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FSI "Programmatic Spanish" vs "Basic"

  Tags: Platiquemos | FSI | Spanish
 Language Learning Forum : Language Programs, Books & Tapes Post Reply
68 messages over 9 pages: << Previous 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 ... 8 9
Senior Member
United States
Joined 5212 days ago

1265 posts - 2113 votes 
Speaks: English*, Spanish
Studies: French

 Message 65 of 68
13 December 2014 at 10:35pm | IP Logged 
I'd recommend Basic. It is a more comprehensive course and it is very well put together. There are definitely differences between FSI/Barron's and Platiquemos. I prefer FSI/Barrons. Others on this site prefer Platiquemos. The big difference I see is that Platiquemos cuts out some of the drills. I personally like the audio of FSI better too. You will see some older posts on this site that talk about the poor audio quality of FSI, but those were before the higher quality ones were put on the free website. Platiquemos has nice images/photos and historical/cultural information. You really cannot go wrong with either one.   
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Senior Member
United States
Joined 6194 days ago

370 posts - 783 votes 
Speaks: English*

 Message 66 of 68
16 December 2014 at 7:13pm | IP Logged 
liam.pike1 wrote:
I have a friend who wants to learn Spanish, and I am wondering as to which course I
should recommend.

Is your friend new to language learning (besides the usual required school courses that nobody likes)?

If he is, the FSI Programmatic Spanish may be the best place to start. It's very good for pronunciation, and
each chapter is step by step in bite-sized portions.

Just let him know not to be turned off by the ridiculously easy first few units, as it does start building up
quickly after that.

If he doesn't like it, he can always switch to the Basic course and see if he likes that better. I'm pretty sure
that doing *both* courses is not a bad idea, since they are both good, and I think Basic would be a good
followup to Programmatic, even if he only does all of Programmatic 1 and wants a change of pace instead of
continuing with Programmatic 2.

Since they're both free and easily accessible online, there's nothing lost if he just samples both to see if one
is more to his liking

Edited by TerryW on 16 December 2014 at 7:30pm

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Joined 3591 days ago

84 posts - 122 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: Spanish, Esperanto, French

 Message 67 of 68
18 December 2014 at 3:17pm | IP Logged 

Yes, my friend is new to language learning. He did, however, have to do a year of Spanish a few years ago at school; the teacher was simply a science teacher who happened to have a Cuban wife! But otherwise, yes: he is new to language learning. He is obsessed with Real Madrid, and he listens to lots of Spanish-language music, so he has the connection to the language and culture of Spain nevertheless.

So, are you saying that the Programmatic Course is a little 'easier-paced' than the Basic Course, and hence more well-suited to beginners of the language? And that the Basic Course is perhaps a little bit more rigorous?

When I go back to Spanish (probably around the end of next year) I will probably do both courses more or less simultaneously (well, I'll at least give it a go). My only Spanish was Duolingo for 4 months; I completed the course, but the more complex aspects of the grammar were not taught all that well. Nevertheless, as my first experience at learning a language (other than a few hellish years learning zero Mandarin at school) it was absolutely brilliant. So I recommended this to my friend as well.

I also contacted the Administrator as to why he gives links to Baron's (Basic Course) when he says in the description that he did the Programmatic Course (as indicated by the reference to 'papa' and papá). I was trying to work out which course to recommend my friend (based on what the Admin experienced and recommended) and was rather confused at first. I know he's not active on this site anymore (not for quite a few months anyway) but hopefully I'll get an answer some day. If I do then I'll let people know on this thread. In a couple of years I may even let people know of how my own experiences with the Basic and Programmatic Courses went!
1 person has voted this message useful

Joined 5347 days ago

23 posts - 47 votes
Speaks: French*, Modern Hebrew, English, Japanese
Studies: Korean, Finnish, Yiddish, Spanish, Russian, Esperanto

 Message 68 of 68
02 January 2016 at 12:34am | IP Logged 
Hi everyone,

I have just discovered this thread.

So in case you haven't seen it on another FSI thread on this site,
you are invited to have a look at my new edition of FSI Spanish Basic Course.

It is made for iPad and Mac
(and works also on iPhone and iPod touch if you don't mind a smaller screen).

I have received extremely positive reviews from users, including on this site.

You can find more details here:

Edited by ilmari on 02 January 2016 at 12:36am

1 person has voted this message useful

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