As learning French becomes increasingly popular in recent years, more people are taking it on as a second language. However as a starter you might have less idea on what’s the best way to learn, or not sure what kind of classes suit you the most.
Fear not, for we have compiled the top 10 free online French classes to help you learn French fast, efficiently and for free!
Reasons for Taking French Classes
- France is the 5th largest economy in the world: If you can speak French well, you may have more opportunities for finding a job in France, or you can work better with French colleagues.
- Traveling in France: With its rich culture and various delicacies, France is one of the most popular tourist destination in the world. Your trip to France will be far more memorable if you can communicate with locals with ease.
- Studying in France：Whether you are just an exchange student or studying for a degree in France, speaking the local language fluently may make your life far easier.
Can I learn French on My Own?
The most traditional way to learn French, and any other language is to find a private tutor or attend language classes. However, if you would like to get a taste of the language first or are really great at self-disciplining, it is highly possible that you can learn it by yourself! With all the ease the internet brings, you can now find tons of free classes, courses and lessons online. Below are our top 10 choices.
Top 10 Free Websites for Taking French Classes Online
After entering the website, you can press the “Free online French lessons “ button to access 15 free French lessons, including numbers, questions, partitive articles, time concepts, phrases, grammar, weather, days of the week, family, conversation material, French idioms and expressions. You can also sign up for their newsletter for more free learning resources!
After signing up for the newsletter, you will get a 30 days trial period with access to a 15-minute French lesson each day. Go for the whole package if you like what you are getting out of it.
Fluent U is a flexible online learning solution that lets you study the French language through some great videos. The content is brought to you by a team of passionate language learners from around the world. It helps students learn French via news broadcasts, cartoons, music videos and so on. The teachers in Fluent U are native speakers, so you can learn French in a somewhat natural environment.
The videos are all fitted with interactive captions and translation so you don’t need to be afraid of not understanding them. Users can tap on any words to see the definition and the page will also display in-context usage, audio pronunciation, helpful images to make students understand the words better. Just be yourself, sit back and enjoy the happiness of learning.
After watching the videos and memorizing some words, you can take quizzes to test whether your comprehension. As you continue to learn, the site will also keep track of your progress for a 100% personalized experience. Sadly the free trial only last for 14 days, but you can always go for the paid version if you like.
Duolingo is the most popular language learning app and it lets you practice and improve your listening, speaking, reading and writing skills for free! Students can learn new languages in fun ways with multiple goals and rewards to make it feel less like learning and more like playing!
Regardless of your level, you can use the Duolingo app to learn French anytime, anywhere just by spending 5 minutes every day. Learning for 34 hours roughly equals to one semester of classes so it is definitely a great alternative to taking regular courses.
If you already possess a certain level of proficiency, you can take a placement test to skip to the harder levels. No need to start from the beginning!
BBC is the world’s leading public service broadcaster. It also does a great job on providing free French lessons. Contents include different types of news（greetings, introductions, food and drink, introductions, accommodation and so on）and readers can choose any topic they like to improve their French skills.
By signing up for an account, you can keep track of your learning progress in BBC. Although the page is archived and no longer updated, you can still find a great deal of interesting resources here.
There are a variety of French courses on BBC and they are totally free to use. One downside is that it doesn’t offer tests or exams so you might have to get them elsewhere.
Loecsen is a free online platform designed for language beginners, with 41 languages available. The French lessons are split into 17 categories: essentials, conversation, learning, colours, numbers, time tracking, taxi, feelings, family, bar, restaurant, parting, transportation, looking for someone, hotel, beach, and in case of trouble. Students can choose to learn with their desired topics without any registration.
The platform is quite easy to use. Simply pick a topic you are interested in and you will be shown the relative keywords, translation and pronunciation. After finishing the lesson, you can also take quizzes to test your results.
French in action is a video instructional series in French, suitable for college and high school classrooms, adult learners and professional teachers. It contains a total of 52 videos. The series uses active participation to increase fluency in French, while introducing the French culture. Each video runs for about half an hour in length. You can choose the videos depending on what you want and your skill levels.
French in action is produced by Yale University and WGBH Boston with Wellesley College. The quality is naturally quite good. Enjoy some great college level education without actually enrolling!
Due to licensing issues, the videos can only be watched in the United States and Canada. A little sad for people who aren’t in these two countries but hey, there are other great resources out there.
Amazing Talker is a nice online learning platform. Founded in 2016, it aims to match students with great tutors from around the world. Creating the best online learning experience to help every students learn without the limitation of time and space.
These free French courses are an online adaptation of the FSI French basic course. Its courses are similar to the typical classroom-style French lessons. Learn French Online is composed of 2 main levels：French for beginners and Intermediate French, with 7 topics you can choose from. For example, French course for beginners contains 12 lessons, and each lesson contains 5 to 14 sections.
You can learn to speak French by listening to French words, phrases and dialogues. Each lesson contains simple explanations and examples to help students better understand the content. After completing each course, you can test yourself for the results.
The courses are totally free and you don’t need to register for an account. If you want to learn French step by step, Learn French Online is probably a good choice.
Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) is a popular way to learn language online and edX is one of the most well-known websites to provide free online courses. It currently offers one French course, the “On-Ramp to AP® French Language and Culture” by Weston High School. You can enroll for free or pay $25 for a certificate.
Register for an account to access the free course. It also comes with an app for you to learn on the go.
Some Other French Learning Tips
No matter what language you are trying to learn, you should always love it. It’ll affect the mood of your learning and act as your emotional support.
Create a French Environment
Immerse yourself in a French environment. Speak, read, listen, and write French frequently. As the proverb goes,”Practice makes perfect” Here are some tips for creating a natural learning environment:
- Set your mobile, computer and social media to the French version.
- Watch some French movies, TV shows or Youtube channels.
- Make a habit of keeping diary in French.
- Stay in France for a few months.
- Listen to French radios, songs and other audio resources.
Not Satisfied? Try Finding A Tutor Instead
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Let’s make learning French fun and easy!