I’d like to start of this post by saying, MERRY CHRISTMAS/PRETTIGE KERSTDAGEN/FELIZ NAVIDAD!!! I hope that everyone has an amazing day and a wonderful time with family and friends.

Today my post will be, as promised in yesterday’s post, about Skype. What is Skype? Skype is a program similar to MSN, where you can talk to others using text, voice, and video. It’s is 100% free, unless you want to make actual international phone calls through it, in which case there is a small subscription fee.

It is a good alternative to MSN, and not only that, it is amazing for language learners. Why’s that? You ask.

There are many language exchanges that use Skype. A language exchange is where you hook up with another language student – preferably one that is studying your native language, and whose native language you are studying. So, for example, I’d talk to a Russian student learning English.

Then, you spend some time helping them in their target language, talking to them in that language, after which you switch and it’s your turn to practice.

Nothing beats face to face contact, but if you live in an area where your target language isn’t spoken, this is a very good alternative.

Some language exchanges out there include The Mixxer and xLingo. Many language learning message boards such as How to Learn Any Language and Unilang also have special threads for Skype language exchanges. Unilang also has a large group chat on Skype for general language discussion, which has been very useful increasing my own knowledge about more technical aspects of languages.

With the possibility of text, audio and video, Skype should be a tool in every language learner’s tool box.

If you have Skype, how has it been useful for your language learning? Let me know in the comments section down below!

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