Updated: Nov 28
Author: Ioanna Chatzidavidou
Date of publication: 24/07/2023
Is English Enough in the Modern Era?
In today’s hyper-connected, globalized world, speaking just one language is no longer sufficient. The days when English was the sole mandatory language for communication, personal and career growth are gone. That’s why multilingualism is increasingly valuable and beneficial for several reasons. Learning a foreign language opens the door to numerous possibilities. What’s more, it can be an enthralling experience that will completely change your life and transform it for the better.
Unveiling the Benefits of Learning a New Language
You may all have a question. Why do we need multilingual people when almost everybody on this planet has at least a basic knowledge of English? In fact, acquiring a second (or multiple) language(s) brings a wide array of benefits:
· It enhances cognitive functions, making you smarter and improving memory and mental abilities.
· It helps with problem-solving and decision-making, sharpening and empowering your mind.
· Additionally, being multilingual provides you with more career choices. This is because companies and organizations value employees who can communicate in multiple languages. In any case, foreign languages in your CV will make you stand out from the monolingual candidates.
· Learning a new language fosters open-mindedness, encourages divergent thinking, and promotes multiculturalism.
· It broadens your horizons, allowing you to discover new countries, cultures, and cuisines.
· It also enables you to watch foreign films and series without subtitles.
· It offers you the opportunity to delve into literature in its original language.
· In addition, you can have access to a wealth of information and keep up with foreign media.
· You can expand your social circles, make new friends, and even find love.
Why Language Learning Apps Are the Perfect Choice
We all share the desire to acquire foreign languages quickly and easily, don’t we? At Vision Factory, we know that the process of learning a second language can sometimes feel challenging. Learning different languages, especially as an adult, is at times overwhelming, confusing, and time-consuming. There are moments when you possess the energy and motivation for studying but lack direction and are unsure of where to start. Have you ever imagined that you could have your language coach at your fingertips?
Moreover, it's important to remember that there isn't a one-size-fits-all approach to language learning. Each person has a unique learning style, schedule, and background in languages. This isn’t the best age to learn a new language. Based on research, a relaxed and happy state of mind enhances our learning effectiveness. Utilizing images, sounds, and bite-sized lessons can aid in easier memorization.
Playfully approaching language learning and a fun mindset can make a significant difference. Immersing yourself in the language and truly living it is equally important. When it comes to interactive and engaging learning, language learning apps provide an ideal solution. The reason for this is that they offer the flexibility of learning anywhere at any time. Meanwhile, thanks to the progress in technology, more and more companies are developing amazing apps that gamify your language learning experience.
Whether you are learning a new language for work, studying abroad, or traveling, language learning apps offer a convenient solution. With just a few clicks, you can effortlessly grasp a new tongue, even if it's simply for personal pleasure. They indeed provide a flexible learning experience tailored to individual needs and fit into your hectic schedule. Whether you have a busy demanding schedule or are a night owl who prefers studying during late hours, language learning apps cater to your needs. Whether you are on a bus, at a cafe, or even standing in a queue, you can learn a new language from the comfort of your chosen space.
You still may be wondering: What is the best language learning app for beginners? Can a language learning app help me become fluent? Is there a free language learning app? In search of the best language learning app, our team did extensive research and tested the above applications that have revolutionized language learning. These apps offer a very enjoyable and structured learning path, enabling you to learn words and phrases in various contexts. This allows you to discuss a wide range of topics. Moreover, they provide an affordable way to learn, offering numerous free features. It’s your time on a rewarding language learning journey, embracing these technological tools:
Duolingo is definitely one of the most popular language-learning apps. It offers a range of impressive features that make it a standout choice even for beginner language learners. The user-friendly interface and the app's feature "streak" work as powerful motivators. They allow you to set daily goals and ensure you stay on track with your language-learning journey.
One of Duolingo's notable strengths is its utilization of multiple-choice responses, making it easy to practice and reinforce your language skills. Another outstanding advantage of Duolingo is the absence of a limit on the number of languages you can learn. This flexibility allows you to explore and acquire proficiency in multiple languages simultaneously. So, whether you have a few minutes to spare or prefer longer study sessions, Duolingo accommodates both.
The best way to learn a new language is to speak it. HelloTalk is an incredible language app that eliminates the need to travel far and wide to learn to speak like a native. You can effortlessly connect with native speakers of your target language from around the world. Through HelloTalk, you not only learn a language but also explore new cultures and make friends from across the globe.
The app also offers convenient search options. With these options, you can find language exchange partners based on their native language, city, proximity to you, and more. It offers various communication methods, including text and voice messages, stickers, as well as interactive Voice Rooms and Lives.
Learning becomes as simple as having a conversation. One standout feature of HelloTalk is its "Moments'' function. This function allows you to practice your target language by sharing posts about anything. It can be a dish you've eaten, a place you've visited, the lyrics of a song, or just a random thought. Therefore, this app blends language learning and social media.
Promova is an exceptional language learning app, extremely convenient and easy to use. Upon starting with Promova, you receive a personalized study plan designed to improve your language skills effectively. The app provides powerful lessons that go beyond boring word games and generic exercises. On the contrary, it focuses on practical topics and situations that you'll encounter in real-life conversations. If you require more practice, Promova offers the option to learn with certified teachers who can provide one-on-one guidance. The app ensures that lessons are delivered in a way that you understand best. Consequently, it focuses on providing practical language skills that can be applied in real-world scenarios.
Drops is an incredibly user-friendly app and an excellent tool for expanding your vocabulary, offering a minimalistic interface. With over 350 carefully curated vocabulary lessons, Drops provides a comprehensive language learning experience. One of the key learning techniques made by Drops is Image Association. This means that words are linked with simple, graphic images, enhancing memorization, and strengthening word recognition. In particular, each session consists of brief 5-minute lessons that engage users through animated activities. This top-notch resource for language learners of all levels will become your favorite language-learning tool.
Babbel is a language learning app that ensures your enthusiasm for language acquisition stays alive throughout your journey. In fact, with Babbel, you have the freedom to practice a language at your own pace. Babbel is known for its carefully curated content, which facilitates language fluency and engages you in meaningful language practice. By immersing yourself in real-life scenarios and participating in interactive dialogues, you master fluency in your target language very fast. With Babbel, language learning becomes an easy and enjoyable process, thanks to its all-inclusive lessons and live classes.
Memrise stands out as an impressive language learning app that ensures a seamless and enjoyable language-learning experience. You have the flexibility to tailor your learning journey to your proficiency level. You can start with beginner-friendly lessons or dive straight into more advanced content. What’s more, the app provides speaking practice and feedback through MemBot. MemBot is an AI language tutor, helping you build confidence before engaging in real conversations with native speakers. Additionally, Memrise offers an extensive collection of over 30,000 conversations between real natives. This enables you to confidently understand their accents and familiarize yourself with the words and phrases they commonly use.
Moreover, Memrise is a noteworthy app for language learners seeking to enhance their proficiency and enjoy the journey along the way. With its comprehensive features, gamified tests, and user-friendly interface, it provides a valuable language learning experience. As the founder of Memrise says: "Fluency is nothing more than mastering the 100 most important real-life conversations." And we couldn't agree more.
This is your sign to step into the realm of multilingualism! What will be your next language?
My Journey and Tips on Language Learning
My name is Ioanna and I am multilingual. Or at least, I strive to be. I am from Greece and my native language is Greek. Of course, just like a lot of children in European countries, I started learning English when I was 6 years old. In addition, I have studied Russian Philology and Slavic Languages, so I have gained a commendable proficiency in Russian. Presently, I work as a Russian Tutor, teaching the Russian language to kids and adults, and I also translate into Russian and English.
During my academic journey, I started learning the Polish language because I would need it for my Erasmus semester at the University of Warsaw. Last year, I started learning the Spanish language, and now I am doing my internship in Barcelona. As my studies are related to Slavic languages, I also had some short courses in the Ukrainian, Bulgarian, and Serbian languages. This allows me to have a basic understanding of them.
From the time you start to learn a second or a third language, learning new foreign languages becomes an addiction. My future aspirations include delving into Arabic and potentially an Asian language, such as Japanese. What always excited me was how many new things I learned about a country's culture that was connected to the language. For instance, while I was practicing Polish, I discovered the remarkable writer, Olga Tokarczuk. Afterward, I came across the films of Kieślowski, and the music of Sanah, Dawid Podsiadło, and Kwiat Jabłoni.
Throughout this learning journey, I followed several practices that helped me to retain vocabulary and increase fluency. Firstly, I started using flashcards and doing lots of grammar and vocabulary review exercises on the weekends. I also started watching movies, TV series, and reality shows on Netflix with subtitles in the language I was learning. Along with this, I looked up foreign YouTubers and influencers on social media to learn more practical phrases used daily by young people, and slang. It helped me also a lot to read news online to expand my vocabulary on topics such as politics, environment, economy, business, etc.
And no. By no means am I one of those child prodigies who speak an astonishing ten foreign languages since adolescence. I’m also not the kind of person who learns a foreign language very quickly. At times, I forget easily, and I need to see a word several times to memorize it. Sometimes with so many languages in my head, I may have difficulty thinking of a more complex sentence even in my native language. But what I have noticed that gets results and helps me the most is to practice each language every day, even for 10-15 minutes. So, this is where mobile language learning apps have played an important role in my daily life.