How To Learn French: 10 Useful Tips

Before the internet became popular it was not possible to learn French online. However, today there are endless resources available on line which you may consider for learning beginners French. Some of the resources cost some money while others are totally free. Here’s a list of ten useful tips for how to to learn French.

Learning the French language is a huge goal for so many people around the world. In addition to being a beautiful language it is also a major language in many countries and regions including France, Canada (Quebec), Western Africa, The Caribbean and many Pacific islands.

Try using an app to learn French!

There are lots of apps to learn French which you should definitely consider if you want to learn French. The advantage to using these methods is that you will get a series of complete and professional lessons made by native speakers.

Also, you can go at your own pace and only study when you feel like it. I also like using this method a lot! Here are some of my recommendations for the top online French language learning products.

Rosetta Stone French

Rosetta Stone: Rosetta Stone is one of the fastest and most effective language learning software products available on the market today.

In addition to getting basic courses that take you from beginners level all the way to intermediate and advanced levels you can also interact with their community of native-speaking teachers online.

Furthermore, they offer incredible technology which helps to recognize your speech and correct your mistakes so you’re learning the language right from the very beginning.

On this page you can read our comprehensive Rosetta Stone review.

Pimsleur French

Pimsleur: Another fantastic and extremely popular French language program is Pimsleur French. Based on the famous “Pimsleur Method” you will be able to speak the words and attain a great listening ability very fast.

The first level has 16 hours of thirty 30-minute lessons which will help you to learn more than 400 words of basic vocabulary and sentence structures. Move on to Level II and Level III and you’ll be able t speak at the level of a native speaker.

Rocket French

Rocket French: This is by far one of the most popular online French courses available on the market today. You’ll get a ton of lessons covering everything you need to know including vocabulary, grammar, listening comprehension and much more.

Their lessons are very practical and you can use what you learn in everyday conversations and real-life situations. The lessons are all downloadable to your PC or MP3 player.

On their site you can read about lots of people who have successfully learned French with Rocket French. Here you can read our full Rocket French Review!

Learn French with Podcasts

FrenchPod101

Over the past few years podcasts have become very popular. Basically, you can download French lessons to your PC or MP3 player and learn at your own pace.

One of the best podcast courses for learning French is FrenchPod101. I’ve used their product to learn Italian in the past and it’s excellent.

Speed up your learning with the right audio course

My friend, Camille, at Frenchtoday.com has helped thousands of students to build a solid base in their French speaking since 1999. She is now offering all of her audio courses at 20% off until September 4th. Click here to learn more!

The lessons offer a ton of vocabulary and are made by native speakers. In addition to being entertaining (which keeps you motivated to continue!) they have a TON of content.

FrenchPod101 comes with over 300 lessons. Also, they have a growing online community which will help you to make friends with native speakers.

This page contains a comprehensive review of FrenchPod101.

Learn French in France

Of course the best way to learn any language is to immerse yourself in the native speaking environment. The advantage to this is that you get to practice what you’re learning with all the people around you.

Indeed, by surrounding yourself with native speakers you’ll have the opportunity to speak even when you don’t want to! However, traveling abroad can be an expensive option for many people. On this page of our site you can learn about learning French in Paris.

My friend, Camille, at FrenchToday does a wonderful job organizing French homestay programs.

Learn French On YouTube

YouTube is a FANTASTIC resource for learning any language on the Internet. Personally, I’ve used it to learn the basics of many languages myself including Italian.

There are lots of excellent online teachers there who give useful video lessons for free. In addition to our lessons you’ll find some other great video lessons on YouTube.

This pages covers the top channels for learning French on YouTube.

Do A Language Exchange

One of the best ways to learn any language fast is to do a language exchange. One idea is to find a language exchange partner locally.

You can do this by putting up advertisements for a French language exchange at your local university. There you can meet French students studying in your local area.

You’d be surprised by how many positive responses you’ll get!

Another way to do a French language exchange is to go online. One suggestion is a website called Live Mocha.

They’re the world’s biggest online language learning community. Live Mocha offers online lessons and can put you into contact with thousands of native speakers who are also participating online line and looking to help teach French to non-native speakers online.

Use A French textbook

Another method you can consider is using a French textbook. This is the traditional way of learning a language. It takes more time. However, by following a university-style textbook course you’ll learn the fundamentals including grammar and vocabulary way better than learning the language in a more casual manner.

One good idea is to combine a good book with the help of a professional tutor. Personally, I recommend this method to students who are serious about learning French.

This page covers the best books for learning French.

Make Vocabulary Lists

This is going to sound like a silly method but it really works! Basically, what you’re going to do is wake up everyday and make a list of about 25 vocabulary words THAT YOU WANT TO KNOW.

The advantage to this is that you’re going to learn way faster because these are words that you’d sincerely like to learn. Next, find a dictionary. I use Google Translate because it’s excellent and they also offer audio pronunciation guides. Another wonderful site or French vocabulary is WordReference.com.

Copy down the French translations of those words and just keep building your personal vocabulary list. This method works best if you can find a native speaker to go down your list of vocabulary with you.

Do this for three straight months and you’ll have an excellent vocabulary base.

It’s also best to keep in mind that you should couple with method with some sort of course or text book. That way you can also learn the basic grammar fundamentals (this is important!).

Ways to learn French – conclusion

I hope this list of ways for how to learn French has helped. If you have any other suggestions please let us know in the comments section below!

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About David Issokson

David Issokson is a lifelong language enthusiast. His head is swimming with words and sounds as he speaks over six languages. Of all the languages he speaks, he's the most passionate about French! David has helped hundreds of students to improve their French in his private online lessons. When procrastinating working on his site, FrenchLearner.com, David enjoys his time skiing and hiking in Teton Valley, Idaho.