Language Learning on the go: Review of Rosetta Stone v4 for Mac & iPad

Posted on December 28, 2012

Rosetta Stone 4

Language Learning Software

Rosetta Stone v4 for Mac and iPad app is a great product for anyone looking to learn a new language. I’m sure you’ve heard of this language-learning software as the company pumps a lot of resources in its marketing and advertising. But don’t be under the impression that consumer overexposure is what makes Rosetta Stone so popular. The simple fact is that users love it because it is easy to use and it works. In fact, my wife used the product to learn Italian so we have first-hand knowledge of its success. Read on to get to know version 4 of Rosetta Stone for Mac OSX with an overview of why the TOTALe companion iPad app is incredibly effective for learning on the go.

Rosetta stone boxes

Rosetta Stone Overview

Rosetta Stone v4 provides language learning for 31 different languages. When you purchase version 4, also known as Rosetta Stone TOTALe 4, you receive Rosetta COURSE, Rosetta WORLD, Rosetta STUDIO, and a trial to the TOTALe Mobile Companion (see the bullets below for more information). The “trial” put me off at first. It’s somewhat frustrating to have to pay an additional monthly fee on top of what you’ve already paid in software costs. This is the main area I think Rosetta Stone could improve upon.

Griping aside, the software is incredibly intuitive and uses easy to follow sounds and examples to help users learn the languages. One thing you should remember is that Rosetta Stone is no crash course. It is a comprehensive language-learning software that requires a commitment from the user to go through each level to learn a new language.

Rosetta stone box open

Here’s what you get

  • Rosetta COURSE – The standard Rosetta Stone software found in previous versions.
  • Rosetta STUDIO – Live online classes with native speakers as instructional tutors.
  • Rosetta WORLD – Brings a social aspect to the software with gaming and a community.
  • TOTALe Mobile Companion – Mobile app for iPad and other mobile devices.

Language Learning Course Structure

Next, I’ll take you through a quick look at the Rosetta Stone v4 for Mac course structure. If you are just starting to learn a language, you are better off going through the complete Rosetta Stone language-learning course. Following the tried and true method is the best way to succeed. However, I do like the ability to just “brush up” on a language you have learned previously. This is perfect if have travel plans and need a refresher course.

Rosetta stone homepage

Language “Levels”

All of the levels in each language course consist of 4 units. Within those units, users will find 4 lessons. The lessons are then broken down into a variety of sections. Units touch on ideas like language basics, travel, past and future, dining and vacation, greetings and introductions, and friends and social life. Each lesson will have sections on reading, writing, speaking, grammar, etc. Take a look at what you do each and every day with your native language and you’ll see where they are going with these sections.

Rosetta stone course image

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Summary

The PROS: Rosetta Stone rocks. Plain and simple. It’s helped my wife learn Italian, and has helped me brush up on the language. The addition of Rosetta STUDIO is a nice touch. It really enhances the learning process by providing a native speaker to deliver live tutoring. Overall this is a great product. I am completely satisfied with my purchase.

The CONS: While the iPad app is free and nice in theory, you have to be online to use it. This doesn’t do much good when traveling and not in major wifi areas. The software isn’t so big that it can’t fit on my iPad, so there’s really no reason to have to stream it. The issue of affordability is also a problem with many users, and the additional monthly fee for the iPad app is somewhat annoying.

In the end, if you want to learn a language without paying for major instructor time, Rosetta Stone 4 is absolutely your best bet.

Overall Rating: 9/10

Price: Varies | Trial? No | Homepage

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