Rosetta Stone

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angela&boys

  • Reviewed on Tuesday, February 11, 2014
  • Grades Used: High School
  • Dates used: Aug 2013-Feb 2014
I am at my wits end.

We purchased this new from Christian Book Distributors in the summer of 2013, just prior to the start of the new year. It is the homeschool version 3, so it was the very latest edition available. Also, ds is using a newly purchased Toshiba laptop that is under a year old.

I have been on the phone with Rosetta Stone customer service five times now since January because even though my son scores a 100% and has completed every activity, it will not allow him to move forward. I follow their instructions for restarting, reloading etc... (I'm to the point that it's predictable as to what they'll have me do. : /) Each time, I struggle with understanding the operator because of English being their second language (ironic, right?). The last two calls made, they told me there is a version 4 available, but that it was not available in the homeschool version, and both implied that since I purchased this in August, it was "outdated". What? I purchase something for a school year, and a year is not even over, and it's outdated?

And now they tell me that I will have to use the online chat or pay the $19.99 fee every time I call. Naturally, I tried the online chat. It not only took twice as long, but they were of no help. Again, they pointed me to the latest version.

So, pay either $19.99 for a call that actually may help, or purchase their latest version for over $200? Sounds like a sales pitch to me. Sorry, I'm burnt.

Bottom line for me, they are not a homeschool-friendly vendor. They are out to make a buck and nothing more. Their customer service, while very polite, are not helpful and quite frankly, it's a waste of time to call.

Now it's the end of the school year and I am at a loss as to how to fill the gap, nevermind what we'll use for Year 2. I will never recommend or use Rosetta Stone again.

blesar

  • Reviewed on Thursday, September 12, 2013
  • Grades Used: 4-12
  • Dates used: 2013
If you come with any knowledge of a language and attempt to preview higher levels of Rosetta Stone you can forget about it. The staff working at their service counters need lessons in English because they are unable to answer most simple questions that a person might have. The information that they provide changes from one day to another as they seem to contradict each other depending on the time of day that a person might have a question. After month and half of trying to determine whether my daughter would be able to proceed on level three, we decided that it would not be wise to spend money on a program provided by a company whose employees do not understand basic English and whose ability to communicate the most rudimentary concepts in their native tongue is laughable.

cciarametaro

  • Reviewed on Sunday, August 4, 2013
  • Grades Used: 1st-5th
  • Dates used: 2013
I would recommend this to others who are having difficulty speaking to others. I live in a HIGHLY Hispanic area and many times people will only speak Spanish. This program is good at helping someone speak the language and understand others using the language. It will not make you a poet or writer in the language, but will help you get a great start on understanding others. As with all things, great effort and time commitment is needed on your side in order to succeed. It was difficult for my kids to figure out at first, but now they enjoy it and know it is okay to try the speaking parts but skip them if they are not recognized. It is not sold everywhere for nothing. It is a good tool to use.

jmasters

  • Reviewed on Tuesday, April 30, 2013
  • Grades Used: 9th
  • Dates used: 2012-2013
I purchased Rosetta Stone Levels 1-5 Latin American Spanish in August 2012 to use for my daughter for 9th grade. I definitely have mixed feelings about it and am not sure I would recommend it to others.

Negatives: In the 8 months that we have used it, I have spent about 15 hours on the phone with tech support to fix problems with the software. We would start up the software for the day only to get an error message that would require us to contact customer support. The advice from one tech resulted in the program being deleted (complete with all records for work completed to that point). The worst time required 6 hours of tech support to get the program working again. Ironically enough, Rosetta Stone relies on non-native English speakers for their tech support and some are quite difficult to understand. Only when you request tier 2 support do you get someone you can understand easily. My expectation was that in spending hundreds of dollars on this software, it should work...all the time! I also found out the last time I called in that the phone support is only available for the first 6 months. I am now limited to live chat support for any remaining problems (unless I want to pay $20 per session.)

My second concern is that the program is very weak on grammar. I have studied Spanish in college and with a one-on-one tutor in Guatemala, so was able to supplement what my daughter was learning. However, in a full year of study (using the Homeschool edition included schedule for high school students), she has yet to be taught the basics of present tense verb conjugation. It teaches through "intuition" and repetition, but does not tell the "why" behind anything it teaches. My recommendation would be to only use this program for high school in conjunction with another program that is more grammar based. My daughter has done well working on her own with this program, but is frustrated that after a year, she is still unable to form sentences and have a basic conversation.

If you plan to use this program for high school, don't assume that it can be used independently. I think there must be something better out there, but in the meantime, we will probably continue to use it, but supplement strongly with other curriculum before my daughter goes on to take dual credit courses in Spanish.
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