Frequently Asked Questions
What is the goal of the course?
The goal of the course is to quickly prepare travelers to a French-speaking nation to converse in the most common situations in which they are likely to have an opportunity to speak French. The course assumes no knowledge of French.
How long does it take to complete the course?
At average reading speed it takes approximately 15 hours to watch the 15 videos and read the text, not including review or study time, and not including completion of quizzes. Younger students and students with no foreign language instruction in the past may require slightly more time.
How long are the videos?
The videos range from 13 to 29 minutes in length.
What size screen do I need to read the online text?
For ideal viewing, reading the online text requires a tablet size screen, like an Apple iPad, or bigger.
What is the youngest age group for which this course is appropriate?
The course is recommended for age 12 and up. Course material is equally appropriate for adults and teenagers.
What is the cost of the course?
The cost of the printed textbook is $29.00 US. Premium Memberships allowing online access to textbook and the downloadable MP3 speaking practice files start at $7.00 US up to $15.00 for a lifetime membership.
Can I buy both a printed text and a Premium Membership for online access?
Yes. Some students prefer to have a printed text available for study. Premium Memberships, however, have direct links to the videos and Answers section of the text that make it easy to switch back and forth between text and videos.
Can I just watch the free videos?
Yes, the videos are free to anyone, but are designed primarily for speaking practice. The text is the primary source for grammatical explanation and translation. Without the text you will not be able to understand the videos unless you have studied French in the past and are just looking for speaking practice.
How should I start each lesson, and in what order should I do things?
As explained in the Introduction To Instant French video, start each lesson with the video, not the book. There are direct links at the beginning of each lesson in the online text to that lesson's video. In most videos you will come to a STOP sign advising you to now read the whole lesson in the text, and then come back for the second half of the video. When studying the book, you may want to be able to listen to the lesson track on the downloadable MP3 audio files to refresh your memory on pronunciation. It's easy-the audio practice files follow the book. Finally, the exercises at the end of each lesson are key to remembering what you have studied, and to giving you practice with writing and spelling.
Are the MP3 practice audio files free?
No. They are downloadable from the Audio Files page of this website with a Premium Membership.
Do the MP3 speaking practice audio files follow the text and videos?
Yes. The audio files are organized into 15 practice sessions that follow the text and videos. The practice audio files range from 8 to 19 minutes in length.
How much grammar is included in the course?
The course is built around seven real-life conversations. All grammar springs from the conversations and is introduced with growing complexity as the lessons progress. Major grammatical elements include verbs in the present de l'indicatif, passé composé, futur proche, and impératif tenses, with a smattering of conditionnel.
Can I print out the exercises?
Yes. Premium Members can go to their Members page and from the vertical menu select Print Exercises.
At what volume do group discounts start?
Group discounts for schools and organizations start at a minimum volume of five Premium Membership packages.