Hebrew is spoken by about 5 million people in Israel and an additional 4 million people around the world. It is the only language of the Canaanite family still in use today. For over 2000 years, Hebrew was only used in religious texts and for prayer. However, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, it was revived as an everyday spoken language.
If you are considering learning the Hebrew language, check out our HebrewPod101 review.
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HebrewPod101 Review: Summary
When you sign up for HebrewPod101, you are automatically given a free lifetime account and a free 7-day Premium subscription trial period. Your free account includes the first three lessons of each learning pathway with new lessons added each week.
The week-long Premium trial opens access to the complete video and audio lessons libraries along with:
- HD video
- Word of the Day emails
- Core words and phrases lists
- Daily mini-lessons
- Voice recording tools
- In-depth lesson notes and translations
- Interactive quizzes and flashcards
- HebrewPod101 app
You can upgrade your account to any of the three monthly subscription plans at any time. Each subscription offers access to four levels of expertise including Absolute Beginner, Beginner, Intermediate or Advanced. You can swap between levels as your knowledge increases.
Pros of HebrewPod101
Pro #1: Large Collection of Learning Materials
To say the lesson library is extensive is an understatement. You will find hundreds of hours of lessons to help you master the language. New lessons are continually being added to the learning pathways which means there is always a ton of material to help you meet your goals.
Pro #2: Structured yet Flexible Courses
The learning pathway series are structured with similar courses, and you can complete each course on your own time. If you do not feel that the material has “stuck,” simply take the course again as often as you like. Podcasts can easily be listened to during your daily commute on the train, on your lunch breaks or in waiting rooms. If you need to quit mid-lesson, simply pick it back up at a later time. This flexibility allows you to easily merge learning Hebrew into your daily life.
Pro #3: Designed for all Learning Types
Whether you learn best by visual, audio or hands-on, you can find what you need on HebrewPod101. Videos and podcasts come with comprehensive lesson notes so you can go over what you just watched or heard. Interactive quizzes and flashcards allow you to get even more involved in your learning.
Cons of HebrewPod101
Con #1: Lack of Feedback
Unless you opt for the Premium PLUS subscription, there is very little feedback to confirm you are advancing as you should be. There is also no way to communicate with other Hebrew speakers, so you will need to seek out ways to practice speaking alongside this course.
Con #2: Most Effective for Beginner to Intermediate Speakers
Advanced Hebrew speakers looking to delve deeper into the language may be disappointed. Though content is abundant, it is mostly geared to those just starting out with Hebrew through intermediate speakers. Of course, if you are already fluent in Hebrew, an immersion course would probably be a better option.
Features of HebrewPod101
Your dashboard is your home base of HebrewPod101. Upon login, you will be taken here where you can access your lessons, learning tools, the latest news, and additional learning pathways. Your progress including lessons completed and time spent studying will be kept in your dashboard and you can also change your level of expertise here. This is the control center of HebrewPod101.
HebrewPod101 will suggest a guided learning pathway depending on your level of expertise. This is generally the most structured course containing vocabulary, grammar, and cultural lessons. You can choose from tons of other learning pathways with titles including Holidays in Israel, Essential Hebrew for Emergencies and Hebrew Alphabet Made Easy. The different pathways can give you relevant translations quickly instead of having to complete the entire lessons first.
Podcast lessons can be listened to almost anywhere so you can truly learn Hebrew on-the-go. The instructors speak slowly in the beginning and go faster as you advance in learning. English translations are given along with any grammar or situational explanations that are required. You will also find lesson notes with the same explanations to read over after you’ve completed it.
Much like podcast lessons, video lesson instructors speak slowly and offer explanations in English. As you advance in expertise, less English and more Hebrew is used. The instructors are engaging and entertaining and keep the content relevant to real-life situations. You will also find lesson notes following the videos for further review.
Other Learning Tools
- Flashcards are a fun learning tool in which the Hebrew word is spoken and you try to guess the English equivalent. You are able to keep track of how many you got correct, so you can go back and review.
- Quizzes help you assess how well you are progressing in your studies.
- Pronunciation Review allows you to record your voice and compare it to the instructors. You can make sure your emphasis and accents are correct.
- Lesson Transcripts are available at the end of every lesson. You can print them out for additional review at a later time.
Who Should Buy HebrewPod101?
People who will benefit most from HebrewPod101 include those who:
- are highly motivated to learn to speak Hebrew for religious, business or personal reasons.
- can devote time to study each day.
- do not want to be restricted to a classroom or schedule.
- have Hebrew-speaking family or friends.
- need a Hebrew refresher course for business or personal travel plans.
Who Shouldn’t Buy HebrewPod101?
People who might not reap all the benefits of HebrewPod101 include those who:
- prefer the structure of classroom study.
- require one-on-one instruction.
- are already fluent in Hebrew and want further instruction.
HebrewPod101 vs. Alternatives
You can find a handful of both free and paid language learning apps that claim to teach you to speak Hebrew. Some are simply sites to enhance your vocabulary with flashcards and other learning games. Others offer comprehensive instruction into the language, grammar and culture similarly to HebrewPod101. Read on to see how some of these programs stack up.
HebrewPod101 vs. Learn Hebrew Easily
Learn Hebrew Easily is essentially a blog dedicated to teaching the Hebrew Language. You can choose between intensive or normal schedules. The intensive schedule lasts four weeks and consists of seven lessons including grammar notes, vocabulary and exercises. It is free to use and claims to have you speaking Hebrew at a “decent” level after the course.
Though there are some interactive aspects to Learn Hebrew Easily, most of the course consists of reading the materials. You can have your questions answered via email, but it is not clear if you are speaking with a native Hebrew speaker or not. Overall, you cannot beat free, and this course is best used in conjunction with a more comprehensive course.
HebrewPod101 vs. LinguaLift
LinguaLift is a subscription-based language learning program like HebrewPod101. It claims to immerse you in Hebrew without overwhelming you. Initially, you are sent a questionnaire to best determine your goals, study habits and motivation levels to customize a learning plan that fits your schedule.
You will receive the book Language Learning Secrets as well as a personalized Road Map to Fluency with your paid subscription. Lessons are quick and can easily fit into your everyday life. Tutors are available to answer your questions via email. The monthly cost is $29, but if you pay for 12 months in advance, it drops to $17/month.
There are three paid monthly subscription levels of HebrewPod101 in addition to your free lifetime account. Here, we will break down the cost and what is included with each.
$8/Month $2.80/month (using our coupon link)
- 100 core words and phrases
- New lessons added weekly
- Access to the entire lesson library
- Comprehensive lesson notes and transcripts
$25/month $7/month (using our coupon link)
The Premium Subscription includes all the Basic Subscription features plus:
- 2,000 core words and phrases
- Season vocabulary
- Custom word lists
- Interactive quizzes
- Voice recording feature
- Vocabulary slideshows
- Audio dictionary
Premium PLUS Subscription
$47/month $16/month (using our coupon link)
The Premium PLUS Subscription includes all the Basic and Premium Subscription features plus:
- One-on-one instruction from a native Hebrew speaking teacher
- Continuing assessments
- Personalized learning plans
HebrewPod101 Review: Conclusion
All in all, HebrewPod101 is a comprehensive and effective program for learning to speak Hebrew. The content is relevant to everyday life and its delivery is certain to keep the learner engaged and on track to fluency. For those who are serious about learning the Hebrew language, HebrewPod101 is an impressive platform to use.
You can try HebrewPod101 Premium for one week — for free. Here’s the link.