“I decided to write a no-nonsense list of the best resources for learning Spanish.”
Every time I tried to find guidance on the best resources to learn Spanish, I was presented with a long list of the pros and cons of various alternatives. This meant I still had to try each option to figure out which one was actually the best. So, I decided to write a no-nonsense list of the best resources for learning Spanish.
Bookmark each one and try to integrate them into your studies every day.
Learn Grammar – StudySpanish
This website provides amazingly succinct modular grammar lessons. Try to read at least one article per day and make sure to go back and review often.
Practice Speaking – iTalki
You can easily find language exchange partners on this website, but you’ll have to reciprocate by teaching your partner your language. You’re better off speaking with Spanish speakers in-person, but this is the next best thing.It is important to note that you have to control the direction of your language-exchanges (e.g. prepare questions and ask your partner to correct your mistakes), otherwise you won’t be maximizing the learning opportunity.
Practice Writing – Duolingo
This doesn’t focus exclusively on reading and writing; it actually targets all major skills. That being said, it’s mostly a writing program. The best part of Duolingo is that it’s addictive, because it gamifies learning.
Practice Reading – BBC Mundo
Real news articles written in easy-to-understand Spanish. This is an absolutely amazing resource for anyone with an intermediate or higher level.
Translation Assistance – ImTranslator
Use this in conjunction with BBC Mundo above. This extension allows you to translate individual words or sentences in-line on any webpage by simply hovering over it and activating the extension.Note: This only works on Chrome.
Note: Remember to set the target language to English in the options menu.
Improve Listening Comprehension – FSI
FSI’s lessons are a little dated and can be boring at times, but the best part about audio lessons is that they can basically be done while you’re doing any other low level physical task, such as walking, driving, cooking or working out.
Note: Install the audio files on your smartphone so that you can listen to it anytime you have a free moment.
Increase Vocabulary – Memrise
This is the best beginner SRS flash card program. Many people recommend Anki, but it’s more difficult to set up and the interface is archaic. Memrise is a lot more fun use and has a number of secondary functions that Anki does not.
Dictionary – SpanishDict
There’s really not much to say. It’s the most popular Spanish dictionary for a reason.
If you feel I have missed a valuable resource, or you’d like to present an alternative, let me know in the comments! I’ll update the post appropriately.