Victrola From United States of America, joined Apr 2008, 451 posts, RR: 1 Posted (4 years 3 months 1 week 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 6033 times:
Has anyone out there done a Rosetta Stone language courses? I recently did the Pimsleur Mandarin Chinese programs. I found the program to be excellent. However my only complaint is that even after you have completed Mandarin, 1, 2, and 3 you only end up with a vocabulary of 500 words or so. Is Rosetta Stone any better in this regard?
BWilliams From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 212 posts, RR: 0 Reply 1, posted (4 years 3 months 1 week 6 days 3 hours ago) and read 6017 times:
I'm using both for German (in between taking formal classes). They each have their strengths and weeknesses.
Pimsleur (as well as Michel Thomas) do a far better job of teaching you to speak the language functionally and understand what's being said. You certainly command the grammar when speaking much better than with RS. I absolutely love doing these two systems.
RS, on the other hand, does a much poorer job of teaching the grammar (at least in level 1 and the first half of level 2, which is as far as I've gotten). You do learn far more vocabulary, but it seems very disjointed, since (especially in the beginning), all of this vocabulary has no context, other then some very simple sentences (ie: they'll teach you the words for "boy and girl", then simply force you to continually repeat these words, eventually giving simple verbs like "run".) It becomes very nausiating after a while, since all you're learning are words, but never actually using them functionally. I really wouldn't recommend this for you, since you likely have a good command of the language, so will find RS incredibly tedious and boring.
While I've never used it, I've heard very good things about Assimil With Ease self-study course books. They do indeed have a Chinese system available, and they claim that their course will leave you with 2000-3000 words. I would say to look into this before going out and trying RS.
FatmirJusufi From Albania, joined Jan 2009, 2435 posts, RR: 7 Reply 2, posted (4 years 3 months 1 week 6 days 1 hour ago) and read 6001 times:
Both of these softwares are so helpful but Rosetta Stone seems to be much more attractive to learn a foreign language.
On the other hand Pimsleur Method is much more easy. Its ability to use as a mp3 helps you very much. Just stop listening music and start learning a language everywhere you go, in the train, bus, city and so on.
Personally I've just started learning some basic Swedish but only from Youtube and other free sites. I wish I could have one day complete Rosetta Stone Swedish levels.
Victrola From United States of America, joined Apr 2008, 451 posts, RR: 1 Reply 5, posted (4 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 5969 times:
What I liked about Pimsleur was that I could just pop the CD in to the car stereo and drive to work. What the hell, I have nothing else to do on the drive. I found that after listening to a lesson about 4 times I was able to advance to the next level.
My only complaint was that Pimsleur l,ll, and lll barely give you a rudimentary knowledge of the language. I was able to communcate when I was in Shanghai. However, I want to move to the next level.
The Rosetta Stone salesman I talked to said that full Mandarin program had about 5000 words of vocabulary. I'm a bit sceptical. I liked the format of the sample lessons. However I don't want to spend $400 if the bulk of it will be a repetition of what I already learned with Pimsleur.
Geekydude From China, joined Apr 2004, 398 posts, RR: 2 Reply 6, posted (4 years 3 months 1 week 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 5901 times:
Just out of curiosity, does either RS or Pimsleur teach one to write in Chinese? If it achieves that goal, it would certainly be awesome.
Just FYI, a highschool graduate in China should master around 3500 characters. And out of those characters, one can come up with much more words by combining the characters. At the conversational level, Chinese is not that hard to learn. But writing is certainly challenging. Good luck.
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