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April 2017

3 Free Must-Have Language Apps for Advanced Learners

Great apps to help improve your language skills

From Duolingo to Rosetta Stone, there are a great number of effective, free applications for beginner and intermediate language learners. Many of these programs cover the basics well. Advanced students, however, have moved beyond the basics and require a honing of their skills. Reviewing general vocabulary becomes a waste of time for many.

Unfortunately, there are not many apps that can support advanced students on their paths towards fluency. This is not a fault of app makers; advanced students require a far more personalised approach to learning. Additionally, many apps claim to cater to advanced students, but they charge a premium after an initial trial period. While they are still much cheaper than hiring a personal instructor, not all students have the resources to pay for language apps.

Today we’ll take a look at three free must-have language apps for advanced learners. While some of these may not be new, they continue to be essential for students.

Tandem

Tandem is a great application for finding conversation partners who are native to your target language. Like many other services, it pairs you with someone learning your native language, someone who is willing to help you learn theirs. What makes Tandem shine is its interface. The app is really easy to use, providing an intuitive platform for chatting and calling others. While language learning is its focus (the app reminds you, for good reason, that it’s not a dating site), it’s easy to make new friends. A review system is helpful for finding partners of good reputation.

Anki

Anki isn’t a new app, but it’s still one of the most useful for advanced learners. The service allows students to create online flashcards on any subject. Flashcards are a necessity for advanced students who need to brush up on specific subjects, rather than learning broad sets of generic vocabulary like a beginning student would require. Users can download, create, and share flashcard sets as well. Anki links with Dropbox, so all data is saved in the cloud. Pairing Anki with the smartphone app allows for mobile learning. Utilizing spaced repetition, students are exposed more often to the items they have a hard time remembering. While Anki itself is free, the mobile version comes with a one-time download cost.

WordReference

WordReference continues to be one of the best free online dictionaries for foreign languages. While Google Translate is great for translating phrases, WordReference offers more accuracy and depth when it comes to learning vocabulary. What makes the dictionary especially good is that it provides multiple meanings for each word, including pronunciation. The online forum offers additional help from user submitted questions that may help you with specific questions.

Are you an advanced language student? What are your favorite apps? Let us know your thoughts on our Facebook Page, and be sure to “like” TELC English for more articles on language and study tips!

Picture (c) Fotolia, karelnoppe

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