5 Free Top-Rated Apps for Learning ESL

Benefits of using Apps for Learning ESL

Recent studies show benefits of using mobile devices in education and positive impact on student performance, engagement, motivation and learning outcomes.

There are thousands of mobile apps for language learning, offering authentic materials (podcasts, videos, e-books, and textbooks), practical language tasks and learning progress tracking options. In this presentation, we will look and explore 5 applications that can be used by ESL teachers and learners for a variety of activities: self-study, pair and group work or extend the learning beyond the classroom walls.

Our Favourites

Because of the vast quantity of apps that are available, we saw a need to narrow down which apps are most beneficial for specific learners and skills. We based our choice of favourites for this workshop on the following criteria:

  • apps should be free to download and use with minimum or no in-app purchases
  • apps should score at least 4 out of 5 stars and have great reviews
  • apps should be available on multiple platforms ( i.e. iOS, Android and /or Windows)

In addition, we categorized by apps by skills and recommended proficiency levels to make it easier for participants (ESL instructors) to identify and choose the most appropriate ones for their learners.

The 5 apps we chose as our favourites are Quizlet, Learn English 6000 words, Duolingo, Learn to Speak English by TalkEnglish, and The Free Dictionary. The workshop facilitators tested many ESL apps to select these five, as well as five honourable mentions. For details on each app, view the presentation below.

This presentation was created for TEAM 2016.