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April 6, 2015 / carlispina

Practice Your Language Skills With Lingua.ly

Lingua.ly logoAn ever-increasing number of tools exist to help language learners to practice their skills online. Some of these offer full lessons, such as Mango Languages, but others try to help language learners to take advantage of the internet to learn from real sources. One example of this is Lingua.ly.

This new tool allows language learners to practice their language skills by reading real articles from the internet. You can select the words you want to concentrate on and Lingua.ly will provide you with a selection of articles that feature them. While you are reading the articles you can tap on any word to see a definition, hear the word spoken aloud (if the audio is available for that word), and load a flashcard for the word. You can also add new words that you would like to learn by typing them in your own language and searching for them in the language that you are learning.

The app also includes a practice section where you can take quizzes on words. To prevent frustration, the app will only quiz you on words that you know and if you say that you don’t know the word, you will be given the definition and quizzed on that word later. The app allows you to earn points and places you on the leader board to foster some competition amongst users. You can share your accomplishments as you earn them on Facebook if you would like, but this isn’t a required part of the experience. The app continues to add new features all the time, most recently the option to customize your difficulty level to better suit your language skills and an integration with Tatoeba to improve the app’s translation of phrases. It will be interesting to see what more is added in the future.

Lingua.ly is a nice addition to a language learning program. I’m not sure I would say that it can be used on its own, but in combination with a class or other online learning tools, it can be a fun and real world approach to learning a language. Lingua.ly currently offers users the option to practice English, Spanish, French, German, Hebrew, Portuguese, Italian, Arabic, Dutch, and Russian with more languages coming soon. It is available for desktop use or as an iOS or Android app. A Chrome browser extension also allows you to read foreign websites and click on words that you don’t understand along the way to learn them and add them to your practice regime. You can learn more about Lingua.ly in the video below.

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