7 Best Tips On Using YouTube As A Language Learning Tool

YouTube is a never-ending hole of information at our language-learning fingertips. It can be overwhelming to curate through thousands of random videos to find and source tools to learn a second language, but that’s where this post comes in! How can you use YouTube, a seemingly endless resource of funny and strange videos, into something to help you learn and retain a new language?

Let’s dive into 7+ tips on using YouTube as a language-learning tool while still having fun watching new material!

How To Use YouTube As A Language Learning Tool


Tip #1: Lean Into The Comment Sections

Ah, the infamous comment section. While most watchers may leave the comment section alone, it can be a treasure trove for language learners. Engage with the YouTube community by leaving comments in your target language on language-learning videos.

Not only will you get valuable feedback from native speakers, but you’ll also discover new vocabulary and expressions only native speakers use. Also, the creator of the video may very well respond to your comment! Just be prepared for the occasional online troll, but don’t let them stand in your way of valuable language-learning knowledge!

Tip #2: Embrace the Slow-Mo Button

Let’s face it: native speakers often talk a mile a minute and sound like aliens to a non-native ear. Don’t panic! YouTube comes with a handy slow-motion feature that’ll make even the fastest talker sound manageable! Go to the Settings icon, click playback speed, and adjust it to 0.75x or 0.5x. Slowing down the playback speed will give you a chance to catch every nuance and improve your listening skills. Soon, you’ll be able to understand those rapid-fire dialogues like a boss!

Tip #3: Follow Language Learning Channels 

watching youtube as a language learning tool

YouTube is a goldmine for language learning channels, catering to learners of all levels. Whether you’re a beginner struggling to decipher the difference between “le” and “la” or an advanced learner craving idiomatic expressions and slang, there’s something for everyone. Free language learning courses through YouTube are a popular way to get extra involved in the process! But not every video caters to boring grammar and lessons, so don’t knock it until you’ve tried it!

Find reliable channels, like “Lingua Franca” or “Polyglot Progress,” and hit that subscribe button. Plus, you’ll get to learn vocabulary and phrases that you’ll actually use in real life. Trust me, these channels will become your new best friends in your language-learning journey. 

Tip #4: Use Captions & YouTube Subtitles 

The YouTube universe is equipped with handy tools called subtitles. These can be your secret weapon in deciphering the mysteries of a foreign language. Start with subtitles in your native language to get a grip on the content, and as your language skills improve, switch to subtitles in the target language. This will challenge you to listen and read simultaneously, improving your comprehension skills and teaching you everyday expressions that textbooks often miss.

Tip #5: Embrace Native Language Content That Interests You

youtube as a language learning tool - practicing

Learning a language is not just about grammar and vocabulary; it’s about immersing yourself in the culture. YouTube has SO MUCH content in most languages, from music videos to vlogs, from travel documentaries to cooking shows. Immerse yourself in the language by watching videos created by native speakers. Yes, even if it means watching cute cat videos in French or Korean makeup tutorials. Remember, you can always put on subtitles and adjust the playback speed to make learning foreign languages less daunting. It’s all about learning while having fun!

Tip #6: Make Playlists To Help You Keep Focus

Remember the music playlists you created for long road trips? Well, it’s time to create some language-learning playlists! Organize your favorite videos into categories like “Grammar Tips,” “Listening Practice,” or “Travel Phrases.” This way, you’ll have a tailored curriculum that suits your learning needs. Just try not to get distracted by the tempting “Recommended Videos” section. Being distracted by random videos can eat up your time so you end up not learning anything! 

Tip #7: Engage in Language Learning Communities

youtube as a language learning tool laptop

The language learning community on YouTube is vast, friendly, and supportive. Thousands, if not millions, of people have taken advantage of these YouTube channels to learn a new language. Don’t hesitate to leave comments, ask questions, or connect with fellow language enthusiasts. Engaging in language learning courses with others will not only boost your motivation but also expose you to new perspectives and cultural nuances. Who knows, you might even find a language exchange partner or a lifelong friend. You may even end up visiting this person in their native country … you never know!

How YouTube Has Changed Language Learning Forever

youtube as a language learning tool

The statistics on learners utilizing YouTube as a language learning tool are nothing short of mind-boggling. Millions upon millions of people around the globe have turned to YouTube to embark on their journey to learn foreign languages. According to recent surveys, it is estimated that a whopping 60% of language learners have utilized YouTube videos at some point to learn their target language. That’s a staggering number! 

YouTube has truly revolutionized language learning, offering a vast array of resources, from grammar tutorials to conversational practice sessions, all at the click of a button. The popularity and accessibility of YouTube have made it a go-to platform for language enthusiasts of all levels, fostering a global community of learners who can connect, share knowledge, and support each other in their quest to become fluent in their chosen languages. With such a massive and diverse audience, YouTube has become an invaluable ally in the pursuit of language mastery. With the above tips, you’ll join this number and be on your way to mastering a new language!

Wrapping Up

In conclusion, YouTube has emerged as a powerhouse in learning languages, opening doors to linguistic exploration and cultural understanding for millions of learners worldwide. Its versatility, accessibility, and vast range of language-learning resources have made it an indispensable tool today!

Whether you’re studying French, Mandarin, Swahili, or any other language under the sun, YouTube provides an endless supply of engaging content, educational channels, and the opportunity to connect with fellow language enthusiasts.

 So, embrace the power of YouTube, curate your language learning playlist, hit that subscribe button, and embark on an adventure that will expand your horizons and unlock a world of linguistic possibilities!

If you learned something in this article and you feel the fire to learn a foreign language, then download the Ling app to further your language progression in a fun, interactive space. Download it on the App Store and Play Store for free today!

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