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on 15 August 2005
I did not use the earlier 8-hour course, but I found this course easy to get into.
I'm not sure that the word 'advanced' is really justified, but the course is certainly very good at teaching the tenses of French verbs and their use. Nor do I agree with what the adverts say about it being 'painless' - it's certainly hard work, and I found that after 20 minutes I was ready for a break.
I'm fascinated by the way in which M. Thomas teaches the spoken language first, and the written language second; when I learnt French, it was the other way around.
Given the teaching method and the fact that there are students in the recording, who, of course, make mistakes, there's the question of how many times you'd want to listen to the CDs. On the other hand, if you listen to them a few times, doing what is recommended and answering all the questions, you get, in effect, at least 10-20 hours of one-on-one tuition - much more intense tuition than you'd ever get by enrolling for 10-20 hours of classes. This seems to me to make it remarkably good value.
So, I agree with the other reviewers, and strongly recommend this course. It's odd how what is, basically, a very old fashioned teaching method should work so brilliantly. There's a message here for our educators, possibly.......?
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on 24 October 2004
The advanced course is an excellent way to develop your understanding of the structure of the French language. Michel works through a number of examples, highlighting the order of pronouns. He also covers the various tenses in considerable detail (something which was lacking from the earlier courses). For me one of the most important aspects was the use of 'would' and 'would have'. As Michel rightly says, you need to develop a sharpened awareness of your own language in order to learn another one.
The two students are far better than on those on the first course, so things move along at the right pace. This is helpful when working through the course a second or third time.
Having gone through the course a few times, I now feel confident that I have a good understanding of the tenses. In fact the verb tables in the more traditional course books finally make sense!
Do bear in mind that the Michel Thomas courses do not cover a large vocabulary. So, for example, if you are looking to learn lots of nouns and adjectives the course will be of limted value.
However if you are looking to develop your understanding of structure and tenses, this course is a great way to do so.
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I worked in France twenty years ago and have just decided to try and reactivate the French that I learned by purchasing this advanced course. I have not used the Foundation course but I slipped into this course easily. Michel Thomas has a very easy manner, and the presence of the students helps make it real. They make mistakes too, and their accents are no better than mine which makes me feel better. Thomas concentrates on the construction of sentences. In this advanced set the focus is on past, future and conditional tenses with many complicated constructions and variations. Some of these are so extreme I really couldn't imagine using them ('If you had told me about it I would have bought it' etc). However, he breaks it down well and it is very motivating to "get" the idea. The course concentrates on verbs and their usage. There are very few nouns here - you'll need to buy a dictionary for those. But you will master the use of the language in all the common tenses. Recommended.
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on 2 October 2007
This course is to take you on from the foundation course, IF you found it good, though not everybody does (see my review of that). Once you've mastered the foundation course, this is excellent as the next stage. If you are already advanced at French, say, A-level and still retaining, then the term 'Advanced' may be a misnomer to you.

Thomas builds on the techniques he employed, and continues to simplify new tense endings into how they sound, categorises verbs in an easy way, and paints graphic pictures on how to form the more complex tenses. I agree some of the constructions he draws from you are difficult, but this is to build confidence: if you can master complex conditionals, you'll feel more astute at the simpler constructions. This has one star more from me than the foundation course since the problem of long gaps has been remedied.

Though I am not at the end of this yet, I can offer this review as I am confident it will not disappoint in the end. It IS for speaking French, but there is a chapter at the end on reading French.

Drawbacks are due to his desire to avoid memorising, some things need reinforcing; for example, there are 16 verbs of motion and living that take etre instead of avoir for the compose tense, yet I could not see this in the menu, and had to find a book with it. The whole course is done at learning speed of course, so to hone your listening skills, you should record Open University French programs and listen to the conversations. No French person will speak at the speed on these CDs, believe me.

To its praise, I went to France to look for work, and all that I learnt stood me well. There was even an English-speaking woman who had lived there for a year trying to master French who, hearing these CDs in my caravan, ordered them for herself. She said he easily explained things about the language she had never really grasped.
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on 6 October 2005
This is basically a grammar course. Through it you will gain an excellent grasp of all the different tenses and how to construct sentences using them.

It moves at quite a fast pace so you have to concentrate and will find it harder than the earlier courses. I found I had to work through some CD's twice and make some notes before I was able to tackle the next CD. There is a lot to learn.

I stongly recommend that unless you have a good previous grasp of French, you work through Michel Thomas' 8 CD complete French course, and his 2 CD French language builder course before attempting this course.

However this is definitely the quickest and easiest way to learn French grammar that I have come across and I strongly recommend it.
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on 13 July 2005
The 8 hour course "basic" course was excellent - this was even better. I have nothing but admiration for the way in which it is put across. After a few hours to end up with 20 odd tenses in relative ease takes some doing. You will find yourself smiling to yourself at how you are able to cover so much ground. Of course you need to listen again and again to get it to stick - no problem.
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on 1 February 2008
I agree with the majority of the reviewers below. the common complaint is that this is not advanced? Well that is arguably the case but if you have a basic understanding of French and you want to take youreself into the A level (which incidentally stands for advanced) then I recommend this set. The fact that I took A level French many years ago and this set clarifies tenses better than any teacher I have experienced says it all- and now I am relatively comfortable with 19 YES 19 tenses after this course (even the subjunctive!!).
I would also add that his advice at the end of the cd is priceless I just wish he managed to produce a further course.And he has got rid of the dithering student from the introductory course which was frustrating. The man was a genius.

Oh and for the lady who called this complete rubbish it depends what you wanted out of the course, maybe checking some reviews would have been helpful first before spending money on it.
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VINE VOICEon 6 November 2007
I did a little French at school (twenty-five years ago!) and the Michel Thomas foundation course and I am now on disc 7 of the Advanced course. Michel Thomas has a great teaching method. He immediately takes the onus off you to lean and puts it on himself to teach. The CDs are a set of informal teaching sessions between Michel and two students and this format makes them easy listening. Just listen to these CDs a few times and you will take it in. Also because it is audio based you can learn when in the car or even in the bath. The other advantage is that you will be surprised how much theory you pick up allowing you to adapt the specifics that he teaches. I hate learning from books so this was a great way to improve my French. These CDs have improved my confidence and given me a base to learn from more traditional methods. The only limitation is that Michel Thomas concentrates on spoken French and consequently my written French is much weaker. Highly recommended to anyone who wants to learn or improve their French language.
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on 17 May 2006
I found this a very effective and painless way of perfecting my French grammar. I have done A level French so I find that many French language courses are a bit too basic. Michel Thomas is very clear and he gives memory clues to help you remember words and structures, e.g. "the diving board", "the nail in the wood" etc. I have listened to several sections more than once to perfect my learning, but it is easy to pick out the sections that you want to repeat. At no point did I pick up a pen to make notes; I just listened to it on my daily commute to and from work. As a reward, I finally understand the subjunctive! I also understand much better how to pronounce words (the links between words like je and ne, for example) the way the French do, and it has really helped me in my listening and spoken French.
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on 6 November 2006
A simply fantastic advanced course.

There is little vocabulary; but that's no bad thing. The words you might need are likely to be very different from the words I need.

However, on the structure of the language, this course is nothing short of perfect. It will teach you more about French grammar than you could imagine.

It's is a very exciting method, which I can see from other reviews, others find as addictive as I do.

He does have a trace of a German accent, which others noticed before me.

At the end of the course, you will no longer have to phrase everything in the present tense. After listening to the CDs a couple of time, you will be amazed at what you know.

I really do suggest you buy this CD (having bought the foundation course first!)
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