12 Alternatives to Memrise for Studying Foreign Language Vocabulary

Is Memrise the apple of your eye? It does check off a lot of “must-have” boxes for a language learning app.

But that doesn’t mean you have to make your relationship with Memrise exclusive!

Whether you want a new learning perspective, more of your favorite feature or just a change of routine, there are some terrific Memrise alternatives out there. 

The options below have prominent features similar to Memrise’s most notable offerings: native content, interactive activities, flashcards and structured courses.

Keep reading for 12 alternatives to replace (or supplement!) your Memrise learning.

Contents


1. Best for Authentic Interviews: Easy Languages

Love Memrise’s on-the-street videos featuring real people? Easy Languages might be your next big passion.

One of Memrise’s greatest features is its abundant library of videos that feature native speakers. Easy Languages is a YouTube channel that features on-the-street interviews with real people all around the world. They’re usually meant to be easy to understand.

While these videos feature authentic language, they also frequently address culturally relevant topics to give you a more well-rounded learning experience.

Curated authentic video library for all levels
  • Thousands of learner friendly videos (especially beginners)
  • Handpicked, organized, and annotated by FluentU's experts
  • Integrated into courses for beginners
Learn more about FluentU
Learn more about FluentU

The Easy Languages channel covers a huge selection of languages, including Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish and many more.

And because Easy Languages groups videos neatly into language-specific playlists, it isn’t too hard to binge-watch videos in your target language.

2. Best for Native Content: FluentU

Available: iOS | Android

Pricing: Subscription-based; free trial available

Like Memrise, FluentU also offers a collection of authentic videos from which comprehensive language lessons are crafted.

Not only do these videos expose you to real-world language use, they can also familiarize you with accents and help tune your ear to better understand native speakers, which can be tricky for some language learners.

Video player for learners like you
  • Interactive subtitles: click any word to see detailed examples and explanations
  • Slow down or loop the tricky parts
  • Show or hide subtitles
  • Review words with our powerful learning engine
Learn more about FluentU
Learn more about FluentU

The gallery of clips is extensive and diverse, using content that you may not have initially thought of as materials for language study.

FluentU takes real-world videos—like music videos, movie trailers, news and inspiring talks—and turns them into personalized language learning lessons.

With FluentU, you hear languages in real-world contexts—the way that native speakers actually use them. Just a quick look will give you an idea of the variety of FluentU videos on offer:

learn-a-language-with-videos

FluentU really takes the grunt work out of learning languages, leaving you with nothing but engaging, effective and efficient learning. It’s already hand-picked the best videos for you and organized them by level and topic. All you have to do is choose any video that strikes your fancy to get started!

learn-a-language-with-music

Each word in the interactive captions comes with a definition, audio, image, example sentences and more.

Access a complete interactive transcript of every video under the Dialogue tab, and easily review words and phrases from the video under Vocab.

You can use FluentU’s unique adaptive quizzes to learn the vocabulary and phrases from the video through fun questions and exercises. Just swipe left or right to see more examples of the word you're studying.

learn-a-language-with-adaptive-quizzes

The program even keeps track of what you’re learning and tells you exactly when it’s time for review, giving you a 100% personalized experience.

Start using the FluentU website on your computer or tablet or, better yet, download the FluentU app from the iTunes or Google Play store. Click here to take advantage of our current sale! (Expires at the end of this month.)

3. Best for Less Common Languages: Wikitongues

Whether you want to supplement your Memrise videos with more authentic content or you can’t find authentic content in your target language on Memrise, Wikitongues might be just what you’re looking for.

Wikitongues is an innovative and exciting non-profit that offers videos on YouTube. Not only is this organization working to preserve and document languages, it’s also sharing what it collects, enabling language learners to benefit from its research.

Wikitongues collects videos featuring native speakers of less common languages and regional language variations. As a result, people studying less common languages not covered by Memrise might be able to find videos on Wikitongues, making it a perfect alternative for the intrepid language learner.

Plus, because Wikitongues also offers videos featuring diverse regional variations of languages, it’s a terrific option for anyone looking to study versions of their target language that they might not hear as often.

4. Best for Fun Lessons: Duolingo

duolingo

Available: iOS | Android

Pricing: Free; subscriptions available

Duolingo is a huge name in language learning, and it’s no wonder why.

Master words through quizzes with context
  • Learn words in the context of sentences
  • Swipe left or right to see more examples from other videos
  • Go beyond just a superficial understanding
Learn more about FluentU
Learn more about FluentU

Just as Memrise offers practice for a variety of language skills, so too does Duolingo, which provides an engaging and varied mixture of activities to help learners build vocabulary through reading, writing, speaking and listening activities.

Activities are actually a lot like the ones featured in Memrise, so they’re easy to use in addition to or in place of Memrise’s options. Plus, if you’re in a public place, you can easily skip the speaking and listening activities so as not to draw stares.

Duolingo offers over 30 languages, so the most popular ones are covered. There are also a few less common languages, such as Navajo and Welsh, if you’re looking to try something new.

You can read our full Duolingo review here.

5. Best for Vocabulary Activities: Drops

Logo for Drops app

Available: iOS | Android

Pricing: Free five minutes per day; subscriptions available

If you ever just sit on your phone and play a repetitive game without really knowing why, you can do so with Drops instead and you’ll be left with an abundance of vocabulary knowledge.

Stop memorizing words.
Start building sentences.
  • FluentU builds you up, so you can build sentences on your own
  • Start with multiple-choice questions and advance through sentence building to producing your own output
  • Go from understanding to speaking in a natural progression.
Learn more about FluentU
Learn more about FluentU

While Memrise intersperses activities with lessons and videos, Drops only focuses on activities. Each five-minute challenge asks you to identify word meanings, spell words and complete word-search-like puzzles.

The main focus is definitely vocabulary, so don’t expect a lot of reading, speaking or sentence-building practice. However, with audio accompanying each word, you’ll also get a hearty dose of pronunciation.

Activities are offered for more than 30 languages, including less common options like Cantonese, Icelandic and Maori.

You can read our full Drops review here.

6. Best for Innovative Learning: LangJet

memrise alternative

Available: Android

Pricing: Free

Accurate, detailed word explanations made for you
  • Images, examples, video examples, and tips
  • Covering all the tricky edge cases, eg.: phrases, idioms, collocations, and separable verbs
  • No reliance on volunteers or open source dictionaries
  • 100,000+ hours spent by FluentU's team to create and maintain
Learn more about FluentU
Learn more about FluentU

It’s a bird! It’s a plane! No—it’s language learning!

LangJet doesn’t offer the broad range of learning options that you’ll find in Memrise, but what it does, it does well. And that’s teaching a language through an innovative game.

In this high-flying adventure, language learners build their vocabularies by piloting an aircraft. You need to hit the correct translations while avoiding incorrect translations.

The format may be a bit different than Memrise, but if you’re looking for a fun, interactive activity to improve your language skills, LangJet can help you study longer without feeling like it’s work.

LangJet currently offers Bulgarian, English, Esperanto, French, German, Russian Slovenian and Spanish.

7. Best for Flashcards: AnkiApp

memrise alternative

Hi, I'm Alan! I became obsessed with learning Chinese, Japanese, and Korean in 2001, and managed to get good enough to work professionally in those languages as a management consultant.

I started FluentU to build a new kind of language app.
Want to learn more about how FluentU got started?

Available: iOS | Android

Pricing: Free basic download; subscriptions available

If you’re looking for a Memrise alternative because you love Memrise’s flashcards, AnkiApp can offer you even more options.

With over 80 million existing flashcards, language learners can find plenty of great vocabulary sets.

However, if you don’t find a set that matches your current need, don’t worry! You can also create your own flashcard sets featuring words, images and audio.

8. Best for Interactive Studying: Quizlet

Available: iOS | Android

Pricing: Free basic download; subscriptions available

Quizlet is a flashcard app with a special bonus—in addition to conventional flashcards, it offers games, so it can pull double duty to fill in for or supplement Memrise’s flashcards and interactive activities.

Like similar apps, Quizlet allows you to create your own flashcards or access decks created by other users, including language learning decks. Audio pronunciations are available for 18 languages.

While the basic download is free, there are a variety of items available for purchase, including premium content like ad removal, image uploads and the opportunity to join and/or start an unlimited number of groups.

9. Best for Organized Learning: Brainscape

Available: iOS | Android

Pricing: Free basic download; subscriptions available

Color-coded flashcards may seem like the Holy Grail to anyone passionate about well-organized learning material. If you’re one of those people, Brainscape is for you.

This Memrise alternative offers an array of flashcards—you can create your own, share with other users and/or access professionally made sets.

But what makes Brainscape stand out from other flashcard apps is that the cards are color coded, giving you a unique option to sort them into clear categories based on how well you know the material.

Accessing user-made content is free, while premium content and additional features are available with a subscription.

10. Best for Structured Lessons: Busuu

Available: iOS | Android

Pricing: Free basic download; subscriptions available

Memrise offers structured courses, which can take the guesswork out of learning a language independently.

While Busuu might not be the classroom-style education you’re familiar with, it does offer one big benefit you’d find in a classroom setting: structure.

Each language on offer features over 150 different units that learners can follow for a clear path to increased proficiency. You’ll even have your own personalized study plan to keep you on track towards your goals.

Busuu offers 14 language options, including commonly studied languages like Chinese, English and French, as well as more unique options, like Dutch, Polish and Turkish.

You can read our full Busuu review here.

11. Best for Contextual Learning: Babbel

Logo for Babbel

Available: iOS | Android

Pricing: Subscription-based; first lesson of each language is free

Structured lessons and interactive activities in one app? Yes, please!

Like Memrise, Babbel offers both lessons and activities. Lessons teach about culture while exposing learners to realistic conversations. Meanwhile, activities encourage learners to practice speaking and simulate conversations.

Babbel currently offers 14 languages, including options like German, Russian, Danish and Indonesian.

You can read our full Babbel review here.

12. Best for Beginners: LuvLingua

memrise alternative

Available: iOS | Android

Pricing: Free basic download; subscriptions available

Rather than deciding for yourself what to study next, Memrise can walk you through the process of learning a language step by step, and LuvLingua does the same.

Lessons start at a complete beginner level and then expose users to common vocabulary and basic grammar, using activities such as listening quizzes, picture quizzes, memory games and more.

There are over 200 organized lessons per language to help students learn systematically. The app also features audio and some cultural information to give learners a firm foundation in their target language.

LuvLingua offers 21 languages, including popular languages and more unique offerings like Czech, Farsi and Maori. Each available language has its own app.

How to Get the Most from Memrise Alternatives

  • Consider which of Memrise’s features you hope to replicate. If you love one of Memrise’s features, alternative apps can provide more material similar to that trait. Seeking a replacement for individual features rather than the whole app will also help you select the right alternative for you.
  • Test out a variety of options. Seeing your target language in a different context can increase your skills and build your confidence, so keep in mind that you don’t have to commit to the first alternative you try. In fact, trying several options is a terrific way to see what you like best and what helps you the most!
  • Consider pairing multiple options. Mixing and matching Memrise alternatives can give you a well-rounded, engaging and fun learning system all your own. Plus, using numerous resources can reinvigorate your learning and keep you from getting bored or stuck in a rut.
  • Use whichever alternative(s) you choose frequently. With any language learning app, system or program, repetition is key. Once you know which alternatives you want to use, make sure you use them often. This will help reinforce your learning so that you can keep building towards fluency without backsliding.

 

So, if the Memrise program isn’t quite perfect for you or you just want to try something new, that’s totally fine.

As you now know, there are plenty of fun Memrise alternatives that may better meet your wants and needs!

Enter your e-mail address to get your free PDF!

We hate SPAM and promise to keep your email address safe

Close