Saturday, February 28, 2009

Auralog Review

I had a chance to review Auralog’s Tell Me More Italian Instant Immersion Foreign Language program.

Let me give you the benefits of instant immersion programs:
1. More ‘real to life’ learning situations
2. More challenging than regular programs
3. Faster learning of the language may result from this program

Some neat features of this program include:
1. Voice Recognition to help you say the word or phrase better
2. Testing throughout the program to see the extent of your progress
3. Crosswords, word finds, and more to help make it more fun
4. Customer Support is there to help you 24/7 with your software and program questions

If you are the type of person who loves an instant immersion program, well then look no further because this is the foreign language program for you! But if you are like me and need a little more structure in a learning program, you may find this program hard to use and understand.

You have three modes of learning to choose from:

1. Free to Roam- You pick what you want to learn and can hop from activity to activity.
2. Guided- This guides you lesson by lesson.
3. Dynamic-This assesses your progress as you go and changes it according to your needs.

Sounds great! However upon starting each lesson, I felt like they dropped me in the middle of Rome and said, “Ciao”. Here is where those who love instant immersion will pick themselves up and jump right in. Here is where I became frustrated and confused. Despite my confusion, I started going through and learning phrases as they were said, unsure of what exactly I was saying. It did tell me what I was saying on one side of the screen, but because sentences are not formed the same way in English, I was unsure whether a word meant one thing or another in English. But I continued on and it took me to the games and the 'name that item' in the picture activity. Word finds were simple but the crossword puzzles asked me to fill in the Italian word for _____. "I haven’t been taught that", I would say to myself. Then in the 'name that item' in the picture activity, I was asked to pick the word for sweater like the girl was wearing. Unfortunately I had not learned the word sweater so I just had to guess. I continued with the program and was able to get into the glossary, but once again I needed to know Italian to figure out where to go in the glossary to find color, animal, or family words.

When I finally felt a little more confident with the program, I let my son have a try hoping that he could figure out what I seemed to fail at. Unfortunately, he learns like me and it ended in frustration and near tears after days and days in the program. For some reason, this type of approach just did not work at our house. However, just because this program did not work for us, does not mean it will not be an instant success for someone else. For those a little familiar with the language being taught and for those who thrive on a constant challenge, this program would work wonderfully with your family. I will be familiarizing myself with this program more because I do have a daughter that seems to grasp language rather quickly. She is in the midst of another foreign language program that she is enjoying so I will save this for her for when she is ready to try.
This program has a Progress Guarantee, which states you will learn or your money will be refunded (Terms and conditions apply). You will have support if you have difficulties along the way. Competitively priced at $249.99, it is a program worth trying. To learn more about this program. Click HERE.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I couldn't agree more with your review. I think the Auralog program has much more to offer than competing programs, such as Rosetta Stone, but it lacks for some good documentation to accompany the software. I enjoy the challenge of an immersion situation, however, it is silly to present someone with a crossword puzzle and expect them to fill it in when they are new to the language, especially when you do not provide an English dictionary in the software. Or maybe they do, but without a good user reference guide, I can't find it!