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Pimsleur Chinese (Mandarin) Level 3 CD: Learn to Speak and Understand Mandarin Chinese with Pimsleur Language Programs (Comprehensive) 30 Lessons + Notes Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
I also had a go at learning the writing system, which isn't as difficult as I previously thought. I can now read and write a few hundred characters, but this hasn't been nearly as rewarding as studying vocabulary. Still though, it is fun to be able to read the signs in chinatown.Read more ›
Pimsleur is a great introduction to the language. It gives drills that develop important vocabulary, settings, and flexibility. They repeat enough to keep vocabulary relatively fresh. They rush you a bit to improve your fluency. They provide grammar in context, not as simply rules. So you sometimes know what to say, although you don't know a gramar rule. So?
I am on track to have comfortable comprehension and fluency. I still have a ways to go (even with my university classes). The Pimsleur set is a great accompaniment to the classes. And I figure out the grammar and associated rules. If you REALLY want to be fluent in Mandarin, you simply cannot rely on the Pimsleur alone (or perhaps any other fixed media). You need context, friends, classes, tv, movies, etc. But I would never give up the continuing practice the sets afford in the car. For me, the regular practice keeps vocabulary current, and "internalized." Pimsleur reinforces common scenarios you would likely experience in China.Read more ›
There are also 30 lessons and a supplementary CD. Each lesson introduces about 10 or so new words and a few grammar rules. This allows for a very gentle but progressive learning of new vocabulary. Unlike other language systems (which bombard you with 20-30 words per lesson), this promotes retention and as a result gives the student encouragement and confidence.
The downside of the Pimselur system is that it only teaches listening and speaking skills and no reading or writing skills. This may be fine for European languages, which are mainly phonetic, but with Chinese, it feels like you're learning only 1/2 the language. ...
Nevertheless, Pimsleur is the best non-classroom language system I've tried so far (and I've tried many!) It does its job very well, so I'm willing to forgive the lack of writing or reading lessons.
P.S.: I wouldn't recommend Mandarin III if you are a beginner and haven't listened to I and II yet.
Each Pimsleur lesson is 1/2 hour long and they make it sound like you just move from one to the next. Usually it takes me 3-4 times per lesson before I feel comfortable enough to move on to the next. They also say that it is strictly an auditory program. It may be, but I have to make flash cards of the new vocabulary as I go along. I have a couple of dictionaires that I work with. The Oxford starter Chinese Dictionary is good and the Rough Guide has phonetic spellings as well as the pin-ying.
Up until now, I have been learning in sort of a vacuum. I have not had much opportunity to speak or listen to Chinese outside of the tape series. When I do get an opportunity to speak, my Chinese speaking colleages say my pronunciation is good enough that people will think I really know what I am saying and will then barrage me with lots of questions expecting that I can understand them.
So while I can now phrase a lot of questions and feel pretty confident about speaking (albeit with the limited vocabulary of the series), I still have a lot of difficulty understanding my co-workers. They speak faster, use words I don't understand, or put them in different order than what is on the tapes. Still they appreciate the fact that I am trying to learn their language and are very patient with me.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I completed the Pimsleur program for Mandarin I and II. They are so well laid out and provide an excellent combination of vocabulary, grammar, sentence structure and practice. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Sarah KS
Pimsleur courses are a very good way to become familiar with your target language. Their Latin-American Spanish course is also very good.Published 17 months ago by T. Brooks
I am working my way through the lessons and find that, as with II and I that preceded it, I can retain a fair bit of the vocabulary from lesson to lesson even when the words and... Read morePublished on March 14, 2013 by yeesee
Product has many of the same problems the Mandarin I and II had. Limited, narrow vocabulary (some 'new' words are repeats of earlier programs); no emphasis on tones, nothing... Read morePublished on December 28, 2012 by Wade Chabassol
consistent with pimsleur mandarin 1 and 2...good way to get started with a language...sets a foundation for serious subsequent study if a person is really interested in the... Read morePublished on October 16, 2012 by valianthorse
I did these three Pimsleur Mandarin courses after completing the Pimsleur Cantonese course and was left wanting to do more (unfortunately they only have the one level for... Read morePublished on May 1, 2012 by Miriam Seshadri
I have lived here in China for a little over a year as an expatriate. Prior to coming to China, I have lived in France and Romania and am fluent in French and can pass in... Read morePublished on July 24, 2011 by bibhouse