Glossika - Yes? No? Maybe?

General discussion about learning languages
issemiyaki
Orange Belt
Posts: 122
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2015 9:02 pm
x 162

Glossika - Yes? No? Maybe?

Postby issemiyaki » Tue Jul 21, 2015 8:55 am

I know people have posted about Glossika before, but I'd like to clear up some concerns I have about the product before making a purchase.

I'm interested Glossika's German program. Are there any German speakers who can speak to the authenticity of the German text? Is it truly colloquial? I ask because I speak Spanish, and when I reviewed Level 3 of the Spanish program. I was shocked. Some did not even sound authentic, at all. Luckily I speak Spanish. However, I don't have that luxury with German.

I'm planning on using Glossika as a supplement, along with Assimil German With Ease.

I'm also concerned about Glossika's method of using the same English sentences, regardless of the language, and then having them translated into the target language. My concern is that when you deal with translations, you're always lose something. The final version always feels watered down. And since the sentences in Glossika were not originated in the target language, some of the sentences feel flat.

Let me know what you thinK? Should I purchase Glossika, and are there any Germans who have reviewed the product and have an idea if if the sentences were written correctly.

Thanks
0 x

User avatar
basica
Orange Belt
Posts: 109
Joined: Sat Jul 04, 2015 12:07 am
Location: Australia
Languages: English (N), Serbian (beginner)
Language Log: http://how-to-learn-any-language.org/vi ... f=15&t=870
x 155

Re: Glossika - Yes? No? Maybe?

Postby basica » Tue Jul 21, 2015 9:10 am

I have Glossika Serbian and German, I haven't had a native vouch for the German yet, but I have heard many good things about it. The Serbian is definitely fine. The Spanish has had some complaints from what I've seen as it seems the translator has taken a literalist approach to the translation from what I understand of the situation. This is generally not the case. If you join the Glossika Facebook group you could probably ask there as well as there's a few people who have purchased it and could give you feedback as well.

I'm happy with both, but you're milage may vary.
0 x
Words written in Serbian: 12590 / 25000 Glossika Fluency 2: 10 / 100

Learning or already speak Bosnian, Croatian or Serbian? Join us here! :)

issemiyaki
Orange Belt
Posts: 122
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2015 9:02 pm
x 162

Re: Glossika - Yes? No? Maybe?

Postby issemiyaki » Tue Jul 21, 2015 9:14 am

Thanks for the tip.
0 x

Speakeasy
Blue Belt
Posts: 854
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 5:19 pm
Location: Canada (Montréal region)
Languages: English (N), French (C2). Studying: Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, German, Dutch, Polish, and Russian; all with widely varying degrees of application, enthusiasm, and success.
x 1994

Re: Glossika - Yes? No? Maybe?

Postby Speakeasy » Tue Jul 21, 2015 7:53 pm

Glossika German
I am not a native-speaker of German. As to Glossika German, from time-to-time, I have been somewhat surprised by the German translation of the English sentences. I assume that the "surprises" represent common, colloquial or idiomatic usage with which I was not familiar. In any event, since the objective of the Glossika mass sentence drills is to help the student develop fluency, I view imperfect translations as a minor issue. Overall, I have been very pleased with the product.

Reviews of Glossika
There are several reviews of Glossika on the Internet including the one on http://www.lingholic.com/glossika-review-mass-sentence-method/. Given my own positive experience with Glossika, I was rather surprised by the comments that many "real users" appended to the review. More particularly, it seems that, for some languages, the translations from English-to-Target-Language are a genuine cause for concern. But then again, do these users have unrealistic expectations and are they being overly critical or are they raising an alarm that should be heeded?
1 x

User avatar
Random Review
Orange Belt
Posts: 177
Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2015 8:41 pm
Location: UK/Spain/China
Languages: English (N), Spanish (B2?), German (B1?), Portuguese (A2?)
x 293

Re: Glossika - Yes? No? Maybe?

Postby Random Review » Tue Jul 21, 2015 8:46 pm

I'm currently using Glossika German and am very happy with it. Like some others, I was shocked by what I saw of the Spanish one and this is nothing like that. There are a few forms I hadn't heard before, but they seem to be valid in at least some parts of Germany.

There is the odd mistake where the translator gets the tense wrong but they are obvious, there was one where the translator translated "they stopped to talk for a few minutes" as "they stopped talking for a few minutes", which made me laugh; but on the whole I think it's pretty well done TBH. As I say, I'm very happy with it.

Edit: oh, and the translator seems confused by the ambiguity that sentences like " X has lived in Mexico for 4 years" have in English and sometimes uses a present tense translation (which I believe is how German expresses it if you mean X still lives there- the usual meaning in English) and sometimes a past 2 form (which I think is only correct in German if X no longer lives there). I think this is useful as it forces you to think carefully about what meaning the English sentence has when looking for the German.
2 x
German input 100 hours by 30-06: 4 / 100
Spanish input 200 hours by 30-06: 0 / 200
German study 50 hours by 30-06: 3 / 100
Spanish study 200 hours by 30-06: 0 / 200
Spanish conversation 100 hours by 30-06: 0 / 100

User avatar
samfrances
Orange Belt
Posts: 110
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 2:41 pm
Location: United Kingdom
Languages: Native: British English
Learning: Spanish (B1/B2)
Want to learn: German, Mandarin Chinese, Latin
Language Log: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=2967
x 143

Re: Glossika - Yes? No? Maybe?

Postby samfrances » Wed Jul 22, 2015 9:25 am

Does anyone have any experience with Glossika Spanish?
0 x
: 91 / 156 : Schaum's grammar, Fluent Forever
: 61 / 230 : MT Insider's Spanish
: 301 / 1000 : Learn / make flashcards for 1000 most frequent Spanish words
Spanish books read

issemiyaki
Orange Belt
Posts: 122
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2015 9:02 pm
x 162

Re: Glossika - Yes? No? Maybe?

Postby issemiyaki » Wed Jul 22, 2015 9:30 am

I have previewed the Spanish edition, and it seems fine to me. I reviewed Level 3 because I wanted to see how they dealt with the subjunctive tenses, which are notoriously difficult for language learners, and Glossika did just fine.

@Speakeasy - thanks for responded. I really wanted to reach out to you because I know, from previous posts, that you are well-versed on German courses. So thanks for chiming in.
1 x

Speakeasy
Blue Belt
Posts: 854
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 5:19 pm
Location: Canada (Montréal region)
Languages: English (N), French (C2). Studying: Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, German, Dutch, Polish, and Russian; all with widely varying degrees of application, enthusiasm, and success.
x 1994

Re: Glossika - Yes? No? Maybe?

Postby Speakeasy » Wed Jul 22, 2015 1:15 pm

Hello issemiyaki,

Glossika German
I would NOT want to discourage you from purchasing Glossika German; my experiences with the product were quite positive. Nevertheless, given the high quality and the truly vast quantity of materials available for learning German, while this supplement is indeed useful, in my opinion, it is not necessary. The greatest utility of the Glossika Mass Sentences lies in the programmed (massive) repetition of the materials. You could derive a similar benefit by repeating the Assimil German dialogues and the FSI German sentence pattern drills. While I have never used Anki myself, I am under the impression that you could build your own version of Glossika German on Anki by inserting the recorded materials from these two programmes. I would add that the Glossika Mass Sentences are just that ... 3,000 recorded sentences ... programmed for mass repetition. While a transcript is provided, there are no explanatory notes; that is, it is assumed that the student is already familiar with the vocabulary (which is rather elementary) and is either comfortable with the grammatical structure or can resolve any grammatical issues himself. I would add that, occasionally, the German translator uses constructions that are incorrect in a purely grammatical sense and that this might leave you wondering why he chose to translate the English sentence in the manner that he did. This will not harm your learning experience as long as you are aware of it; in fact, it even enhances it (oh, that's how they really talk!). Finally, the question becomes: if I don't really "need" it, should I buy it anyway? Although I had worked through the initial Assimil German and FSI Basic German levels, I found that Glossika German gave me a welcome break and helped stave off the boredom of working with the afore-mentioned materials.

Explanatory Notes in Assimil German and FSI Basic German
You will need a "simple" grammar for working with either Assimil or FSI. In the case of the FSI Basic courses, these materials were meant to be delivered in a classroom by a qualified instructor. Thus, the explanatory notes are somewhat sparse and are occasionally difficult to understand. In the Assimil method, the publisher adopted a "running narrative" style in the notes that accompany the lessons. In my experience, these notes are correct in the narrow context of the word, phrase, or sentence to which they refer. However, I have often found that the manner in which the points are presented masks, and sometimes even confuses, a broader grammatical issue that could have been presented in a more straight-forward manner. Therefore, I highly recommend that you keep a "simple" grammar close at hand when using either of these courses. In fact, I would even suggest that you acquaint yourself -- superficially, at first -- with the notion of the German Case System, and with the conjugation of Verbs in the Present Tense, before beginning your German studies with either Assimil or FSI.

Using a Grammar
As to the Grammar, keep it VERY "simple" initially. Most grammars are reference works that explain not only the basics of a language's structure, but also the numerous complexities and nuances that native-speakers are comfortable with. To do this, Grammars often employ both vocabulary and sentence structures for which the Beginner is not yet prepared. The unintended consequences are that the Beginner will become lost in the grammatical nuances that do not concern him at the beginning level and/or he will lose both his concentration and his valuable study time looking up definitions in a dictionary, whereas he might not encounter such vocabulary in his initial course materials and, thus, will likely forget it. For this reason, I would recommend that you acquire a copy of German Verbs & Essentials of Grammar by Charles J. James, published by McGraw-Hill. You can purchase a more in-depth Grammar later, if you so wish.

Viel Spaβ!
6 x

User avatar
Random Review
Orange Belt
Posts: 177
Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2015 8:41 pm
Location: UK/Spain/China
Languages: English (N), Spanish (B2?), German (B1?), Portuguese (A2?)
x 293

Re: Glossika - Yes? No? Maybe?

Postby Random Review » Thu Jul 23, 2015 8:22 am

I can only speak for myself, mate, but I am currently both using Glossika and repeating Assimil for German and I find they complement each other very well. I have also previously used the first (of 2) levels of FSI German and, while good, it's not quite the same.

I honestly think it provides something fairly unique that can only be obtained from other resources through fairly time-consuming sentence mining and editing processes.

The Spanish one is chock full of errors, it needs to be redone IMO.
2 x
German input 100 hours by 30-06: 4 / 100
Spanish input 200 hours by 30-06: 0 / 200
German study 50 hours by 30-06: 3 / 100
Spanish study 200 hours by 30-06: 0 / 200
Spanish conversation 100 hours by 30-06: 0 / 100

issemiyaki
Orange Belt
Posts: 122
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2015 9:02 pm
x 162

Re: Glossika - Yes? No? Maybe?

Postby issemiyaki » Thu Jul 23, 2015 12:15 pm

@Random Review - are you a native Spanish speaker?

Could you explain what some of the errors are in the Spanish edition?

Thanks.
0 x


Return to “General Language Discussion”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest