A Review of Language101.com
Language101.com is a program that teaches you to speak and understand Spanish, French, German, and the languages listed below.
Our program does NOT teach you how to spell, write, or translate your new language.
We also don’t teach much grammar, but we do have grammar lessons for Spanish.
You will learn to read some with our program, although reading is also not our main focus.
Because we only teach you to speak and understand, you will learn to speak and understand much more quickly than you would with any approach that tries to teach all language skills.
In this review I will explain what our program does well and what it does not do well. I will also explain who should try our program and who should not.
Language101.com Is for Beginning Through Intermediate Students
If you are an advanced learner who wants to become more fluent, please read our review of Yabla.
If you haven’t already tried one of our free lessons, you might want to do that now.
A Limited List of Languages
If we don’t have lessons for the language you want to learn, please read our review of Pimsleur. Pimsleur’s approach to language learning is also very effective.
What Language101.com Is Good At
At Language101.com we have one simple goal. We want to teach you to speak and understand a very large amount of your new language very quickly.
So how can you tell if our program will work for you or not?
My answer is that you can tell by trying our free lesson for 15 minutes (30 minutes would be better) and see how much you remember the next day.
Try the free lesson from any other company you are considering and see how much you can remember from that lesson the next day.
How do we compare?
Fast Learning Requires Fast Study
Here’s a question for you. If you have 60 seconds to study your new language, is it better to spend all 60 seconds on one new phrase or to try to study several new phrases in 60 seconds?
With our system, it’s much better to study several new phrases in 60 seconds and to study very quickly. It’s the recalling of the memory that fires the neurons in your brain and makes the memory stronger.
Our system will help you learn very quickly if you study quickly, but it won’t be any better than other systems if you try to study slowly.
Don’t Try to Be Perfect — Just Improve Slightly
At Language101.com we want you to study very quickly. The idea is to study many phrases very quickly and just try to improve slightly each time. Don’t try to be perfect the first time, or even the second or third time.
If you are studying quickly, our system will prompt you to review a phrase just before you were about to forget it. This is a time-efficient way to create new memories. You will learn quickly and forget slowly.
We Have Manually Recorded “Very Slow” Audio
You probably think that all computer learning systems have this feature, but that’s really not true.
Most computer learning programs record the audio at a speed that is slower than normal speech but still is much faster than a beginner can understand. Then they typically use computer-generated audio to slow the phrase down to a speed that beginners can understand.
We use a different and much more expensive approach. All of our audio phrases are recorded both at normal speed (which seems too fast at first) and also at an extremely slow “teacher speed,” which is what you’ll need when you first start learning.
This is a time-consuming and expensive way to record lessons that most programs don’t use. We think this makes a better learning experience. Try our free lessons and see what you think.
We carefully trained our language teachers to say each word 25 percent slower and then to add enough silence between the words so that you can say each word out loud after the teacher.
Say, for example, that you want to learn the phrase, “How are you?” (formal form) in French. Click the audio player below and then say the phrase out loud after the teacher.
Normal Speed Audio
When you are learning to say it for the first time, it would be really nice to hear the phrase slower. Click the audio player below to hear the same phrase said much more slowly. Say each word out loud after the teacher.
Slow Speed Audio
Of course, you don’t have to waste time on the slow recordings after you have learned to say and hear the words at normal speed.
Why Language101.com Is Fast for Most People
Language101.com is a speed learning system. It requires that you study quickly and then rewards your quick study with quick learning.
After you have tried to say a phrase, you will grade yourself. When you give yourself a better grade, you are scheduling it for review further in the future. When you grade yourself “Wrong” or “Some Mistakes,” you are scheduling it for review very quickly.
The result is that you don’t waste time reviewing things you already know well, and you can go full speed ahead into learning new material.
Two Translations to Reduce Confusion
If you click on the screenshot below you will notice that Language101.com has two translations of the Spanish phrase into English. One of those is labeled “Meaning” and the other is labeled “Literal.”
“Meaning” is what the foreign phrase really means in English.
“Literal” is a word-by-word translation of the foreign phrase into English.
Often the “Literal” translation doesn’t make sense in English. If you are studying Japanese, the literal translation will never make sense.
The “Meaning” translation lets you know what the phrase means, and the “Literal” translation helps you get a feel for the foreign language word order.
Why the Name “Language101.com”?
In American culture, universities will typically label their introductory classes “101.” For example, a beginning Spanish class is “Spanish 101.” The second year’s class will be Spanish 202, followed by Spanish 303, and so on.
So Language101.com is a short way of saying to Americans, “This site is where you’ll begin learning Spanish or your favorite language.”
European universities don’t use the same naming convention for their classes, so Language101.com doesn’t really make any sense to someone from the UK or other parts of Europe until we explain it.
Hopefully, if you’re a European, Australian, New Zealander, or other English speaker, you now understand the American tradition of calling your first language class, “Language 101.”
Try a Free Lesson Right Now
If you haven’t already tried one of our free lessons, click on the language you want to learn below to start your free lesson.
Thank you for reading this Language101.com review.