Do you like learning from textbooks? Wouldn’t you rather listen to native speakers instead of flipping through a boring book? This Memrise review will show you a better way of learning a language.
More than 50 million people have used Memrise so far, so we’ve tested its features and services to understand what’s so special about it.
Have a look at our comprehensive analysis to see the bigger picture.
Does this fit well enough into your pricing range? If so, then continue reading to find the story behind this language learning giant.
The story of Pimsleur dates back to the mid-1960s when Dr. Paul Pimsleur, a well-known linguist and psychologist, created a learning system based on listening and repeating. Although this technique wasn’t revolutionary by any means, his repetitive method became a core formula for many language learning platforms that have come since.
This program proved so popular that, in 1995, the famous publishing firm Simon and Schuster bought the rights to Dr. Pimsleur’s courses. From that point on, the platform became known as Simon and Schuster Pimsleur.
Now that we’ve put a face behind the product, let’s focus on the platform’s features.
Features, Courses, and Materials
Memrise is a language learning platform with a focus on real-life learning. While browsing the official Memrise website, we learned that Ed Cooke, Ben Whately, and Greg Detre founded the company in 2010. Their primary goal was to make language learning fun and effective.
The trick is in reviewing what you learned until you memorize it. The spaced repetition system’s algorithm predicts when a word or phrase should be repeated to stay in your long-term memory. Spaced repetition is effective because it helps you memorize more items in less time. With massed repetition, you can easily get bored or accustomed to words or phrases that are presented to you.
Based on the information we gathered for this Memrise review, you can learn new alphabets, practice vocabulary, pronunciation, grammar, and listening skills with the help of this program. There are two types of courses: the platform’s official courses and the user-generated ones. It’s possible to redo them if you need more practice.
Memrise teaches languages by exposing learners to everyday language in context. Thousands of video clips by native speakers instruct you on using particular words or expressions in real-life conversations. What not many Memrise reviews mention are games such as chess or blackjack that introduce new terms.
You can access Memrise in one of the following ways:
- In mobile and desktop browsers
- As a desktop app via an emulator for Windows and Mac
- As an Android app downloaded from the Google Play store
- As an iOS app downloaded from the Apple App Store
Apart from languages, the platform covers a wide range of categories, such as art, history, math, etc. Let’s now dive deeper into Memrise’s features separately.
Pimsleur Method Review
If you visit Pimsleur’s website, you’ll find a special section that details Dr. Pimsleur’s repetition method. It comprises four concepts: Graduated Interval Recall, Principle of Anticipation, Core Vocabulary, and Organic Learning.
Let’s break it down.
Memrise Review: Website
Arguably the most convenient way of using Memrise is in a browser, either on a mobile device or a desktop computer. It doesn’t require any additional downloads; just follow three simple steps:
- Choose your native language and the language you’d like to learn
- Choose your level (beginner or intermediate)
- Register with Google, Facebook, or email
- Start learning
At this point, you still don’t need a subscription; you can complete introductory courses for free. If there aren’t any courses for your preferred language pair, you’ll see courses for English speakers. Our findings agree with a Memrise site review we came across online claiming that the website version has the following learning modes:
- Learn new words – learn new items until you memorize them
- Classic review – Strengthen the items in your long-term memory
- Speed review – Review items fast
- Difficult words – Mark items you struggle with often
- Listening skills – Review your listening skills
- Learn with locals – Watch and listen to more than 1,000 native speakers
- Learning statistics – Track your progress and personal records
You simply can’t review Memrise without mentioning the Learn with Locals video mode. With it, you can watch and listen to 1,000 native speakers using their language in everyday situations. However, it’s active on these official courses only:
- English (UK)
- English (US) for courses 1 and 4
- Spanish (Spain)
- Spanish (Mexico) for courses 1 and 4
- Portuguese (Portugal)
- Japanese for courses 0–3
If you’re someone who prefers learning a language with the help of a tutor, Memrise might not be the right choice for you. The courses and features in the app are intended for independent learners.
Memrise App Review
To use Memrise as a desktop app, you need to install either the BlueStacks or the Nox app player first. You’ll find them in the Apple Store and Microsoft Store. Second, use the search bar to find the “Memrise: Fun Language Learning” option, download it, and log in.
The desktop and mobile apps offer the same features as the website version. The exceptions are grammar, pronunciation, and offline mode. The features available in the Memrise app are:
- Learn New Words
- Classic Review
- Speed Review
- Difficult Words
- Listening Skills
- Learn with Locals
- Offline Mode
The Explore mode for naming objects in the target language exists on iOS devices only. Also, you can learn grammar on these language pairs:
- For UK English speakers: French (1, 2), Spanish (Spain) (1, 2), German (1, 2), Italian (1, 2), Japanese (0, 1, 2), Chinese (1, 2), Russian (1, 2), Korean (1, 2)
- For Spanish (Spain) speakers: English (UK) (1, 2)
- For Russian speakers: English (UK) (1, 2)
Memrise Review: Languages
Memrise has a huge language library, but there’s a catch. The course selection depends on the device language and the language pair. Memrise automatically detects your device’s language and localizes the interface. If we assume that your device’s language is Chinese, Memrise will see it as your source language and will show you a list of available courses for Chinese.
But don’t worry; you can change your native language. Although there’s a wide selection of languages, sometimes you won’t find any courses available. In such cases, the program will show you courses for English speakers.
Memrise Japanese Review
Written language is the most challenging aspect of Japanese. Memrise offers eight courses to ensure that you tackle the language thoroughly. After you grasp Katakana, you’ll be able to jump to the conversation level.
The topics covered in the Japanese courses teach you how to say basic phrases such as telling time or the seasons. The more advanced lessons deal with abstract topics, such as space and time, the online world, heightened senses, etc. Therefore, you’ll be ready to participate in different conversations.
Memrise Chinese Review
Due to the large number of Chinese characters, Memrise courses will teach you a sufficient number of them to be able to form sentences in Chinese. For the same reason, the courses consist of more levels than some other languages.
The Chinese 3, for example, has as many as 87 levels.
This continuous lesson flow keeps you engaged while revising what you’ve learned so far. More than 10,000 video clips show you how Chinese native speakers communicate in everyday life. Also, you’ll learn how to get around and order food in a restaurant.
Memrise French Review
The French language course consists of seven Memrise modals and numerous community-created courses. They will help you fuel your vocabulary with the commonly used words. As you progress, you become more capable of ordering a crème brûlée or telling your doctor how you feel.
Grammar practice is possible in the app only. However, you can still practice in your browser if you choose one of the community-generated courses. Check if they meet your needs, and you’re good to go.
Memrise Russian Review
The inspirational Russian courses teach you more than just the language. The course starts with the fundamentals—the alphabet and phonetic system. Later on, you’ll become proficient in talking about culture-related topics, such as cold weather.
The lessons educate you about hard and soft consonants.
You can see the position of the lips in the videos, which is of the utmost importance for beginners. The Cyrillic script is quite different from the alphabet most European languages use, so the software has a keyboard with all the symbols.
Memrise Spanish Review
There are two official Spanish courses you can take—Mexican and Castilian Spanish. Both immerse you in a series of reviews designed to teach you new expressions. The Mexican Spanish course consists of seven modals. Each modal deals with a particular topic. For example, the introductory lesson teaches you to introduce yourself and use some colloquial expressions.
It takes seven modals to learn Castilian Spanish, too. But the great thing is that both teach you vocabulary and pronunciation. That’s why the Learn with Locals mode allows you to communicate with native speakers from both countries.
Memrise Korean Review
It takes approximately 54 hours to learn more than 1,600 words and phrases in Korean. Thanks to 3,200 audio and video clips featuring native speakers, you can master this language in no time. But before you proceed to more complex lessons, you need to master the alphabet.
A lot of attention is dedicated to Hangul. Moreover, initial lessons help you decipher Korean by learning how to put letters together. Vowels are crucial in Korean. Luckily for you, grammar lessons deal with those, too.
Ease of Use
Some Memrise reviews that we found online while doing research prefer the browser-based version to apps. Apparently, it’s easier for some people to log in to their Memrise accounts in the browser on a PC or laptop.
In our experience, the interface in all the Memrise versions is user-friendly. You can navigate through the courses without hitting the Back button. The reviews’ interface is well-structured without redundant buttons.
Pricing and Plans
Memrise enables you to go through basic courses for free upon registration. If you’re more ambitious, the Memrise Pro cost structure is as follows:
- $8.99 for the monthly plan
- $7.50/month for the annual plan
- $139.99 for the lifetime plan (one-time payment)
Don’t forget that Memrise often offers gifts, promotions, and discounts. All types of subscriptions automatically renew unless you cancel them before the billing period expires. Also, feel free to upgrade or downgrade your plan at any time.
Try to make the most of the 7-day free trial because Memrise offers a 30-day money-back guarantee for the annual plan only. However, if you aren’t satisfied with the Memrise cost, you have the right to cancel any subscription within 14 days from the date of the purchase.
Thanks to the vast range of courses, Memrise isn’t a rare topic on the web. Users often choose this app over competitors because they love the source-target language ratio as it prompts them to speak and write more in the target language.
Community-generated courses draw a lot of people to Memrise. If they can’t find everything in the official courses, they turn to the user-generated ones. Either way, the program meets their needs.
Based on our findings and the latest Memrise reviews, the Learn with Locals feature is a great addition that not many pieces of language learning software have. Combined with the right amount of repetition, they successfully teach people how to use those phrases in context.
Pros and Cons
- You can learn up to 22 languages
- Available free courses without a subscription
- Audio-visual flashcards created by native speakers
- Learning words and completing tests resemble a game due to the gamified interface
- Phrasebooks for 12 Memrise languages instruct you how to use the language in everyday conversations
- A spaced repetition system for better and faster memorization
- The Lifetime plan gives access to all language courses for 100 years
- Courses and features vary depending on the language pair
- Certain app features, such as Difficult Words exercises, are available to Pro users only
- Any user can create courses on Memrise, which doesn’t guarantee quality
Memrise Review - The Final Verdict
Memrise is all about fun language learning. Its gamified interface removes the stress that comes with learning. The logical but straightforward lesson flow takes you from the basic stuff to more advanced expressions.
If you decide to give it a shot, you’ll have a chance to connect with your fellow learners from all over the world and exchange knowledge with them at fair prices. A lot of people turn to online learning platforms when learning a language. If it turns out that Memrise isn’t your cup of tea, there’s no need to give up on online education.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Is Memrise free?
Memrise lets you register as a new user without choosing a plan. You have three ways of signing up:
- register with Google
- register with Facebook
- register with email
These options grant you free access to early learning content. If you decide to advance your learning at some point, you’ll need a subscription. Memrise offers monthly, annual, and lifetime plans. By subscribing to any of them, you unlock all the language courses and exclusive Pro features such as Pronunciation mode or Speed review.
Can Memrise make you fluent?
Foreign language fluency demands high proficiency levels. Memrise teaches you how to use phrases in conversations. But these aren’t just any phrases; idioms, fixed expressions, and topic-related sentences should help you improve your fluency to sound like a native.
Short videos demonstrate how native speakers answer specific questions, including facial expressions and gestures. However, fluency is expected much later at higher proficiency levels. So, beginners should be patient, practice regularly, and gradually work on their fluency.
Is Memrise any good?
Let’s recap to make things more transparent. Self-paced courses don’t interfere with your daily routine. The competitive prices ensure Memrise’s spot among the most affordable language learning apps. You can enroll in the courses regardless of your proficiency level.
Beginners can start with the fundamentals, whereas more experienced users can find more complex material for studying. The content satisfies the needs for both formal and informal language. Therefore, we can say that Memrise has something for everyone.
How much is Memrise Pro?
As we’ve already stated, you can choose a monthly, annual, or lifetime Memrise Pro plan. The lifetime subscription will cost you $139.99, and it’s a one-time payment. The monthly plan costs $8.99, while the annual plan costs $7.50 per month.
Additionally, you can get a refund within 14 days from the date of your purchase for every Pro plan except for the monthly subscription, according to information gathered for this Memrise review.