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Is it possible to learn Spanish online? Sure, at least to a certain extent. You can learn a lot of vocabulary and grammar, and even get a pretty good sense of pronunciation, but if you want to learn to speak Spanish with actual people (gasp!) then at some point you will have to study with actual people. That doesn’t necessarily mean you have to take a class (though I do recommend it) but you have to talk and listen and learn. You have to, there’s just no way around it, unless all you really want is to learn how to read and write Spanish.
So with that caveat firmly in place, here are some tips and tools to help you learn Spanish on your own.
Start with the basics
Totally obvious, right? But you’d be amazed at how many people want to start learning by reading books or watching movies without knowing a word of Spanish. Whatever your ultimate goal may be, you’ll get there faster if you first put some time into learning basic Spanish vocabulary and grammar. My Spanish for beginners self-study checklist can help.
Listen, listen, listen
There is a huge disconnect between written and spoken Spanish: what you see can be very different from what you hear. Many long-time Spanish students continue to struggle with listening comprehension, so jump in right away and listen as often as you can.
Learning Spanish is a marathon, not a sprint. Fluency is a long way off, but you’ll get there if you stick with it.
Keep things interesting
Once you have some grammar and vocab under your belt, try reading on topics that interest you. If you like classic literature, great! But if not, don’t hesitate to read about sports or food, dive into current events or comics or even watch TV – anything that keeps you from getting bored.
This is a no-brainer, but it bears repeating: the more you put into your Spanish learning, the more you’ll get out of it. Study and practice a little every day and your Spanish will just keep getting better.
Other people will try to convince you that learning Spanish is too hard or that some people just aren’t any good at languages – don’t listen to them. If you make a real effort, you can and will learn Spanish – it’s as simple as that.
Learn about learning
Take some time to learn about the most efficient learning techniques and your own personal learning style to make the most of the time you spend learning Spanish.
Keep a journal to track your progress – jot down what you studied, how you did on that pop quiz, whatever you like. And sign up for Progress with Lawless Spanish, a quiz-based system that will create your personalized study plan and track your progress all the way from A1 to C1 (explanation of levels).
Tips and tools
- Daily Spanish practice ideas
- Hotel Borbollón
- Spanish for beginners
- Lessons by category
- Lessons by level
- Listening comprehension exercises
- Progress with Lawless Spanish
- Reading comprehension exercises
- Speaking practice
- What is fluency?
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