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Pimsleur Comprehensive Italian I on CDs
Where To Buy This Item
- Audio CD
- Publisher: Pimsleur (March 1, 2002)
- ISBN: 0743518373
- Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 11.5 x 2.0 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds.
- Average Customer Review:
based on 11 reviews.
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful:
si puo sbagliare! (You can't go wrong!), August 23, 2003
Fugeddabout it! The best way to learn to speak Italian. Took
these cassettes to Italy with me when I was about a third of the way
through them. I had no problem getting around and communicating,
even in towns where little or no Inglese was spoken. I couldn't hold
a deep conversation, or a lengthy one, but to be able to survive in
a foreign language when still completing level I was really
gratifying. And recently I bought Ultimate Italian as a supplement.
It's good, but nowhere near Pimsleur. Pimsleur is brilliantly
designed to lock the learning into your memory. You find yourself
thinking in Italian, not translating back and forth in your head.
There are, of course, less expensive vendors of Pimsleur to be found
on the internet, e.g., languagelovers.com. But the course is worth
every Euro. I can't wait to start Level II. If you can afford it,
and your interest is chiefly speaking Italian rather than reading
and writing it, this is tops. If, on the other hand, you want to
read and write in Italian, you should look for a different course or
supplement this one.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful:
1/2 Thumps up!, July 25, 2003
Richland Hills, TX United States)
Like most folks here who are serious about becoming fairly fluent
in a foreign language, I spent many years in classrooms learning
Spanish and still am not comfortable enough to hold a conversation
with a native speaker nor can I understand it when spoken to, unless
it's spoken very slowly. Thanks to books and the classroom, I'm very
good at reading it, though. However, I'm only half way through the
Pimsleur Italian 1 and feel I can already speak and understand it
far better than Spanish! Yes, I plan on polishing my Spanish with
In order to prepare for an upcoming trip to Italy, I bought these
CD's from a friend and spend the 30 minutes each day on a lesson. I
personally feel it is important that when visiting a foreign country
it's best to make an attempt to speak their language. You will be
better received and hey, when in Rome, do like the Romans do, right?
HINT: with the CD's, if you don't catch something (and this does
happen), you will have to listen to the whole lesson all over again,
so you might want to consider cassettes for greater flexibility. I
hit "pause" when instructed to answer a question so I can construct
my reply before the speaker blurbs out the answer.
I like Pimsleur's approach to learning a lesson by hearing it. We
didn't learn our first words by reading books, did we? However,
there is a downside to this approach if your hearing is as bad as
mine! I would find it more helpful if any new vocabulary introduced
in the verbal lesson was included in the reading part at the end of
each lesson. As it stands now, the reading is only a list of words
or phrases and are not translated so you don't know what you are
saying, and they are not related to the material in the lesson. I'm
sure this is done this way just to loosen your tongue, but there are
words spoken in the verbal part of the lesson that I still have yet
to comprehend. It took me 2 or 3 lessons to figure out that the word
for "I" was io. I kept imagining that they were saying "eel" or "ee-ohw."
It wasn't until I saw it on the reading for a later lesson that I
figured it out. Now, I'm still trying to comprehend the word for
"you would like." I can't find it anywhere. Guess I'll have to by a
book on Italian verbs!
27 of 29 people found the following review helpful:
best!, May 5, 2003
I have done Pimsleur French (I -III), Spanish(I-III), and am now
working on Italian II. I am looking forward to doing German, and
more in the future. Yes, I'm a Pimsleur addict. And I'm someone who
took two years of French in college and never learned how to say
anything. I'm also someone who got my lowest grade in college in
foreign language! And that's after lots of work then.
But, Pimsleur really, really, does teach you how to converse, if
you are willing and able to pay the money, and put in the time.You
won't know lots of vocabulary (but that's easy to learn later) but
you will know how to construct all the basic sentences you need to.
You'll be able to converse with people at the train station when
your train is delayed, at the store when you buy something, etc.
This is converse not just ask directions! and people will tell you
your accent is pretty good.
If you are very serious about being fluent, or knowing how to
read, you will need other info later - but if you really, really
want to be able to manage like a cosmopolitan tourist or business
person, not like the typical English only American, these are the
I recommend allowing a minimum of a month for each I, II, and
III. More is better. I really 'get' it if I work through and then
put them away for a few months, and then go back. Doing the first
one only will not really prepare you to converse, but you will be
able to order at restaurants and stores, and be polite. The second
will allow simple conversation, and the third more complex
conversation - especially if you work on your own on your own
vocabulary for your sitaution.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
but superior to all others, November 22, 2004
I've spend thousands of dollars on language learning aides over
the years, and I have found that Pimsleur is the best by far. I'm
amazed that the other programs I wasted money on even sell since
they are so ineffective. I've purchased Spanish II,III, French I-III
and Italian I-III and they are all equally good. I've bought almost
every other advertised product out there, but none of those lessons
are structured like these. The Pimsleur method focuses on speech,
not reading or writing, however.
If you can afford them, you will find they work better than any
other system you can buy for learning to speak a new language.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful:
Language Program, October 4, 2004
I have just completed Pimsleur Italian I, and I must say its
worked better than I expected. At 30 minutes a lesson, its easy to
stay committed. And with each lesson you really learn something new.
Most of the critisism is valid however. I do recommend getting a
book on Italian Verbs. It should help you understand the verbs
better than you can just from the tapes.
More work could have been done to make it better for tourists,
although I suspect its aimed more at the buisness traveler than
I would have also liked more nouns in the lessons. I have only
bought hats a few times in my life. I can think of many nouns which
are more useful. A suppliment CD with nouns presented in their
Graduated Interval Recall technique would have been a really nice
Still, I think this Pimsleur course has given me the confidence to
use Italian (unlike my Chinese classes in school.) And I highly
recommend them. They are expensive however. If you are doing it for
buisness, have the buisness pay for it. If you are doing it for fun,
check your local library. You could save a lot of money.
If you just want to play around with the language, I would recommend
doing the Italian Steps program from the BBC. You won't learn nearly
as much, but you won't spend as much either.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful:
best!, August 28, 2004
I can't believe it, I'm only on the 4th lesson, and I've learned
more italian than with any other program. This has inspired me to
take actual Italian classes, just to learn to read and write it
since speaking it is so easy! I was skeptical at first, so I made a
small investment, but now, I'm buying the whole program. If I
learned this much in a few lessons, imagine with an entire course!
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