Resources for Students

Language

Study Spanish

A website to learn Spanish maintained by a group of teachers. It is free, clear and has comprehensive grammar explanations, including a random Spanish verb test generator, as well as a diverse range of interesting cultural articles. It also offers the option of purchasing additional ‘premium’ services.
The pronunciation section is particularly interesting for students that need to improve this particular skill.

Mi Mundo

An online programme created by the Cervantes Institute to teach Spanish to young learners. It includes vocabulary activities and interactive stories

Spanish.About

A website created and maintained by Gerald Erichen, a North American journalist who provides a comprehensive set of well-explained grammar lessons, as well as many other interesting and original articles.

Páginas de ayuda en Español

Professor Enrique Yepes has created a collection of resources for intermediate and advanced students of Spanish from Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine. It contains grammar explanations and exercises, a guide to Spanish writing-style, articles, etc.

Spanish Grammar Exercises

Professor Matthew D. Stroud from the Department of Modern Languages at Trinity University, in San Antonio, Texas, has created this website with loads of Spanish Grammar exercises with auto correction.

Learner.org

Annenberg Learner is a North American company whose multimedia resources help teachers increase their expertise in their fields. Many programs are also intended for students in the classroom and viewers at home. You can watch episodes of ‘Destinos’, a soap-opera in Spanish. The episodes begin with basic and end with advanced language, providing a fun and effective way to practice your Spanish listening skills.

The University of Iowa

This is an excellent website to view how the sounds of Spanish are articulated and to learn the basics of Spanish phonetics.

Reading material

Centro Virtual Cervantes – Lecturas Paso a Paso

The virtual resource centre of the Cervantes Institute (Centro Virtual Cervantes) has a section called ‘Lecturas paso a paso’ where you can find reading materials organised according to your level.

Centro Virtual Cervantes – Historias de debajo de la luna

Another section called ‘Historias de debajo de la luna’ where you can find reading materials from different countries written by locals who describe their customs, legends and others.

Proyecto Sherezade

The University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, Canada has created this website as part of a Project to collect stories from all over the world written in Spanish. A great resource for advanced learners who want to branch out and experience some Spanish texts.

Online Dictionaries

Among the many available options, these dictionaries seem particularly helpful to us. Most of them have also a free mobile app version downloadable in Android and iPhone.

SpanishDict

A multilingual Spanish dictionary that also provides grammar tips, flashcards and other useful resources for Spanish language learning, which makes it particularly useful for beginner students.

Wordreference

This multilingual online dictionary allows you to find synonyms, definitions and translations of Spanish words from and into several languages. Very useful for students of all levels.

Real Academia de la Lengua

This monolingual dictionary is particularly useful for intermediate or advanced level students. It is a very comprehensive source because it has been developed by the Real Academia de la Lengua Española (Royal Academy of the Spanish Language), which is the is the official institution responsible for overseeing the Spanish language in Spain.

Diccionario del español coloquial

Sometimes you may have to search for informal expressions that don’t show up in regular dictionaries. This monolingual dictionary providing definitions of colloquial expressions in Spanish can help in such situations.

Diccionario Clave SM

A monolingual dictionary for foreigners with easy definitions, provided by SM, a Spanish publishing house.

 

Multimedia Resources

Fundación de la Lengua Española

The Spanish Language Foundation is a private institution created to respond to a twofold desire: on the one hand to promote the Spanish language and culture in countries where Spanish is not the main language, and secondly to spread the image of Spain and Castilla y León throughout the world. It offers different multimedia channels for students to practice their Spanish and know more about the culture:

  • Practica Español Website to practice Spanish with EFE PRESS news contents, supported by the Instituto Cervantes and the Fundación de la Lengua Española.
  • Campus Virtual Website that offers a wide range of online courses to learn Spanish
  • Canal desarrollo A portal with content related to immigration, information for immigrants, visas, working experience, etc.

Spanish Proficiency Exercises

Professor Orlando R. Kelm from the University of Austin, Texas has created this site to provide video activities for Spanish students of different levels. Spanish Proficiency Exercises is a compilation of brief video clips in which native speakers of Spanish from various locations throughout Latin America and Spain demonstrate various language tasks. The videos come with transcripts as well.

BBC Languages: Spanish

A very useful compilation of Spanish learning materials and resources provided  by the British broadcaster.

The Guardian

The British newspaper has created this language resources website with a collection of useful articles to read, vocabulary and grammar structures for different situations and audio files.

Language by Video

A resource for students and teachers. Students can use it to learn or to supplement their learning and teachers can use it to supplement their lessons plans. It offers free videos made by Spanish speakers or students all with a teaching point about vocabulary, grammar or culture. Each video is accompanied by a script and a translation.

Bab.la

A language portal to learn Spanish with a dictionary, games, quizzes, etc.

Pasatiempos de Rayuela

A section from the virtual resource centre of the Cervantes Institute where you can find games to learn and practice your Spanish.

Culture

Centro Virtual Cervantes

Official webpage of the Centro Virtual Cervantes, part of Instituto Cervantes. You will find lots of resources and information.

Diccionario de gestos españoles

A great website where common gestures used by Spanish speakers are explained and illustrated with examples of use.

Filmin

One of the most interesting Spanish websites to find movies free or at a low cost to watch online with very good quality. It includes independent movies from all over the world.

Arte e Historia

A digital magazine sponsored by the government of Castilla y León that includes videos (and their transcript) about Spanish and Latin American history and art.

TV, radio and press

ARGENTINA

Página12 http://www.pagina12.com.ar/diario/ultimas/index.html

La nación http://www.lanacion.com.ar/

Buenos Aires Herald http://www.buenosairesherald.com/

 

COLOMBIA

Radio Caracol http://www.caracol.com.co/

 

ESPAÑA

TVE http://www.rtve.es/

Antena tres http://www.antena3.com/

El país http://elpais.com/

El público http://www.publico.es/

El mundo http://www.elmundo.es/

 

MÉXICO

La Jornada http://www.jornada.unam.mx/ultimas

El Universal http://www.eluniversal.com.mx/noticias.html

 

VENEZUELA

Telesur www.telesurtv.net

Alba ciudad http://albaciudad.org/wp/

El Universal http://www.eluniversal.com/

El Correo del Orinoco http://www.correodelorinoco.gob.ve/


Podcasts

Podcasts are certainly one of the most convenient ways to develop our listening skill. You can download them onto your computer or smartphone and listen to them during a commute, working out, tidying your place, having a coffee… Nowadays, you can listen to many podcasts that are specifically designed for Spanish language learners (apart from the ones that are for Spanish speakers  which might be too challenging for you) and you can download them easily from their websites or online broadcasters like Itunes. These are only a few of the many you can find:

Audiria

Audiria is free and provides programs for all levels. They have an enormous amount of material as they upload podcasts every day. They also provide exercises and other resources.

Spanish Pod 101

A lot of free material as well as the chance to listen to hosts from many Spanish-speaking countries so you can be exposed to some of the many accents of Spanish.

Spanish Obsessed

Created by an English-Colombian real life couple, Spanish obsessed prides podcasts for beginners, intermediated and advanced students.

Study Spanish.com

Quite formal in structure and focused on grammar.  Their website contains a lot of additional materials.

Podcast in Spanish.org

Very complete podcast that emphasizes conversational Spanish on up to date subjects. It comes with transcriptions, worksheets and vocabulary tasks.

Podcasts from Spain

Podcastfromspain

You can listen to their many podcasts, do their exercises or check out their links for videos and resources.

Notes in Spanish

Notes in Spanish is a very popular podcast produced by an English-Spanish couple that lives in Madrid. It provides materials for every level and they also focus in conversational everyday Spanish.

News in slow Spanish

A live Spanish class where up-to-date news are told at a slighter slower pace with the help of flash cards, grammar support, pronunciation practice etc.

Español Podcast

A podcast for learners of Spanish who wish to revise and update what they have learnt. In the blog you can find the transcription of some of the most up-to-date news and videos which are being discussed in Spain.

Apps

Even if their effectiveness is still put into question by some, nobody can deny that mobile apps for language learning are generally convenient, attractive and cheap (or even free), which is certainly why they are becoming so popular. These are just a few of the many apps available for you to learn and practice Spanish, but you can find reviews and comparative charts like this easily on the web.

Duolingo

It’s free, and, while not particularly grammar heavy, it doesn’t only focus on vocabulary, allowing you to practice verb tenses, for example.

Memerise

Free and particularly focused to acquire and memorize vocabulary, as the name implies.

Cat Spanish

A very original game to learn Spanish… with cats. Seriously. It is also free.

Open Language

A Spanish language course, more than a game. They offer some free contents, but otherwise requires paid subscription.

Spanish Challenge

A game that allows you to learn and practice Spanish as you compete with other users. It contains some free materials, but otherwise requires paid subscription.

Social networks

Apart from the usual ones (facebook, Twitter, Whatsapp…), which can also be useful tools for language learning and practice, certain social networks are focused on language learning, such as:


My Language Exchange

An online space where you can meet speakers of other languages and have virtual exchanges to practice any language you are learning.

Busuu

A social network for Spanish language learners.

Interpals

Website that allows you to practice your written skills with a pen pal.

Purchasing Spanish books in Hong Kong

Most bookshops in Hong Kong sell Spanish dictionaries or grammar books, however, to buy textbooks in Hong Kong there are limited options:

HKU bookstore

The University bookstore on campus sells the textbooks that are used by the Spanish Programme at HKU:

HKUP Bookshop
出版社書店
G/F, Run Run Shaw Heritage House (HKU MTR Station Exit C1)
Centennial Campus, The University of Hong Kong
Pokfulam Road
Hong Kong
香港 薄扶林 香港大學
百周年校園 逸夫苑 地下
Business hours:
Monday to Friday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. (closes on public and University holidays)
Tel:  (852) 3917 7801
Email:
upweb@hku.hk

The Spanish Bookstore

An online store that provides books for people learning or teaching Spanish in Hong Kong. They also distribute other materials printed and/or made in Spain such as educational toys/games, backpacks or notebooks.

Parentheses bookstore

This bookstore has a limited range of Spanish books on sale. It’s located in Central (2/F Duke of Wellington House, 14, Wellington Street, Central). Tel: 2526 9215

Viva Spanish

A Language school in Hong Kong which sells a selection of textbooks from Spanish publishing houses.

Spanish learning materials publishing houses from Spain

On-line shops

La Casa del Libro

A famous franchise of bookstores around Spain. Their flagship store is in Madrid (C/Gran Vía) but they have a website as well where you can browse for ELE materials.

CELESA

A wholesale book distributor that sells books at a lower price from that offered by publishers. They also serve retail.

Learning Spanish Outside HKU

Many students ask about learning Spanish outside HKU so that they can continue improving their Spanish after finishing their degree at HKU. There are many institutions in Hong Kong which offer Spanish courses, however, you will need to check the levels offered because most places teach beginner or intermediate level courses. Below is a list of some of those places:

Continuing Education Schools

HKU SPACE

School of Professional and Continuing Education from HKU.

SCOPE

Centre of Continuing Professional Education from City University.

SCE, HKBU

School of Continuing Education, Hong Kong Baptist University.

CUHK-SCS

School of Continuing and Professional Studies from The Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Language Schools

La Sociedad Hispánica de Hong Kong

Spanish World

Carabela

Columbus Language Institute

Viva Spanish Language Centre

The Spanish Academy

Excellence in Languages

Spanish Tutors Hong Kong

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