Memrise – Language Learning Tool


Is a really cool app (and website) that is a prettier, better designed Anki. Call me a graphic whore, but I cannot stand how ugly Anki looks and reviews are. I cannot for the life of me like it, so when I discovered Memrise had done an app for tablet, back in December which was when I restarted my Japanese studies, I whooped and got on that shit.


I really, really love it’s design and UI a bunch, and bonus, they keep improving it and adding new things to app that I really like and appreciate!

Like ignore buttons, words we struggle with, points and streaks, target number of numbers.

I also like that it tests with audio, when it has (since this is user done, but I’ll get that in a bit).

I’m not into their rapid fire tests because it gives me stress because it’s time based, and I turn into a headless chicken under pressure.

I feel it’s really rewarding seeing each word be planted until finally it blooms. Visuals are really important to me and I find Memrise really hits it right.


So here’s the tricky part, Memrise courses are user made, specially on the languages like Japanese, and so there’s bad courses with romanji only for learning vocabulary, or even with the answers wrong. This is where an app with a focus on delivering things accurately could supplement Memrise. I feel, though, there’s really good courses in it. I’m doing the JLPT ones because it’s easier to learn in chunks of 1000 word than a vocabulary course I looked that was 6000.

I’m a bit of the frustrated and want it right now type, so things that take a long time start really messing with me. It’s a bit cheating, but it’s really knowing how I work.

I’d say to not do just one course in case you’re learning is wrong or not the best. I tried a bunch of courses, dropped them and then mix and matched because I wanted ones with good organisation but also with a focus more on kana/kanji at different times.


In December I knew maybe 100 kanji’s when I started Memrise, since then I did a couple kanji to English courses to N3, hated them because I didn’t feel I was learning, and hopped around until I found vocabulary ones. Vocabulary JLPT is where I’m learning the kanji as a word, including the hiragana besides them, instead of just English or readings. I don’t have patience for readings and I can learn the English with the reading until I get the kanji down.

I’m doing N4 now, because I did N5 two times. One in December and another in half January because I discovered one with better organisation and more content/was more throughout.

Memrise is an interesting beast, others like Babylon and Duolingo, don’t actually have many languages. Memrise has almost all the languages in the world available, and it’s helped because language learners and connoisseurs produce decks.

This might mean there’s some wrong things here and there but it’s quickly fixed and the community is supportive.

The only way Memrise could get better, besides what they’re already improving, was if they did have official decks by them that was correct and didn’t involve so much choice. Also a preview of the deck would be nice.

There’s a lot of content on it, that can be good and bad depending on the person.


If you don’t like Anki or don’t know what to use, I do recommend Memrise if having more than 50 courses or more on one language doesn’t daunt you.

I was on Twitter where we talked about Kanji Senpai because it had content Memrise didn’t. Like stroke order learning and doing, and that it provides the decks by a professor and is free (audio is buyable).

I haven’t played with it much because I don’t want to fracturate myself (and Memrise is prettier) but once I decide to redo JLPT to make sure I got it, I’ll try to do it through Kanji Senpai and review it here. Does that sound good?


I completely forgot to touch upon that Memrise isn’t just for language learning, and in fact has all this other stuff you can learn and memorize thanks to it! (⌒▽⌒)

I’ll abstain from rating it, since I don’t know what to gauge it on. Easiness? Prettiness? But I did give it a 4 stars on google store because I’m not a 5 stars giver and I see potential for it to deserve the 5 stars!

Happy learning everyone! ヽ(*´з`*)ノ


  1. Great review! I have been using this over anki and livemocha lately because it’s more thorough and honestly the badge system keeps me motivated. Considering it’s an average of 5000 hours before you master any skill I need as much motivation as possible!
    …and yeah, it’s purdy.


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