Note: if you have any suggestions to improve this list, please let me know in the comments or via email (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Learning the language
General Language Learning Materials:
- Lingholic, a Portugal-based English language website focused on the processes of learning; there (and also on their Facebook and Twitter feeds) you’ll be able to find interesting materials and strategies to focus on your ability to retain information and improving your learning, like “How many words do I need to know? The 95/5 rule in language learning”; a great place to start to build and replenish your confidence in your language learning skills.
- Duolingo: free, engaging and with a strong sense of community, Duolingo can be a good starting point to your journey through Portuguese vocabulary and grammar; the Portuguese Duolingo course is based on Brazilian Portuguese, so you should definitely tread carefully when using it to learn European Portuguese. I’m a former moderator and course coordinator on the website; during my tenure I did my best to add EP expressions, vocabulary and grammar to the course, but don’t expect it to be 100% responsive or catered to your needs as a EP learner. Check out a longer review/assessment of Duolingo for EP learners.
- Talkalang: a website where people can ask questions and give answers on different topics as a way to improve their basic fluency in a language; like Duolingo, it also uses daily/weekly goals to make people motivated in their studies, and the different array of subjects should appeal to those who are interested in learning about a variety of subjects, especially if you have strong opinions about them. Also relevant is a feature that allows you to ask for other users to send you some feedback regarding the quality of your texts. Sadly there doesn’t seem to be a strong sense of community in the Portuguese section yet – the discussions are few and far between, and the same can be said about the number of views and comments on each – but I’m trying to change that: you can follow me there as well!
- Bliu Bliu: its model is based on giving students short texts to read, later asking them to grade words based on their difficulty in understanding them; although it’s a paid website, it has many free functions (the limitations being mainly time-based, i.e., you’ll be unable to use the website for a while if you don’t pay, but apparently the timeframes are never too wide); you can choose between European Portuguese and Brazilian Portuguese, so make sure you choose the former
- Lingua.ly: a website that also gives you texts with words, but asks you to mark words you already know. Those words become flashcards which you can later use in games and other activities; if you add a browser add-in, you can “pick-up” words for your vault from any Portuguese-language website.
- Conjuguemos: a website focused on verb-specific exercises (mainly verb form drills). It follows EP spelling rules for verbs.
- Online Platform for Portuguese: an EP language learning website run by the Alto Comissariado para as Migrações (High Commission for Migration), a Portuguese governmental agency. It was brought to my attention via an email submission (thanks again, Briana!), and it seems like a really interesting, engrossing way of learning the language: it’s completely free, the course is divided into two sections (Elementary and Independent user) to account for your skills and every lesson follows a clear, interesting throughline (examples include “Daily Life”, “Health and the Human Body” in the Elementary section, “Portugal Past and Present”, “Rights and Freedoms” in the Independent section) and you take exams to measure your progress; apparently you also get assigned a tutor to help you out with your progress, which seems like a really great idea if they can follow through with it. I really can’t recommend it enough! (P.S. It seems there are parts of the modules that haven’t been translated yet – and sometimes the translation isn’t the best – but I’ll try to find the time to complete some of the modules myself and write a longer assessment post so that you can use it with more knowledge about its pros and cons- until then, feel free to test it for yourself and please take my enthusiastic recommendation with the necessary grain of salt)
Online EP dictionaries:
- Dicionário Priberam da Língua Portuguesa
- Dicionário Infopédia (Porto Editora) da Língua Portuguesa
- Bab.la Portuguese-English dictionary has a European Portuguese voice-to-text option for single words. It’s not perfect (especially with certain vowels), but it gets consonants and nasals mostly right.
Verb conjugation lists:
Portuguese Grammar Links:
- Portal da Língua Portuguesa
- Ciberdúvidas da Língua Portuguesa: website that receives and answers questions about the Portuguese language; it’s run by ISCTE-IUL (a Portuguese college).
- Portal da Língua Portuguesa, if you search an individual word (in its lemma form) or a verb infinitive, it provides you with the right pronunciation in different dialects.
- Typing Test, which allows you to practice your typing skills in Portuguese and several different languages; a good opportunity to visualize Portuguese sentence structure and learn new words; beware that some if not all the exercises seem to be in Brazilian Portuguese.
Society and Culture
- Practice Portuguese, a free EP language learning podcast.
- Expresso, weekly newspaper of reference; the site is updated multiple times a day like a normal news website.
- Público, daily newspaper of reference – works as a subscription-only newspaper after you’ve exceeded your monthly article limit, but you can bypass the limit by accessing the website using your browser’s Private mode.