English Chinese Dictionary
Lexiconer.com Web
English Chinese Dictionary Chinese English Dictionary Language bookstore home Language Video Store TOEFL/GRE/GMAT Vocabulary
Browse Bookstore by languages:

Teach Yourself Thai Complete Course

Title: Teach Yourself Thai Complete Course

Format: Paperback + audio cassette
List Price: $27.95
Where To Buy

Amazon USA Price: $18.45

Buy from Amazon USA

Amazon Canada Price

Teach Yourself Thai Complete Course

Recommended: Auralog TeLL me More Language Software, a superb and effective system for learning a foreign language. Proven method and highly praised system.

Where To Buy This Item

Product Details
  • Paperback
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill; 1 edition (June 11, 1996)
  • ISBN: 0844238783
  • Product Dimensions: 9.7 x 6.5 x 1.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces.
  • Average Customer Review: based on 13 reviews.

Customer Reviews
Avg. Customer Review:

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:

Fast pace, interesting and fun to work with, March 17, 2004

Reviewer: stephen g haigh (palo a,lto, ca United States)

I've just finished Thai for beginners by Benjawan Becker and i think this is a great follow on book. Even through it's not touted as an intermeediate book, I think the pace of this would be too fast for an absolute beginner.

This book is way more interesting than Thai4beginners however. Each key word and sentense structure is explained very well and the constant Q&A is great. Thai4beginners is much more repetitious and spends too much time on nouns you will likely never remember or need.

This book also uses an easier to follow romanization method than the proper phonetic backward 'e' and all that crap used in thai4beg. My only complaint is their insistance on using 'u' for our 'a' sound which seems completely unnecessary and highly confusing.

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:

Probably the best one out there, February 19, 2004

Reviewer: Richard V.F. Almasi (Brisbane)

This book is quite good to be modest, the main dialogues are provided both in romanized form as well as thai script, the thai script version is for later on when you can read the script better so you can go back to previous chapters and re-read the dialogue in script.
The book gradually teaches you to read and write the script, I have read other books teaching thai script and this one is by far the best one, you can tell the author knows the language.
Understanding the tapes can be hard at first since they speak at natural speed, but after some chapters you get the hang of it and its not too hard, and there are enough listening excercices for each chapter.
The grammar is clearly explained and is easy to understand, as with many asian languages the grammar is the easy part - pronounciation and script is the real challenge.
In each chapter you get to practice your knowledge of the script, you gradually build up you skills.
The only shortcoming of this book is that I think there are to few excerices to practice the grammar, so you might want to get a extra book on practicing grammar.

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful:

Very Effective!, July 10, 2002

Reviewer: STEPHEN M. MALLINGER "smallinger" (Mexico City, Mexico)

I am about to be transferred to Thailand and will be taking formal and intensive Thai instruction next month. I wanted to get a head start on the language and after reading the..reviews purchased the Smith book with the two cassette tapes. After three weeks of study I find myself (to my surprisE) learning to read and speak Thai. First let me mention some things I do NOT like (but remember I am a pure beginner). The transliteration is confusing and frankly often does not match what I hear on the tapes. Second, there are disconnects between the tapes and what the book says I am supposed to be hearing. Third, the tape's intro to tones is not sufficient. Now what I like about the Smith book. I am learning to actually read Thai! It is a complicated alphabet (no matter what David Smith says) but I am progressing. The text progresses easily from one step to the next. Contrary to some reviews I like the practical application in the dialogues e.g shopping, menu ordering. etc. But most of all I like the easy and maybe even chatty way the book guides you into the language. I must admit I certainly enjoy studying this language with this book. And Smith is correct that 20 minutes a day is more effective than one 2 hours session weekly. Yep, a new edition of the tapes is needed but it is the best 20 bucks I spent in a long time!

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful:

Has drawbacks, but else good, April 22, 2002

Reviewer: Linas Kondratas (Vilnius, Lithuania)

First of all good news. The Thai course of David Smyth has the advantage to be a good introduction to the Thai script and pronuntiation. Covering of the grammar is a little bit sketchy, but anyway it is enough for beginner and the grammar is certainly not the most difficult part of Thai.

Now the inconvenient points.

The course unfortunately gives too much place for specifically tourist things such as haggling for price, ordering drinks and food, taking taxi, visiting places etc. - which would be much more in their proper place in a "Lonely Planet" conversational guide as in a more serious language textbook. One could have rather included texts/dialogues on Buddhism, on Thai history, way of life.

A very bad transcription system - letter "r" is used where it should be not pronounced, the aspiration is not shown, and the most disconcerting thing is using "u" to represent the sound of "a". Similarly "air" is used to represent open "e"(more convently to be represented as "ae") and so on. It has taken a certain time for me to figure
out that "wun" (day) shoud be actually pronounced as "wan", or "bpairt"(eight) as "pae:t" or "nakorn" as "nakho:n". I wonder why David Smyth has not used the signs of the International Phonetical Association which are far more understandable for beginner and for experienced linguist alike.

A second inconvenient thing is that D.Smyth does not use Thai script in the exercises, at least in the beginning of the book. This is very inconvenient when making revision. One would like to remake excercises using Thai script.

Anyway I wonder whether there is need to use Romanised transcription for a Thai course at all. Certainly the Thai spelling is not exactly phonetical, but one could give the transcription of irregularly spelled words with Thai letters themselves. Only tones would require special markers in the beginning until one has not yet learned the tone rules.

Another thing what should be needed in such book is a table showing the Indian(Pali-Sanskrit) values of Thai letters. This would help to figure out the class of letters(high, middle or low) with much more ease, greatly facilitate understanding the alphabetical sequence of Thai, to help recognize South Asian borrowings (which maybe make 30-40% of Thai vocabulary) for those who have learned a South Asian language(Sanskrit, Pali, Hindi, Bengali etc).

Nevetheless I give 4 stars to this course since as it appears there are not too much better courses of Thai, if any, as this one.

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful:

Choice of the experts, December 30, 2001

Reviewer: Jon @ www.bannok.com (Chiang Rai, Thailand)

I'm with the US Peace Corps in Thailand, a job (the toughest one?) that requires learning Thai, and it's not by coincidence that more of us have Mr. Smyth's book than any other.

I found learning to read essential in learning Thai, and this book teaches better reading better than any other book I have seen. As for teaching the letters out of dictionary order, well, I haven't found that many Thais who could answer a question analogous to "What letter comes before S?" without reciting the whole alphabet. It's just not how they learn, therefore, most Thai dictionaries have an index of the letters in the beginning. The lesson here is that you are a lot better off learning the letters by class (and therefore tone rules) than you are by dictionary order, which will come later as you use a dictionary more.

I've only listened to someone else's tapes briefly, but they seemed to give good assistance separating the tones and learning to pronounce the sounds that we don't have in English.

If you are just going to Thailand for a week, I imagine any number of books would suffice, but if you want to learn Thai more than "snake-snake-fish-fish" (bits and pieces), then get this book.

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful:

I have not found one better, August 30, 2001

Reviewer: Raymond Hendrix (Altamont, TN United States)

Let's face it. Learning Thai is not easy regardless of the teaching method. This book however was exactly what I was looking for as it also teaches how to read and write the language. I found some mistakes and the audio is not cooridinated very well with the book but you will have to losten to it MANY times anyway in order to ever learn it. After a few times you learn to find the corresponding section in the book. So, all in all the book is well worth the money and it does what it says it will do.

Where to buy

Buy from Amazon USA

  Search Thai books on Amazon:


Language Stores:

Top Recommended Language Programs

Learn Spanish Central: A collection of books for studying Spanish.

List of 3,465 Spanish English Cognates

Main Language Bookstore

Auralog TeLL me More Language Software

Fluenz Language Software

Pimsleur Language Program

Instant Immersion Language Software

Rosetta Stone Language Software
(Rosetta Stone Review)

Video Courses

Transparent Language Software

Power-Glide Language Software

Learn Chinese Central

View this page in: | | | | | | | | |

Copyright © 2000-2008 Lexiconer.Com or its partners.

English Chinese Dictionary  Site Map  Language Bookstore   Language Video  Rocket Spanish   Rosetta Stone Language Software (Rosetta Stone Review, Rosetta Stone SpanishAuralog TeLL me More Language Software Update History (About Us)   Contact Us   Testimonials   Privacy Policy