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Learning Russian

Do you want to finally become fluent in Russian and feel like a local in countries and regions where Russian is spoken? Find below a summary of my top recommendations for tools and resources that will help you learn Russian.  I've personally tried and tested all of them and selected the ones that I found to be most effective, user-friendly, and fun. Mix and match them, and use 3 or 4 of them interchangeably to keep your motivation high and your attention span focused.

 

Some of the resources below include affiliate links - which means that Perfectly Fluent will get a small commission when you purchase these resources through the link below. This comes at no additional cost to you, but helps us cover the costs of running this site! 

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This is my #1 recommendation for anyone starting to learn Russian or trying to improve their listening and pronunciation skills. The 30-minute lessons are easy to fit into your schedule, and they do wonders for pronunciation and speaking skills!

Effectiveness: *****

Easy-to-use: *****

Cost: $

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Learning a language successfully is impossible without interacting with native speakers and getting lots of speaking practice. This app gives you access to thousands of professional and community teachers, and you can book private online courses with them for as little as US$ 5 an hour!

Effectiveness: ****

Easy-to-use: ****

Cost: $

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This is my favorite app to train my memory and retain vocabulary in Italian. It uses spaced repetition system to help you remember words and phrases more effectively. It also has a great game-like interface, making this app a fun and exciting pass-time. And you can complete a session in as little as 5 minutes, making it very easy to practice your Italian on a break or during a commute. 

Effectiveness: *****

Easy-to-use: ****

Cost: $$$

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This is an excellentpodcast for learning Russian. Its short episodes teach useful vocabulary, everyday phrases, grammar, and culture, and do so in a progressive and easy-to-follow way. There are over two hundred episodes for beginner and intermediate learners. The podcast is completely free. 

Effectiveness: *****

Easy-to-use: ***

Cost:  

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This website and app have great short 10-15 minute videos and podcasts with lessons from beginner to advanced levels, flashcards, dialogues, grammar break-down, and vocab lists. Premium plans give access to a tutor for accountability and faster progress. 

   

Effectiveness: ****

Easy-to-use: ****

Cost: $$ 

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This online course has the most impressive innovative way to teach you Russian through immersion into an addictive and super-fun story. Rather than following a standard curriculum of grammar, sample dialogues, etc., the teaching happens by engaging you in a creative story context, and it's surprisingly effective! Although access to this course is on the pricier side, it's one of the best investments you can make to help you learn Russian, and it's totally worth it.

Effectiveness: *****

Easy-to-use: ****

Cost: $$$

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This fun app helps you learn languages with short stories, audiobooks, and music. It shows texts in two languages, side by side, so you can compare the two and learn the language in context. And all texts have audio narration! The texts go from fairy tales and news to science papers and novels, and new ones are added every week. You can listen to a native speaker narrate at your preferred speed (even with your phone locked or while offline) and take tests to assess your comprehension.

Effectiveness: ****

Easy-to-use: ****

Cost:  $

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This very thorough video course from Red Kalinka is designed for learners at most levels. It offers a lot of content designed to help students read, write and understand Russian. Their videos include Russian for tourists, a comprehensive assessment of various everyday situations, and even love phrases in Russian! Red Kalinka also has comprehensive and very good paid courses on their website

Effectiveness: ***

Easy-to-use: ****

Cost:  -

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Mondly is a fun game-style app that teaches you vocabulary through core words and phrases. The app breaks the learning process down into short lessons and puts them into themed packs. It has great visuals and is easy to use if your schedule is too busy for more structured or intensive courses. 

Effectiveness: ***

Easy-to-use: ****

Cost: $

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Rocket Languages has great audio content, comprehensive vocabulary-building tools, pronunciation training, solid grammar breakdown, and a steady path for progression. It's a pricier course and somewhat trickier to do on-the-go, but it's incredibly well-structured and effective.

Effectiveness: *****

Easy-to-use: ***

Cost: $$$ 

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This Grammar Hero course from StoryLearning.com helps you understand Russian grammar and learn it intuitively. It's based on short lessons presenting and clarifying grammar through an engaging and exciting story, which makes learning fun and easy. This course is quite pricey, but its quality and great results justify this price and make the course worth it. 

Effectiveness: ****

Easy-to-use: ****

Cost:  $$$

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Glossika helps to learn Russian patterns and speak Russian naturally. Whether you are a beginner or an advanced language learner, Glossika's audio-based training improves your listening and speaking at native speed. It helps you acquire Russian Grammar and vocabulary through complete sentences.

Effectiveness: ****

Easy-to-use: ***

Cost: $

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