Learning to speak Russian can consist of many different methods, all of which have their own strengths and weaknesses to consider. Whether you're a student that's just starting out in your study of Russian, or you're a professional with a high level of Russian language education that wants to learn more in order to acquire certification, here are the most common approaches to learning, along with their pros and cons.
Learn to Speak Russian with Different Methods
- Self-Study: Audio, video, and text materials can all help students to improve their understanding of Russian on their own time, and may be a smart way to introduce yourself to the language if you aren't quite sure whether or not Russian is the right pick for you. While these self-study methods do often come at a low cost, and can provide a lot of information, they're also lacking in the actual “communication” aspect of language; actually talking in Russian to Russians is a key component to mastering it.
- Learning to speak Russian with a native speaker: One of the more effective forms of study. Russian speakers understand the nuances of the language, as well as some of the quirks that you won't pick up on in most video, audio, or text-based courses. You'll also be able to learn difficult pronunciations by hearing a native speaker say them, and by having them correct your pronunciation if it's incorrect. Learning from a native speaker may be a bit more expensive if it's a private tutor, but the cost is almost always worth it if the tutor is certified and experienced.
- Studying Russian in your country, or abroad: There are language schools in most major cities that can provide you with lessons when and where you need them, and that can also be ideal for students that may want to pass a Russian language course but do not have the time to study abroad. For those that can study in Russia itself, that is the most ideal possible way to learn the language. Not only can you learn to speak Russian from everyday native speakers, but you'll also get a greater appreciation for the cultural and historic depth of the language, which is key to mastery and fluency.
- Online courses: Online curriculum can combine the strengths of some of the above mentioned options. For example, ECHO Eastern Europe offers online courses that include live Skype calls with native Russian speakers, as well as text, video, and audio materials that can assist you with your studies. Online courses can also include mock exams, information on certification for foreign speakers of Russian, and more. Online education is often quite flexible and affordable for students and professionals.
In closing, your preferred method of learning should be based on your goals. If you want to learn at your own pace, then choosing self-study or online courses may be your best place to start. If you're a professional that needs to learn Russian for business, then you will definitely want to invest in a tutor so that you can learn technical language and matters of etiquette. Professionals and students alike may be able to make the time to study abroad, but language schools in your city are the next best thing if they're available.