Technology is such an integrated part of today’s world, and it is significantly changing and reshaping many aspects of work, education and how we travel. Language learning, for example, has significantly benefited from technology. Traditional methods of language learning depended heavily on in-person learning settings and heavy textbook readings. However, there are now so many tech resources and options available to learn a foreign language, and here are our top six to look at in 2020.
Language learning apps
These days there are apps for just about everything. Language learning apps such as Babbel, available on iOS and Android, are a great way to learn a new language. You can carry out your language learning anywhere, anytime and follow guided courses and learning paths for your intended language. Since you can do your learning at your own pace, you can use a language learning app as your primary or supplemental way of learning.
YouTube is a hub of free information available at your fingertips. When learning a language, it is helpful to find videos you are interested in created by native speakers in your intended language as well as language lessons available for free.
Podcasts are an accessible source of information, as you can download them to your smart devices to listen to them offline. You can follow language-learning podcasts, as well as search for podcasts available at your level of the language you are learning. Listen to podcasts on your commute, while food shopping, and any other way you can get these podcasts into your days for greater language learning.
Games are a fun way to learn, and when you are having fun without as much pressure to learn something you are more likely to remember what you are intending to learn! So play your favourite games in your intended language.
Autocorrect is a quick way to learn from your mistakes and practice your writing skills. It catches your spelling and grammar and some even help you with the style of your writing. Add the language keyboard of your choosing to your smart device for proper autocorrect and utilise spellcheckers to learn as you go.
Google Translate is used by millions people all over the world. If you are learning a language or travelling to a country where you do not speak the local language, it is incredibly helpful as you can translate what you want to say or need to comprehend in a matter of seconds. All you do is input the ‘translate from’ and ‘translate to’ boxes with the appropriate languages selected and insert the appropriate text.
The benefits of using technology resources
The benefits of using such language learning resources include: being able to learn a language with cost-effective measures, being able to learn anytime anywhere you are, and being able to create a learning environment that is best suited to your individual learning style. We all have unique learning preferences and styles and technology gives us the ability to customize our learning environment with the plethora of options available nowadays, while also making it a more efficient and stimulating process. Rather than needing to be limited by traditional learning methods, you now have remote access to language learning, blended language courses, and interactive language learning to help boost your skills.
A new type of technology that will positively impact language learning even more is ‘virtual reality’. It will enable learners to be immersed in their learning environments and boost the efficacy of their dedicated time to learning a new language. By being fully immersed in a digital environment with a 360-degree camera, users can dive into entertaining games and experiences and use both their speaking and listening skills. So much of the success of learning a language derives from actually using your language skills and the benefit of virtual reality is that it gives you the opportunity to really use it.
With the plethora of options available and all the benefits of using technology to aid in your language learning process, have fun exploring what works best for you and incorporating different methods throughout the process.