Spanish Course Recommendations
What's the best online Spanish course? Here are my recommendations for different types of learners.
Spanish Verbs 123 is our own course designed entirely to demystify and simplify the process of learning all aspects of verb use, and to make their use second nature. It includes over 40 lessons (and more being added regularly), along with drills and quizzes designed to reinforce the learning.
- Over 40 lessons
- Practice drills
- End of topic quizzes
- Custom drill maker
- Free updates
Verbs are the cornerstone of grammar and if you find this aspect of Spanish difficult then you won't find another course dedicated to covering this in as much detail.
If you are looking for something to teach you all aspects of Spanish grammar then this won't do that.
I tried Rocket Spanish years ago when it was a simple audio course, and it was good then, but I'm amazed at how it has developed since then. Updated for 2017, Rocket Spanish now takes the audio course format and combines that with lots of other great resources like practice games, vocabulary builders, an innovative feature which records and assesses your pronunciation and a convenient mobile app. It offers different ways to learn for many different learning styles, so works well for almost anyone.
- Audio lessons
- Grammar course
- Practice games and quizzes
- Pronunciation checker
- Mobile app
You get a LOT of content for the money. It combines the benefits of audio courses with loads of supplementary tools and materials. It caters to all learning styles, and importantly, it's fun. It's great value when you consider how much more you get with this compared to just a few lessons with a tutor.
The single up front purchase might put off some people who prefer a monthly subscription model - but in my experience this makes it more likely you'll complete the whole course and get the full benefits you are looking for from it.
Synergy Spanish can take you from zero knowledge to holding conversations quicker than any other course I've found. It teaches vocabulary in a very innovative way that lets you create your own sentences within a few minutes of starting. Combine that with memory techniques and ways to multiply your vocab and you have a great option for beginners to get running with Spanish very quickly and easily.
- 68 audio/video lessons
- Quick start guide
- iPhone, iPad, Android app
- 90 days email help from a teacher if you need it
Excellent for beginners, it will get you up and running in no time and the quick progress you'll see is great for motivation. I'm a big fan of this "language hack" approach. The 90 days of email support from the teacher is a nice touch.
Intermediate learners and above are better suited to other courses.
Learning a language through an online course is great, but at some point you need to start talking to real people, after all that's the point of learning, right?
On Italki you can find conversation partners from all over the world at a very affordable price. You can either have one to one lessons with teachers, or have more informal chats with tutors from the community if you just want the speaking practice without a lesson.
- 1-on-1 online lessons from native language teachers
- A community of language exchange partners
- Arrange sessions when it suits you
- Just pay for the lessons you take
The best way to get affordable speaking practice without actually leaving your country. Good for intermediate and advanced learners.
For what it does, I can't think of any.
Go to the Italki website for more information.
Which one is best for me?
Different courses are good for different people depending on your level and learning style.
- If you want to focus on verb use, then Spanish Verbs 123 is the best option.
- If you want an all rounder that will cover all bases, then Rocket Spanish is your best bet for any level.
- If you are an absolute beginner, Synergy Spanish will get you up and running the quickest. This is the best choice if you are pushed for time and want to get by on your upcoming holiday, for example.
- If you want to improve your speaking and conversation, or just want an occasional refresher, then you can't beat Italki.
- If you want to improve your pronunciation then Rocket Spanish has a voice recognition tool that assesses and trains your spoken Spanish, or use Italki for real world feedback.