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Complete German with Two Audio CDs: A Teach Yourself Guide Paperback – Mar 19 2010

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 496 pages
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill; 5 edition (March 19 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0071663827
  • ISBN-13: 978-0071663823
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 4.3 x 22.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 907 g
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #644,405 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

About the Author

Paul Coggle is an experienced university teacher of German, who has taught courses from beginners to postgraduate level. He was a pioneer in the development and use of multimedia language learning materials at the University of Kent, and has acted as a Language Consultant for the BBC and the University of Cambridge Language Centre. He is series editor for the Teach Yourself language courses.
Heiner Schenke was born in Hannover and is a native speaker of German. He has taught German at university level for many years and is currently teaching at the University of Westminster.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x9f8a4330) out of 5 stars 13 reviews
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9f4d31bc) out of 5 stars Good looks but scope for improvement Dec 22 2010
By LangTeacher - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Glossy paper and colourful print leave an excellent first impression. Another plus for many learners is the emphasis on practical situations. But there is scope for improvement, mainly at the bottom and top end. For a beginner, the basic stages may be a bit dense. It's more for someone coming back to the language after a break. The claims made as to the level reached also need revising. The course doesn't take the learner to the promised level of competence.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9f16803c) out of 5 stars Very good course May 30 2013
By A christian - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The new Teach Yourself language books are coming now with better quality paper and color illustrations (German is one example). Despite the fact that their traditional method was already very good, it seems to have improved even more with this German language course. Instead of giving vocabulary in small chunks, it now gives new words piecemeal, almost one by one, as even the titles of the activities introduce new words as you go through the course. Although most words are explained, some are not, whose meaning can usually be inferred from the rest of the context. I like to study this course with an online dictionary available, so I can write down every new word I learn in case it's not explicitly explained.
Exceptionally, while most Teach Yourself language books have 20 chapters, this one has 23, as German is a slightly more difficult language and the topics are introduced really gradually. Even after finishing all the 23 chapters, you won't have learned a lot of german (even the future tense is not covered), but you'll surely learn enough to get you by during a trip, for example. Sometimes I wish the content (grammar points) were not introduced so slowly, and a little bit more content were introduced, like the future tense for example, but I'm not sure it would do good.
Also for the sake of simplicity some topics are introduced as they come up, eg, the fact that adjectives in german are declined differently with the definite and indefinite article. Since concepts come so gradually, sometimes you cannot easily look in retrospect and have a full view of the grammar taught, and thus feel entirely confident, but this is a minor complaint.
In the case of the German language in particular, and a few other languages, the Teach Yourself series also offers an 'Improve your German' course, which can take you further in the language(s).
This course taught me German well from scratch, and gave me confidence to speak it correctly. I really recommend it.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9f5c7a50) out of 5 stars Dieses Buch ist enfach toll! Dec 15 2012
By Andrew Miller - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is easily the best book I've found to help bring-together my German studies. I've been learning the language on my own over the last year or two, and this really, really helps. Are you confused about when to use which adjective ending? This book easily answers your questions. Do you still have a hard time trying to identify when you should use the proper case? This book, once again, easily shows you correct placement.

If I had not already completed "German Made Simple," this book may not have been enough to teach me the language, but my German wife has been absolutely amazed by how quickly my speech has progressed once I've started this book. Not only that, I can complete an entire chapter in about 15 minutes, and have had at least 2-3 "a-ha!" moments every time I use their system to study.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9f90e060) out of 5 stars Good "illustration" of German, with one very annoying feature! Dec 31 2012
By Jamais sans mon minou - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
The Teach Yourself Complete German course is comprised of a pocket-book sized manual and two CDs. So then, let's start by agreeing that it would be very difficult for ANY publisher to provide more than a brief introduction to a language. The authors have taken the common, yet proven, approach of: (a) presenting dialogues in the target language that (b) are accompanied by a brief discussion of the most important points of grammar illustrated in the dialogues and (c) are followed by a very few exercises to assist the learner with the new vocabulary and concepts. As is the case for many other basic language courses, various scenarios are introduced so as to present additional vocabulary and illustrate points of grammar.

One of the more PLEASANT FEATURES of this small package is the QUALITY of the DIALOGUES, all of which are written for adults, who discuss adult issues, in an adult fashion. However, be forewarned, as this necessarily imposes are heavier workload on the student than many competing courses! There are no "la plume de ma tante" phrases here ... an expression that was drilled into me in high school so many, many years ago.

Despite the foregoing, my first reaction to this course was "these are great dialogues, but what am I supposed to do to learn the language?" That is, the course seems to be more of an "illustration" of German than a self-study guide. Ultimately, MY ANSWER to this question would be something like: "repeat the dialogues until you can recall them from memory." That is, in the limited space available to the authors, they seem to have opted for quality dialogues over exercises. Perhaps other reviewers might like to comment?

The course manual has, for me, one very ANNOYING FEATURE. Some -- but not all -- of the recorded texts are included in an appendix. However, the audio recordings themselves are imbedded within the lesson units along with the major part of lesson material. This means that the student will be needlessly flipping back-and-forth between the appendix and the lesson units. I cannot, for the life of me, imagine what advantage this might procure, particularly in a self-study course!

I have assigned only THREE STARS to this self-study course because (a) I find that many competing products do a better job of helping the student acquire the basics of German and (b) I simply cannot abide the needless frustration of having to turn to the appendix for some of the recorded texts. I would have given TWO STARS had it not been for the quality of the dialogues.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9f2c2360) out of 5 stars Great Book Oct. 28 2011
By GBU - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I really enjoyed the book, it really remembers me my English classes where we used to listen to the recorder and try to understand what they were saying to later associate the informantion that we listened to what is asked in the book.
The big difference is that i'm learning German without need to go to one school.