Despite modern communication methods, the art of Morse code remains a timeless and valuable skill. Fortunately, the Internet offers many accessible resources that can help anyone learn Morse code from the comfort of their own home. If you’re ready to begin mastering this skill, check out our recommendations for the best websites to learn Morse code.
Good to know: looking for other ways to communicate? Check out this Google Translate Guide to communicate easily in any language.
1. Best Overall: Morse Code World
Morse Code World is one of the best websites to learn Morse code online. It’s a user-friendly platform with every tool listed in clear blocks. The learning program is broken down into two parts: the International Morse and the American version. The International section features far more tools, such as a translator, training, decoders, timing, and more.
Click any tool to get started. I recommend using Translator or Instant Character Recognition under Training. With Translator, enter text or Morse code. Listen to how it sounds and check the translated output. Both audio and flashing light options are available.
With Instant Character Recognition, select your learning type (Alphabetical, CW Academy, Koch, LCWO, or LICW), choose the character(s) you want to hear, and use the controls near the bottom of the page to learn at your own pace. Take your time and explore all the tools available to master Morse code.
2. Best Step-by-Step Lessons: LCWO.net
LCWO is a simple-looking website that uses the Koch method to teach Morse code. Sign up for a free account to get started. Use “test” for both the username and password to try things out first. I like the free account to keep track of my lessons, statistics, and even compare my scores with others. It’s a nice way to gamify learning.
Get started with the Introduction section on the left side of the window. This introduces you to how lessons (currently 40 total) work. When you’re ready, proceed to the actual lessons. Press the play button (triangle) for each letter you want to hear. Then, listen to the test and enter the correct text. Proceed to the next lesson only when you feel ready.
Use the Settings cog under any letter or symbol to change the speed, spacing, volume, etc. I highly recommend slowing the speed down when you’re starting out. Click the Download icon under letters/symbols in lessons to download for offline listening. After you’ve completed all 40 lessons, try the Speed Practice sections, chat in the forum, or join/create a user group to learn together.
3. Best for Practicing Morse Code: The National Association for Amateur Radio
The National Association For Amateur Radio, or simply ARRL, features a ton of resources that help you learn Morse code. It includes a full library of MP3 files for 26 letters, 10 Arabic numerals, and punctuation marks. Access it without having to sign up anywhere. While premium memberships are available, this is only for those wanting to dive more into amateur radio and completely unnecessary for just learning Morse code.
Each file is played at a rate of 10 wpm (words per minute), an appropriate speed for beginners, and you can also download these files to be stored offline. Click the character you want to learn, and it opens in a new window. Or, right-click to save for offline learning.
The real gem is the Code Practice Files. These are updated regularly and offered in 5 to 40 WPM speeds. Try translating regularly updated MP3 files, and compare your answers to the provided text files. Take the time to learn more about the history of Morse code, how HAM radios work, and much more.
4. Best Visual Tool: Learn Morse With Google
Google offers a wide variety of experiments and even hidden games, if you know how to access them. The Morse code experiment is surprisingly simple, elegant, and effective. It’s completely free and uses word groups to help you learn quickly. Click Trainer to start the tool.
You can set it up to learn on your phone or through the website. For the site, you’ll use your dash and period keys to type in your answers. You’re presented with a single letter at a time in a word. Enter the code as you hear and see it. Every letter also features a word to help you remember it.
Overall, it’s one of the easiest tools to use for beginners. The repetitive practice helps. However, if you like to skip ahead or want to learn specific letters first, this isn’t the site for you. Continue practicing with other Google Morse code experiments and games for free.
5. Best for Learning Shorthand: MorseFree
MorseFree is a free course offered by Richard C. Fitch, a ham radio operator and Morse code instructor with over 60 years of experience. The course is perfect for beginners. Either follow the step-by-step lessons, or learn your own way by playing individual audio clips for every letter, number, and even shorthand.
Shorthand isn’t something most websites that teach Morse code offer. Click the bolded letters to hear the code. Of course, if you go through the lessons or the list of individual letters, you’ll likely already know the code itself. You just need to remember the shorthand for common words like “and,” “soon,” and “your.”
Review a lesson as much as you want, using paper and a pencil or any word processor app to record your answers. You don’t have to sign in. The site uses browser cookies to save your place, so if you clear your cookies, your progress is gone. That’s really the only downside.
If you want to have fun and practice what you’ve learned, try these free online games. If you’re using your phone to learn Morse code, learn how to type it in Gboard. Using Chrome as your browser for your Morse code lessons? Learn how to change Chrome’s color and theme to get rid of the usual bland look.
Image credit: Flickr. All screenshots by Crystal Crowder
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