The Best Language Learning Software Of 2011

We consulted reviews on PCMag, Lingualogue, Learning Village, and Amazonm, to bring this listen of  the best language learning software of 2011:

Rocket Languages Software

Rocket Languages Software

Rocket Languages Software ($299)

Pros:

  • Interactive, uses fun games
  • Best for beginners and travelers
  • Best for audio learners
  • Begins with useful words and phrases

Cons:

  • No voice recognition
  • Some sections need to be updated
  • On-line ordering needs updating

Top Review Sources:

  • PCMag: Editor’s Choice; “Among the most useful language-learning software on the market”
  • Lingualogue: “Exellent value for the money”

With an emphasis on cultural learning, Rocket Language learning software is a perfect choice for travelers and beginners employing a fun and simple user interface. The learning focus is audio and files can be transferred to an Mp3 for on-the-go learning. One nice feature is the variety of voices so that you get to hear different accents. The program also uses cultural context for real world usage. Rocket Languages offer a wide array of languages including Chinese, Spanish, French, German, Japanese, Italian, and Sign Language. The lack of voice recognition could be a deal breaker for those looking to advance in the language, but is fine for beginners as many find the voice recognition discouraging and distracting. While the on-line purchasing procedure has been found inconvenient, Rocket Languages does offer a 6 day free trial or you can purchase the software in discs with web access.

Rocket Languages learning software is available on Amazon or through their website.

Rosetta Stone Language Learning Software

Rosetta Stone Language Learning Software

Rosetta Stone Language Learning Software ($480)

Pros:

  • Dynamic, user-friendly interface
  • Best voice recognition software
  • Strong tech support
  • Award winning immersion teaching method

Cons:

  • Lacks cultural references
  • Pricey
  • Time consuming

Top Review Sources:

  • PCMag: Editor’s choice; “Excellent user experience”
  • Lingualogue: “A breeze to use”
  • Amazon: Average 3.7 out of 5 stars, based on 67 customer reviews

Rosetta Stone, the most recognized in language learning software, is perhaps the best for usability with a highly intuitive interface and interactive lessons. This program is geared toward a Kinesthetic or tactile way of learning- learning through doing. With an exhaustive design, Rosetta Stone is for those who are committed to thoroughly learning the language. The on-line video conferencing allows interaction with native speakers as well as other students. There is also a mobile app that allows you to continue your lessons while away from your computer. Rosetta Stone offers 31 languages and a variety of packages.

Rosetta Stone is available on Amazon or directly from the Rosetta Stone website.

Tell Me More Language Learning Software

Tell Me More Language Learning Software

Tell Me More Language Learning Software ($650)

Pros:

  • Substantial features and content
  • Emphasis on voice recognition
  • Best for advanced users or for business
  • Wide array of purchasing options

Cons:

  • Not the best for beginners
  • Buggy voice recognition software
  • Activities can become dull

Top Review Sources:

  • Learning Village: “Easy to understand and navigate”
  • PCMag: 3 out of 5 stars; “A highly customizable language learning experience”

Tell Me More language learning software is a good choice for those who may already have a base knowledge and are looking to advance in the nuances and idioms of the language or need to communicate in a business setting. With an extensive set of features and tools, the user can customize their learning process and the program will generate a lesson plan and timetable. Tell Me More has been designed around the voice recognition which gives useful feedback on pronunciation. Available in nine languages, packages range from a 3 month on-line pass to a 10 level software DVD package. You can get fewer levels for less money.

Tell Me More is available on Amazon or through their website.

Fluenz Language Learning Software

Fluenz Language Learning Software

 Fluenz Language Learning Software ($498)

Pros:

  • Simple and intuitive interface
  • Learn useful words and phrases
  • Human interaction
  • Learning process aids in comprehension and retention

Cons:

  • Pricey
  • Only 4 languages available
  • Requires insertion of disc every 5th time you run the program

Top Review Sources:

  • Lingualogue: “A top class language learning product and possibly the best in its field”
  • Amazon: Average 4.6 out of 5 stars, based on 60 customer reviews

Fluenz is the new kid on the language learning block, which means you’ll get the latest in innovation and features. It’s been designed with the adult in mind, with a focus on learning functional words and phrases like ‘cell phone’ as opposed to ‘cat’. There is no voice recognition software in the Fluenz program, which some may consider a con, but others find this system to be troublesome and a waste of time. However, there is a microphone included which allows you to record portions of a conversation then plays back the conversation with your voice inserted. Sonia Gil acts as your personal tutor guiding you through the lessons as real world and cultural contexts are used. Fluenz offers a variety of package options including a more affordable beginner’s course.

Fluenz is available on Amazon.

Instant Immersion Language Learning Software

Instant Immersion Language Learning Software

Instant Immersion Language Learning Software ($34)

Pros:

  • Inexpensive
  • Audio files can be transferred to Mp3
  • Basic, easy to use, for kids too

Cons:

  • No grammar or sentence structure
  • Low tech interface
  • Limited use; not for advanced

Top Review Sources:

  • PCMag: 3 out of 5: “A lot of material for such a low price”
  • Amazon: Average 3.7 out of 5 stars, based on 49 customer reviews.

Instant Immersion by Topics Entertainment is a budget language learning software providing a basic vocabulary and pronunciation building program. This may be a good option if you want to try out learning software before committing to the higher priced options. Also good for travelers and kids. It does feature voice technology which allows the recording of your voice to perfect your pronunciation. The DVD is interactive and uses flash cards as a learning tool. The program is equivalent to a 2 year high school course.

Instant Immersion is available on Amazon.

 

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