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Is It Possible To Successfully Learn French Fast?

Learning a new language can be a long and difficult process; many of us will have spent years in classrooms during our school days trying to learn a second language to pass our exams, only to come out with a basic understanding. This initial experience with language learning may make some mature students feel that taking up French in later life will be just as long and difficult, something that can be discouraging for people that need to learn French fast; however, with the right attitude and approach to learning it is possible to learn the French you require in a short space of time.

Consistency and simplicity is much more beneficial than accuracy

The key point here is that when you are looking to learn French fast it is generally not because you want to master the language perfectly in record time but rather because you have an important meeting or trip coming up and you want to be able to speak enough of the language with confidence. This need is the reason why simple,vocab-focused methods such as flashcards and the Audio-Lingual approach are so beneficial for speedy learning over Grammar-Translation based methods, which put too much effort into the intricate, academic side of language learning.

To learn any language fast you will have to be a little selective over the phrasing and elements of language that you study and concentrate on consistency revising those that matter most. Too much attention to accuracy can be time consuming so it is best to use some simple audio files or visual aids to help you retain the information. Some people find that visual cues are the best triggers for revision while others say that learning through listening is ideal because it is more primal and relates to our experiences of learning our mother tongue. Either way, it is important to keep up the lessons.

Immerse yourself in the language as much as possible

This idea of constant revision for quick retention of information is not the only way that you can help familiarise yourself with the French language on a regular basis. Learning vocabulary and phrasing through basic materials is a great starting point but there are other steps you can take to improve all your skills in a fast and enjoyable way. There are four elements to language learning – reading, writing, speaking and listening – and embracing them all can help you understand how the language is used. Additionally, learning from cultural media can offer a better insight into conversational use, prepare you for the French you will actually have to use and prove to be a great way to immerse yourself in the language.

Taking in information on a continual basis and developing each of these skills may seem like a challenge but there are methods of doing so that are more enjoyable than continually repeating the same phrases or listening to the same audio files. Watching foreign films and dubbed TV shows can offer a mix of conversational French and visual subtitles, listening to French podcasts can provide more material and context than audio course material and video chats with native speakers can offer the chance to practice your speech and pronunciation.

Is the Pimsleur approach the best way to learn French fast

It is easy to see why many people that want to learn French quickly would turn to a program such as the Pimsleur, particularly when it gives the bold sales pitch that it can help people speak their chosen language within 10 days. 10 days may be a little optimistic but it does seem that within this time frame, subscribers to this ongoing language program can certainly increase their understanding with ease and convenience. Part of the reason why this particular approach is seen as one of the faster ways to learn French is because the lesson structure and materials emphasise the importance of continual revision of material and the benefits of the Audio-Lingual method. The approach is not perfect – and many people are put-off by the narrow focus of the material and high cost – but it has a lot of potential for anybody needing to learn quickly.

Summary: what should you do if you want to learn French fast?

The Pimsleur approach is certainly worth trialling because of the speed and approach to language learning, although buyers must be careful not to get trapped by the expensive renewal program and make sure they take advantage of the 30-day money back guarantee. It is perhaps not the ideal method for speedy French but it is a great way of learning and retaining vocabulary quickly and, if you add in other elements and embrace the idea of immersion, it could be a useful weapon in a larger arsenal. In short, consistency and commitment to immersing yourself in the language are more beneficial when learning French quickly than accuracy and academic structure; the more material you absorb in your short study time the more likely it is that it will stick and, while French natives will not mind if you mess up your sentence structure, they will not be able to help if you cannot remember the right words.

1 Comment

  • I need to learn some basic French soon because of a business trip to France. I hope this Pimsleur method will help….

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