5 Great Foreign Language iPad Apps

It’s not the dark ages of language learning – you no longer have to immerse yourself in a foreign culture, take a college course, or flip through flashcards to learn to speak another language. These days you can get all the vocabulary and sentence structure you need via your favorite mobile devices. And if your tablet of choice is the iPad, you’re in luck, because there is no shortage of applications designed to help you learn just about any language you choose. Some even offer multiple languages from across the globe! Here are just a few of the best apps the iPad has to offer and why you might want to give them a try.

  1. Rosetta Stone. The most popular language learning software for your computer is now available in a slew of mobile versions. With Rosetta Course, you can take any of the languages offered by Rosetta Stone for a test drive thanks to free access to Lesson 1. From there you’ll have to subscribe to the service in order to continue to Lesson 2 and beyond in your chosen language, but you’ll gain access to language learning software that is designed to have you speaking like a pro in no time thanks to lessons that provide you with the basics for verbal interaction.
  2. Babbel. Let’s just address the elephant in the room: Babbel is not a cheap app and you will have to pay for every language. In addition, you’ll probably want to sign up for the monthly subscription in order to get full access (beyond the rudimentary lessons provided with your initial fee). That said, this app enjoys a 4-star rating on iTunes, perhaps because of extras like photos, pronunciation correction, and sample sentences that all help you learn to speak your desired language more naturally, fluently, and correctly.
  3. Busuu. The nice thing about Busuu is that you can pay by the lesson or get the whole kit-and-caboodle with a full course purchase for the language you want to learn. Actually, that’s not even the best part. This app connects you to a community of others who are either learning languages or are already native speakers, giving you the opportunity to ask questions about pronunciation, proper usage, and the nuance of language. At the very least, you can practice with pros that have grown up speaking the language you’re learning.
  4. Duolingo. Hailed as one of the best language apps for iPad (and with a 4.5-star rating, to boot), this is definitely a mobile app you’ll want to check out. You’ll learn language the fun way through gamification, or the use of rewards for progress, the ability to level up, and the chance to compete against friends. This can only help to make the learning process easier and more productive. In addition, this app is totally free! The company motto, “free language education for the world”, is more like a mission statement.
  5. Rocket Languages. With everything from Rocket Arabic to Rocket Japanese to¬†Rocket Italian iPad, you’ll have no trouble finding courses in the language you want to learn with the Rocket series, which offers lessons that run from beginner to advanced. With interactive lessons, conversational skills, and ratings to chart your progress, this app takes a more traditional approach to teaching users new languages. And if you already enjoy the online version, you’ll find the mobile app to be a great companion for when you’re on the go.

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