Audio lingual language programs

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Speakeasy
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Re: Audio lingual language programs

Postby Speakeasy » Sun Apr 14, 2019 11:12 am

Random Review wrote: … initially found your style quite irritating … I now find it quite charming …
Random Review, thank you very much for the unexpected support! But, “charming”? Well, perhaps as in: “Speakeasy, I’ve just had a look at your final report on the pecuniary efficiencies which have accrued to the Logistics Branch through the *normalisation of eyeglass frames* across the CAF: utterly charming!”

*During my final year in the Canadian Armed Forces, an administrative directive was handed down from Canadian National Defence Headquarters specifying that all members requiring corrective eyewear must wear a standardized eyeglass frame when in uniform. Said frame was just about as “charming” as my writing style which, should I be I tempted to tell a lie, I could blame on years of writing soulless, anonymous military memoranda. But no, even my military superiors found my writing not just parched, but wordy … “For God’s sake, Speakeasy, get to the point!” ;)
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peterbeischmidt
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Re: Audio lingual language programs

Postby peterbeischmidt » Tue Sep 01, 2020 2:51 am

I think this one here is an audio-lingual course for Tagalog:

Pilipino through Self-Instruction by John Wolff

They're still selling the original recordings, but unfortunately at a rather prohibitive price of about 700 usd:
https://sales.lrc.cornell.edu/collections/tagalog
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Cainntear
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Re: Audio lingual language programs

Postby Cainntear » Tue Sep 01, 2020 1:37 pm

peterbeischmidt wrote:I think this one here is an audio-lingual course for Tagalog:

Pilipino through Self-Instruction by John Wolff

They're still selling the original recordings, but unfortunately at a rather prohibitive price of about 700 usd:
https://sales.lrc.cornell.edu/collections/tagalog

And the link to the book they're supposed to accompany doesn't work either, which is even more problematic...
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iguanamon
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Re: Audio lingual language programs

Postby iguanamon » Tue Sep 01, 2020 2:30 pm

Before being banned from the forum, Speakeasy had made it his task to track down these old audio-lingual materials and try to get the publishers to release them into the public domain. Sometimes he was successful, and sometimes he was not.

Generally speaking, these types of situations crop up all the time with old courses. My recent experience with trying to find all the materials for the old 1990's multimedia course for Catalan- "Digui, digui" is illustrative of this. The videos are online, unofficially. The books are available for purchase used. The accompanying audio is not available for purchase as far as I know.

Booksellers who have no knowledge of language-learning most often do not include the accompanying audio or only the books survive to be passed along through the years. Audio formats change from vinyl -> cassette tape -> compact disc -> mp3 -> flac -> whatever is next. Along the way the older formats get discarded.

The same booksellers cannot keep up with every genre of book and know its value on the open market. So, they rely on an algorithm to price their offerings. The algorithm knows that the book is out of print and considers it a collectors item and prices it outrageously as a result. If the bookseller were an individual with whom you could sit down and have a conversation, they would probably come to realize that their is no real collector market for such books and perhaps would lower the price to a reasonable one.

Old language courses from 50 to 60, even 70 years ago can still be used to learn languages. Often times they are more thorough and effective for self-learners than more modern courses and materials. When one wants to get access to older materials that are out of print and no longer for sale, there are most often few options available. Publishers do not want to compete against their own older courses, if they are still in the business of developing and selling new material. This gives active course publishers little incentive to make older materials available easily. Publishers who have since gone out of business or are no longer publishing language courses also have little incentive to cooperate other than altruism. The publishers and copyright heirs can be hard to next to impossible to locate. The appeal to altruism more often than not can fall on deaf ears. Speakeasy would go down the rabbit hole and follow every trail until it dead-ended... which it often did and does. This leaves few legal options for a learner to pursue.

In the US, the Library of Congress keeps a copy of almost everything published. University libraries often have an extensive collection. One legal option is to make a request from your library through an interlibrary loan for the material with as much identifying information as possible for the materials sought- title; author(s); date published; isbn number if available. If an individual wants to make use of those materials for themselves, there is the fair use doctrine. In the case of the materials at Cornell University, it may indeed be possible to find them through an interlibrary loan... or not. Sometimes it's better to just give up and find something else.
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Re: Audio lingual language programs

Postby ilmari » Wed Sep 02, 2020 2:09 am

Before being banned from the forum, Speakeasy had made it his task to track down these old audio-lingual materials

As I always enjoyed his posts, I did notice Speakeasy's absence, but I wasn't aware he had been banned from the forum! May we know what happened?
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dgc1970
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Re: Audio lingual language programs

Postby dgc1970 » Thu Sep 03, 2020 2:10 am

diplomaticus wrote:It seems that someone who created courses of this style for Arabic, Chinese, and the like would make out quite handsomely.


About the Author
Cornelius C. Kubler, Stanfield Professor of Asian Studies at Williams College, received his B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. degrees in linguistics from Cornell University. He earned a second M.A. in Chinese literature from National Taiwan University.

From 1980-1991 he was employed at the Foreign Service Institute, U.S. Department of State, where he served as Language Training Supervisor in Mandarin, Cantonese, Japanese, and Mongolian; as Principal of the advanced Chinese field school in Taiwan; and as Chair of the Department of Asian and African Languages.

https://www.amazon.com/Basic-Mandarin-C ... 677&sr=8-3

https://www.amazon.com/Intermediate-Spo ... 677&sr=8-1

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=Cornelius+C. ... nb_sb_noss

Free Audio:

https://www.tuttlepublishing.com/basic- ... udio-video

If you click on the "Look Inside" option you can see that you are expected to memorize the dialogues then use drills and repetition.There are different editions with the same material but the new Elementary edition looks like it may have a few different units. Just like the old FSI course Pinyin is taught first (separate books for learning the writing).

https://www.amazon.com/Basic-Mandarin-C ... 802&sr=8-4
Last edited by dgc1970 on Thu Sep 03, 2020 2:26 am, edited 2 times in total.
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David1917
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Re: Audio lingual language programs

Postby David1917 » Fri May 07, 2021 3:49 am

iguanamon wrote:Booksellers who have no knowledge of language-learning most often do not include the accompanying audio or only the books survive to be passed along through the years. Audio formats change from vinyl -> cassette tape -> compact disc -> mp3 -> flac -> whatever is next. Along the way the older formats get discarded.

The same booksellers cannot keep up with every genre of book and know its value on the open market. So, they rely on an algorithm to price their offerings. The algorithm knows that the book is out of print and considers it a collectors item and prices it outrageously as a result. If the bookseller were an individual with whom you could sit down and have a conversation, they would probably come to realize that their is no real collector market for such books and perhaps would lower the price to a reasonable one.

Old language courses from 50 to 60, even 70 years ago can still be used to learn languages. Often times they are more thorough and effective for self-learners than more modern courses and materials. When one wants to get access to older materials that are out of print and no longer for sale, there are most often few options available. Publishers do not want to compete against their own older courses, if they are still in the business of developing and selling new material. This gives active course publishers little incentive to make older materials available easily. Publishers who have since gone out of business or are no longer publishing language courses also have little incentive to cooperate other than altruism. The publishers and copyright heirs can be hard to next to impossible to locate. The appeal to altruism more often than not can fall on deaf ears.


This is the nightmare I live in. I desperately wish to find a better alternative to ebay/Abebooks.

One legal option is to make a request from your library through an interlibrary loan for the material with as much identifying information as possible for the materials sought- title; author(s); date published; isbn number if available. If an individual wants to make use of those materials for themselves, there is the fair use doctrine. In the case of the materials at Cornell University, it may indeed be possible to find them through an interlibrary loan... or not.


A lot of European courses are only held in European libraries unfortunately and my university's library won't borrow anything outside of the US / Canada. But yes, I have gotten some great language learning materials through ILL. Provides a great incentive to finish a course more rapidly.

I've begun to legitimately wonder what the extensive bureaucratic obstacles are to registering LLORG as a library or institute of learning that would allow the hosting of the mp3 files for old courses that we know are already floating around out there. And for those that aren't but someone on here has the CDs, they could upload and fill in the gaps. As you said about an individual bookseller, I'm sure also that a reasonable person at Assimil or Linguaphone would say, "I guess the 5 people a year who might download the mp3s for our out-of-print Serbo-Croate course has negligible impact on our current offerings."

Sometimes it's better to just give up and find something else.


This is the way.
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dgc1970
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Re: Audio lingual language programs

Postby dgc1970 » Fri Dec 03, 2021 2:03 am

Tomás wrote:
Modern Spanish: A Project of the Modern Language Association


I have acquired this book through Interlibrary Loan. It is really, really good. It is a pure ALM textbook with all the expected pattern and substitution drills, but much better done than the FSI Basic Spanish manual. The grammar explanations are far, far superior, with many excellent observations about colloquial uses.

However, like FSI it is made for a classroom scenario. Drawbacks for independent learners are:

(1) You would probably need to also purchase instructor's manual. There are no answers to the exercises in the student book. I have not yet seen the instructor's book, so I don't know if it has the answers.

2) I have not been able to locate the recordings. Some libraries apparently have a single 7" LP that came with the book, but I believe it only has the pronunciation exercises. Recordings of the language lab drills are the holy grail, and I have not yet found a source or a library. Perhaps someone with superior googling skills than I can find it.

Given that the recordings appear to be unobtainable, I think FSI Basic Spanish remains the gold standard for ALM Spanish courses. If we could turn up the lab tapes for Modern Spanish, though, it just might beat out FSI.

There are also subsequent volumes entitled "Continuing Spanish", but I have yet to obtain one.


I bought the complete set of records in January from ebay for $5.99 USD plus $20.70 USD shipping to Canada. I took some pics of them but I am having trouble posting the pics to this message. I haven't digitized them yet and have taken a break from studying Spanish. I also have the textbook, I bought it on Amazon for $22.23 Canadian dollars.
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dgc1970
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Re: Audio lingual language programs

Postby dgc1970 » Fri Dec 03, 2021 2:41 am

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