Best app for learning mandarin?

Hyperchaotic

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 19, 2005
50
31
I was wondering if my iMac could give me a hand learning Mandarin. Google reveals some MacOS apps for this purpose but it is impossible for me to see what is good or not. Any recommendations will be very much appreciated :)
 

superbovine

macrumors 68030
Nov 7, 2003
2,872
0
Hyperchaotic said:
I was wondering if my iMac could give me a hand learning Mandarin. Google reveals some MacOS apps for this purpose but it is impossible for me to see what is good or not. Any recommendations will be very much appreciated :)
get a real teacher.
 

annk

Administrator
Staff member
Apr 18, 2004
13,946
5,433
Somewhere over the rainbow
First, I have to say I agree with superbovine - you really need a teacher, and preferably a class.

That said, I´ve used both Wenlin (expensive) and Clavis Sinica (inexpensive) to complement my Chinese studies at a university here, and found both to be very good. Wenlin seems to operate much more smoothly, but Clavis is fine if you don´t have the bucks for Wenlin.

Both programs will help you through texts and give you pronunciation, but you´ll need - at the very least, and in addition to a teacher - GOOD grammar books (like Basic Chinese and Intermediate Chinese, Yip and Rimmington, published by Routledge). Those grammars are fantastic, I use them all the time as reference, but they´re very condensed - you really need quite a bit of vocabulary for the examples to make sense and be useful.

http://www.clavisinica.com/
http://wenlin.com/
 

Hyperchaotic

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 19, 2005
50
31
Well...

Hadn't quite expected those first answers, guess I shouldv'e been more specific.
My wife is chinese. I just wanted to play a bit with my Mac and see if I could supplement the learning a bit on my favourite toy.

Thanks for the tips, I'm heading there :)
 

annk

Administrator
Staff member
Apr 18, 2004
13,946
5,433
Somewhere over the rainbow
Hyperchaotic said:
Hadn't quite expected those first answers, guess I shouldv'e been more specific.
My wife is chinese. I just wanted to play a bit with my Mac and see if I could supplement the learning a bit on my favourite toy.

Thanks for the tips, I'm heading there :)
Start with Clavis then, you might find it´s enough. With a Chinese spouse, you certainly don´t have to look far for a teacher, lucky you :D
 

flyking09

macrumors newbie
May 14, 2009
2
0
Chinese

Hi all,

I am interested learning Chinese as well. As far as I know it is really difficult to learn a langugae like Chinese. I was teaching myself for a while, but I failed. Now I am looking for a Chinese language that could significantly help me make progress in Chinese learning.

Any of you happen to know any program that is both practical and could be flexible. Please let me know know.

Thank you..
 

softwater

macrumors newbie
Dec 3, 2010
10
0
Thailand
Have a look at memrise and search in langauges for mandarin; there's quite a lot of stuff there and for various levels. Hsk1 and upwards.

I've been using it as a rank beginner and found it excellent, and most of it is free - needs a web browser though, don't think there's any downloadables.

http://www.memrise.com
 

nnoble

macrumors 6502
Jun 19, 2011
418
470
Rosetta Stone here... well at least that was what I used to learn Russian... but I cannot stress that going to night classes is the best thing to really learn a language...
Sometime back I read that Rosetta Stone doesn't work anywhere near as well with Putonghua as it does with other languages.
[doublepost=1522848573][/doublepost]
I was wondering if my iMac could give me a hand learning Mandarin. Google reveals some MacOS apps for this purpose but it is impossible for me to see what is good or not. Any recommendations will be very much appreciated :)
Writing and Reading is a huge commitment. Rosetta Stone has a very good reputation - but when I looked into it, it seems Rosetta doesn't work so well for Mandarin. Listening and Speaking, very much less intensive, and actually fun, particularly with a Chinese speaking wife at hand. Pimsleur Mandarin Chinese is good to get started and can actually take you a long way. You just have to ignore some of twee things they judge as being conversational. Pimsleur work hard to close down sites and individuals that take the trouble to transcribe the scripts into PinYin. But if you can get hold of these transcriptions, they are indispensable for the more advanced Pimsleur recordings. I used all of this on an iPhone / iPod whle in China where it was then easy to try it out on the nearest Chinese person at hand. The more it worked, the faster I got through the material. The first thing you realise is that not everyone speaks Mandarin, but the majority can and will understand you.
 
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