What's the easiest way to learn Italian? You could do what I did, and marry a Roman!
Or, you can try one of these great resources.
We all learn new languages differently. Some learn by studying and taking tests. Others learn by immersing themselves in a country where they speak the language one is trying to learn. Some use apps, others use tutors.
There is not one best way to learn a new language such as Italian. Much of it depends on YOU, your circumstances, and most importantly, how you learn.
On this page I'll give you some excellent resources for learning Italian like:
There are a lot of excellent online courses to help you learn Italian. This may be one of the most popular ways to learn Italian. Usually you can go at your own pace, and using a computer or tablet screen is easier than using a smaller smartphone screen as you would with an app.
There are almost endless resources for studying Italian online. Here are some of the most widely used:
There are so many apps now to help you learn Italian. Here are just a few of the most popular apps for learning Italian:
There are podcasts and audio courses that will help you learn Italian while you're driving (or walking or otherwise not in front of a computer or phone screen).
A highly-rated audio course that also comes as a kindle or paperback is this Learn Italian for Beginners course.
Another excellent course that comes complete with audio files, physical books, and online learning is this course by Living Language Italian, Beginner through Advanced.
One of the best podcasts for learning Italian is the Coffee Break podcast.
Another excellent podcast is the Italian Pod 101 podcast.
One of the easiest ways to learn any new language is to immerse yourself in a culture where that language is spoken. Even better if you are not surrounded by a lot of other people who speak your language.
So it would make sense that one of the best ways to learn Italian is by spending some time in Italy.
As with picking the easiest way to learn Italian, picking WHERE to study Italian in Italy will be different for everyone.
Here are some things to consider:
There are thousands of schools across Italy. Here is a handy website that helps you filter them based on your needs.
Obviously the longer you can spend in Italy, the more your Italian will improve. But it's not just the amount of time, but the way you spend it.
The first time I tried studying Spanish in Spain, I went with an American University group. First we had a big bus tour of Spain (so much fun!), and then we planted ourselves in Barcelona. They put us in pairs to stay with local Spanish families. The course lasted a month, and at the end of it, I'd really spent more time with my fellow students than with my host family. And I didn't learn much.
When I returned the following year, I spent a month in Alicante. I decided not to go with an American school but with a local one. I was in a dorm with other foreign students. And we all spoke English together. So I didn't learn much.
Then I met the man who would become my boyfriend for a few years. School ended. I stayed in Alicante and went to live with him, his mom, and his two sisters. I went home to finish university and graduate. I came back to Alicante and lived and worked there for a year. And THEN I learned Spanish.
One huge advantage to studying Italian in Rome is that you have so much to see and do here while you study here.
Another huge advantage is the ease of coming and going to other parts of Italy from Rome's Termini train station. There are even lots of fantastic day trips.
The easiest way to learn Italian in Rome is to enrol in a program and live here for a period of time, but it's also important that you get out every day and try to interact with the Romans themselves.
Following is a list of some of the most popular Italian language courses in Rome, and where they are:
The easiest way to learn Italian is by speaking it and hearing it.
You can augment your learning with some books like these:
I think the easiest way to learn any language is by watching tv shows or movies that you enjoy. Watch them in Italian and either English subtitles or Italian subtitles. Believe it or not, if you have a fair handle on Italian, using Italian subtitles will help you much more than using English subtitles.
We watch everything in original language (this often means we watch things in English), and we use original language subtitles. So for Alessandro, who is fluent in English, it's helpful to have the subtitles in English when we watch tv shows or movies in English. It just makes it easier especially when people speak quickly and/or in slang.
The same is true for Italian. When we watch Italian tv shows or movies in Italian, I like help from the Italian subtitles even though I am fluent in Italian.
There are a lot of fun, well-known. easy to watch movies in Italian. Then just use either English or Italian subtitles.
With Netflix and Amazon Prime, you often have the choice to watch something in original language and with subtitles.
Visit my Amazon store front to see my recommended Italian movies. Here are 3 of my favorites to get you started:
If you are coming to study Italian in Italy and you are an EU citizen, you do not need to apply for a student visa.
If you come to study Italian in Italy and are not a citizen of the EU, you can only stay in Italy for a maximum 90 days as a tourist. So if your course lasts longer than this, you will need to apply for a student visa.
As I wrote above, when choosing your school make sure they are eligible to get you a student visa. Most state-run schools and universities are eligible. But some smaller, private language schools might not be, so check before you commit.
Student visas for Italy are issued by Italian Embassies or Consulate-General offices in your country of origin. You should try to book your appointment with your nearest Italian consulate 1-2 months in advance.
Here's how to apply for a study visa in Italy. You will need: