simple customer support from sales and technical teams, plus community and communication features to assist with language queries. If you think you’d benefit from talking with tutors and students about learning Spanish, we recommend looking for a website which offers these features. A number of websites also offer a satisfaction guarantee, if you’re uncertain whether or not to try their program.
Value for Money
The cost of learning Spanish online can vary considerably. As a general rule, sites which hire tutors tend to be more expensive because they have higher running costs. Purchasing Spanish teaching software is usually a cheaper option and you can take as long as you like on the lessons without incurring more costs. Several websites require you to become a paid member, allowing you to access their resources during your membership period. A cheaper option isn’t necessarily offering better value for money when you consider the features and support which are on offer.
The Bottom Line
That’s all the advice you need for now. The most important thing is that you find a Teach Yourself Spanish course which will suit your learning style, ambition and bank balance. With all those things in place, you should be speaking the lingo in no time – Buena suerte (good luck)!