5 Advantages of Learning French Online
I am very happy to feature a guest post by Annabelle Short, who has been using online education to improve her skills in a very convenient manner. She is now sharing with us 5 advantages of learning French online, rather than going to a language school. Thank you so much Annabelle for taking the time to write for Frenchlover.org
5 Advantages of Learning French Online
by Annabelle Short
Have you ever found yourself sitting in a classroom thinking: “I could do this much faster if I had the ability to work on my own.”?
You can probably think of a few times where you have thought about how much easier or more pleasurable it would be if you could do your learning online as opposed to in the classroom…
Personally, I used to consider it a lot. There were times when I felt a group project was only wasting my time, or I was working part-time but knew if I could just do school on my own time then I could work full-time instead.
While the classroom has perks of its own, there are several advantages to online learning, especially when it comes to learning a new language, such as French.
Learning a new language can be one of the most daunting academic tasks you will face… A new language comes with an entirely new sentence structure, new slang, and of course, entirely new words that are usually pronounced with a new accent. One of the most effective ways to learn a new language, such as French, is just to practice, practice, practice. Conquering this task through online classes offers several language learning benefits:
1. More time to practice
One negative aspect of learning French in a classroom is that you are learning it with several other students… This means you might only get to actively practice the new language aloud a few times because everyone needs a turn. However, when you take online classes, you are the only student in your “classroom” at home, so you can practice over and over again.
2. Work at your own pace
Having a set schedule is great, but with an on-campus class, you are confined to choosing between the available times the class is offered – and typically, these do not work well with a normal work schedule.
With online learning, you can make your own schedule and work at your own pace. So, for example, you might have all assignments for one class due on Sunday nights so you could spend one hour each Monday, Wednesday, and Friday working on them. You can still design a classroom-like schedule for yourself, around your other responsibilities.
3.The ability to repeat French materials
Repetition is key – wether it is repetition in practicing or in just reviewing the material over and over again. Because in person class times are limited, you might feel a bit rushed and never have the opportunity to have the instructor repeat what they said. Learning French can be difficult if you are unable to go at your own speed… Thanks to online courses, the teacher’s lecture will likely already be recorded, meaning you can pause and rewind it as often as you need to.
Note from Angel: I totally agree! Being able to repeat the lesson is crucial to your learning. For this reason all sessions in my 1-1 coaching programs The High Road to Fluency and DELF preparation are recorded and I give the recording to the student as soon as the session is over, so they can listen to it as many times as they need.
4.Access to more personalized language learning tools
Of course, in a language class, teachers commonly use videos and other language learning tools that will help you better understand the natural flow of French… But, the videos and tools they select might not always fit your learning style. With an online French course though, you can also incorporate your own language learning tools that you have found because you have direct access to a computer.
This will help personalize the program more to you and will help you learn French much faster.
Note from Angel: yes! and one-on-one coaching is even more personalized. All one on one sessions I give are customized to the student's personal situation such as current French level, field of work, learning style and study goals.
5. More student to student interaction
You might be thinking… “How in the world will I get more student interaction if I am sitting behind a computer screen and never see them face-to-face?”
Well, with an on-campus course, oftentimes, the professor lectures, you take notes, then you leave. However, with an online course, the professor wants to know that you are engaged and wants to ensure you have the opportunity to access every tool available to succeed. Therefore, with online learning, it is often encouraged – if not required – that you actively engage with several of your classmates on a weekly basis.
If you are a more introverted person, online learning might also naturally encourage you to engage more with other students as you feel more in your comfort zone than if it were in person.
Note from Angel: Totally with Annabelle on this one. This reminds me of the reasons why we typically fail to learn languages at school.
From more time to a more comfortable learning atmosphere, the benefits of online learning go on and on. While it might not be the best option for some, it is a great option for many.
If you have never tried online learning but are curious, you might spend one term taking just one online course to see how you like it and then base your decision off that experience.
If you have participated in online learning before, what was your favorite part? Let us know in the comments!
Annabelle Short is a professional seamstress and content writer. When she isn't making crafts with her two children, Leo (age 9) and Michelle (age 11), she writes about online education.
"Online education has enabled me to improve my skills in a way that I found very convenient, therefore I am passionate about helping other people use the benefits online education offers." Annabelle Short