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Language Learning

Suggests resources around U-M campus and online to help with your language learning journey.

Online Resources

There are a multitude of online resources that can aid you in your language learning journey. Below is a list of free online resources ranging from dictionaries to free lessons:

  • Open Culture
    Organization that compiles free and paid online language learning resources from all over the web, features resources for 48 different languages
  • Eudict
    An online dictionary that supports over 500 language pairs. Though the sites features dictionaries for a variety of languages, their focus is mainly on languages spoken in Europe.
  • LangMedia
    A project of the Five College Center for World Language Study, LangMedia offers resources in 49 different languages. Their CultureTalk series provides videos of interviews and discussions on cultures in various countries in target languages as well as English.
  • California Language Archive
    This archive originally came from the Survey of California and Other Indian Languages and has since grown into a research center housed primarily at the University of California at Berkeley. The archive features a multitude of print, video, and audio materials in over 490 languages, with a special focus on indigenous languages.
  • Edx and Coursera
    EDX and Coursera are sites that host MOOCs (Massive Online Open Courses) and provide many open language courses that are free to take with optional extra charges for certificates of completion.
    Website that offers free resources on verbs and vocabulary in 19 languages. Some courses are available for select languages.
  • BBC Languages
    The BBC Languages website provides in-depth guides on 20 languages featuring resources on vocabulary and alphabets as well as helpful videos and fact sheets. In addition to these resources, several of the languages featured link to news coverage in that language, often through the BBC itself.
  • Forvo
    An online pronunciation dictionary that contains pronunciations for over 430 languages.


In addition to online resources such as dictionaries, pronunciation guides, and language guides, there are countless phone and web applications that can help you along through your language learning journey. Below are a few applications that offer interactive language lessons.

  • Duolingo
    A phone and computer application that offers short lessons in 38 lessons. Duolingo offers free and paid for memberships.
  • Mango Languages
    Mango Languages offers interactive lessons in over 70 languages. Subscriptions are free to the UM Community. More information about how to sign up can be found at the UM LRC Website. Check out this page to see which languages are available to study.
  • Rosetta Stone
    A subscription based language learning platform that offers lessons in 30 languages. Rosetta Stone has a web-based platform and and phone application available.
  • Yabla
    Platform that offers language immersion through authentic videos on a variety of topics from food and culture to music and television. The LRC has a subscription to Yabla in six languages (English, Spanish, French, German, Chinese, and Italian) that is free for members of the UM Community.
  • SpanishDict
    Web platform that offers short lessons, pronunciation guides, and vocabulary lists for Spanish language learners. SpanishDict offers free and premium subscriptions.
  • Eggbun
    A phone application that offers a "chat-to-learn" model for Korean, Japanese, and Chinese. The chatting feature of the app is free with option lessons available in paid subscriptions.

Open Educational Resources

Textbooks and workbooks can often be prohibitively expensive and, as such, there is a growing movement to create Open Educational Resources (OERs) for language learning. Below are some websites and textbooks to check out: 

  • Open Educational Resource Initiative
    The Academic Senate for California Community Colleges has compiled several open educational resources for Spanish at a variety of levels, from beginner Spanish to Spanish for native speakers. These resources include open textbooks, literature, videos, grammar books, and assessments.
  • Galileo
    Galileo is an open textbook repository and contains several OERs for language learning for Spanish, Italian, and French.
  • Center for Open Educational Resources and Language Learning (COERLL)
    COERLL is a project funded by the U.S. Department of Education working to promote the use and creation of OERs for language learning. It has a hub for language learning resources in 23 languages.
  • Open Textbook Library
    The Open Textbook Library is a project of the University of Minnesota and holds over 1000 open textbooks on a variety of topics. The library contains open textbooks in over 30 languages.
    The Multimedia Educational Resource for Learning and Online Teaching, or MERLOT, is an online repository of open educational resources such as videos, textbooks, websites, exercises, and much more. Their collection also holds resources specific to language learning.
  • OER Commons
    OER Commons is another repository of OERs that features over 100 language learning resources from syllabi to full courses. The repository features 21 languages.

For other applications that are conversation based, the Language Resource Center maintains a list of Conversation Partner Platforms that details the costs, benefits, and drawbacks of a variety of platforms.