on 18 February 2005
This course starts off being great. It does state in the introduction of the book that you should learn to read and write the Arabic script to be able to get the most from the course, but the explanation of the Arabic alphabet is too limited to be able to actually read the script when written in it`s normal form. I was really enjoying learning the language and got through the first two units quite quickly and easily but then I "hit a brick wall" on unit three, as the writing in the corresponding book is then only written in Arabic instead of in English as well, as it had been in the first two units.
I got this to learn the basics of the spoken language but, to learn the rest of it, I need to get other books or CD`s to learn to read and write the Arabic script before I can continue to learn the spoken language. I had hoped to learn the basics of the spoken language before going on holiday and then to learn the script, but that`s not really possible with this.
If you have the time and inclination to learn to read and write Arabic as well as speak it, it`ll be just right as long as you get an additional product to help with the reading and writing.
on 11 November 2003
This course is great if you are new to the arabic language and/or visiting or taking a holiday to Egypt. I wanted to learn arabic as i am going on holiay to Egypt so i bought this course. What i didn't know is that it is the EGYPTIAN DIALECT as it does not say so in the course description but it was fortunate for me as this was the country i am visiting!
The course is structured in to easy-to-follow steps and you'll find that you learn very easily and quickly. The course book is very colourful and informative with lots of illustrations. You do not need the book to listen to the cds but i find that it is best to use the book whilst listening to the cd.
This course also teaches you the basics of arabic writing in easy to follow steps and examples. While i have not mastered the written side of the course yet, i am sure it is only a matter of time and practice as i only bought this course 3 weeks ago!
All in all this is a very good course if you're a beginner like me as it teaches you the basic words you will need to know when travelling to Egypt, it is also GREAT FUN!
on 12 March 2009
I took this course to Egypt and used it for at least two hours every day for four days. I really put the effort in, but did not find it useful at all. At the end of that time I was halfway through unit three which took me as far as a few greetings and some limited small talk asking where someone was from. I could not recommend this to anyone wanting to use the language as a tourist. On day five I adopted the potted language guide at the back of Lonely Planet and got on much better with people.
This course is not quick! There is an emphasis on written Arabic from the start and by unit three pronunciation guides disappear leaving you with a list of English words and Arabic writing from which you work out (slowly) what the pronunciation could be. The CDs mirror the lessons and can help a little, but I found the speakers to be unclear or contradictory at times.
I found this all slowed the learning process. It is further slowed by instructions to repeat the lessons and do a further practice. I felt a real lack of progress. This course reminded me of school language classes from the seventies with slow repetition of written phrases.
I wanted a course that would let me shop or order meals, and perhaps get directions. This did none of that, and yet three pages at the back of the LP guide did.
on 9 May 2012
Whilst studying this, I listened to Linguphone going from the college. It's easily broken down and planned in a good order. The further into the disks you go, you will find that you have to listen to it again repetively and more often. It grows on you, but the demand on the listener becomes difficult about 2/4 disks into it. Seems like faster words.
Once you listen to the couple of live recordings contained, then you'll find it very rewarding. Overall, it's at a Good price, but to progress in difficulty, Linguaphones' next edition is expensive.