My name is Yue Jie, and I am a Singaporean Chinese. I am a filmmaker as well as a film critic. I went to Berlin, Germany in February 2015 for the Berlin International Film Festival 2015 as a student from film school, and it was there that I learnt Germany provides free higher education for all students in its public universities. The only catch was that its degree courses are conducted in German. Thus began my pursuit to learn German as a foreign language, and my research into language learning sites online.
It was through this research, and some recommendation from friends, that I chanced upon italki. Naturally, I was at first hesitant about the quality of learning a language through Skype. But I decided to give it a go and take a trial lesson. So my first learning experience wasn’t too bad. It gave me hope that learning is possible anywhere, even the learning of languages. As a student, I like the freedom of being able to choose the teachers whom you want to learn from. It’s unlike the traditional school system where a teacher is assigned to your class without a choice. So I love italki for the simplicity of choosing a suitable teacher and a comfortable date/time to have the lesson.
Before italki, I hardly used Skype to communicate with anyone. So italki made me fully utilise the service that Skype provides, and for video calling someone in another country. Thus, I’d say Skype is a wonderful tool for such a use.
To a friend or fellow student who considers learning through italki, I would say take a leap of faith and just go for it. Besides learning a language, the native speaker/teacher you’re talking to can also become your friend. And there you go, you know someone who speaks your target language!
Yue Jie has been a member of italki since May 2015