Title: Easy Language17 Language Edition
Overall Rating: A+
Source: IMSI http://www.imsisoft.com/easylanguage/17main.html
Playing Time: unlimited
Date: 1996
Cost: $ 29.95
Number of Players: 1
Special Equipment/Facilities Needed: CD-ROM microphone, mouse, internet access (optional)
Subject Area: Spanish, French, German, English, Italian, Greek, Danish, Dutch, Russian, Portuguese, Japanese,
          &nbs p;           Chinese,Korean, Thai, Indonesian, Hebrew, Arabic
Objectives: to offer "the basics" of seventeen modern languages, while including opportunities for the players to check
          &nbs p;        comprehension and expand cultural awareness
Brief Description: The program offers beginning level vocabulary (pronounced by native speakers), a recording
          &nbs p;                   mechanism so that students can hear their pronunciation, comprehension tests, cultural information,
          &nbs p;                   internet links, a multilingual dictionary, a "travel smarts" handbook, and multimedia videos/photographic
          &nbs p;                   tours.

Entry Capabilities Required: Player must be able to use a mouse

Rating: (1-5)

    Relevance to objectives: 5 (Software offers relevant vocabulary in all 17 languages)
    Provides practice of relevant skills: 5 (listening, speaking and cultural awareness skills are stressed, and players are given
          &nbs p;                           &n bsp;            &nbs p;         the opportunity to check comprehension through the "tests")
    Likely to arouse/maintain interest: 5 (program offers a wide variety of language, vocabulary and cultural information)
    Likely to be comprehended clearly: 5 (instructions available in any of the 17 languages)
    Technical quality (durable, attractive): 5 (good illustrations, excellent photographs of cultural landmarks)
    Game: Winning dependent on player actions (rather than chance): 5 ("winning" or passing the tests are dependent upon
          &nbs p;                           &n bsp;            &nbs p;                           &n bsp;            &nbs p;                 the players understanding of the vocabulary)
    Simulation: Validity of game model (realistic, accurate depiction): 4 (good photos accompanying vocabulary)
    Evidence of effectiveness (e.g. field-test results): 5 (This program is currently coming in very handy in my own
          &nbs p;                           &n bsp;            &nbs p;                           &n bsp;    personal study of French; I use it in conjunction with French 101.)
    Clear directions for play: 5 (directions well explained)
    Effectiveness of debriefing:  5 (The program offers test results and Internet addresses for further research.)

Strong Points: This program would be particularly beneficial as a supplementary tool in the foreign language classroom.  Students can assess their own language acquisition by recording their voices and listening to how it compares with that of the native speakers.  It also provides tests so that students can determine their weak areas.  The program offers excellent cultural photographs and brief histories of the various cultures that the students are researching.  Finally, this program lends itself well to any foreign language department, especially since it offers such a wide variety of languages to choose from.
Weak Points: This program concentrates on just the "basics" of the languages it offers.  In other words, teachers might not find this program to be useful beyond the beginning stages of language instruction.
Reviewer: Cindy L. Stacy
Position: Student
Date: September 19, 1998
Computer System Reviewed on: Macintosh PowerPC 6500/250, 32mb ram.