Rosetta Stone 4.5
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Even though it may be a dream of our life to speak some foreign language, we still often have to exert ourselves when learning it. There are indeed enough obstructions to make us change our mind about studying a language sooner or later: having to spend another evening making an exercise, the meaning of which is yet obscure to us; or dealing with desperation of not seeing any correlation between grammatical rules of languages; and above all, overcoming the constant reflection, trying not to translate our own thoughts. However, there are yet different approaches to learning foreign languages, one of which - making one forget they are actually foreign - is employed by Rosetta Stone.
This programme features the method of 'Dynamic immersion', which resembles the setting of one's early childhood. Rosetta Stone grants us with no translations or explanations whatsoever, but only surrounds us wholly with the language we want to learn. We shall discover ourselves in familiar situations, seeing familiar things, but every word we shall read or hear will be in another language. By recreating connections between actual images and their verbal realisation - using logic, memory and sometimes intuition - we learn a foreign language in the same way that we learned our native one, bypassing the need to use the latter for understanding.
Most of the language courses are divided into three levels, with a gradual advancement from naming things and meeting people to explaining routes, expressing opinions and dealing with various colloquial situations. Among the tasks we are facing are those of repeating passages after a native speaker (with a possible comparison of waveforms to denote our pronunciation errors), answering questions (either verbally or in writing), recreating correlation between words and images, and many other mixes of listening, reading, speaking and writing. The pictures we are shown are rather colourful and not misleading (one of the most notable drawbacks of earlier versions), and the voices of native speakers are pleasant to hear - so the overall process of language learning becomes somewhat of an absorbing environment for us, with no distractive thoughts about whether we should better quit.
- Quite colourful and captivating
- Lessons of various types are shuffled, so that particular activities are distributed evenly
- Many languages to choose from
- Really helps to think in another language
- The speech recognition system is far from flawless
- Obtained language skills are somewhat basic
- Exercises are not divided into thematic categories
- Rather expensive