Dutch is a great language to learn, even if it does feel as though it’s sometimes overlooked in comparison to other languages such as Spanish or French.
For an English native speaker, learning Dutch might actually be easier than learning Spanish or a romance language. This is because Dutch is more closely related to English and German, as they derive from the same Germanic branch of Indo-European languages.
However, even if you’re not a native English speaker, there are still advantages to learning Dutch. For instance, around 20 million people worldwide speak Dutch as their first language, and learning Dutch may also make it easier to pick up a language such as Afrikaans.
So once you’ve decided to learn Dutch, you might decide that the best way to improve your proficiency is to learn the language online. Learning a second language such as Dutch using online resources can be very effective due to the fact that:
- There are plenty of resources that look to develop your language skills - from reading and writing to speaking and listening;
- You can still learn to speak the language and improve your fluency in Dutch;
- There are lots of different resources out there for all ability levels - whether you're already conversational in Dutch or you're a complete beginner.
Below are just some of the ways you can put your internet connection to good use when taking Dutch lessons London.
Best Apps To Learn And Improve Your Dutch
If you want to learn Dutch as a foreign language, then you might be considering whether it’s worthwhile learning Dutch through a language learning app.
Such apps have become increasingly popular over the past few years, and it’s not difficult to see why.
When you consider that everyone is busy in today’s world, and the fact that people spend ever larger amounts of time online, using an app to learn a new language can be an easy way to develop a new skill without it taking up too much time.
When it comes to choosing the right app to learn Dutch for you, there are a few things that are worth bearing in mind, such as:
- Your ability level – some apps are more geared towards complete beginners in Dutch, while other apps also have lessons for intermediate and advanced Dutch speakers;
- Whether you’d like to pay for a course – some apps offer a free service, such as Duolingo, while others require a paid subscription to access lesson content, such as Babbel; and
- Whether you’d like to learn more languages than just Dutch – some apps offer a wider range of language courses than others, so if you know you’d also like to learn, say, Norwegian in the future, it may be worth finding an app that also offers that language.
In terms of popular language learning apps for Dutch, you can try a number of different ones, with some of the most popular being apps such as Duolingo, Babbel, and Memrise. All three apps are compatible with iOS and Android, so it shouldn’t be an issue downloading any of the apps to your phone.
The main thing to keep in mind when using an app is that you should regularly use it if you’d like to see a tangible increase in your Dutch proficiency level. Regular daily practice – even if it’s only 10 or 15 minutes – should go a long way in improving your level of Dutch, and will be much more beneficial than logging into the app for just 20 minutes each week.
Find a Dutch tutor here!
The Best Translators For Dutch To English Translation
When you’re first learning Dutch, you might find that it’s very difficult to get Dutch to English translation right.
If this is the case, the key is not to feel disheartened. The fact is that translation is a very particular skill that often requires someone to undertake a fair amount of training and practice to get it right. This is often why translating is seen as a difficult exercise, regardless of whether you’re a complete beginner when learning Dutch or you’re an intermediate or advanced learner.
However, there are benefits to learning how to translate from Dutch into English. Namely, incorporating regular translation exercises into your Dutch learning programme can:
- Help improve your overall comprehension of Dutch, while also improving your Dutch reading skills;
- Develop your range of Dutch vocabulary, particularly if you choose to translate technical or more complex pieces of Dutch texts; and
- Help you to understand how sentences flow in English, and what the hallmarks of a quality translation are.
As a result, it may be worthwhile finding someone who can give you regular Dutch to English translation exercises so that you have the opportunity to improve your translation skills. Superprof, for example, has a number of experienced Dutch tutors who would be happy to provide personalised translation exercises to help improve your proficiency in the language.
Of course, if you need to have a text translated from Dutch into English for whatever reason, and you’re unable, or do not feel comfortable, undertaking the translation yourself, then you can also turn to other avenues to get the translation done.
The most well-known way to translate a text from its source language into a target language is through the use of a machine translator, such as Google Translate. While this can be a quick and easy method of translation, it’s not without its disadvantages, namely that the translation is unlikely to be 100% accurate depending on the nature of the text.
However, if you’re not concerned about total accuracy, this can be a quick way to find out what a Dutch sentence means in English.
Alternatively, if you’re happy to spend money on a translation, you could try and find a translation agency or professional translator who can translate a text from Dutch into English for you – the choice ultimately is yours.
Ten Best Dutch Podcasts Targeted To Dutch Learners
If you want to learn Dutch online, then one potential way to do so is through the help of a Dutch podcast or two.
Listening to podcasts in Dutch, or podcasts that teach you about the Dutch language, can be a great way to practise your Dutch listening skills, while also giving you the opportunity to learn new words or phrases that you hadn’t previously come across.
For instance, some people like to learn Dutch with the help of podcasts because:
- There are podcasts out there for all ability levels in Dutch – from absolute beginners through to more advanced or fluent speakers;
- Listening to a podcast isn’t typically time intensive – many podcasts tend to run for less than thirty minutes; and
- You can listen to a podcast wherever you are – when travelling, at home, or at work, making them easy to fit into your everyday life.
Although it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to become fluent in Dutch just by listening to podcasts alone, they can be a wonderful resource to use to supplement what you’re learning through other mediums.
Websites To Learn Dutch Online
Given that we live in a digital age, it’s not surprising that you can also learn Dutch online through the use of websites.
The kind of content that each website offers when it comes to Dutch lessons varies, as some websites tend to:
- Focus on a particular area of learning Dutch, such as the language’s grammatical aspects; while
- Other websites offer a more well-rounded overview of the language, which may help beginners or intermediate learners deepen their knowledge of Dutch.
Equally, some websites offer free Dutch language lessons, while others charge a fee to access premium content.
Ultimately, if you do decide to use websites to learn Dutch then whether you use free or paid-for services is a matter of personal choice. Equally, it’s up to you to decide whether you use just one website to learn Dutch or use a combination of different websites.
After all, while some people might prefer to use Duolingo to improve their proficiency in Dutch, others might prefer to just use dutchgrammar.com to get all the answers to their Dutch grammar-related questions.
If you do find yourself struggling to find a learning approach that works for you when it comes to learning Dutch, you could also consider hiring a Dutch tutor through a site such as Superprof. A Dutch tutor can help provide personalised exercises in order to help develop your reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills, while also giving you motivation and encouragement so that you continue to improve your proficiency in Dutch.
Just enter your postcode to be matched with Dutch tutors who are either in your local area and available for in-person tuition, or to find tutors that are happy to provide online-only Dutch lessons.
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