IWTYAL 203: Where to find audio with transcripts

Myles asks: “Where can I find audio with transcripts?”

Episode Summary:

  • Why listening is important, and why transcripts matter
  • Considerations for beginners, intermediate and advanced
  • The trouble finding good material

Resources that are unhelpful:

  • YouTube videos
  • Movies
  • Radio
  • Podcasts

Resources I consider helpful:

  • Graded readers with audiobooks (with caveats)
  • FluentU, Easy Languages, etc (with caveats)
  • Persist with native speaker resources that really interest you
  • Podcasts for language learners with transcripts (mostly for English learners)
  • Random language blogs and products
  • I have hired people to transcribe material I like in the past

Resources Mentioned In Today’s Episode:

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  • dandiprat

    I work a lot with videos for Vietnamese such as Easy Languages, but yeah it’s a pain when you don’t have the whole transcript there for you at once to look over carefully. You have to keep pausing it. Sometimes it goes through too quickly and you don’t have time to pause. Nevertheless, when it comes to free resources I try not to be too picky. Another resource that’s available in many languages (a freemium model) s the Innovative Language series. While I have some complaints about them, they do provide a transcript to premium learners which you can view in their app or their website.

    • Yes, I should have mentioned them. However, I get frustrated with their “lessons” – too short for proper listening practice.

  • Luke Truman

    Hey Olly, I am currently using Cantonese conversations and the Living Cantonese book for my core study time. I am going to Hong Kong in August and wondering if you had any book recommendations for while I’m there? I think I’m going to buy “wedding bells” and “a feng shui master”, do you have anything you would recommend? What you just described is really annoying especially when it comes to Cantonese when every time something does have a transcript/subtitles it’s in standard written Chinese -_-, 我哋要頂硬上㗎啦, 大家加油了!!!

    • Hey Luke. I bought a bunch of books last time I was in HK from Commercial Press. However, I never got round to using them, because I just use Cantonese Conversations now. With with CC and LC, I’d recommend just exhausting those first (in that order), before worrying about anything else.

  • Note from Olly – I should have mentioned LingQ in this podcast. An oversight on my part. It’s great, if they have a language you’re learning: http://iwillteachyoualanguage.com/lingq

    • Arvid Falk

      Indeed. I was just going to point that out – with disappointment. Good of you, to mention it at least in the comments. Because, if one thinks one needs to pretty much only listen and read or if one thinks, one has to pursue other activities as well, like speaking; either way LingQ is the go to only resource for audio and text.

      By the way, Benny’s video for Steve’s YouTube anniversary was a nice idea. It’s always good to rise above the little bickering over details or even methods, and just do a little something for a fellow language learner. Although I don’t understand Cantonese, I thought your part was very well executed!

      • Thanks Arvid, glad you liked the video. Benny did a great job. As I mentioned somewhere below, I haven’t used LingQ that much because they don’t offer languages I’ve been learning recently. I think that’s why it’s often not on my mind and I forget to mention it.

        • Arvid Falk

          Ah, of course. Yes it’s also not as strong on the Asian languages. If you continue with German in the future, though, you will probably find it very useful for that…