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Language learning series video reviews

  Tags: Linguaphone | Video
 Language Learning Forum : Lessons in Polyglottery Post Reply
64 messages over 8 pages: 1 24 5 6 7 8 Next >>
lloydkirk
Diglot
Senior Member
United StatesRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 4606 days ago

429 posts - 452 votes 
Speaks: English*, French
Studies: Russian

 
 Message 17 of 64
08 April 2008 at 6:58pm | IP Logged 
With the new Teach Yourself books, the quality seems to depend on the language. I dabbled in the Norwegian and Russian books, both of which are excellent. TY is definitely a valuable source, irreplaceable in the more obscure languages...
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Budz
Octoglot
Senior Member
Australia
languagepump.com
Joined 4566 days ago

118 posts - 171 votes 
Speaks: German*, English, Russian, Esperanto, Ukrainian, Mandarin, Cantonese, French
Studies: Italian, Spanish, Korean, Portuguese, Bulgarian, Persian, Hungarian, Kazakh, Swahili, Vietnamese, Polish

 
 Message 18 of 64
08 April 2008 at 11:59pm | IP Logged 
My first Assimil course has just arrived in the mail today. Besides the content the format of the book is also a pleasure to read and to hold.

I learnt French for 8 years but I'd still feel rather uncomfortable learning another language through French. But it would certainly improve one's French.

I'll probably translate all the French to English and use that as the key to the other language.

The French of the grammar explanations doesn't look too difficult. If you've just started to learn French... I can't understand why you wouldn't just use one of the Teach Yourself or Colloquial courses for the other languages...
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Kubelek
Tetraglot
Senior Member
Switzerland
chomikuj.pl/Kuba_wal
Joined 5045 days ago

415 posts - 528 votes 
Speaks: Polish*, EnglishC2, French, Spanish
Studies: German

 
 Message 19 of 64
09 April 2008 at 7:15am | IP Logged 
TheElvenLord:
upon completing only French with ease you won't be able to understand the grammar points in courses with French as a base language. The idiomatic expressions may give you problems as well. Perhaps if you followed it up with some FSI or a reference book to reinforce the grammar, or Using French it would be much easier, as there's a big leap in terms of the content and difficulty level between these two series.

Courses are customized for speakers of X language. Easy concepts from the perspective of its native speakers will not have ample explainations. Also the idiomatic expressions which have similar counterparts in the base language will not be explained.

I'm speaking from my experience. Others may have had easier time switching to French as a language of instruction. I may add that I achieved basic fluency in French and now I can follow 'with ease' series.. quite easily. Using X series is still over my head though, for very similar reasons to the ones I just outlined.
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Budz
Octoglot
Senior Member
Australia
languagepump.com
Joined 4566 days ago

118 posts - 171 votes 
Speaks: German*, English, Russian, Esperanto, Ukrainian, Mandarin, Cantonese, French
Studies: Italian, Spanish, Korean, Portuguese, Bulgarian, Persian, Hungarian, Kazakh, Swahili, Vietnamese, Polish

 
 Message 20 of 64
09 April 2008 at 10:34am | IP Logged 
Yes, the poster is right. Languages are already hard enough to learn... it's just so hard using another language as an intermediate language that you just aren't that familiar with. It would be soooooooooo frustrating. And you'd certainly miss important content.

Why not use Teach Yourself or Colloquial series books? They are both pretty good... except for the fact that the more recent stuff is not as structured grammatically. In any case, if you're after a particular language, drop me a personal message. I have an online method that is probably available in whatever language you're interested in. It's not available to the general public as yet, but might be some time in the future. In the meantime we're happy to have some beta testers. We're committed language learners ourselves so we use our method ourselves.

Anyhow, no matter what you end up doing, changing to a course that is based on a language you don't know that well sounds really radical...

Robert
1 person has voted this message useful



vista
Tetraglot
Groupie
United States
Joined 4588 days ago

38 posts - 40 votes
Speaks: English*, Portuguese, Spanish, French
Studies: Modern Hebrew, Arabic (Written), Mandarin, Basque

 
 Message 21 of 64
13 April 2008 at 9:10pm | IP Logged 
You are very right Professor. I also think Routledge Colloquial books are some of the best ones out there; but in absolute terms, they are definitely suboptimal. Even some of the 1990's manuals that I have, like Basque for instance, are in what you call "phrasebook" format. It's very sad how the quality has deteriorated over the years.
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Budz
Octoglot
Senior Member
Australia
languagepump.com
Joined 4566 days ago

118 posts - 171 votes 
Speaks: German*, English, Russian, Esperanto, Ukrainian, Mandarin, Cantonese, French
Studies: Italian, Spanish, Korean, Portuguese, Bulgarian, Persian, Hungarian, Kazakh, Swahili, Vietnamese, Polish

 
 Message 22 of 64
13 April 2008 at 9:45pm | IP Logged 
Interesting to see the old Romanian one. Nice if all the modern ones were along that line... Actually I think I might have an old Hungarian lying around somewhere but for some reason it never occurred to me that they were a continuation of the same series.

One thing about the Colloquial series... they look great when you leaf through them... but when you try to use them you find that stuff is exlained all over the place so you have to make your own tables by collating what they have presented in a rambling fashion.

Then again, the old Teach Yourself Series could easily go an entire book without teaching you the word for 'hello'...
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Makrasiroutioun
Quadrilingual Heptaglot
Senior Member
Canada
infowars.com
Joined 4299 days ago

210 posts - 236 votes 
Speaks: French*, English*, Armenian*, Romanian*, Latin, German, Italian
Studies: Dutch, Swedish, Turkish, Japanese, Russian, Arabic (Written)

 
 Message 23 of 64
27 April 2008 at 11:03pm | IP Logged 
The sheer exhaustiveness and repetitiousness of these FSI courses are their undoing, in my opinion. But for the military-style learner, or the boredom-immune, FSI courses are simply dwarf anything else on the market.
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Topsiderunner
Diglot
Senior Member
United States
Joined 5111 days ago

215 posts - 218 votes 
Speaks: English*, French
Studies: Italian, Arabic (Written)

 
 Message 24 of 64
01 May 2008 at 3:42pm | IP Logged 
First of all thank for all of the reviews so far, and I look forward to hearing more. I was wondering if you had thought about reviewing the old Berlitz Self-Teacher and Step-by-Step series, which while somewhat basic, provide great introductions to the major European languages. And as I believe you have mentioned before, they offer a good base of comparison because of often identical content between the various language books.

Joshua


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