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Audio & Multimedia Self-Study Language Programs To Learn Spanish, French, Italian And More!

Updated on April 18, 2010

Learning another language should be free of stress, simple and fun. If you desire to learn a new language that you want to be based on your schedule and pace, a self-study program may be a good choice for you. There are a number of audio and multimedia programs to help a person along the path of understanding and speaking in another language, four (4) of which are highlighted. When choosing such a program, it is advisable to keep into consideration certain things such as:

  • your current level (absolute beginner, beginner, intermediate or advanced)
  • the level that you desire to step up to.
  • your preferred way of learning (audio, video, text or a mixture of all)
  • the cost of the product(s).

"What languages do you speak?"

"One, including English."

Michel Thomas (Feb 3, 1914  Jan 8, 2005)
Michel Thomas (Feb 3, 1914 Jan 8, 2005)

Michel Thomas

Michel Thomas' Audio Language Program is based on Michel's philosophy that learning should be free of tension, anxiety and worry. His language courses including French, Spanish, Italian and German do not require drills, textbooks, the taking of notes and homework (including mental homework). His 'teaching devices' are two beginners: each of a different gender, nationality and accent, and learning pace.

There are three sets of Michel Thomas CDs including the:

  1. Introductory Set - 2 CDs
  2. Deluxe Set - 8 CDs (includes the 2 CDs of the Introductory Set)
  3. Language Builder Set - 2 CDs (is a follow up for the 8 CD Deluxe Set)

Rosetta Stone

Rosetta Stone Language Programs integrate audio, text and visuals and in a highly effective system. The system is based on the research of how humans learned their first language. Rosetta Stone uses the principle of Language Immersion inclusive of:

  • learning in a natural environment that is free from memorization and translation.
  • engaging interactively - repeating words, phrases and sentences from imitating native speakers.
  • speaking confidently - building conversational skills and improving pronunciation.
  • having fun - enjoying your learning experience will naturally lead to long term memory of language and will be good motivation.

9 out of 10 persons agree that Rosetta Stone works for them. The Language program offers 31 languages, and there is a six-month money back guarantee on every CD-ROM product.

Dr. Paul Pimsleur ((Oct 17, 1927  Jun 22, 1976)
Dr. Paul Pimsleur ((Oct 17, 1927 Jun 22, 1976)


Pimsleur Language Programs- Dr. Pimsleur developed the Language learning system used for these programs which are rooted in 4 principles:

  • anticipation
  • graduated interval recall
  • core vocabulary
  • organic learning.

The courses are simple and easy to follow, with each lesson being 30 minutes in duration. No written course material is included, but the high level of interaction that is required encourages learning. These courses are ideal for the absolute beginner, and there are over 50 languages to choose from.


The Linguaphone Language System, established by the Polish Jacques Roston is based on three (3) simple habits: "Listen, Understand and Speak" that is used to teach 15 languages. Linguaphone has 5 Levels:

  1. Beginner (PDQ)
  2. Beginner to Intermediate (alltalk)
  3. Beginner to Advanced (complete)
  4. Advanced to Expert (second stage)

Linguaphone even uses stories as learning devices that are filled with good acting and reasonable suspense. After each scene, there is a revision exercise involving words and phrases used within that particular scene. Furthermore, at the end of each unit, there is unit recap. The language courses also include a variety of written material to enhance the learning experience.

“Acquisition requires meaningful interaction in the target language – natural communication – in which speakers are concerned not with the form of their utterances but with the messages they are conveying and understanding.” Stephen Krashen


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    • theblackedition profile imageAUTHOR

      Shane Brown-Daniels 

      8 years ago from USA

      Hey Winsome, that's actually an idea I'll keep! Linguaphone is great, because you may even forget that you are learning a language as you keep up with the story. I've tried the Linguaphone's alltalk Italian - good stuff.

    • Winsome profile image


      8 years ago from Southern California by way of Texas

      Good hub BE. I am familiar with the Rosetta Stone but the others are new to me. I especially liked the acting scenes out method. Another market for your scripts? = :)


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