New Ways to Learn a Language

We often hear customers ask: “What kind of language learning resources does the Library have?” Mango Languages has been our standard answer over the years, but now we have more to offer!

Our awesome UpSkill resources open the door to thousands of online courses on language learning. Even better, you can even get certificates for free through many of those courses.

Pro Tip: For the three resources I recommend in this blog, you can find language courses by running a simple search in each platform using terms like: 

  • "language learning"
  • "languages"
  • or the specific language you are interested in, for example "Spanish"


Coursera offers hundreds of language learning courses from top universities and industry leaders.

If you have signed up for the library’s Coursera account, you can now earn a Course or Specialization Certificate completely free and at your own pace.

Select a course like First Step Korean, Learning Chinese and Russian Language for Beginners, and start to learn the language today.

Pro Tip: Before you enroll in a class in Coursera, make sure the California State Library icon is alongside the Coursera logo on the Coursera page. This logo indicates you are using the library’s Coursera account and you won’t get charged for enrollment.


GetSetup also has some language courses exclusively for Seniors, like Beginner French, Learn Conversational Mandarin, Learn Spanish etc..

If you are a senior, you might find it more comfortable to learn a language with GetSetup where all the courses are designed for and by older adults.