Teach Yourself Brazilian Portuguese Complete Course (Book & CDs) by Sue Tyson-Ward

Score:
1 2 (3) 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
“Three outta ten!”
Pros:
multiple dialogues per chapter; price
Cons:
choice of vocabulary and phrases seems random and uninspired; the Portuguese introduced is of the textbook variety; incomplete coverage of grammar


Teach Yourself Brazilian Portuguese isn’t an awful entry in the TY series, but it isn’t stellar by any means. Its chapters feel cut-and-paste as far as vocabulary coverage and conversational phrases. Very little material links these topics and makes them stick in the Portuguese learner’s memory.

If you decide to pursue this course, purchase the package with audio CDs and complete all the exercises. But the exercises and activities are limited in effectiveness. Even late in the course, simple fill-in-the blank exercises abound.

Grammar coverage is graded, but often introduces points about tricky words and phrases rather than presenting systematic stepping-stones towards a general understanding of how Brazilian Portuguese works. This emphasis on specific traps to avoid when learning the language could be helpful, but not at the expense of basic information.

If you’re traveling to Brazil, I highly recommend other programs for conversation (such as the all-audio Pimsleur) and still others from grammar. The main Teach Yourself entry (Cook’s Teach Yourself Portuguese) deals with both European and Brazilian Portuguese, but it’s much more thorough (abut see my review for certain reservations I had).

One Response to “Teach Yourself Brazilian Portuguese Complete Course (Book & CDs) by Sue Tyson-Ward”

  1. Agreed. Not up to the standards of the Russian or Korean TY book I used.