I have just finished trialing the Spanish Uncovered online Spanish course by Olly Richards. In this Spanish Uncovered review, you’ll find out all about the course, how I rate it, and what I liked/disliked most about it.
By the end of this article, you’ll be familiar with the key components of Spanish Uncovered, including:
👍 How successful the Storytelling method is at teaching a foreign language
👍 Whether or not this style of language learning is suitable for an absolute beginner
👍 How beneficial the course will be for anyone keen to learn grammar
I will also cover what Spanish Uncovered includes, how it differs from other online Spanish lessons, and whether the course offers a way to learn Spanish naturally (as it claims to do).
Our ratings for Spanish Uncovered
Value for Money
|4.5 out of 5.0 stars||4.0 out of 5.0 stars|
|Excellent resource for Spanish grammar and overall comprehension.||Good value for money with one-time payment.|
Ease of Use
|5.0 out of 5.0 stars||4.5 out of 5.0 stars|
|Modern dashboard with access to learning material.||Not limited to most popular European languages.|
|👍 Proven, Effective Method|
👍 Free Trial Available
👍 Long-term Study Choice
|👎 Not Cheap|
|Spanish Uncovered is unique in the online language learning market. Its focus on grammar, new vocabulary and structure makes it a well-rounded option which leads to inevitable language progression.|
How I did this Spanish Uncovered Review
In order to make this Spanish Uncovered review as varied and informative as possible, language learner James (that’s me!) tested out Spanish Uncovered on his own, before sharing his findings. James does not usually refer to himself in the third person!
The scoring system provided on this site is based on comparisons between the product in question and other similar language learning apps on the market.
Five stars indicate excellence, whilst a lower star rating indicates room for improvement.
The comments and opinions that you read throughout this Spanish Uncovered review are results of my findings during a 7-Day free trial with access to Spanish Uncovered.
James is a fluent Spanish speaker already, so knows which positive features or red flags to look out for in foreign language courses.
The factors listed in the review table above are measured in the following ways:
Effectiveness – This is measured by the progress that I was able to make during the time I had access to this beginner course, and the projected progress one would be able to make when language learning over a prolonged period.
Value for money – I compare the Spanish Uncovered cost with other beginner courses.
Ease of use – As language learners, user experience plays a large part in whether we keep coming back, resulting in progress. A poor user experience usually leads to a lack of progress.
Languages Available – Offering multiple languages by no means makes an app or language platform better. However, it usually means they’re more popular and capture a wider audience, investing more heavily in the factors above.
Spanish Uncovered Review: What is Spanish Uncovered?
Spanish Uncovered is a language course that offers a unique, independent approach to learning the Spanish language. It is part of the ‘Uncovered’ series which offers you the chance to learn a new language through an entire story.
Comprising 20 modules, Spanish Uncovered claims to take you to an upper-intermediate level of Spanish within 100-150 hours of study time.
The Spanish story, El Hombre del Sombrero, contains an easy narrative with basic grammar and common Spanish vocabulary words.
This course, unlike many alternative language learning courses, provides you with material and common Spanish phrases that you’ll actually use in your everyday life.
Each chapter ends with several questions about what happened during that section so that you can check your understanding.
Spanish Uncovered is best for those in the early stages of language learning or those with limited knowledge of Spanish.
What’s Included in the Spanish Uncovered course?
Spanish Uncovered is a comprehensive course that takes you from beginner to upper-intermediate level Spanish.
The following are some of the key features included:
👍 20 modules, each with a video lesson and accompanying PDF transcript
👍 A lively and interesting story, El Hombre del Sombrero, to keep you engaged
👍 Spanish words and grammar points introduced in context with example phrases
In addition, the course provides:
👍 A grammar lesson with explanations with examples
👍 Exercises to practice your new Spanish skills
👍 A video dictionary
Spanish Uncovered: Course Overview
This course contains 20 complete chapters, each of which has a similar structure to the other.
Throughout the course, you’ll be learning Spanish grammar, vocabulary, and culture all in the context of a story.
The story is about an American man who visits Spain for the first time and gets caught up in a mysterious adventure.
You can expect the following inclusions from Spanish Uncovered:
👍 20 chapters
👍 PDF with exercises, vocabulary, and grammar explanations
👍 Vocabulary and grammar videos with Olly (the course creator)
👍 Reading and listening activities
👍 Pronunciation lessons and pronunciation training videos
👍 Learning tips from Olly
What you can learn in each of the 20 modules
Below, you’ll see how this online course is structured. The fact that it covers multiple parts of the language learning process is one of the reasons I rate it highly.
Below, you will see what you can expect from each Spanish lesson of Uncovered.
A short description of the topic, as well as what you’ll learn in the chapter and why it is important to do so.
2. Reading and Listening
In each lesson, you’ll go through the next part of the story “The Man with the hat”, reading and listening only to the Spanish version.
This form of immersion is a key feature in this language course and a great way to listen to proper Spanish pronunciation.
Remember, both Latin American Spanish and Spanish versions are available so that you can choose the one that is most appropriate for your language learning.
In this lesson, you will:
👍 Learn some of the new words you learned in the short story.
👍 Cover key Spanish vocabulary.
This is a fantastic area to check if you’re having difficulty comprehending a word or phrase.
4. Cognates and Translation
In this session, you are able to view the English translation. Olly demonstrates how to utilize cognates in a video lesson, showing you the most useful cognates from the chapter you just read in Olly’s short story.
Spanish shares a significant number of terms with English, so learning extra words in each chapter and improving your vocabulary is very beneficial.
Spanish, like the German language, has a lot of grammar that might be difficult for linguistic novices, like pretty much all foreign languages.
If you’ve studied French, Italian or Portuguese already then Spanish grammar will no doubt be easier for you. Even so, there will be certain aspects that are tricky to learn.
Focuses on key Spanish grammar topics in each module.
Frequently references the text and explains why the grammar works the way that it does.
In this lesson, vocal coach Angela appears through video lessons to help you to focus on Spanish pronunciation and ensure you sound more like a native Spanish speaker.
Uncovered is a self-study Spanish course, so there’s no need to interact with a Spanish speaker one-on-one in tutor-style format.
Whilst this may seem negative, the course compensates for this by featuring regular ‘Speaking’ lessons.
In these lessons, you go through a text and are encouraged to read aloud and record yourself. A speaking partner will then provide feedback on your pronunciation.
8. Final Review Quiz
Finally, each chapter has a final review quiz to see how much you’ve absorbed the lessons’ material and individual words/Spanish vocabulary.
There are also quizzes at various stages of the lesson to ensure that you have a firm grasp on what’s going on in the narrative.
If at any point, you’re having difficulties keeping up with the tale, it’s time to go back and review that course module once more.
Spanish Uncovered Review: Key Features
In addition to the features mentioned above, one of the best things about Spanish Uncovered is that all the resources (recordings, PDFs) are in both Latin American Spanish and Castilian Spanish.
So, you just need to choose which of the two types of Spanish you want to learn. This is pretty useful since most courses just offer one type of Spanish.
If you’re a complete beginner and unsure about which accent/dialect to follow when learning Spanish, we’d suggest just selecting at random. Focus on that later. Phase one should be to focus on Spanish grammar and vocabulary.
Below is an overview of the topics that you’ll come across in Spanish Uncovered.
Express interests in Spanish
You’ll learn to express interests and understand others when they do the same. While doing this, you become familiar with key elements of Spanish grammar.
Pronouns (I, you, he/she/it, we, you plural, they) are introduced in Spanish Uncovered, and you will learn how to use them correctly. This is a very important part of learning the language since they are used extensively in the Spanish language.
Articles and nouns
You’ll learn how to use articles depending on whether nouns are masculine or feminine. Again, this is a critical part of learning Spanish.
The Verb Ser
In Spanish, there are two forms of the verb ‘to be.’ Ser is one of these verbs. In Spanish Uncovered, you learn how to conjugate this verb.
Tener vs Haber
These are two forms of the verb ‘to have.’ But they are not interchangeable and learning them is important once you progress beyond complete beginner level when you learn Spanish grammar.
Different past tenses, including:
These are three of the main past tenses in Spanish.
Spanish Uncovered provides a great platform from which to familiarize yourself with each of these tenses and when/how it is used.
The conditional tense
This is one of the future tenses in Spanish and a key part of the future tense learning process.
Por vs Para
There are two ways to say ‘for’ in Spanish – por and para. Spanish Uncovered covers this topic, which is often really difficult for English speakers.
Other topics included in the course
Talking about the weather
Introducing yourself in Spanish
How to say you like something
You’ll also cover key grammar topics in the grammar section including:
Adverbs and adjectives
Using the Imperative
Spanish Uncovered Review: Cost, Price and Guarantee
Spanish Uncovered costs $297 and is backed by an unconditional 30-day guarantee and a full 7-day trial.
You can try it free for seven days and if it is not your liking then it doesn’t require monetary payment.
Nevertheless, even when you decide to enroll, you still get an opportunity to try it for 30 days.
If the fee is too much for you, then you can opt for 3 monthly installments at no extra cost.
Is Spanish Uncovered free?
Based on the fact that you receive a 7-day trial with no request for payment, Spanish Uncovered is free temporarily.
If you like the course and find that the storytelling method is working for you, then payment is required.
So, the entire course is not free, but Olly is fair in that he lets you try the course without paying anything initially.
Spanish Uncovered Review: What I like most
There are several aspects I like a lot about Spanish Uncovered. I have summarized these benefits below.
👍 It’s one of the few Spanish language courses that take a comprehensive and well-rounded approach to language learning.
👍 It’s not just a grammar book with some listening exercises thrown in or a vocabulary builder course.
👍 It covers all areas of the language so that you can feel confident when using Spanish in different contexts and situations.
👍 The way the story is told makes it easy to stay focused and motivated while learning Spanish.
👍 It isn’t overwhelming with vocabulary lists or technical details. Instead, it focuses on the key terms and phrases that you’ll need.
👍 The course also has a lot of detail about pronunciation so that you can sound more like a native speaker when speaking Spanish.
Spanish Uncovered Review: What I disliked
As with any language course, there is room for improvement. I have summarized what I believe these areas are below.
👎 The quiz at the end of each lesson requires a lot of work. In addition, there are around 30 questions for every module.
👎 Some learners may find it difficult to follow conversations when there is no visual accompaniment.
As a side note, we’d love to see more focus on speaking practice through additional video lessons to help people actually speak Spanish. Olly could introduce a native Spanish teacher to the course.
In addition to the quotes in the image above, below you’ll find some real comments published by Olly Richards about Spanish Uncovered users and what they thought about this online course.
“Olly is not just delivering great materials — he is a real person who can help with the learning of the language.” Austin USA
“The Spanish courses changed my whole life in two months and in just four months it was gaining a lot of vocabulary. Thanks, Olly Richards!” Cynthia Aguirre USA.
“I think this is one of the best Spanish courses I’ve ever used. It’s very easy to follow and most importantly, it works.” Bianca, USA.
“My mother tongue is English but I have studied French for seven years at school. When my children were born they spoke Spanish so now my wife and I want to learn too. The course is very well structured.” José, Spain.
“I’m finding the program really helpful. I like that there are a variety of ways to learn and that it’s not all grammar-based.” Leslie, USA.
“Olly Richards is brilliant! This online Spanish course has been so helpful, easy to follow, and fun!” Sarah, UK.
What is ‘I Will Teach You A Language?’ And Who is Olly Richards?
I Will Teach You a Language is a language learning brand created by Olly Richards, who is one of the creators of the Storylearning series.
Olly is an expert at learning languages and a speaker of eight languages. He learns languages through his own method, relating to cognitive psychology, and human communication.
The Storylearning Series is a set of interactive language courses which are designed for new language learners who are interested in completing a course without having to spend hours upon hours studying boring grammar rules.
The main goal of the course is to get students engaged in immersive story-telling, which makes learning Spanish fun and engaging. The ultimate goal is to understand Spanish grammar and (eventually) reach a fluent Spanish level.
Spanish Uncovered is part of this series which includes other courses like French Uncovered, Russian Uncovered, German Uncovered, Portuguese Uncovered, Italian Uncovered, and many more courses.
What is the Story Learning method?
The Story Learning method uses stories to teach Spanish grammar and vocabulary, following the latest research from neuroscience and cognitive psychology.
According to the website, the method is based on two principles: firstly, stories are the best way to learn a language, and secondly, learning grammar and vocabulary in context is more effective than learning them in isolation.
The method uses stories to help students learn Spanish in a natural and fun way. The focus is on communication rather than grammar rules, which makes the learning process less daunting for many students.
What is Olly Richards’ approach to language learning?
Olly Richards has developed a seriously high following on Youtube.
Below, you will find a video (in his native language) about his experience learning this target language. He discusses how he has developed speaking skills and overall language learning ability through storytelling.
Spanish Uncovered Alternatives
In honesty, there are not many comprehensive beginner-friendly courses for learning Spanish available in this style.
This style of study may be suited to those who enjoy a literacy and grammar-heavy approach (it’s really detailed with its explanations), but it might not be for you if that’s not your thing.
Below, I have listed some popular alternatives for anybody who wants to learn Spanish in an alternative way.
Rocket Spanish is an online Spanish course that is similar to Spanish Uncovered. It has a focus on grammar, vocabulary, and pronunciation with regular speaking exercises.
One thing that I like about Rocket Spanish is that it includes culture lessons in each module.
Like Spanish Uncovered, Rocket Spanish requires a one-time payment but does offer all users a 7-Day free trial. See our Rocket Spanish review.
The focus of the course is on helping students to develop good pronunciation, and it does this by repeating phrases and words often.
This course is different from Spanish Uncovered because there is little focus on reading and more focus on listening.
Unlike Spanish Uncovered and Rocket Spanish, Pimsleur provides a subscription-based model which you can cancel at any time.
You can also make use of a 7-Day free trial. See our Pimsleur Spanish review.
Glossika Spanish is a different kind of Spanish course that does not follow a story or use any grammar lessons. Instead, Glossika helps you to learn through lots of repetition, just like the Pimsleur audio course above.
I like Glossika for those who want to focus on their Spanish pronunciation as it provides audio recordings of a native speaker.
Glossika’s payment structure is also different from Spanish Uncovered and Rocket Spanish. It offers a subscription model which you can cancel at any time, or purchase modules à la carte.
Does Spanish Uncovered work?
Spanish Uncovered will definitely teach you the Spanish language if you respond well to this style of language learning.
As mentioned, it is best suited to people who like literacy and a grammar-heavy approach. The course is extremely thorough with its explanations. However, others will prefer aural resources.
Overall, the volume of contents available makes Spanish Uncovered good value for money if you use it properly. It is beneficial long-term that there are no recurring charges.
Do you need any prior knowledge of the Spanish language?
No previous knowledge of Spanish is required in order to begin this course.
However, it’s important that you have some basic understanding of the Spanish language in order to get the best possible results.
How long does it take to complete this course?
This online course will typically take around five months for a student who spends an hour on their studies each day, but this is dependent upon how quickly you learn and whether you have any previous knowledge of Spanish or not.
Is there anyone that should not take this course?
If you’re looking for a course that is heavily focused on speaking and listening, Spanish Uncovered may not be the best fit.
Additionally, this course might not be suitable if you don’t enjoy detailed explanations and prefer learning with more visuals.
My final Thoughts on Spanish Uncovered
We’ve covered a lot in this post and discussed the key features of Spanish Uncovered, including benefits and areas for improvement.
Let’s recap below on the main points.
Spanish Uncovered is a course that teaches Spanish in an immersion environment. It works well if you respond well to a literacy-heavy approach.
The course content consists of dialogue transcripts, audio, grammar explanations, and exercises.
There are no recurring charges with this product because you pay for it once and have access to everything – forever!
One criticism is that the course does not focus on Spanish culture as much as it could.
Final thoughts: You’ll notice that this Spanish Uncovered review has been pretty positive. Overall, I think that Spanish Uncovered provides learners with good value for money. In addition, I recommend it to those who want to learn key Spanish grammar rules and vocabulary before practicing spoken Spanish.
If you are already familiar with grammar and looking to focus on speaking then this course may not be the right one for you. However, it will always be a great supplementary resource for language learners based on its self-study format.
James is the founder of travel-lingual.com, and this Spanish Uncovered Review. He is a tutor of English, Spanish and French. Furthermore, he has visited 35 countries and has tried dozens of language courses to date.
He has worked as a language teacher in France, Spain, Argentina, and Costa Rica. His love of languages led him to create this blog, to share best practices in language learning and inspire others to learn!