Intro

Rocket FrenchDo you want to learn French, but aren’t quite sure which program is best? I have spent hundreds of hours using all of the major language learning systems, including Rocket French, and built this site to show you the ins and outs of each system before you buy.

Based on that experience, I feel very comfortable recommending Rocket French as an alternative to more expensive language software because of its comprehensive grammar explanations, fun vocabulary games, downloadable MP3s, community learning forum, and certification program.

Let me walk you through the specifics of their tools and teaching style in the full Rocket French review below.


Features

Here are the key features of Rocket French:

  • 10 Survival Kit Lessons
  • 33 Interactive Audio Lessons
  • 31 Language & Culture Lessons
  • Downloadable MP3 Lessons
  • MegaFrench Software Games
  • Community Learning Forum
  • Quizzes, Progress Tracking and Certification
  • Educational Support
  • Technical Support
  • Mac/PC Compatible Lessons
  • 24/7 Online Access
  • Lifetime Membership


Video


Screenshots

Rocket French Interactive Audio 1

Rocket French Culture - Medical System


Certificates

Each level of Rocket French has two proficiency tests available for you to take. These are great for assessing your progress and at the end you will receive a certificate that can serve as proof of your competency in French.

Here are mine:

Rocket French Certificate 1.1Rocket French Certificate 1.2

Rocket French Certificate 2.1Rocket French Certificate 2.2


FAQ

Q: If I don’t like it, can I get a refund?
A: Yes, contact them within 60 days of purchase and they will refund your money.

Q: How long does each lesson take?
A: The lessons typically require between 30 and 60 minutes, depending on the content and your experience with French. The audio lessons are around 20 minutes long and you’ll need another 20 – 40 minutes for practice. The culture sections are very brief, but the accompanying grammar will take a good deal longer. You will also need to set aside time for reviewing vocabulary and verb conjugations.

Q: Will my internet speed affect the learning experience?
A: For the most part, internet speed will not affect the speed of the site, though you may have to wait a bit longer for the MP3s to download. I was able to use all the features without problems over a basic broadband connection in China, which is notoriously slow for foreign websites.

Still have questions? Ask them in the comments below.

 

Properties

French Lessons
Overall Rating

Using a weighted rating algorithm based on 31 different criteria, this is the rating for the program as a whole.

92.8/100 Rating
Rating: 92.8%
Ranked #1

Every product has it's strengths. Choose a product whose strengths match your priorities.

Grammar & Price
Price

This is the price for the recommended version of the product.

$99
Value for Price

A program may not be the absolute best, but if the price is relatively low it will offer much better value for the price.

97.0/100 Rating
Value for Price: 97.0%
Guarantee

The number of days of the guarantee period. During this time you can return the product for a full refund if desired.

60 days
Lesson Format

How is the material accessed: Mac/PC, online, and/or mobile.

Online, MP3, Mac/PC
Levels Available

Number of levels produced by the company. Typically these can be purchased individually or packaged together for a discount.

3
Delivery

How quickly the product will arrive.

Instant Online Access
Lifetime Access

Is it a limited online subscription period?

24/7 Access

Is this program available at any time of day?

Educational Help

Is there a support forum where I can ask questions about grammar and vocabulary?

Technical Help

Do they have a dedicated team to solve any technical issues that might arise?

Visit Site

The site where you can purchase the recommended version of the product.

What's Included

What is in the box or what will be available online.

24/7 online access to over 100 lessons, downloadable MP3 recordings, downloadable games and vocabulary software, progress tracking and certification
Lesson Length

How long does each lesson last? How much extra time will I need to devote to studying the material between lessons?

20 minutes for audio, 20 minutes for practice, 20 minutes for vocab and conjugation review
Lessons/Level

How many lessons are there in total for each level of the program?

~70: 10 survival, 30 audio, 30 grammar/culture
Education

This rating is based on the criteria of: reading, writing, speaking, listening, vocabulary etc...

98.1/100 Rating
Educational Quality: 98.1%
Interface

This rating is based on the criteria of: aesthetics, layout/flow, and production quality.

81.7/100 Rating
Interface Quality: 81.7%
Live Tutoring

Will I have the opportunity to practice with a native speaker as part of the program?

Downloadable

These are supplemental materials that can be downloaded as desired.

Games

Are there fun supplemental opportunities to practice the material?

Vocab Builder

Is there a tool for reviewing vocab outside of the standard lessons?

Quizzes

You can use these to check if you really absorbed the content of each lesson.

Track Progress

This will tell you where you are in each lesson and how close you are to completion of the course.

Certification

When I finish the program, is there a certificate that I can show to others as proof of my proficiency?

Bonus Materials

What materials are available outside of the core lessons?

Downloadable MP3 Lessons, MegaFrench Software Games, Community Learning Forum
User Experience

This rating is based on the criteria of: aesthetics, layout/flow, and production quality.

84.5/100 Rating
User Experience: 84.5%
Best Deal

We do not sell guitar lessons; we are a free guitar lessons review service. This link goes to Rocket French

Full Review

Summary

Rating: 92.8/100. I’ve studied French for several years and used countless resources. If you’re looking for a comprehensive resource at a great price, then Rocket French is it.

Pros:

– Great price
– In-depth grammar explanations
– Vocab and conjugation tools
– Downloadable MP3s
– Learning forums
– Lifetime access
– Certification

Cons:
– Interface could be more polished
– May be too traditional for some learners

User Experience

The overall user experience is good, though it seems more functional than beautiful. Everything looks nice and works like it should, but it lacks the “wow factor” of other programs.

– Works smoothly and is well-organized
– Progress tracking helps with motivation
– Design feels slightly dated, but not too bad

Rocket French Interface

Rocket French has a very user-friendly interface with a logical and easy to use navigation bar. Though it could still be streamlined a bit to simplify the screen while you are working through a lesson, the design never detracted from the learning experience. The aesthetics of the interface are nice, but functionality seems to have been the focus of the designers.

At the top of each screen you have a tab for the level that you are working on, followed by four sections: Interactive Audio Lessons, Language & Culture Lessons, Survival Kit, and Games. Except for the games, you will have a progress tracker for each section that shows you how many lessons you’ve been through in percentage terms. Below that is the lesson that you’ve chosen to work on with a marker for recording your confidence level regarding the material. The left sidebar includes some supplementary tools:

– My Community: A forum for asking questions
– My Motivation: Articles on the language learning process
– My Notes: A place to record the key points for each lesson
– My Vocab: A vocab list that you can add to and customize
– Latest News: Feature updates to the software

Educational Value

There are four main components to the Rocket French program: the Survival Kit, Interactive Audio Lessons, Language & Culture Lessons, and the Mega French software.

The Survival Kit is a great place to get started as it will quickly take you through ten lessons focusing on the most essential parts of French. It goes through: pronunciation, days of the week, countries, getting around the city, food, clothing, colors, around the house, beginning numbers and advanced numbers. I recommend starting here and then moving on to the other sections.

The lessons are broken into 3 levels and each level is divided into 8 groups, consisting of about 10 lessons each. Each of the groups is split between the Interactive Audio Lessons and the Language & Culture Lessons.

The Interactive Audio Lessons each start with an audio lesson of about 20-30 minutes where an instructor will walk you through a dialog and explain the relevant vocabulary and grammar points. There is also a transcript of the dialog for easy review and the audio file can be downloaded as an MP3 if you prefer to listen away from your computer.

Following the lesson you will proceed to a practice section where you can review each of the key phrases with a short audio clip and practice repeating the phrase until you sound like the native speaker. Rocket French also includes a nice audio recorder that allows you to easily record the phrase and compare the digital frequency waves to those of the native speaker so that you can see how close you are. Here’s what it looks like:

Rocket French Audio Clip

Following this there is a short quiz for you to gauge your listening comprehension as well as some written vocabulary. You can also enter any notes that you might want to make for quick review later. All of your notes can be accessed through the My Notes section in the sidebar.

The Language & Culture Lessons comprise the second half of each group of 8-10 lessons. These focus on common phrases and grammar structures with plenty of examples and an audio recording of each one. The grammar is explained through text, rather than audio, which I find to be easier to review and understand as the explanations can be read and reread without having to pause and rewind. Audio is great for dialogues and listening practice, but the grammar works really well in this text format, as you will want to go through the new material a few times before moving on.

The culture portion of these lessons are brief articles on various aspects of life in France. These range from relationships, to food and wine, to telephone etiquette, to interviews. If you haven’t had the pleasure of spending time in France, they help to put the language in context and provide a bit of motivation toward your next trip.

MegaFrench Welcome Screen

MegaFrench (above) is a downloadable piece of software for both Windows and Mac that comes with a large set of vocabulary cards with pictures to reinforce and build on the vocabulary presented in the lessons. You can test you self by listening to the spoken French and choosing the matching English or seeing the English and choosing the French. I find that it’s quite valuable to practice translating vocabulary in both directions when learning a language, so I enjoy using both options.

They also include MegaVerbs for testing your verb conjugation skills (how verbs change depending on the tense), which allows you to choose the tense that you want to focus on. With this tool, they give you the English and you will need to type the French, with accents. Creating the language instead of simply recognizing it is always more difficult and they were smart to include this functionality as well.

MegaVerbs Sample

Is Rocket French for You?

This really depends on your learning style and budget. If you are looking for the absolute best learning experience then I recommend you read my reviews on Fluenz French and Rosetta Stone French. These two programs do a better job of streamlining the content, and have a nicer interface, but the content and educational value is very similar and they are substantially more expensive.

All in all, Rocket French really is the total package at a great price. With approximately 75 lessons per level and the additional software tools, there is a ton of material to move you from novice to speaking comfortably in a variety of situations. If you already studied French in school and are coming back to pick the language up again, you may want to start with the second level, Rocket French Premium Plus. Or you may choose to start from the beginning to refresh your memory and ensure that you don’t skip anything.

I can assure you from the year I spent in France that the French taught here is very practical, but also quite comprehensive and will allow you to say much more than, “Where is the toilet?” Whether you are learning out of cultural interest, looking to study abroad, or preparing for a business trip, you’ll find everything you need and then some with Rocket French. Bonne chance!

Conclusion to my Rocket French Review

I hope you enjoyed my review of the Rocket French program and that this has helped you figure out if it’s right for you.

Still not sure? Have a question about Rocket French? Leave a comment below. I’d love to hear from you!



Post Comment