Pimsleur Russian Comprehensive
by Daniel Greenfield
(Rockford, IL USA)
About eight years ago I did a very close study of all three levels of Pimsleur Russian 1,2,3. At the end of the third course, I could speak very basic Russian without too much difficulty. I went to Moscow soon after, and could not understand a word that was spoken, although I was able to communicate in basic sentences to the people I met. And they seemed enormously appreciative that I knew their language. The course itself is decent. I don't think it is realistic to expect to become fluent in Russian even after 90 lessons. The Vocabu-Learn Russian tapes (all three) were a huge help in fleshing out the Russian vocabulary and idioms, and I would strongly urge anyone who is using the Pimsleur Russian to invest another $50 in buying all three of the Russian Vocabulearn tapes, for they will greatly increase your vocabulary. Finally, in the end, there is not substitute to learning grammar, but just as important in the case of Russian is learning and becoming comfortable with Russian script, that is, being able to write (not print) the Russian letters. Once you can begin to actually write your words and sentences down you will begin to really make headway.
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