Monday, April 18, 2011

Learn Languages For Free

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Surfing the Internet recently, I discovered the website of the US Foreign Service Institute (FSI).
The Foreign Service Institute (FSI) is the United States Federal Government's primary training institution for employees of the U.S. foreign affairs community, preparing American diplomats and other professionals to advance U.S. foreign affairs interests overseas and in Washington. [Source: Wikipedia…]

The Foreign Services Language Courses site bills itself as “…the home for language courses developed by the Foreign Service Institute.”

The amazing thing about this site is that over 40 languages are represented here, with hours and hours of free, downloadable lessons on offer to anyone who has always wanted to learn a language other than their native tongue.
“These courses were developed by the United States government and are in the public domain.
“This site is dedicated to making these language courses freely available in an electronic format. This site is not affiliated in any way with any government entity; it is an independent, non-profit effort to foster the learning of worldwide languages. Courses here are made available through the private efforts of individuals who are donating their time and resources to provide quality materials for language learning.” [Source: ForeignServices Language Courses website…]

Along with the most popular European languages (German, French, Spanish, and Italian), you will also find: Amharic, Arabic, Bulgarian, Cambodian, Cantonese, Chinese, Chinyanja, Czech, Finnish, Fula, Greek, Hausa, Hebrew, Hindi, Hungarian, Igbo, Japanese, Kirundi, Kituba, Korean, Lao, Lingala, Luganda, Moré, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Serbo-Croatian, Shona, Sinhala, Swahili, Swedish, Tagalog, Thai, Turkish, Twi, Vietnamese, and Yoruba.

This site is a wonderful resource for anyone wanting to ‘dip their toes in the water’, and learn the rudiments of a new language before they travel to the country or countries of their choice.

The fact that the lessons are available for free, makes it hard to pass by and ignore. You can at least download and try one or two lessons before deciding whether to continue alone, or go on to paid language classes – which give you the opportunity to actually talk to other students, and put your training into practise.

More InformationThe Foreign Services Language Courses…

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