How you learn a new language is typically a very individual thing. When choosing online Russian classes, it is important to consider how you prefer to learn in order to choose the best class for your learning style. Some classes may not offer much interaction with other students and be entirely self-study. Others might have meeting times to practice speaking and listening, and to participate in general conversation. A few more important considerations include such factors as cost, time commitment, the practice materials available, whether college credit is offered and how much access you have to an instructor.
Online learning can be a very solitary experience, far different from classroom learning in a group. For those who prefer a self-study type of environment, online Russian classes may be ideal. Those who want some interaction, however, may wish to look for classes that offer specific times for students and instructors to meet. These meetings can allow you to practice speaking and listening in Russian. They also offer an opportunity for you to ask the instructor questions and get feedback on your progress.
The cost of online Russian classes can vary from free with no instructor to college-level courses that charge tuition based on that university's cost per credit hour or other system. Many free online Russian classes are self-taught. This means that they are online for you to follow at your own pace. There may be no interaction or chances for feedback. College courses most likely will have some sort of meetings with other students and instructors built into the schedule, and may offer college credit upon completion of the course.
Online education that you pay for is also more likely to have a set schedule you must follow. How rigid the online learning program is will usually vary from place to place. If you are taking accredited online courses toward an online degree, there will probably be a time limit in which the class must be completed. Free or lower-cost classes may be more open-ended and fit into a tight schedule better.
Another very important consideration when choosing online Russian classes is what kind of materials are offered with the course. A book or website filled with words and phrases can be helpful, but materials that you can listen to are usually ideal for language learning. If you can hear the words spoken and practice them as you hear them, it will generally be easier to learn the language correctly.