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If you've tried to find classes near you, you already know that it's a challenge. Without a university or an Arabic-speaking community nearby, your opportunities to learn the language might seem pretty slim. Fortunately, there's no shortage of ways to study Arabic from home - or from anywhere you've got your phone or tablet!
We also congratulate you on your interest, because Arabic speakers are in high demand. As one of the official working languages of the United Nations and spoken by over 400 million people, Arabic can open doors to business, travel, or intercultural friendships.
Wednesday, December 6th
italki puts spoken fluency in Arabic within reach. The lessons on this platform are delivered by real people: community tutors and professional teachers with a background in language instruction. You'll work one-on-one via video with the instructor(s) you select, to perfect your accent, get comfortable with conversation, and learn or practice reading, writing, grammar, or any other area you need. Most italki tutors let you take a sample lesson for under $5, and their hourly rates are usually between $10-$20. If you've got enough bravery to take private lessons, italki is a phenomenal way to get your Arabic fluency up to speed.
Anyone can use Arabic Pod 101 to improve their fluency, from total newbies to advanced students. Your free account will come with a 7-day free trial of their premium plan, but you can keep the limited access plan forever. Arabic Pod 101's Premium Plus membership lets you work with your own assigned teacher and get personalized feedback and advice on your language learning journey. It's easy to get overwhelmed by the almost endless Arabic lessons here, but you'll always have something new to study with Arabic Pod 101.
There's plenty for everyone to learn with Busuu's Arabic lessons. Create a no-cost basic membership and get access to over 110 lessons spanning four levels of fluency; with an inexpensive membership, your account will include customized study plans and unlimited feedback from native speakers. Word to the wise, though: watch your renewal date because Busuu's refund policy stops after 14 days. Busuu gets lots of five-star reviews from thousands of users, and you're sure to improve your Arabic here.
For beginning students of Arabic, Rocket Languages offers fantastic lessons to get you started. Across four modules, you'll learn how to read, write, speak and understand basic Egyptian Arabic and get insights into the culture along the way. Unlike many programs, there's no subscription here: you'll pay a one-time fee (or six installments, if you prefer) and have lifetime access to your lessons. This program won't take you beyond beginner-level content, but Rocket is one of our preferred choices for entry-level Arabic lessons.
Mondly is a language-learning app that can help you learn (or review) basic Arabic words and phrases. It's got some unique features like Chatbot and Augmented Reality that let you practice real-world conversations in a fun way, and it's easy to see everything you learn in Arabic script or in the English-alphabet approximation. Mondly lacks the structure and organization found in more rigorous Arabic lessons, though, making this program more useful for fun and practice than for in-depth study.
Rosetta Stone says that the best way to learn Arabic - or any other language - is by immersion, teaching lessons with no reference back to English. While that can be true for "easier" languages (ones that are already somewhat familiar and that use the same alphabet as English), it doesn't work well for Arabic. You're going to want to try Rosetta Stone's three-day trial before you commit to this program long-term, because we found it to be somewhat frustrating.
Memrise is usually known for its amazing native speaker video clips that help you visualize every aspect of the language as you learn. Unfortunately, those are missing from their Arabic lessons. You're left with what essentially feels like flashcards, but with very little context and not much to help you create your own sentences. You can make a free account and try Memrise for yourself, but we suspect you'll wind up choosing a more robust program for your Arabic lessons.
Talk in Arabic is one of the only language programs on the market that promotes learning of eight major Arabic dialects (like Egyptian, Saudi, and Iraqi). These lessons are delivered via audio and video clips with native speakers. Unfortunately, the presentation of the material here is disjointed at best; most students would only find Talk in Arabic helpful when used in conjunction with a more structured program.
Learning Arabic has other advantages. Mastering it lets you quickly grasp related languages like Hebrew, Urdu, Turkish or Farsi. Fluency in Arabic can help you understand Islam, read the Qur'an, or delve into the history of the Middle East. And, don't overlook how the work required to comprehend a different writing system from English can benefit your mental agility!
Now that you're even more convinced that it's the right time to take Arabic lessons online, where should you start? That's the perfect question! One size does not fit all, so here are some factors to bear in mind as you sort through the options and choose the ideal path for your studies:
To help you with your language goals, TopConsumerReviews.com has tested, evaluated, and ranked the top Arabic lessons available today. Your journey can start today as you find the program that's right for you!
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