Re: conversational spanish, french and german tapes

Gregory Callahan (
Thu, 23 Jan 2003 10:29:12 -0800 (PST)

Actually, there are several audiotape products out there that would be reasonable.  I don't have any in front of me right now, since I am not in my building.  Pimsleur offers a number of good products.  If you're interested in a video coures, with accomanying materials available, FRENCH IN ACTION (which has been out since '87 and may be getting a bit dated--unless it's been updated or actually redone in recent years) was an interesting communicative approach.  That telecourse, as well as the Spanish and German equivalents, may still be available from the Annenberg foundation. You could try call 1-800-LEARNER

I was a foreign language teacher (German & French) before I became a librarian, so this topic is still of interest to me.  But my experience has been that "teach-yourself" tapes are of limited value.  Students who use them as supplements to course work and who are well motivated anyway can benefit from them, but for many they're panaceas or, worse, they wind up confusing students who may be experiencing a completely different approach in their classrooms.  As refreshers, however, especially before a trip abroad they can be useful, of course--but again, in such instances, you're talking about advanced and highly motivated students anyway.

That scarcely answers your question, I know.It might be beneficial to do quick searches on Amazon or Barnes & to see what's currently available and what the  "public reviews,"  as well as the usual professional reviewers, are saying.  Good luck.  Feel free to write me directly if you think I might be able to help further.


>From: "David Ofiara"
>To: Multiple recipients of list
>Subject: conversational spanish, french and german tapes
>Date: Thu, 23 Jan 2003 08:43:52 -0800 (PST)
> Can anyone recommend a set of conversational Spanish tapes, a set of conversational French and a set of conversational German tapes that a community college library could purchase?
> Our community college sponsors a large number of overseas academic trips for our students, and we have people from the community who visit the library wanting sets like these. We have sets of Grammar tapes that go along with textbooks in our more formal courses, but, we would like to buy effective, popular conversational sets (on cassette or audio CD) in Spanish, French and German.
> Please specify name of series, vendor, phone number website. Your help is greatly appreciated. Please post to the list.
> Dave Ofiara
> Media and Reference Librarian
> Adirondack Community College
> Queensbury, New York
> e-mail:

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