General Linguaphone Discussion

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Speakeasy
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Re: General Linguaphone Discussion

Postby Speakeasy » Sat Nov 18, 2017 5:54 pm

Hello, Seneca. I came across the above offer for the "Vintage Linguaphone Language Learning Program: Japanese Course" on eBay recently and, given the price, I was very tempted to add it to the untouched piles of materials that have been accumulating in my basement. I still find myself wondering why I didn't buy it, why should it matter that I don't have any desire to learn Japanese? I mean, it's there, right in front of me, and its "vintage"!

As I see it, if you want the Linguaphone Japanese course, there are presently two options:

Option 1
Purchase the item that is presently available on eBay, the price is very attractive! The photos display an "Explanatory Notes" book/booklet/pamphlet the contents of which are not specified. You could always contact the seller via eBay and clarify the matter. If it turns out that this book is, indeed, the "Handbook" for this course, then you're off to the races! If, on the other hand, it is not the Handbook, you could go ahead with the acquisition and purchase the Handbook from Linguaphone U.K., the website of which contains an offer to sell the printed manuals for their courses. Implicit in this option is that you would most likely want to digitize the audio cassette recordings, the tracks of which could easily be 45 minutes in duration, and you would want to split them into smaller segments so as to facilitate their use on your mp3 player. So, there would be some baby-sitting involved.

Option 2
Purchase the latest edition of this course (most likely a simple reprint of the edition presently available on eBay) directly from Linguaphone as a "Refurbished" course. Although such packages have been opened for display purposes, their quality is the same as that of the regular, unopened packages. The Linguaphone U.S.A. website is presently not responding; however, my experience suggests to me that the refurbished courses are often offered at discounts of up to 50% off the regular price, which translates into a net price of something approaching $195 US. The price is, indeed, higher! However, you would receive a complete set of the materials and the digitizing of the CDs would be both easier and quicker and you would not have to split the files.

Enjoy your studies!

EDITED: Typos, of course.
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Seneca
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Re: General Linguaphone Discussion

Postby Seneca » Sat Nov 18, 2017 7:26 pm

Speakeasy wrote:Hello, Seneca. I came across the above offer for the "Vintage Linguaphone Language Learning Program: Japanese Course" on eBay recently and, given the price, I was very tempted to add it to the untouched piles of materials that have been accumulating in my basement. I still find myself wondering why I didn't buy it, why should it matter that I don't have any desire to learn Japanese? I mean, it's there, right in front of me, and its "vintage"!

As I see it, if you want the Linguaphone Japanese course, there are presently two options:

Option 1
Purchase the item that is presently available on eBay, the price is very attractive! The photos display an "Explanatory Notes" book/booklet/pamphlet the contents of which are not specified. You could always contact the seller via eBay and clarify the matter. If it turns out that this book is, indeed, the "Handbook" for this course, then you're off to the races! If, on the other hand, it is not the Handbook, you could go ahead with the acquisition and purchase the Handbook from Linguaphone U.K., the website of which contains an offer to sell the printed manuals for their courses. Implicit in this option is that you would most likely want to digitize the audio cassette recordings, the tracks of which could easily be 45 minutes in duration, and you would want to split them into smaller segments so as to facilitate their use on your mp3 player. So, there would be some baby-sitting involved.

Option 2
Purchase the latest edition of this course (most likely a simple reprint of the edition presently available on eBay) directly from Linguaphone as a "Refurbished" course. Although such packages have been opened for display purposes, their quality is the same as that of the regular, unopened packages. The Linguaphone U.S.A. website is presently not responding; however, my experience suggests to me that the refurbished courses are often offered at discounts of up to 50% off the regular price, which translates into a net price of something approaching $195 US. The price is, indeed, higher! However, you would receive a complete set of the materials and the digitizing of the CDs would be both easier and quicker and you would not have to split the files.

Enjoy your studies!

EDITED: Typos, of course.

Do you mean you can order just specific books from their courses you may need, or am I misunderstanding? That is cool, if true!

Also, as far as you know, has there only ever been just one version of Japanese Linguaphone that has been reprinted in time? That would definitely make this all a lot easier to sort out!
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Speakeasy
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Re: General Linguaphone Discussion

Postby Speakeasy » Sat Nov 18, 2017 8:07 pm

Hi, Seneca. The Linguaphone, U.K., website contained, until very recently, an offer to sell copies of the printed manuals for their courses. I just consulted the website and I could not locate the thread. However, you could always send them a message via their "Contact" portal and ask them about this. You could also ask them about the various editions of their Japanese course. Good hunting!
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neumanc
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Re: General Linguaphone Discussion

Postby neumanc » Sat Nov 18, 2017 8:09 pm

Seneca wrote:Does anyone have the Japanese Linguaphone course?

Image

I am trying to figure out if this set on ebay is complete. To me it seems to be missing a standalone "Handbook," but I am unsure if the other books besides the main coursebook (Nihongo Kosu) might actually provide everything I need. I don't mind buying an incomplete Linguaphone set, but it can be a real pain to pick up the missing pieces sometimes. Anyone know if those one shows all the parts, book wise, or not?

Hello Seneca, the lesson texts, the explanatory notes and the two vocabulary books seem to be present. In this respect, the course is complete (with exception of the pamphlet "student's instructions", which can be found on archive.org). Later editions have the explanatory notes and the two vocabulary books bound together as "handbook" without any changes as to the contents. However, I can only see two cassettes instead of four. I don't know any Linguaphone course which has only two cassettes. Even the oldest cassette editions had always four cassettes. If the course should be incomplete in this respect, you might send me a personal message. I am owner of a German version of this course. The audio should be identical. But beware: This course does not teach how to write Japanese. No kana/kanji at all. The lessons are more or less identical to the other 50-lesson-courses from the 1950s/60s. I have not studied the course yet, but I read somewhere that the language is very formal.
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Pal
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Re: General Linguaphone Discussion

Postby Pal » Wed Dec 06, 2017 7:53 am

I would like to make a few points concerning the Linguaphone Japanese course.

1. There are English Translations in the all-in-one Handbook in addition to instructions, explanatory notes, and vocabularies.

2. At the back of the Course Book are the Japanese Pronunciation (Nihongo no hatsuon) written in both romanji and Japanese kanji-kana script, plus the Introduction Part I and II in Japanese script.

3. In addition to the romanji course book, there is 1 more course book in Japanese script in the Chinese edition. At the back of this extra book are also 2 kana charts. Strangely, the Japanese Pronunciation in it is written only in kana, without kanji.
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haziz
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Language Log: https://forum.language-learners.org/vie ... =15&t=9602
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Re: General Linguaphone Discussion

Postby haziz » Mon Jan 01, 2018 7:33 pm

This post is a recycling of one from my language log, but I think it would also be relevant here. It concerns the 1960s Linguaphone Curso de español (de Hispanoamérica). For clarification, this is the 50 lesson Linguaphone course from that era.

I am now up to lesson 21 of the 1960s Linguaphone Latin American Spanish course. I am not doing it as intensively as I probably should, but I am using it as a revision of my forgotten Spanish. For the most part I am reading the lesson 3-4 times, occasionally listening to the audio, and reading the vocabulary and explanatory notes from their respective books.

The 1960s edition does feel a bit dated. When was the last time you went to a restaurant that expected not just jacket and tie, but formal black tie evening wear from it's customers? This also does render some of the vocabulary a little redundant "piano de cola", "musiquero", and "traje de etiqueta" in addition to some fairly antiquated idioms could have waited until much later than the 2000 word basic vocabulary stage. It does however add a bit of old world, or is it just old, charm to the process. I do appreciate the "visit to the post office" chapters, since I am one of the few travelers still mailing postcards when I travel, to relatives, but also often to myself as a sort of wacky diary. As a completely irrelevant aside, Italian post offices will often tell you they are out of stamps, after you have waited in line for 45 minutes. I know tobacconist shops often carry stamps, but a post office, out of stamps? What is the world coming to!?!

The 1960s edition also expects you to have a very good grasp of grammar, not just the concepts but also the terminology, as it will often describe the grammar and structure of the sentence, without ever giving you the equivalent construction in English. As someone who studied, in High school, a largely British curriculum from the late 1970s to early 1980s, and such a curriculum completely eschewed any formal teaching of grammar, expecting you to assimilate a solid sense of grammar through usage and osmosis. An approach which surprisingly did leave me with a very good sense of the correct grammar of the English language but with no knowledge of the terminology. I am therefore often at a loss when the book describes the grammar of a sentence but fails to give you the equivalent structure in English.
Last edited by haziz on Tue Jan 02, 2018 1:27 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Spanish:
: 26 / 50 Linguaphone Curso de español (de Hispanoamérica - 1960s)
: 10 / 30 Linguaphone Curso de español (1973-1999)
: 1 / 13 Extr@
: 0 / 40 Ultimate Spanish
: 10 / 52 Destinos

Speakeasy
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Re: General Linguaphone Discussion

Postby Speakeasy » Mon Jan 01, 2018 9:28 pm

haziz wrote: ... The 1960s edition also expects you to have a very good grasp of grammar, not just the concepts but also the terminology, as it will often describe the grammar and structure of the sentence, without ever giving you the equivalent construction in English ...
I have a copy of the Linguaphone Complete courses, covering all of the languages that I study, from the 1960’s-1970’s, as well as a number of earlier editions for Linguaphone German, going back to the 1920’s.

To my mind, you have struck upon one of the (from my perspective) major deficiencies of the Linguaphone courses. That is, the accompanying notes seem to be written for the benefit of someone who already possesses are fairly sound notion of the target language’s structure. A few quick comments ...

Your Linguaphone Spanish course should include a fairly good summary of grammar in the appendices to the Handbook (see image below). So then, while it is not necessarily clear which issue of grammar is presented in the notes, you do have access to a more explicit and better organised statement of the language’s structure. The difficulty, of course, is how does one reference the two? This is not easily done, particularly as Linguaphone does not provide instructions.

The Assimil and Cortina courses take a similar approach; opaque notes for the “insider”, plus a summary of grammar. The Cortina courses adopted the “saving grace” of numbering all of their notes so that the student could very easily look up the appropriate section of the summary grammar; they even included a suggested list of which sections of the grammar that one should consult before attempting each lesson. Linguaphone and Assimil would do well to adopt this simple expediency, but that is unlikely to happen!

With a view to facilitating your progress with the Linguaphone Spanish course, I suggest that you “familiarize” yourself with the appendices. That is, take the time to develop a fairly good idea of how the information is organized. Your objective should not be to memorize the contents of the grammar, but you should develop a good idea of how the information is organized. Then, I suggest that you familiarize yourself with the sections on Regular Verbs in the Present Indicative Tense, Personal Pronouns, Adjectives, et cetera, without attempting to memorize the materials. Subsequently, you might find it useful cross-referencing the notes in the Handbook that seem the most relevant to your studies to the appropriate sections in the grammar in the appendices as Cortina does (e.g., L1, N23 in the Handbook is numbered "12" and the corresponding article in the summary grammar is also numbered "12"). I realize that this represents a fair amount of particularly fastidious work on your part, but at least it marks the beginning of a solution to your problem (which everyone shares!). Thereafter, as new grammatical issues appear (different verb tenses, et cetera), proceed as before.

Learning a foreign language as an independent learner represents enough of a challenge on its own, it amazes me that some publishers choose to complicate what is really a simple matter. If it's any consolation, you’re not alone!

EDITED:
Typos; beginning the New Year as I passed Last Year.

IMAGE:
Linguaphone Spanish (1960's - 1970's) Appendices
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Speakeasy
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Re: General Linguaphone Discussion

Postby Speakeasy » Tue Jan 02, 2018 12:31 pm

Linguaphone Courses For Business
Had it not been for the efforts of a fellow forum member, I would have never become aware of the “Linguaphone Courses For Business” series, which was introduced in the mid-1970’s for the self-study of French, German, and Spanish. These courses seem to have been available through the mid-1980’s, but were subsequently withdrawn from the marketplace. My questions to Linguaphone International U.K., concerning the history of these courses and the availability of archived materials, yielded a polite, but terse, response to the effect that they were no longer for sale. What follows is a brief description.

Materials
The materials were comprised of three spiral-bound course manuals, fifteen audio cassettes, and a cassette recorder complete with headset and microphone. The materials were packaged in a durable, leatherette, business-style carrying case.

Course Structure (Audio-Lingual)
The audio-lingual method of teaching was employed. The course was divided into 60 lessons in two manuals. Each lesson presented a short, situational dialogue wherein new vocabulary and specific elements of grammar were introduced. The dialogues were augmented by four or five sets of sentence-pattern drills, each comprising a dozen or so individual exercises. The lessons were accompanied by a list of newly-introduced vocabulary, explanatory notes and, where appropriate, an answer key to the drills. A third manual contained written exercises in support of the lessons, along with an answer key, and a bilingual glossary.

Vocabulary and Course Focus
Linguaphone labelled these courses as being for “business” use, a matter which I believe was more a marketing strategy than a statement of course content and focus. That is, while the dialogues did, indeed, take place for the most part in a “business setting”, the major part of the vocabulary was common to that of many other home-study beginner to lower-intermediate (A2 to B1) language courses. The presence of distinct, business-related vocabulary was only a minor factor.

Audio Recordings
The audio portion was recorded as: (1) dialogue with pauses, (2) sentence-pattern drills, (3) dialogue without pauses. Each cassette contained the audio covering four lessons. The recordings accompanying the individual lessons ranged from approximately 9 minutes to 15 minutes in length, yielding a total duration of some 13-plus hours of audio for the entire course. Voices on the recordings, male and female, were those of voice-trained native speakers of the language whose speech was clear, well-articulated, lively, and the cadence of which was at a conversational speed, but not rushed.

Course Notes
Regrettably, the course notes accompanying the individual lessons fall short of the mark. That is, they come across as genuine attempts at explaining the elements of grammar that are deployed in the dialogues and sentence-pattern drills without actually identifying the points of grammar in question. It is as if the authors were working under the assumption that the average adult was incapable of coping with the terrifying notion that the German language employs a case system (PG 13). As a summary of grammar was not included for reference purposes, the student is left (once again) wondering what is really going on! For this reason, as for the other Linguaphone courses, one should keep a simple grammar of the target language close at hand when studying with these materials.

Appreciation: Absolutely Fabulous !!!
The authors, by dividing the course into 60 short, well-conceived lessons replete with practicable exercise sets, managed to “breathe a little air” into the standard Linguaphone courses. Although the audio-lingual method was used, the relative shortness of the dialogues and the accompanying sentence-pattern drills struck a remarkably good balance; the student will feel neither exhausted nor underserved at the end of each lesson. These courses (if you can get your hands on a copy) are still very current as to their content and their approach. It is a shame that Linguaphone made the decision to cease publishing them and, as an alternative, to continue with their standard approach.

EDITED:
Tinkering (OCD).
Image.

IMAGE:
Photo downloaded from a chimeric offer of the Linguaphone Business German course.
Attachments
Linguaphone Business German.JPG
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Last edited by Speakeasy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 5:36 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Elexi
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Re: General Linguaphone Discussion

Postby Elexi » Wed Jan 03, 2018 10:50 am

I think Speakeasy has hit on the critical weakness of the Linguaphone method. I like Linguaphone courses, but I find the 'English Grammar for students of X Language' series published by Olivia & Hill to be an essential companion to the grammar notes.
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Seneca
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Re: General Linguaphone Discussion

Postby Seneca » Wed Jan 03, 2018 3:17 pm

Does anyone else have the 30-Lesson Russian Linguaphone course from the 1970's? This one, from up-thread:

ImageImage

The first lesson is "аэропорт".

I had a strange thing happen. I have been an avid collector of Linguaphone courses for many languages I have no interest in ever studying simply because everyone needs a hobby, and I bought this course a while ago. At the time, a former coworker offered to digitize the audio for me since I have no way to play records.

Last night I went to play the audio he gave me, and while it lines up with the course, it is excruciatingly slow, so I thought since I owned the course that it would not be an issue to try to find a version of the audio already spliced online with gaps taken out, etc....

Here is where it gets weird. It seems my former coworker simply downloaded the audio files from online and gave them to me, having not digitized them himself. I have no idea why. I guess so I'd owe him a favor? Either way, here we are. The options I found online are what I already have. So, this is a long way of asking if anyone has this version of Linguaphone's audio already edited/labeled, etc....and would be willing to share? I can give proof I own the course if it is needed. I don't believe this violates any copyright if it is shared with me freely since I own a version of the audio. If wrong, a mod can let me know :)

I figured it made sense to ask first to save myself the time.
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