The Polish language, with approximately 38.5 million native speakers and 50 million speakers worldwide, is a part of the West Slavic language family in the Lechitic group. Closely related to both Slovak and Czech, Polish has also been influenced by the Latin languages including French and Italian, as well as German. It uses the Latin alphabet including nine additional characters.
Due to emigration from Poland mostly after World War II, you can find large communities of Polish speakers in countries like Canada, the United States, UK, Australia and Brazil.
If you are considering learning to speak Polish, check out our PolishPod101 review below.
Summary of PolishPod101
First impressions tell us that PolishPod101 is an innovative and exciting way to learn the Polish language. The program, designed by Innovative Languages, offers a flexible way to learn a new language at your own speed. Upon signing up, you receive a free lifetime account and a free 7-day Premium trial period.
You will be able to access thousands of audio and video lessons as well as tons of learning tools on both mobile devices and computers. Some other features available to aid in your studies include:
- PDFs of lessons to download or print
- Flashcards and other tools to help keep learning interesting
- Assessments to determine your progress
- Enthusiastic, native-speaking instructors
- New lessons continually added
- Daily emails and lesson plans
PolishPod101 Review: Pros
Pro #1: New and Relevant Lesson Content
Not only is new material always being added to your account, but it is also fun and relevant to life as we know it. There are no outdated references or learning scenarios that are useless in modern life and boring to learn about. All the information you will take in is up to date and helpful for today’s world.
Pro #2: Flexible Lesson Pathways
How much you choose to learn is completely up to you. If you only need to brush up on some Polish to get around for vacation, you can. Likewise, if you are striving to become fluent in Polish, this is also achievable with PolishPod101.
Pro #3: Comprehensive Lesson Library
With thousands of lessons and podcasts, you will be hard-pressed to find a program with more content from which to study. Luckily, you get to decide how often, how much, and when to study making PolishPod101 a truly self-paced program.
PolishPod101 Review: Cons
Con #1: Very Little Feedback
Unless you opt for the Premium PLUS subscription, you have no access to one-on-one feedback. This can make it difficult to know if your pronunciation is correct or if you are progressing toward fluency as you should be.
Con #2: No Community of Polish Speakers
Polish is not one of the more popular languages people are learning which means it is harder to find a community of like-minded individuals to study with. You may have to find creative ways to find others for speaking practice.
Your dashboard is your control center or home base for PolishPod101. This is where you can check your progress, adjust your experience level, or change your subscription plan. You will find all the latest news from Innovative Languages here as well as your learning pathways.
As we mentioned, you can learn as much or as little Polish as you need. Take the curated and structured pathway to work towards fluency or choose from a variety of other pathways ideal for different situations. For example, you can learn Polish for emergencies, how to order food in Polish, or basic travel phrases.
Audio and Video Lessons
You can use these audio and video lessons to match up best with your learning preferences. Both audio and video lessons can give you a good idea of pronunciation rules. Video lessons usually show the words you are speaking onscreen, so you can also see what you are saying. Most lessons include information or explanations about cultural norms. Both lesson types end with transcripts that you can print off to review at a later time.
Interactive Learning Tools
Interactive tools like spaced repetition flashcards are helpful in keeping your studies fun while helping you to memorize key vocabulary words and phrases. You will also find pronunciation review with the option to record your voice and compare it to an instructor’s.
Who Should Consider Buying PolishPod101?
Since anyone’s language learning program is not always the right match for everyone, we’ve devised a list of those who will get the most from a program like PolishPod101. The following individuals who will most likely benefit from PolishPod101 include those who:
- are highly motivated to learning a new language
- excel in independent study
- do not require frequent assessments for progress
- would like to become fluent in Polish
Who Shouldn’t Buy PolishPod101?
On the other hand, there are also some individuals who would not benefit from the purchase of PolishPod101. These individuals include those who:
- require instruction from a teacher
- lack the discipline to study each day
- require feedback on progress
PolishPod101 vs. Competitors
For the most well-rounded review, we’ve included information on some of the top competitors for PolishPod101. Though all programs operate in a similar manner with similar platforms, the teaching methods vary greatly. Read on for more valuable information.
PolishPod101 vs. Babbel
Before being able to sign up for your Polish lessons with Babbel, you are asked a series of questions including why you want to learn Polish. They also want to know if you have had any prior teachings of the language and how much time per day you can dedicate toward it. Finally, you can enter your email address and set up an account.
Babbel only offers two levels of expertise making it a program geared toward beginners only. They offer an introduction to grammar, useful words and phrases and pronunciation practice with the latest Flash-Player and microphone.
PolishPod101 vs. Rosetta Stone
Rosetta Stone is more than books and CDs these days and offers true on-the-go learning like PolishPod101 using an app or computer version. It does not offer a placement test, so if you have some Polish background, you will need to figure out where to start out. It has often been referred to as repetitive by users, and the cultural information and colloquialisms are lacking.
Even so, Rosetta Stone remains a favorite among users with its newly redesigned interface. It is very structured and clear with the intent of acquainting you with the Polish language.
You will find four different subscription levels including your free lifetime account. Read on for details on pricing and features for each plan, and keep in mind that the longer subscription term, the cheaper the monthly rate is.
Basic Monthly Plan
$8/month $2.80/month (using this link)
- Complete access to all lessons
- Comprehensive lesson notes
- New lessons added each week
- 100 Polish core words and phrases
Premium Monthly Plan
$25/month $7/month (using this link)
The Premium monthly plan includes everything the Basic plan offers plus:
- Line-by-line audio conversations
- HD video
- Custom word lists
- Lesson quizzes
- Voice recording
- Grammar and word bank
Premium PLUS Monthly Plan
$47/month $16/month (using this link)
The Premium PLUS plan offers everything the Premium plan offers plus:
- One-on-one access to a teacher
- Personal lesson plans
- Ongoing assessments
PolishPod101: Final Thoughts
Overall, we feel that PolishPod101 is a comprehensive program worth the monthly subscription fee for anyone who is serious about studying Polish. The PolishPod101 cost is on par with its top competitors and offers the additional benefits of cultural explanations and norms. If you want to become fluent in Polish, PolishPod101 is a great place to start this journey.
If you’re not sure if the program is right for you, you can sign up for a 7-day free trial here.