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Declan Software is a teach yourself German program which takes the tried and tested ‘flash card’ technique into the 21st century by including sound wave images, native speaker audio and multiple ways in which you can test yourself using multimedia applications. The flashcard technique has been used for perhaps hundreds of years as a way of getting a large amount of vocab to stick in your head. As well as linking thousands of words to their meanings, Declan software vitally teaches you how these words are pronounced. As it is infinitely more useful to learn vocabulary along with its correct pronunciation, especially in the context of conversational German, Declan software is a great way to build up a strong base of German words that can be used in real situations immediately. Users can also test themselves and there is even a typing exercise with which you can not only practice the vocab you have leant but you also get a taste of written German; a trick missed by many other flashcard based programs in this category. Although there may be some more sophisticated flashcard based programs on the market, Declan Software is by far the cheapest.
Declan Software is not a complete German language solution and neither does it market itself as such. Those of us looking for a comprehensive course will need to study grammatical rules which cannot be effectively taught with the flash card technique alone. Without this kind of understanding you will never progress to an advanced level of German. In this case, Declan Software must be viewed in one of two ways; an introduction to German or a supplement to additional sources of learning. Firstly, in terms of basic understanding, vocabulary forms the building blocks of any language and is consequently the most useful part; you’d be surprised at how easy it is to ask simple questions, understand basic instructions or read a German menu with no understanding of the grammar at all! Furthermore, many believe that our brains naturally pick out the grammatical patterns of a language, meaning all you have to do is expose yourself to them. Secondly, in terms of language acquisition, it is proven that students with a solid vocab base fair far better in all aspects of the language learning process than those without. Overall, Declan Software should provide a cheap, simple and effective solution to those looking for a supplement to their German classes or who want to get the basics of German in order to make the most of a holiday there.
We would recommend anyone to try the 15 day trial as this will give you a taste of the flashcard system as well as Declan Software’s approach to it. If you are sufficiently impressed, downloading and installing the program is straight forward. As well as the test yourself tools, which, although basic, make a welcome addition, you will get unlimited access to an extensive library of word lists which can easily be downloaded and played on your Declan Software. We hope that in the future Declan Software will become more portable as there do exist portable apps for Declan Software French. However, unfortunately German learners will be tied to their computers while learning. However, watch this space, if the French app proves popular enough there may soon be a German version to follow. We found Declan Software to be a no thrills yet effective, teach yourself German product that will suit beginners or intermediate users in different ways.
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