Serbian is a South Slavic language, and it’s is estimated that around 12 million people speak Serbian. Mainly in Serbia, then across Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, and Croatia.
Many people say that Serbian is one of the hardest languages to learn. Maybe because Serbian grammar is very complex. Or we should "blame" the fact that Serbian uses both Latin and Cyrillic (although, the Cyrillic is the only official one) and the language is phonemic.
I think that the biggest problem for foreigners to learn Serbian is that every noun has a gender. But it's not really that hard and you can easy to distinguish them after learning the language for some time. The cases are also the ones who give a "headache". Sure, there are seven cases like nominative, genitive dative, etc, but you can handle them like a pro with one simple trick: just make a table how the nouns are changed and remember it in your mind as a picture.
I am glad you asked. There is one very obvious recommendation that can be made here, and that is the Ling Serbian app. Ling uses native Serbian speakers to help you learn Serbian just like it will sound in the country.
Through the gamification of learning, it also makes the whole process much more engaging. You can see yourself progress as you make your way through the different topics and tests that come along with it.
Then there is the chatbot feature that simulates conversations and makes for great practicing your Serbian language skills. For an introvert like me, it helps to build up my courage to eventually feel confident enough to use it when out and about.
While these mobile apps do share a common goal of making language learning fun and accessible, what sets Ling apart is the focus on practical vocabulary, sentences, and phrases that you will use in everyday speech.
This one is actually a part of the same family as Ling. Simply Learn Serbian is a phrasebook in app form, giving you all the benefits that come with that. You can listen to the words and phrases being spoken by native Serbian speakers, along with the Serbian and phonetic spellings of the words.
It makes for a great companion both when practicing and when you are in Serbia. It makes use of flashcards and the spaced repetition learning technique that is said to really improve language learning.
It may not be the top choice if you want a deep understanding of the language but helps you start out with pronunciation and basic grammar like word order.
Serbia is an interesting country with stunning nature and warm and welcoming people. However, one of the biggest reasons for people not going there is the language barrier. If we add Serbian language learning apps, more people would learn the language and as a result, more people would visit and see how beautiful the country really is and how friendly the locals really are.
In my opinion, the Serbian language highly beneficial to learn, as you are able to understand essentially 3 languages in one (Serbian, Croatian, and Bosnian). What's more, understanding a Slavic language opens up opportunities to learn other Slavic languages, like Russian, so I would definitely recommend learning it.
There are quite a few different apps and websites that work great with helping you to learn Serbian. Each one goes about its own way to replace the hole made by the lack of Serbian in Duolingo. Ultimately, it is a case of finding which option works best for your case.
Like we said before, it is good to make a language learning plan and mix things up if you are serious about learning Serbian. If you are just looking for a more casual experience to learn a few phrases before traveling, then apps might be the best option for you.
If you really want to learn to say a word or two to your Serbian friends on their mother language or plan to visit Serbia, you should consider using some language learning apps like the Ling App.