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Why is Pimsleur such crap?

  Tags: Usefulness | Pimsleur
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62 messages over 8 pages: 1 2 3 4 5 68 Next >>
hobbitofny
Senior Member
United States
Joined 5969 days ago

280 posts - 408 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: Russian

 
 Message 49 of 62
05 July 2010 at 11:20am | IP Logged 
socks wrote:
jplain wrote:

Maybe you're taking it a little too seriously. I consider it comic relief. The
sentences and vocabulary are useful, even if I'd never use them in the combinations and
situations presented in the lessons.    


Well, I thought this thread was for criticizing Pimsleur. :p
I do mind it because it irritates me, but not so much that I wouldn't use it. It's one of
my main study materials right now.


After arriving in Moscow, getting a cab and checking into hotel, I needed to eat. The drinking was pushed at me. I drink very little. However, if visiting Russia, you need to know the words beer, wine, vodka and so on. If for no other reason then to tell the waiter or host you do not want them. Not in Pimsleur but also needed are words for smoking. To many times on evening walks, men were asking for a light. Neither I nor my wife smoke.

The words are need for culture reasons. The exchanges on Pimsleur are not realistic, but the words and phrases are needed.


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joebelt
Diglot
Groupie
United States
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51 posts - 68 votes 
Speaks: English*, French

 
 Message 50 of 62
08 July 2010 at 1:38pm | IP Logged 
Euphorion wrote:
I really dont believe anyone can learn even a beginners level of a language from that. To me it is only a loss of time and I doubt it can teach you any vocabulary (speak nothing of grammar). All you can lear from Pimsleurs is a couple of phrases just like the parrot Ive seen the other day :) But Im not sure if you would understand anything beyond.

I only used it a couple of times to check the pronounciation and the melody of a language. But thats all and thats too little.



I think you A) missed the whole point of the method and B) dismissed it too early to be able to appreciate its strengths. I personally like Pimsleur the most when it comes to starting my studies. Without any memorization you get a deductive understanding of the language's grammar. You learn to construct phrases on your own. And last, but not least, your ear is trained to be in tune with native speakers. My pronunciation has never been better after doing a Pimsleur course. To me, for the amount of time and the price (check their prices on the iTunes Store), I haven't found anything better. Not even close.
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budonoseito
Pro Member
United States
budobeyondtechnRegistered users can see my Skype Name
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261 posts - 344 votes 
Studies: French, Japanese
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 Message 51 of 62
08 July 2010 at 2:07pm | IP Logged 
To me, it is one of many tools. Is it the swiss army knife of language learning? No, it
has a narrow focus of listening and speaking the basics. But, gradually increasing
listening comprehension is a key feature. For some, it is to slow.

My library has several courses so at no cost to me, I can listen about 2 hours a day
during my commute. That gives me a lot of exposure. Then at home I can practice reading
and grammar.
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zekecoma
Senior Member
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561 posts - 655 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: German, Spanish

 
 Message 52 of 62
17 July 2010 at 7:39am | IP Logged 
Pimsleur is great, just wish it was a little more fun. It is a little slow, and half the
times you cannot be really sure what they are saying. Also, no transcripts. Though I did
find the transcripts for some languages.
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Elexi
Senior Member
United Kingdom
Joined 5301 days ago

938 posts - 1839 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: French, German, Latin

 
 Message 53 of 62
17 July 2010 at 11:28am | IP Logged 
I have done Pimsleur French I-III+, Dutch I, Italian I-II and Spanish I-III and am doing the German series (mostly via my local library). My view is that Pimsleur's marketeers, like so many other language course marketing, claim too much for the course and charge too much for it. However, I find Pimsleur useful as a basic revision and drill programme - I use it when I have a grasp of the basics of a language and want practice and to internalise it. Unlike most people here, I find doing Michel Thomas first more useful because with MT you get a rapid introduction to the grammatical structure of a language (I don't really care about accent formation in the first few hours of learning a language as I do Assimil and Linguaphone later on). Maybe I am old fashioned but I need grammatical bearings for a language before I can start speaking it.


Edited by Elexi on 17 July 2010 at 11:29am

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michaelmichael
Senior Member
Canada
Joined 4993 days ago

167 posts - 202 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: French

 
 Message 54 of 62
19 July 2010 at 7:21pm | IP Logged 
I'm at lesson 18 of unit 1 for french, and i have only 1 complaint. ORANGINA ???? I know people complain about beer and wine, but at least that's a category of drinks. I just looked up Oragina, and i feel it's not a word that should be in the program ><.

i agree with Elexi, it's easier to assimilate the material if you have some grammar background. i've only completed the beginners MT though, starting advance either today or tomorrow.

Edited by michaelmichael on 19 July 2010 at 7:22pm

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hobbitofny
Senior Member
United States
Joined 5969 days ago

280 posts - 408 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: Russian

 
 Message 55 of 62
19 July 2010 at 9:45pm | IP Logged 
I thought Orangina is an orange soda drink. What drink would you prefer they use?
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michaelmichael
Senior Member
Canada
Joined 4993 days ago

167 posts - 202 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: French

 
 Message 56 of 62
20 July 2010 at 12:15am | IP Logged 
hobbitofny wrote:
I thought Orangina is an orange soda drink. What drink would you prefer they use?


A generic category, like wine and/beer. milk, juice, etc...

Something specific like a product, pepsi, coke, Orangina, is kind of stupid in my opinion. Why not du jus d'orange. i would learn something from that. Maybe i would anticipated that apple juice would be du jus de pomme. Who knows what i might be able to infer from this. maybe i will see du vin, de la bière and come to the conclusion that some uncountable nouns require the partitive article. I could also infer that even though English forms right headed compounds when a noun modifies a noun, french does it from the left. orange juice, jus d'orange. hmm maybe sunglasses is les lunettes de soleil , but I'll never know because pimsleur chose Orangina over jus d'orange.

imagine instead of au restaurant they said Est-ce que vous allez à Mcdonalds. i guess what i'm saying is the less proper nouns, and the more common nouns, the better. Granted I've only done 18 lessons, so I'm certainly not an authority on language learning, but i feel like orangina shouldn't be one of the 500 words pimsleur covers.

just to be clear, i would recommend pimsleur, it is definitely one of the best.

I've never tried orangina though, I'm sure it's a good drink.


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