Michel Thomas-like French course taught by native French speaker
May 11, 2016 7:03 PM   Subscribe

Is there a good French language cd / audio course similar to the Michel Thomas one, but taught by a native French speaker (a male one preferably)?

Is there a good French language cd / audio course out there similar to the Michel Thomas one, but taught by a native French speaker (a male speaker preferably)?

Just started going through the Michel Thomas course, and it's pretty good, but he has something of a Polish / German accent when he speaks French. Of course, ideally one should learn the accent as a native would speak it.

posted by cotesdurhone to Writing & Language (3 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
The Michel Thomas Method is owned by Hodder and Stoughton, who are very strict in enforcing the patent, so you're not going to find a lot of similar courses out there.

Paul Noble, however, seems to be getting away with his courses that are said to be a very close copy of Michel Thomas' (or maybe he just pays royalties). He uses a native speaker. I don't know if it's as good as Michel Thomas', though.

In a very different style, but also with native speakers, you have the Pimsleur method. I haven't done the French course, but I'm doing the Swedish course to complement Duolingo and it has helped me a lot, specially the confidence gained by using more complex sentences relatively fast (something it has in common with the Michel Thomas Method).

Having learned several languages, though, I'd tell you not to worry that much about the accent of the teacher as long as they're not blatantly mispronouncing stuff. You're going to have an accent even if you learn from a native. That's just the way it is. Your brain is not used to producing sounds a certain way. Over the years of speaking French with french people your accent will probably improve (for some people it doesn't), and if at the beginning you catch a bit of a polish accent together with your natural accent it won't make a huge difference.
posted by Promethea at 9:37 PM on May 11, 2016 [1 favorite]

If you take DuoLingo's French course, you will be using (I think) an Ivona produced TTS system with a number of male a female voices. A bit more variety than Michel (previously, by me) . Pierre Capretz (previously) "French in Action" now looks a but dated in some ways - but is still extremely innovative in others. . Example. You will be listening to Mireille Belleau and friends, chouette!.
posted by rongorongo at 10:42 PM on May 11, 2016 [3 favorites]

I can't comment on similarity to the Michael Thomas method, but anyone looking for instructional audio of well-pronounced French should try out the now free DLI and FSI courses. Both courses have hours and hours of audio for repetition and for grammar drills. Along with downloadable pdf course books.

The FSI French Phonology module is particularly useful in getting the elementary sounds of proper French squared away from the start.
posted by bertran at 1:08 AM on May 12, 2016 [3 favorites]

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