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German With Michel Thomas Complete Course CD Audio CD – Audiobook, 1 May 2000

4.3 out of 5 stars 60 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD
  • Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton (1 May 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0340780657
  • ISBN-13: 978-0340780657
  • Product Dimensions: 16.4 x 5 x 22.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (60 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 137,342 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


"Ideal for any business traveller who needs to be able to get around confidently." (Sunday Business)

"Five minutes into the first CD, you already feel like you're winning." (Time Out)

"Michel Thomas is a precious find indeed." (The Guardian)

"Thomas makes it simple" (Sunday Times)

"Hugely inspiring" (Red)

"Michel's methods will teach you effectively and easily" (Daily Star)

About the Author

Michel Thomas has had an amazing life. Born in Poland, he spent his early years in Germany and then in France, where he studied psychology at the Sorbonne in Paris. When war broke out, he fought with the Resistance and suffered imprisonment in slave labour camps. At the end of the war he joined the US liberation army and later settled in the US where he established his world-famous language school. For more than 50 years he has taught languages to the rich and famous and has become the world's most sought-after language teacher.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Quite simply, buy it! With almost minimal effort (Ok, you have to put some effort in, but it really isn't too much) you can learn enough German to be able to communicate effectively in simple situations. It gives you the confidence to speak to others in German and gives you a great grounding in the language, which will help you to learn more once you have finished the course.
I listened to this CD in the car, travelling to and from work. This was after moving to Germany, not being able to speak a single word. Within weeks I was able to start asking for things and holding very basic conversations in German. More surprisingly, I was also able to read a lot of German (surprising because there are no reading or writing exercises in the course). Better still, once you have started you will find it easier to pick up new words and sometimes to work out what words mean (Michel teaches you that many English words come from German origins).
I would absolutely recommend this course to anyone who wishes to speak German, for whatever reason. This is even if you have never spoken the language before.
The best part has to be the fact that there is so little theory involved - if you are like me and prefer to just get stuck in, then this is perfect for your needs. Also, the fact that Michel does not start with the usual phrases such as 'What is your name?' and 'How old are you?' is a big bonus. He starts straight away with questions that you will actually need in every day situations...
Seriously, buy it - you won't be disappointed!
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Format: Audio CD
Is this a good course? It depends on what you want to learn or what you think it ought to contain. Previous reviewers have noted the lack of vocabulary taught: "I do not know when I will be able to do it" is a typical sentence. Michel concentrates on sentence construction and verbs to the exclusion of almost everything else. This follows his philosophy that verbs are the cornerstone of a language and everything else is just vocabulary (which, by implication, is left as an exercise for the listener). Very few nouns and adjectives are taught and there is virtually no acknowledgement of the existence of case and gender other than pointing up the difference between "mich" ("me") and "mir" ("to me"). At the end of this course, you will not have learnt even such a simple sentence as "Ich möchte eine Tasse Kaffee" (I would like a cup of coffee). Michel teaches the present, future and conditional tenses of verbs, but not the past - so you will be unable to tell a German what you did yesterday: and "Sie" but not "du" so you will be unable to address close friends and family correctly, "you" being translated in German as "du" for close friends, children, and family, and "Sie" for everyone else. (Though this is hardly going to be a great problem unless you get to know a German really well!)
HOWEVER, one of the big problems with German, at least for an English-speaker, are the word order rules that result in sentences that literally translate as "Can you to me tell how I to the station go?" English may be a Germanic language but word order in it has been heavily modified by French - blame the Norman Conquest for that - and the big plus of this course for me is the concentrated drilling in forming sentences. The most oft-heard phrase on the CDs is "How would you say...?
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2 Comments 113 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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By A Customer on 12 Feb. 2005
Format: Audio CD
I've spent a lot of money trying to learn German. I've been to various classes, I've got books, flash cards and computer programmes. If spending money made you speak German I'd be fluent.
The reason I've been slow to learn is that I don't find the time to use all these learning aids - I buy them and put them in the cupboard to gather dust. There are two things about the Michel Thomas CD course that make it work for me: First, I can put the CD on in my car whilst I'm driving around and all I have to do is listen. Secondly everything is repeated ten thousand times and if there's one thing I seem to need to learn language it's repetition. By the time I'd driven to work and back half a dozen times I knew a CD backwards and could move onto the next one.
Michel Thomas rambles on a bit (especially at the beginning of the first CD) and frequently gets annoyed at his inept students but if you can cope with this it will teach you a little bit of German very thoroughly.
True it's expensive but so were all the books I bought and didn't read - at least I got something out of this course.
1 Comment 45 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Audio CD
I think this is a brilliant CD if all you want to concentrate on is oral German rather than written. Michel Thomas explains the grammar really well and in a logical way, much better than a text book I had used previously. He also tells you how everything relates to English so that you learn grammatical structures more easily (I also found this very interesting from a history of language point of view). He makes you learn by thinking rather then memorising, which I think is the best feature of this German course - Michel does this by slowly building up your vocabulary and sentence length, so you start off by saying "I play tennis" and gradually move on to saying "I play tennis with my sister on Mondays in Berlin". There are two students recorded on the CD, and this gives you a brilliant opportunity to correct their mistakes - it certainly did NOT make me learn their mistakes, as a previous reviewer wrote; instead, it gave me the chance to first think about how I would say the sentence myself and then to correct the student, and finally to see if I was right by listening to Michel. The only disadvantage is that you won't be able to write much German while using this set of CDs alone. Michel himself stresses the importance of learning in your mind as you listen, rather than writing things down and learning them off by heart for hours. Not being able to see the German as it is written down could be a big disadvantage if you need it for something other than verbal communication, and I solved this problem by buying the German Experience text book, so that I get some reading and writing practise of German too. I find that using these two courses works really well, and I am very happy with the progress I've made over the last 3 months.Read more ›
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