After Finishing Fluenz
I finished all 5 levels of Fluenz a few months ago now, and I just wanted to give some feedback and suggestions. Maybe other users can give their two cents as well, whether you've completed the program or not!
This is by far the most smooth and natural program I've come across. From the $10 generic "Learn X Language" you can find in your local computer store to Fluenz's competitors, I didn't know learning a new language could be so easy (even when it's hard) until I discovered Fluenz after researching Language-learning software for work. I have been and will continue to recommend Fluenz to anyone I know that wants to learn a new language. In my opinion, Fluenz is a perfect balance between too much information or analysis of a language and not enough. I loved it so much that I finished all 5 levels in less than 6 months! And that's with one-week breaks here and there! I've come to trust Fluenz so much that I don't really know where to go with my Spanish journey from here! I already have a digital pen pal that I write to in Spanish pretty much every day. Sometimes they have to tell me to try again when I don't get it right, but overall they are very impressed with how far I've come.
- The Flashcards are an awesome way to practice. I can't even tell you how many times I've done the flashcards of every lesson, every level, especially since I completed the program. The "Write the Phrases You Hear" workouts of the lessons are, in my opinion, where I was most engaged. It requires you to listen while also realizing how the words and grammar you just learned are used. It would be so amazing if there was also a separate tool, like the Flashcards, that is only for writing what you hear. Even if it only included the phrases that are already recorded and used in the lessons, having this separate resource is a great way to work on listening outside of the lessons. I just started going into the lessons and only doing the listening workouts, but it would be very convenient and useful to be able to access "Listening Flashcards" on their own. Please, please!
- Curriculum. Like I said, I trust Fluenz with my Spanish, but after finishing 5 levels, I really felt like there was no finality or any direction given as to what I should do next! If Fluenz is a path to Fluency, help a brother out! It would be great to see a "curriculum," some sort of diagram, or SOMETHING that says, here is everything you can learn in Spanish, and here is what you learned/will learn with Fluenz. I don't mean individual words or phrases. For example, I only know the subjunctive exists because of comments I've seen here in the Commons. I would have just been confused every time I saw verbs in the subjunctive. I see people suggesting that it's not used as much, but that hasn't been my experience with my pen pals. We also never covered what we would call "imperative sentences" in English. Not "Can I have your number?" but "Give me your number!" ;-) I can go combing through hundreds of language-learning resources that exist out there and start figuring out what I already know, but I would feel so much more confident if Fluenz provided me with what I've been taught and what I still need to learn. Recommendations for other resources would be awesome, too. If you're not going to teach me everything in 5 levels, at least tell me a good place to learn more.
- Advanced Supplement. This kind of goes with my prior point. I would definitely pay for an advanced Spanish supplement to the program. I know recording and organizing the lessons takes a lot of time and effort, but I don't think at the higher levels we really need all of that in order to build onto what we already know. Even if it only included subject matter, explanations, and a few examples and practice workouts, I would be very happy!
- Speaking and Listening. I think it is understood when using a computer program to learn a language that you will have to look elsewhere to get the speaking and listening experience needed to become fluent. I know it's a complicated and cumbersome task, but having the option to talk with someone live would really take Fluenz to the next level. The immersion program is a great way to get that experience, but for those that don't have the time and/or money to participate, it would be great to get feedback and direction from a company you trust.
- If I have to give one criticism of the program, it would be with the way questions are translated. It is very common and casual in English to structure questions the same way that they are in Spanish; that is, the same structure as a statement but with intonation distinguishing it as either a question or statement. This isn't always the case, of course, but sometimes it was more odd to change the structure than to just keep it in line with the Spanish. This was especially clear in the very strange translations for "tampoco." You will never hear someone say in English "Don't you want to go either?" Instead, it would the somewhat rhetorical question, "You don't want to go either?" I think that "tampoco" can be explained better in order to avoid this type of strange translation. It seems unnecessarily complicated when the English translation can usually very easily match up to the Spanish.
I'm determined to become Fluent in Spanish, and I hope I can continue with Fluenz in some way!
Open Jul 30, 2018 - 11:24 AM
Spanish, Spanish > Culture