Dutch Listening & Speaking
Dutch Listening & Speaking/Learn Dutch is an app-based course with tons of lessons for you to work through. Unfortunately, it left us disappointed. It’s focused on memorising specific phrases and dialogues instead of building your own sentences.
Each lesson begins with a dialogue. Next, you’ll listen to the phrases individually and get a chance to record yourself saying them. Now it’s time for the exercises. You’ll match the writing to the audio, put words in the right order, fill in the gaps and pick the right translations for audio clips. In most of these exercises, you’ll hear an audio recording with the answer before you do them.
Finally, it’s time to recreate the dialogue – but don’t get too excited. Either you’ll listen to the correct phrase before selecting it from a choice of three, or you’ll see the correct phrase and then practise speaking it. With the latter, speech-recognition software means you’ll get some feedback on how good your pronunciation is.
The most frustrating think about this course is the fact that you’re only taught set phrases from one specific dialogue, with no opportunity to customise them. For example, in the lesson “Where are you from?”, the only answer you learn is “I am from California.” You’re also unlikely to pick up a good understanding of Dutch grammar from these exercises.
This app has an immense amount of content, with over 200 lessons at the elementary level alone, as well as listening tasks with short stories and news stories. But it comes across as quantity over quality. We would opt for Babbel (review) or DutchPod101 (review) over this course.