Instructor-led language classes vs. language apps: What’s the difference?

Berlitz -

When it comes to learning a new language, the learning methodology can play a critical part in gaining fluency. While the course material may be the same, there is a big difference between instructor-led language classes and language apps. Both have distinct advantages that are designed specifically for a particular type of learner. 

Learn a language fast 

For most people looking to learn a new language, one of the aspects to consider is how fast you will be able to gain proficiency. When it comes to learning a language fast, instructor-led classes can help you gain fluency much faster. This does not mean language apps don’t work, but by their nature, they allow you to learn on your own and because you are not an expert in the language you are trying to learn, you will not be able to learn as quickly.  

Instructor-led language classes give you access to a language expert who can give you feedback immediately. For example, if you are looking to learn English and sign up for an instructor-led English class, having an expert in English teaching you will allow you to pick up the language faster than if you were learning the language on your own. 

Learn on your own time 

If flexibility is very important to you, then language apps are probably a better solution. As a self-paced option, language apps are always available, and you can choose when and where you want to study and learn. Language apps also give you access to all the course material at one time, which gives you the option of learning a lot of information at one time. 

Instructor-led language classes also generally provide course material for extra learning, but classes will have to be scheduled in advance to a degree, which will make them less flexible.  

Learn for business or education  

Instructor-led language classes are usually designed for serious learners, which is generally people looking to learn a new language for a serious milestone: a new job, studying abroad or moving to a new country. In these situations, it will be important to understand all nuances of the language and be able to use the language daily. 

For those people looking to learn a new language for a vacation or as a hobby, language apps will usually suffice. Language apps tend to focus on the basics of a language and are not customizable for a specific purpose, making them better suited for casual language learners. 

Learn a language on a budget 

Language apps are generally cheaper than instructor-led language classes. If you are looking to learn a language on a budget, language apps are probably the way to go. As they are not customizable and do not feature live instruction, they are usually the cheaper option. 

Instructor-led language classes are affordable but are not as cheap as most language apps. The reason for this is because instructor-led language classes are customizable per the needs of the learner and incorporate live instruction, allowing learners to gain fluency faster and to get a better grasp of the cultural aspects of actually using the language. 

Language apps and instructor-led language classes both have distinct advantages and even though both have the same aim, they do so in very different ways. When it comes to choosing between a language app or an instructor-led language class, it is important to consider the options above.  

Berlitz offers both self-paced language options and instructor-led language classes. Contact us to learn more about all our language class options.