Tag Archives: Language

Brief Review of Three Language Learning Communities Available On the Web

compare_3_lang_learn.pngVery Brief Review of Three Language Learning Communities Available On the Web: LiveMocha, Busuu, and Hello-Hello

Livemocha, Hello-Hello.com and Busuu.com have free accounts you can sign up for. Each gives you lessons with a vocab review, a writing exercise, an audio exercise, and a chance to have the exercises graded by native speakers (you as a native speaker of a language have the ability to grade others as well) and to chat with native speakers to practice your new found language skills (not available in Hello-Hello.com just yet). Both LiveMocha and Busuu have paid subscriptions where you can have access to more contention and more advanced lessons. Here are some of the differences between the three services:



  • At free level ,able to download vocab lists from the site
  • More languages are available to you to learn at free level (like Arabic and Hindi)
  • Have more flashcards to review and fill in the black word exercises at free level to help you retain vocab and helps you with writing and audio exercises
  • Chat with native speakers
  • Speaking exercises where you record yourself.
  • Written exercises
  • Graded by the community



  • The vocab is not conversational in nature (you say things like I am fat, and I am thin)



  • Vocab is conversational in nature. You learn things like hello, how are you. Welcome. Good day. What is your name?
  • To help with comprehension and vocab review, you are quizzed on a conversation a few people are having in that language. It is spoken at the normal pace and with the vocab you learned.
  • Chat with native speakers.
  • Speaking exercises where you record yourself.
  • Written exercises
  • Graded by the community


  • Free subscription limits you to only a few languages.
  • To download vocab and print it (like  flashcard review), you need the paid service (also get podcasts with paid service)
  • There is not enough vocab review exercises to prep you for the written and audio exercises. I felt that I retained little when I went into the written exercises and audio exercises.





  • The exercises are very practical and conversation in nature.
  • You can create flash cards for each lesson.
  • You can write notes in the notes section in each lesson.
  • Written exercises.
  • Speaking exercises where you record yourself.
  • Graded by the community (you can also ask questions as you go along in each lesson that can be answered by the community too).
  • There also a dictionary and a translator section built into the design
  • Hello-Hello collaborated with the ACTFL (The American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages) to make this community.
  • Totally free. No upgrade to a paid subscription to access more lessons.



  • You do no have a traditional list of vocab like LiveMocha. You absorb the conversation but there’s a translation box under the lesson. This could be hard for beginners.
  • You can not chat with a native speaker (but this function will be available soon)
  • The audio files did not work in Google Chrome (this may be fixed with future updates to the site)
  • You are limited to a few language choices to learn (English, French Portuguese, Spanish)





Language Learning iPhone App Displays Tweets of Vocab Words as Examples

byki_logo.pngByki is a company that has developed free iPhone apps to learn different languages. Like other language learning apps, this has a a flashcard component and audio to hear the phrases. But unlike some other apps, you can click on a button that will display tweets that use the vocab word you are reviewing. You get to see how that word is being used in a real context like Twitter. If you wold like to learn more about this free app, click on the link below:


ProVoc: Free and Easy To Use Vocabulary Trainer and Flashcard Maker

provoc_logo.pngProVoc is a free software for Mac that allows for you to create lessons to study vocabulary. You can create traditional flashcards to study your vocab or you can enhance them by adding audio or using a fill in the blank question style (by typing) to study your vocab for a language. What I also like about it is that if you type the wrong word but it is actually  in your vocab, it will give you that hint. You are also able to include video and images into your study lessons too. You can print flash cards, share your lessons or download vocab lessons, and also play your lessons on an iPod. The one drawback to this software is that it is Mac only. The design is intuitive and has a great layout for learning. To learn more, click on the link below: