There are many reasons why you might want to learn Dutch. Perhaps you have friends or family in the Netherlands that you would like to communicate in Dutch with, or maybe you would like to learn a new language that’s part of the Germanic Indo-European group of languages.
Whatever your reason, learning the Dutch language will allow you to communicate with over 20 million people who speak Dutch as their native language.
One of the first things that people think about when they want to learn a new language such as Dutch is how they should learn more about the language. For instance, is it better to learn Dutch through:
- Online apps;
- Group classes involving a teacher; or
- Watching Dutch media?
Another method that people also turn to when learning Dutch is using various websites to help them improve their proficiency.
There are so many language-learning websites available on the internet these days that it’s relatively easy to find websites that can teach you about Dutch grammar, pronunciation, vocabulary, common greetings and expressions, and more.
This article outlines just some of those websites that you can turn to in order to improve your level of Dutch, regardless of whether you’re a complete beginner or have an intermediate or advanced understanding of the language.
Learn Dutch Online For Free
There are plenty of different websites you can use to learn Dutch online, which is brilliant if you’re looking to learn the language from home, or while you’re on the go (provided you have a laptop or mobile phone at hand).
However, the type of lessons that Dutch language learning websites provide does differ from website to website. For instance, some websites:
- May offer all-rounded lessons with classes that focus on improving your Dutch reading, writing, speaking and listening skills;
- Prefer to focus on a particular area of learning Dutch, whether that’s grammar, verb conjugation, vocabulary, or pronunciation; or
- Have a specific audience in mind, for example, people who want to learn Dutch to live there or who want to learn Dutch for business purposes.
Which website or websites you choose to use to learn Dutch will likely depend on whether you want to improve your overall knowledge of the language, or whether you would prefer to focus on a particular area, such as your Dutch listening skills.
Below are some free websites, which offer support for anyone learning the Dutch language, albeit in slightly different ways.
The University of Groningen Introduction To Dutch
This Massive Online Open Course (MOOC) is for complete beginners to the Dutch language, with the university stating that the course is aimed at anyone who would like to travel to the Netherlands or who would like to learn Dutch more broadly.
Overall, the course takes about three weeks to complete and covers topics such as how to introduce yourself and talk about your family and friends, among others.
More information is available on the university’s Language Centre’s website.
Duolingo is a well-known and popular language learning app, which is most often associated with the fact that you can use it on your phone or tablet. However, you can just as easily use Duolingo on your computer, or on any device that has an internet connection.
Duolingo offers lessons in a number of foreign languages, including Dutch, and tries to break lessons down into short, manageable sessions that are most effective when completed daily. As you progress through the Dutch course, you’ll learn a variety of different nouns, adjectives, pronouns and verbs. You should also learn about different grammatical concepts, such as verb conjugation.
This website is quite specific in the service that it offers language learners, but it is a great resource to be aware of.
Specifically, Verbix is a tool that conjugates verbs in a wide number of different languages, including Dutch, and also conjugates verbs across a range of tenses. So if you need to find out how to conjugate the past tense of zijn (to be) for example, you can use this site.
Dutchgrammar.com has a range of different grammar tools to help you learn Dutch, which can be a real help regardless of whether you’re a complete beginner when it comes to Dutch or you have intermediate or advanced proficiency.
In addition, the website also offers audio clips that you can listen to, which should help improve your Dutch listening skills.
When using websites to learn Dutch, the main thing is to try and find out which websites are most helpful for you. For instance, you may prefer to use just one website exclusively to learn Dutch if you find that website easy to navigate and it has all the learning materials that you need to improve your Dutch proficiency.
Equally, you may prefer to use a variety of different websites to learn Dutch – perhaps one to learn about Dutch grammar, another website to read news articles in Dutch, and another that providers speaking and listening exercises.
There’s no wrong way to learn a language, so the most important thing is finding out what works for you and sticking to that learning routine through regular practice and revision.
Take Dutch language courses here.
The Best Websites To Learn Dutch Online
While there are a number of websites out there that offer free language resources when it comes to learning Dutch, it’s equally the case that there are a variety of paid or subscription-based services as well that also offer Dutch language learning services.
Ultimately, the decision of whether to pay to learn Dutch is yours alone and may be influenced by factors such as your budget, how intensively you need to improve your level of Dutch, and how satisfied you currently are using free online learning tools.
While there is no obligation to use paid-for language learning services, it’s always worth being aware of what other websites are available out there. A few examples of these websites are outlined below.
Learndutch.org is a website that offers a mixture of free Dutch lessons as well as paid-for premium content.
It has lessons that cater to both beginners and those who have some previous experience with the Dutch language, which makes it quite accessible to all Dutch learners. There is also a range of lessons on offer, which cover subjects such as:
- Dutch vocabulary and the alphabet;
- Various aspects of Dutch grammar;
- Dutch phrases and proverbs.
Of course, more lessons are available if you sign up for premium content, but some lessons are available for free as well.
If you want to learn Dutch, but don’t know where to start, then you might find that hiring a Dutch tutor is beneficial. This is because a Dutch tutor can identify your current ability level and provide you with a range of tailored exercises that should help improve your spoken Dutch, as well as your:
- Understanding of Dutch grammar, from how to form different tenses to understanding Dutch syntax;
- Reading and writing skills in Dutch; and
- Ability to converse with someone in Dutch while also listening to and understanding their response.
Superprof has a wide network of tutors that can provide either in-person, group, or online lessons, so it’s a case of deciding which tuition format you would like and finding the right tutor for you from there!
Find Other Ways To Supplement Your Learning
While the internet is definitely a fantastic resource to use when learning any new foreign language, including Dutch, it’s equally true that you can also turn to other learning resources if you’re trying to improve your Dutch proficiency level and your Dutch speaking, listening, reading, and writing skills.
In addition to the work you put in online, it may be worth taking some time each week to consolidate your progress and perhaps even introduce new areas of grammar or vocabulary by doing just some of the following:
- Watching Dutch language films or TV shows;
- Reading a Dutch novel; or
- Speaking if possible with a native Dutch speaker.
Any of these activities can be a great way to keep up your current level of Dutch, and may even help you to develop your understanding of the language further.
Regardless of whether you're a beginner and want to learn to speak Dutch more fluently by learning key words and phrases, or you're an advanced speaker that can hold a great conversation in Dutch, there's always some way that you can practise your Dutch and improve your level, either through self-taught means or through language courses.
The main thing to bear in mind is that, with regular practice, you should begin to see tangible results and an overall improvement in your level of Dutch. Good luck, and have fun studying!
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