Memrise’s guide to bringing the outside world in with a new language

Posted: August 23 2021

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You don’t have to book an expensive plane ticket or commute to a language class to get good at another language.

In fact: you can pick up a language from home, lying on the sofa in your pyjamas, while sipping a glass of your favourite wine... if you want. No pressure.

Language learning

But how...?

The Memrise founders, Ben & Ed, figured out a way to put real-life language immersion online. Opening our app and exploring 50,000 audios and videos of native speakers is like having a local in your home! Or on your train journey, in a café, or while you wait for a friend. Our app is brilliant on-the-go, you know.

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This means you can get comfy, start a language course, and transport yourself to the different countries or/and cities where the language is spoken during your learning sessions. Think about bringing little pieces of the world to you, at your convenience – rather than flicking through flight prices. That’s how it works.

Adding a new language will enrich your life and it doesn’t have to be daunting to do it on your own. 

 

Here are 3 steps to bring the outside world to you, with Memrise.

 

Step 1. Pick a language

Let’s start simple. Which language do you want to speak? Whether it’s a beach party in Barcelona or a lively izakaya in Tokyo that you’re craving... Pick the language that’ll help you thrive in the situations you want to be in.

Thinking about why you want to acquire a language will give you that motivational boost. Need a helping hand? Here are five popular languages for English speakers:

Mexican Spanish and European Spanish

Japanese

German

Italian

French

The one you’re after not on that list? See our full list of official courses.

 

Step 2. Start learning in short sessions

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We hate it when people say learning is boring... so we’re here to make you realise just how fun learning a language can be. Here are some tips to make the most out of it.

  • Set a daily goal. Even 5 or 10 minutes a day on Memrise can make a huge difference.
  • Set up weekly learning challenges with friends and family. Or climb our public leader boards the more you learn. Learning together will keep you connected and have fun while learning.
  • Explore different course levels and situations. 1000’s of audio and video clips of local speakers teach you how to speak in real life and connect you to scenarios you’ll find yourself in.

Feeling ambitious? Discover how to get conversational in a language in 7 days using our memory tricks.

 

Step 3. Immerse yourself in the language in different ways: films, TV, music, podcasts.

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Immersing yourself in natural language (i.e. how locals actually speak, rather than those robotic voices you heard during listening tests at school) will boost your understanding of the language massively.

The more you do this, the better you’ll get. A piece of immersion advice: consume the content you enjoy, but in another language. Surf the internet and pick out the media forms you enjoy the most: comedy series, action films, YouTube cooking videos. You name it, it’s probably there. Dive in!

Here are a few top recommendations:

  • Music in different languages. It doesn’t matter if you understand all the lyrics, you won’t be the first to make them up as you joyfully sing along. It’ll help you get used to how it sounds and you can sneak in a dancing session, double points.
  • The daily news. A lot of what’s being said in the media will be the same in other languages, so switching to another language can enhance your understanding of words, phrases and sentence structure.
  • TV & film. Whatever your favourite genre is, you’ll definitely find videos online in the language you’re learning. Subtitles will help you follow along. Netflix and learn, maybe? See these recommendations in:
  • Spanish
  • French 
  • Japanese

Learning a language with Memrise is an awesome way to go globetrotting and understand another culture from home. We hope this guide will help you get started. For more about our learning philosophy and how it works... click here.

Otherwise, you know what to do. Join almost 60 million others and get started.

 

Pick a course