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Old 03-31-2011, 04:23 PM   #1
davholla
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Rosetta Stone and other software to learn languages


Has anyone used this or a competitor? If so which Language?
And more importantly how did it compare to audio based courses?
 
Old 03-31-2011, 05:19 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davholla View Post
Has anyone used this or a competitor? If so which Language?
Tried it for japanese, found it unsuitable. While you can learn words, and constructs, the major problem with japanese is kanji, and for that rosetta stone didn't look like a good tool, so I decided to get heisig's book instead.
I'm not sure if Rosetta's approach (learning as children do it) is "right" - while thinking in foreign language from the start is definitely a good idea (I had a great language-learning book built on this approach), adult brain have multiple powerful instruments at its disposal (trained logical thinking, imaginative memory, etc), and not using those seems like a waste. Rosetta may work better for other european languages(german/spanish/italian/french), however I'm not sure if it is worth its price. It definitely isn't a "silver bullet". Anyway, your experience may wary - there are multiple rosetta reviews, you could check and "criticism"/"reception" sections on wikipedia's page.

Last edited by SigTerm; 03-31-2011 at 05:28 PM.
 
Old 04-01-2011, 04:25 AM   #3
davholla
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Thanks for that. Good luck with learning Japanese - it is meant to be one of the hardest languages to learn.
 
Old 04-01-2011, 08:50 AM   #4
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For me it's been the only thing that has worked. Which is sad because it's not very good, it's pretty basic.

I'm sure there have to be better ways out there but I haven't found them... not for Spanish anyway.

The whole thing is crying out for a programming solution to the problem, such as:

- using AI to identify word meanings

- linking voice recognition, not just in a simple way like RS does (barking correct/incorrect) but really stearing the voice like a real teacher does

- immersing and new forms of input, like touch and feeling as well as sounds and images

- a programmer looking at the problem like a programmer or datamining expert would

- linking tech like voice recognition too all the related stuff... link that xbox controller to map body language for example; it's all uncoordinated, reapply it all to language learning

See, people thing it's just language but it's all related to what they're trying to do these days to understand people and society. So all the analysts trying to predict the stock market, it's language related, so it all links in.


RS definitely ain't worth the price (what a sad and tragic example of dinosaur licensing trying to fight the world market). I actually got what appears to be a boxed dodgy v3 Chinese copy here I'm trying to get rid of...
 
Old 04-01-2011, 09:27 AM   #5
davholla
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Actually I learnt Spanish via tape based courses and this
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Collins-Gem-...1664323&sr=8-3

Buy it, it can fit in your pocket and when you are waiting for a bus or something it you can use it.

But with Russian I am making a lot slower progress.
 
Old 04-01-2011, 10:58 AM   #6
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I have just started taking lessons in Spanish from a teacher. And I am soooooo slow in taking the grammer, pronounciations and all that I think no one in this world is ever going to make me learn it.
But thanks for all the links. Hope that will help me in my endeavor in some way.

---------- Post added 1st Apr 2011 at 20:28 ----------

I have just started taking lessons in Spanish from a teacher. And I am soooooo slow in taking the grammer, pronounciations and all that I think no one in this world is ever going to make me learn it.
But thanks for all the links. Hope that will help me in my endeavor in some way.
 
Old 06-19-2011, 01:21 PM   #7
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Try online services like livemocha and google for `learn languages online`

I didn't think I could learn a language til I got into Rosetta Stone. It obviously isn't worth the $1000, so I'm recommending it only if you don't have to pay somehow (stolen, copied, language school license, extortion etc)
 
Old 06-21-2011, 09:12 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jago25_98 View Post
Try online services like livemocha and google for `learn languages online`

I didn't think I could learn a language til I got into Rosetta Stone. It obviously isn't worth the $1000, so I'm recommending it only if you don't have to pay somehow (stolen, copied, language school license, extortion etc)
Or if your employer pays for it.

I don't think the "child method" works for adults. It probably works for children. The learning mode is different in early ages. Also, children don't have the expectations of adults. They can get by with knowing a lot less to begin with, so they are able to converse with a limited vocabulary and wrong pronunciation. We let them do that, and gradually correct them. It takes a few years.

A structured community could help. Unlike courses and books, this can let the learner focus on what interests them, and the questions they have. For example, I see words and phrases that I'm curious how to correctly pronounce them. I learn better if what I want answered gets answered, rather than what the teacher wants to answer gets answered. It would need to be at minimum an audio media augmented site, for those pronunciation issues. So when someone answers with some words or phrases, I can click on them and hear how they say it, and give them an audio reply to get their judgment and corrections.

I'm not going to pay $1000 for software that I need another OS to run on, nor am I going to sign up on some web site where I can't even browse around to see how it works. I could browser LQ before I signed up so I knew it was worth the cost of giving my info. But LiveMocha just doesn't show me anything to let me know how well it works.
 
Old 06-21-2011, 09:23 AM   #9
Skaperen
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Another way to get some input on other languages is to visit the various video sharing sites. The Google Video Search allows searching by language. It's not always accurate, but often it is. Go to Google Translate and translate some simple phrase into your language of interest. Then use that phrase in that language as your search key, with the language chosen for selection, too. That should narrow you down to a better choice of videos. For example, search for "nyheter" (news) while selecting for Norwegian or Swedish. You'll get lots of video snips of news broadcasts.
 
Old 06-21-2011, 09:44 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Skaperen View Post
I don't think the "child method" works for adults. It probably works for children. The learning mode is different in early ages. Also, children don't have the expectations of adults. They can get by with knowing a lot less to begin with, so they are able to converse with a limited vocabulary and wrong pronunciation. We let them do that, and gradually correct them. It takes a few years.
Agree 100%.

I took French in high school for a couple of years, and I went through the standard process of learning verb conjugations, verb tenses, proper sentence construction, etc. I was very happy with this method, for two reasons: it made me think about English in a way I really hadn't, deepening my understanding of that language, and it also showed me that once you know the nuts and bolts of how a language works, the rest is easy, it's just expanding your vocabulary.

So, you'd think learning Spanish after this would be the easiest thing in the world... unlike French, Spanish is sensibly phonetic. It's a Romantic language like French, so I already know how sentences get arranged, stuff like that. The basic words are similar to those in French, and the complicated words are pretty much the same as the ones in English, since English originally borrowed them from Latin. And if I had any questions or needed to get a judgement on pronunciation, I have a native speaker at my beck and call, because it's my wife's first language. Easy, right??

So I bought some software to help me learn it. The first of five CDs progressed pretty much the way I expected, introducing some nouns to expand vocabulary, and I moved through it quickly. Then came CD #2, where they decided to go full immersion method... and I stopped dead in my tracks. I needed verbs at that point. What are the normal conjugation rules? How can I tell one verb tense from another? What are the common irregular verbs, and what are their conjugations?

I am not a child. I know how language works. Give me the basic tools, and I'll construct my own sentences.
 
Old 06-21-2011, 10:06 AM   #11
davholla
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Agree 100%.

I took French in high school for a couple of years, and I went through the standard process of learning verb conjugations, verb tenses, proper sentence construction, etc. I was very happy with this method, for two reasons: it made me think about English in a way I really hadn't, deepening my understanding of that language, and it also showed me that once you know the nuts and bolts of how a language works, the rest is easy, it's just expanding your vocabulary.

So, you'd think learning Spanish after this would be the easiest thing in the world... unlike French, Spanish is sensibly phonetic. It's a Romantic language like French, so I already know how sentences get arranged, stuff like that. The basic words are similar to those in French, and the complicated words are pretty much the same as the ones in English, since English originally borrowed them from Latin. And if I had any questions or needed to get a judgement on pronunciation, I have a native speaker at my beck and call, because it's my wife's first language. Easy, right??

So I bought some software to help me learn it. The first of five CDs progressed pretty much the way I expected, introducing some nouns to expand vocabulary, and I moved through it quickly. Then came CD #2, where they decided to go full immersion method... and I stopped dead in my tracks. I needed verbs at that point. What are the normal conjugation rules? How can I tell one verb tense from another? What are the common irregular verbs, and what are their conjugations?

I am not a child. I know how language works. Give me the basic tools, and I'll construct my own sentences.
What software was this?
 
Old 06-21-2011, 10:08 AM   #12
davholla
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Originally Posted by jago25_98 View Post
Try online services like livemocha and google for `learn languages online`

I didn't think I could learn a language til I got into Rosetta Stone. It obviously isn't worth the $1000, so I'm recommending it only if you don't have to pay somehow (stolen, copied, language school license, extortion etc)
Surely if you could learn it from Rosetta Stone it is worth the money? Personally I don't think that it is so good as to be worth the money.

BTW are you sure it cost 1000USD? It doesn't cost anything like that in the UK.
 
Old 06-21-2011, 10:29 AM   #13
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What software was this?
It's been several years, so I'm not 100% sure, but I'm pretty sure it was this: http://www.dealyard.com/p-3687-learn...LAID=677667615
 
Old 06-21-2011, 10:31 AM   #14
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Surely if you could learn it from Rosetta Stone it is worth the money? Personally I don't think that it is so good as to be worth the money.

BTW are you sure it cost 1000USD? It doesn't cost anything like that in the UK.
I'm finding it for about $480 online for the full set.

Honestly, I think these products have their place for an adult learner, but not as a first step. Mechanics first, then immersion.
 
Old 06-21-2011, 12:55 PM   #15
davholla
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I'm finding it for about $480 online for the full set.

Honestly, I think these products have their place for an adult learner, but not as a first step. Mechanics first, then immersion.
I agree to be honest I don't think children are that quick at learning so the rosetta stone idea is a bit false.
I could communicate in Spanish after 2 years of studying.
Children take a lot longer to learn than that. My toddler is almost 3 and his language skills are ok for his age but not as good as a Chinese person who had been studying Spanish and English (my wife and mine first languages) as much as he has been could have achieved.
 
  


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