Building Language Skills as a Health Educator

As health educators, being able to speak a second language is an invaluable skill. But taking language classes can be expensive. Thankfully, there are a plethora of resources out there to help you learn a new language. These are some of my favorites:

My favorite language learning so far has been through Innovative Languageā€™s online course. InnovativeLanguage.com offers programs in 35 languages, including Spanish, Mandarin, German, Arabic, French, Vietnamese, Italian, Tagalog, Hindi, Portuguese, Russian and Swahili.

Local community colleges and universities often offer in-person language classes at all levels and can sometimes specialize in language learning for specific sectors. One of my favorite classes was a Spanish for healthcare professionals class at a local university.

The Global Language Network is a Washington, DC based nonprofit that aims to connect and empower people through language and culture. GLN offers both in-person and virtual classes led by volunteer instructors. Most classes are 12 weeks for $200 (with a $100 stipend for participants who do not miss more than 2 sessions).

DuoLingo offers both free and paid versions of their game-based language learning program. I found it a bit difficult to learn grammar on this app. But it is a quick and fun way to refresh your vocabulary when you have some downtime. I was often able to do Duolingo on the subway on the way to work.

There are plenty more language learning resources out there. Give them a try!

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