How to Learn English by Yourself

How to Learn English by Yourself

How to Learn English by Yourself

Strategic Investment is one of the prinicples of language learning and teaching included in a list of 12 principles made by H. Douglas Brown 

Strategic Investment  is defined as:

Success in learning is dependent on the time and effort learners spend in mastering the language learning process according to their ability

Now you know that learning a language takes time and effort but sometimes you have some challenges like

  1. I don’t have much time to study English
  2. I don’t have enough money to hire a private tutor.
  3. I don’t know where to start

Those challenges and struggles can be real however there are practical solutions to those three problems. Make sure to follow all or some of these advices to see improvements fast.

Tips for Learning English by Yourself

#1 Music

One of the hobbies that you should have while learning a language is to listen to music. Listening to music is crucial to successful language learners because:

  1. Listening to songs in English again and again will help you increase your vocabulary size.
  2. Repetition is necessary to remember new vocabulary.
  3. You will get used to listening English speakers and different varieties of English accents.
  4. You will reinforce the pronunciation  and other pronunciation features such as intonation.

You just need your phone and install musixmatch to understand what you are listening to. You can listen to music as you commute to work or university and even when you exercise.

Try spending some time checking songs in English on Youtube, most of popular songs have lyrics videos.

#2 Grammar

Let’s just say that you want to improve your accuracy  but you don’t know where to start. If you are an independent learner, you don’t need to hire somebody to fix problems that you can fix youself.

My best recommendation to make huge improvements in your grammar and pronunciation is buying or downloading these two books:

  1. Basic Grammar in Use
  2. English Pronunciation in Use

You can download those two books and check the holes in your game by yourself, you can teach yourself grammar and pronunciation with both books, they have a very practical approach.

#3 Apps

Nowadays everyone has a smartphone, You might be reading this article in expensive one so why don’t you put that cellphone to a good use?


Try searching for for applications to:

  1. Increase your vocabulary size
  2. have a more accurate pronunciation
  3. improve your grammar

#4 Netflix

If you haven’t been living under a rock for the last decade, you might know what Netflix is. In case you aren’t a netflix user yet. I can give you a hint of what you can get there.

In Netflix you can choose a show or a movie from a huge collections of titles and in most cases you will have the option to watch your show or movie in English  and with subtitles in English.

If you think watching a show or movie in English is quite challenging, watch the movie in spanish first or with subtitles in spanish and then give it a try  in English with subtitles in English or without them.

#5 Books

How to Learn English by Yourself

Start reading in English, you might start with books that don’t have a complex plot such as the little prince. I like to advise people to use the Google Play  Book apps since you can buy books and download some for free.

The benefits of using an app is that you can get books easily for free and the best book apps will give options such as a integrated dictionary.

#6 Start Writing

When you have some time off, start writing sentences in a notebook or in a note app such as Evernote.  Write a few sentences every day , then start writing a few paragraphs about fun topics. Show your work to a classmate or a teacher, I bet that he or she will be happy to help you.

#7 Fluency

If you consider that you grammar and pronunciation is kinda accurate and that your vocabulary size is decent enough for exchanges and small conversations, try to enroll in  a class in which communication is a priority or find a partner to practice with.


I bet there are some other fun ways to learn English without spending tons of money in institutes.  Learning how to be an independent learner is way cheaper that being a passive learner.

Avoid at all cost the idea that passing a course means progress. You will recognize progress when you are experiencing it.