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Linguaphone French Complete is an in-depth audio based course with accompanying course workbooks. No previous French experience is necessary and it takes you right from complete beginner to a reasonably advanced level of French. No short-cuts are taken though so you may find that this seems like a lot of work compared to some other courses. However, if you persevere you will definitely have a solid grip on the French language by the end.
The Linguaphone French Complete course comes on a whopping twelve audio CDs with a supplementary course of six booklets. It would be handy if there was an extra disc containing MP3 versions of all the lessons for your iPod, but it should be easy enough to rip them into a format compatible with any mp3 player. The format of the lessons makes them ideal for listening to in the car on your way to work or as you do the housework at home and a handy carry case is included so you can take everything with you wherever you go.
The course is one of the most in-depth we have seen, which goes some way to explaining the rather hefty price tag. However, if you want to really the master the French language you need to know the inner workings that are discussed here as opposed to just skimming the top as many courses do. There is a good number of hours of work involved in completing the course, but once you do you should be at a reasonably advanced level of French reading, writing and speaking with a vocabulary of over 2000 words. This should be more than enough to get you by in most situations.
The Linguaphone French Complete course materials are good quality and well designed. The audio CDs are narrated by an easy to understand, clear speaking English voice with dialogues spoken by native French speakers. The dialogues cover a wide range of situations so you will gain experience of understanding spoken French in many of the typical scenarios you might find yourself in. The accompanying course books are also great quality and provide extra information that the audio CDs couldn't cram in. The included tests and quizzes are great for keeping you interested and checking your progress.
Linguaphone French Complete is a full on French course that will really help you begin to master the French language. It doesn't claim to be the easiest, but it is certainly one of the most in-depth we have seen. If you only want a few phrases for your next holiday this might be a bit of an overkill, but if you are serious about learning the language it would be an excellent choice.
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