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Monday, December 5th
Rosetta Stone may have been the first (or the only!) name that came to mind when you first thought about taking Italian lessons. Remember the days when you could only buy it on CD-ROMs from a mall kiosk? (That is, if you're old enough to remember shopping malls....) Back then, these language courses were some of the most expensive around - but not anymore! Today, you can get access to Italian or even to all of the languages in the Rosetta Stone catalog for a low monthly price or a one-time cost.
Set up a free 3-day trial
Rosetta Stone would be more than happy for you to take the plunge and subscribe to their language lessons, but you probably want to try it out first. To get a three-day free trial, choose Italian in the dropdown box at the bottom of the homepage and enter an email address. You'll immediately be taken to the questions needed to set up your account, which includes your current level of fluency in Italian, if any, and your purpose for learning the language (so that Rosetta Stone can put you in the learning track with the vocabulary that corresponds to your needs). You'll then be taken to the study plan that matches your answers, but you can change it at any time if your learning goals change.
Speech recognition is important here
One key component of the Italian lessons on Rosetta Stone is speech recognition. Before you go into your first lesson, you'll have to specify if you're an adult male, adult female, or a child: your voice profile will be set to match that.
Learning through immersion, not instruction
Unlike many language courses that use English to teach grammar and vocabulary in Italian, Rosetta Stone uses an immersion approach. What does that look like? With every language they teach, including Italian, you can expect the very first lesson to start out with images of boys and girls, men and women, paired with simple verbs like "drinks" , "eats" , "runs" , and "reads" . The idea is that, over time, you'll naturally start to recognize the differences and pick up on the structure, like gendered nouns and singular vs. plural verbs.
Familiarity makes it easy
Because Italian uses the same alphabet as English and many of the words are already familiar, this immersion-based structure tends to work fairly well. (We can't say the same about languages like Russian or Chinese, though!) But, if you're looking for English translations, detailed grammar explanations, or fun cultural lessons, you're not going to get that with Rosetta Stone's Italian lessons.
A little lacking in content beyond beginner level
It's not made super-obvious, but you can move around in topics as needed. Go to the link of "Explore All Content" in the dashboard to see any extras you might like to use or to choose a lesson with vocabulary you want to learn. During your 3-day free trial, we really encourage you to click through as much as you can, so that you'll have a good feel for what Rosetta Stone's Italian lessons offer - and what they don't. For example, if you've already studied Italian for a while, you may not find much here to challenge you: despite being advertised as suitable for beginning to advanced students, the topics definitely don't go much beyond a first-year Italian course (best evidenced by the lack of inclusion of any verb tenses beyond simple present and past).
More economical than ever before
On the upside, Rosetta Stone has never been so budget-friendly. You can pay $35.97 for a 3-month subscription to their Italian lessons, $95.88 for 12 months, or pay a one-time fee of $299 for lifetime access to all of the languages in the Rosetta Stone library. You may even get more savings; during our many visits to the site, we've spotted several discounts, one of which included lifetime access for just $179. And, all three options are protected by a 30-day money-back guarantee, getting you a full refund in that first month if you change your mind.
Good choice if you want immersion-based beginner Italian lessons
Rosetta Stone does immersion language instruction like no other, and if you learn best by studying intuitively their Italian lessons might be a great fit. However, for students who like the comfort of learning from the perspective of English, who want direct explanations of grammar, or who need more advanced content, Rosetta Stone isn't going to cut it. Be sure to use the free trial as much as possible before committing to a paid plan here.
Sight-seeing at the ancient ruins of Pompeii, a romantic gondola ride along the canals of Venice, or a visit to the art museums of Florence: if you're dreaming of a vacation to Italy, you would be in good company among the 94 million tourists who visit annually. In addition to being able to ask for directions or order your dinner without a hitch, there are many benefits to learning Italian before your trip.
If you're after a unique, more authentic experience in Italy, speaking the language can help you gain a deeper understanding of the culture, become friends with locals, and give you the confidence to explore places off the beaten track. Plus, Italian is an official language of other popular travel destinations, including Switzerland, San Marino, Slovenia, and Malta.
Italian is spoken by 63-85 million people around the world. Among tourists planning Mediterranean getaways, adults who want to find a use for their high school Latin, and people interested in reconnecting with their roots, Italian continues to be a popular choice for avid and casual language learners alike.
Aside from hopping on a plane and spending time in Italy, what's the best way to learn the language? Some of that depends on you! Are you most comfortable learning in a more traditional, structured way, with detailed grammatical explanations in English and lots of exercises for practice? Or would you prefer a smartphone app that you can use when killing time during your day, to do a quick flashcard session of key words and phrases? There are Italian lessons for each approach - and there's nothing stopping you from using several different services to get a good mix of materials.
Besides the overall teaching style, what other factors should you consider when deciding how to learn Italian? Keep these criteria in mind to help you choose:
To help you get the most out of your studies, TopConsumerReviews.com has evaluated and ranked today's best options for online Italian lessons. We're sure this information will help you find the right path for your language journey. Buona fortuna!
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