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10 Time-Saving Language Learning Websites (For Busy People)

10 Time-Saving Language Learning Websites (For Busy People)

If you’re reading this, chances are that you’re a busy person.

Either you’ve got a job you work hard at, a business you run yourself, or perhaps you’re out traveling the world (congrats!).
But your goal is to learn a new language this year, and you have no idea how you’ll fit it into your schedule.

No problem. There are great time-saving language learning websites today that allow you to effectively learn a language on your own time without comprising your busy schedule. This way, you can keep working hard (or traveling hard), while expanding your cultural and language knowledge.

Here are 10 time-saving language learning websites to learn a new language if you’re a busy person.

The 10 Best Language Learning Websites For Busy People

When it comes to finding the best language learning websites, I’ve found there are a handful of areas worth investigating and experimenting with.

First is the method of learning, of which there are 4 main categories:

1. Algorithm learning

2. Textbook learning

3. Course learning

4. Human learning

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    Next, we need to dig deeper and measure the 4 important factors for each method:

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    a. Time commitment

    b. Engagement

    c. Personalization

    d. Effectiveness

    Let’s take a look at how these factors apply to each of the follow sites.

    1. Michel Thomas

    Time commitment: Low
    Engagement: Medium
    Personalization: Low
    Effectiveness: Medium
    Cost: $15 – $130

    Michel Thomas provides an audiotape course from a great teacher. It provides everything from beginner to advanced lessons.

    Although it’s a one-sided conversation, it’s not only Michel speaking on the audiotape. Michel provides a real-life conversation scenario by bringing on students to speak with each other and correcting them along the way.

    michel

      2. Duolingo

      Time commitment: Low
      Engagement: Medium
      Personalization: Low
      Effectiveness: Low
      Cost: Free

      With over 50 million downloads and increasing quickly, Duolingo is the most popular language learning mobile app.

      The gamification of the app is great for keeping you entertained and engaged while learning. The app is recommended for anyone who has zero knowledge and wants to focus on learning basic vocabulary and grammar.

      From personal experience, you will get what you pay, and if you want to see real, lasting results, Duolingo will only get you so far.

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      duolingo

        3. Rype

        Time commitment: Low
        Engagement: High
        Personalization: High
        Effectiveness: High
        Cost: $79/mo

        If you’ve ever experienced how quickly you can pick up a language while living in a foreign country, then you’ve seen how powerful real-life immersion can be. Rype brings real-life immersive learning to your screen, so you can learn on-the-go, anytime, anywhere. In fact, studies have shown it can be up to 18 times more effective than traditional lectures.

        rype

          What Rype offers is unlimited one-on-one Spanish lessons with a professional, dedicated coach online. This means that you can book as many lessons as you want (no strings attached). With your membership, you’ll also gain access to premium video classes on-demand, language guides/resources, personalized feedback documents, and more. Think of it as having unlimited access to a personal trainer for getting in shape, but for language learning.

          Since all of the learning is done online, on any device, it takes the time you would have wasted commuting out of the equation. In addition, because coaches are located all around the world, you’re able to schedule your lessons at any time of the day, whether it’s 7 AM in the morning or 2 AM at night. Learn more about how Rype works here.

          rype

            4. Busuu

            Time commitment: Low
            Engagement: Medium
            Personalization: Low
            Effectiveness: Low
            Cost: Free

            Busuu is quite similar to Duolingo, but they do provide more of a community aspect to connect with fellow language learners, if that’s what you’re looking for.

            busuu

              5. Lonely Planet

              Time commitment: Medium
              Engagement: Low
              Personalization: Medium
              Effectiveness: Medium
              Cost: $9

              Lonely Planet is one of the largest travel websites online. They also provide books on language learning, targeted at travellers who want to learn the basic conversation phrases before and during their trip.

              Because of the targeted focus, if you’re a traveler wanting to learn basic phrases in a language, it can be a simple and easy way to accomplish your goal.

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                6. Conversation Exchange

                Time commitment: High
                Engagement: Medium
                Personalization: Medium
                Effectiveness: Low
                Cost: Free

                Conversation Exchange is a place where language lovers meet online to help each other learn their native language.

                For example, a fluent person in German looking to learn English can pair up with a native English speaker looking to speak German. Conversations can take place in-person, over Skype, or through text over Whatsapp or other chat software.

                Although the concept is great, finding the right partner is a challenge due to the lack of personalization, a matchmaking system, and schedule coordination. Most students will not be as dedicated because of the lack of commitment involved, and it can take some time before you discover a partner you like.

                If you’re lacking a budget and have the patience and time to go on the journey, this is a great, free way to learn conversation skills!

                convexc

                  7. Babbel

                  Time commitment: Low
                  Engagement: Medium
                  Personalization: Low
                  Effectiveness: Low
                  Cost: $13/mo

                  Babbel is very similar to Busuu and Duolingo, offering a free way to learn languages using algorithms.

                  This is another alternative if you are looking to experiment before choosing your platform.

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                    8. Memrise

                    Time commitment: Low
                    Engagement: Low
                    Personalization: Low
                    Effectiveness: Medium
                    Cost: Free

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                    Memrise is great for one purpose: memorization. If you read our blog post on How to Learn Any Language in 90 Days, you know that you can memorize 30 words/day for 90 days and be able to recognize 70-80% of a language.

                    You’ll have to face a lot of memorization obstacles when learning a language, and when that time comes, Memrise is a great tool to help you overcome them.

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                      9. Fluentin3months

                      Time commitment: Low
                      Engagement: Medium
                      Personalization: Low
                      Effectiveness: Medium
                      Cost: Free

                      Fluentin3months.com is a language learning website started by Benny Lewis. As stated, he’s well known for learning languages in 3 months, and has courses available to teach you his methodology. Fluentin3months also has an avid community of fellow language learners that you can meet, which makes the website stand out above others.

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                        10. Rosetta Stone

                        Time commitment: Medium
                        Engagement: Low
                        Personalization: Medium
                        Effectiveness: Medium
                        Cost: $499

                        Rosetta Stone has been around for many years now. They provide language learning courses for almost every popular language you can think of. While it’s great for getting started, due to the lack of engagement levels, it’s not ideal for people who want to improve their speaking skills.

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                          Your Turn

                          Which of these time-saving language websites will you try out? If there are any tips or suggestions that we have missed, please let us know in the comments!

                          More by this author

                          Sean Kim

                          Sean is the founder and CEO of Rype, a language learning app. He's an entrepreneur and blogger.

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                          Last Updated on March 25, 2020

                          How to Type Faster: 12 Typing Tips and Techniques

                          How to Type Faster: 12 Typing Tips and Techniques

                          Typing is a lot of fun, especially if you’re the type of person who loves to write. Whenever an idea comes to your head or you just want to communicate something, the feeling of scribbling things down in a computer is awesome.

                          Do you know that being able to type faster makes you more productive? In fact, it’ll save you 21 days every year just by typing faster!

                          Many people look up to master typists and wish that to handle a keyboard like they do. The truth is that none of them started that way, and they had to learn.

                          In this piece, you’ll learn how to type faster with some useful tips and techniques:

                          1. Work on Your Workspace and Typing Area

                          A lot of people believe that fast and correct typing will start when you can master the keyboard. But the truth is, you will need to begin with getting a workspace that is clean, properly ventilated, and comfortable. Also, for optimal typing, you will need to get a table and not out your laptop or computer on your lap.

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                          If you will be working for an extended period, make sure that you’re comfortable.

                          2. Fix Your Posture

                          If you want to type well, the correct posture will be seated, straight backed, and with your feet planted a little apart, flat on the ground. You wrists should also be positioned in such a way that your fingers can cover the keyboard. Tilt your head a bit as you can look at the screen properly as well.

                          Adjust your office chair so you’ll be able to easily play with the seat and get a proper posture.

                          3. Hold Your Posture

                          It is also very important that you keep this position as you type. Ensure that your posture is good, and this way, you will be able to avoid getting aches on your wrists. These aches have a way of slowing you down and keeping you out of rhythm.

                          Keep your back and shoulders from hunching, and while relaxation should be your key goal as you work on, also be sure to stay upright.

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                          4. Familiarize Yourself with the Keyboard

                          The keyboard is your tool here, so you will need to get to know it. Fortunately for you, most keyboards that you see will make use of the same layout; the QWERTY layout. It is called that because of the letters that make the top left corner. You’ll also find that a lot of keyboards have keys around these main ones that do several tings.

                          Here’s a nice video to help you familiarize yourself with the keyboard:

                          So, work on memorizing the positions of the letter keys, as well as some of the most used punctuation marks. You will need to understand where they are without looking at the keyboard. This is the only way you can learn to type fast.

                          5. Close Your Eyes and Say the Keys out Loud as You Press Them

                          Another great way to get to know the positions of these letters is to look away from them and directly at the screen. Then, pronounce the keys as you press them and see if you’re correct. This step will go a long way in helping you to memorize the keys, and it can easily help you

                          6. Start Slowly with Touch-Typing

                          Improving your speed as you type is a matter of developing your skill over time. However, the quickest way to master typing will be touch typing. If this is your first time with touch typing, then you might spend a lot of time on this step. However, once you can type without looking at the keys, your speed will increase.

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                          Now, this typing method might feel a bit alien, but you’ll improve with time.

                          7. Stick with It and Don’t Look at Your Hands

                          The whole essence of this step is to keep you from looking at your keyboard as you type, so that your fingers are made to learn how the keys work.

                          Again, you might find that your speed reduces when you begin, but just stick to it. Touch typing will help you to reach higher speeds and master it.

                          8. Practice, Practice, Practice

                          Mastering the touch typing technique will prove to be a bit finicky, but once your posture is up and you get your fingers where they should be, you can only improve by practicing.

                          Spare some time on a daily basis to practice and master both accuracy and speed. With continuous practice, you will also notice that you make fewer errors with time.

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                          9. Check out Some Online Games

                          There are also some websites that can help you with your practicing. They score you and record your words per minute, so you can try improving your record and competing with others as well. Here’re some of the nice sites:

                          10. Dictation Practice

                          If you don’t know what you can type, another alternative to getting good practice is to listen to something and try to type as you hear the words. There is no limit to the kind of things you can type, and you can even make the practice process more fun. So, get an e-book, an online lecture, or listen to a talk show and type. You could watch a TV show as well.

                          11. Monitor Your Progress

                          Ensure that you keep track of the progress you make as you go on. But it is important that you don’t get obsessed with how many words you are able to type in a minute. Rather, ensure that you stay comfortable while you type. With time, your words per minute will increase, and you’ll be able to clock up some high numbers.

                          12. Get Some Formal Training If You Want

                          There are actually a lot of specially designed courses and programs that will boost your typing ability. If you’re willing to improve your skill, get any of these and see how well they work for you:

                          Don’t just finish reading this article and expect that you’ll type faster. You do need to work on your skills. It takes time to type fast but, practice makes perfect!

                          More Tips About Typing Faster

                          Featured photo credit: Cytonn Photography via unsplash.com

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