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Global Access Russian

Book Review

 

Title:

Global Access Russian

Editor:

Penton Overseas Inc.

Publisher:

Penton Overseas Inc., Carlsbad,  CA

ISBN:

0-56015-515-9

Reviewed By:

Frank Fogg

Review Date:

September, 2000

Rating:

Global Access Russian is part of the popular Global Access language series. Global Access combines the beginning  material from the Learn In Your Car and the Vocabulearn programs. The course  consists of four cassette tapes and three booklets.

The two cassettes that form the Learn In Your Car portion of the program are designed to teach the beginning student some basic words and phrases to navigate the Russian language. The program begins with common words such as yes and no, then progresses to more complicated topics such as travel and shopping. Each word or phrase is presented twice in both English and Russian. New words are read by themselves prior to demonstrating their use in a phrase. All of the audio material is printed in a script booklet that is included with this course.

The other two cassettes are from the Vocabulearn language series. Vocabulearn familiarizes the student with the most commonly occurring words in the target language. The material in this portion of the course is not presented in any particular order -- it seems this is to assist in the memorization of the individual words. All of the words are shown in the order they appear on the tape inside the other script booklet that accompanies the course.

Also included with this course is a Harrap's phrasebook. It contains phrases that deal primarily with travel and tourism. The phrasebook also includes a concise 5,000 word bilingual dictionary, and a short section on grammar and conversion tables is included near the end to round out this part of the course. The printing quality of all three booklets is good and easily legible, but would have been more pleasing with the addition of color. The audio quality on the cassettes is also good.

I found most of this course to be useful in assisting me to learn Russian. The pace of the Learn In Your Car portion is just right for a beginner to catch on. Although the Vocabulearn part of the course is not particularly exciting since only words (and not sentences) are being read, it also is useful since one learns only the most essential elements of the language. The length, pace, and content of the both parts of this program are appropriate for commuters since everything is read in both English and Russian. Difficult sentences and words are avoided until the listener has become more comfortable with the material. This course is also attractively priced, costing less than each course would cost separately.

This is a great course for those desiring to gain a basic grasp of the Russian language and to build their Russian vocabulary without spending a fortune. The topical material is targeted to address travel phrases and situations, making it ideal for those planning a trip or vacation. It can be easily used in the car, on the bus, or during those other odd moments that normally are wasted.

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