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Does the Pimsleur Approach Really Work?

Updated on March 10, 2011

Find out if the Pimsleur method is effective for you

The Pimsleur language method allows you to learn a language by listening. I will show you how to use it most effectively.

What is the Pimsleur approach?

Pimsleur offers a growing number of audio language lessons. The idea is that you listen and repeat. Each lesson is about a half hour long.

The lesson makes you repeat words and phrases so much that by the end of the lesson you should have most of them memorized.

Who is it for?

Depending on the language you learn, the course contains 10 to 90 lessons. It is very useful if you are starting to learn a language or you would like to get a quick introduction to one.

I used the Swedish course when I spent a couple of hours in Sweden and wanted to be able to ask basic questions, but I also used the French course to quickstart my French knowledge.

By the time you finish the course you will have a good idea about the language, but you won't be fluent by any means. You will have to look for other materials if you want to continue to learn the language, but it is certainly a great start. It will help your pronunciation, and will allow you to learn some of the most frequently used phrases.

What I like the most about this series is that you can learn much more effectively than with many traditional methods. For example I was learning Spanish for years with not too much results. Then one of my friends recommended Pimsleur, so I thought I would give it a try. I started from scratch. The next time I was in Spain, I was amazed how easily I was able to join conversations and get what I needed. Not only that, but I was also able to have shorter conversations with local people.

What Pimsleur doesn't do

Pimsleur courses do not teach you to read and write. They have the lesson transcripts, but the lessons are primarily to get you started in speaking. If you are serious about learning a language, it is a good idea to learn to read and write, especially if the language uses characters which you are not familiar with.


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