When comparing Clozemaster vs Pimsleur, the Slant community recommends Clozemaster for most people. In the question“What are the best sites for learning foreign languages?” Clozemaster is ranked 3rd while Pimsleur is ranked 19th. The most important reason people chose Clozemaster is:
Clozemaster helps you learn vocabulary in a natural way by giving you regular sentences and asking you to fill in the missing word, either by typing or using multiple choice. For example, "Apenas hay ______ en esa ciudad". The additional context using natural speech helps get you comfortable with the language.
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Pro Helps you to remember vocabulary by giving you context
Clozemaster helps you learn vocabulary in a natural way by giving you regular sentences and asking you to fill in the missing word, either by typing or using multiple choice.
For example, "Apenas hay __ en esa ciudad". The additional context using natural speech helps get you comfortable with the language.
Pro Large variety of languages to choose from
Currently offers over 50 languages from around the world.
Pro Free to play
There's a paid version with extra features, but it's free to sign up and play. The free version is quite generous and will give you plenty of material to learn from.
If you want to upgrade, the cost is $8/month. You can see the additional features here.
Pro Lots of repetition helps you remember new words
Words are used in a variety of different sentences to help you remember them.
Pro Lots of options for users who don't speak English
A lot of language learning sites expect your starting language to be English.
Clozemaster teaches target languages in a variety of different starting languages. For example: if you want to learn Spanish, the language used for explanations could be English, French, German, Italian, Russian, and a few others.
Pro Gets you used to hearing your target language
After completed a sentence, it is read out loud by a native speaker of your target language (some sentences will allow you to hear it spoken by multiple speakers). They read it out clearly, but at a conversational pace.
It gets you comfortable with hearing the words spoken in a normal, conversational way.
Pro Makes you write the vocabulary
This active approach helps save the words for active use.
Pro Effective support
The developer is very receptive to user feedback and ideas. Bugs are fixed quickly and new features are regularly added.
Pro Principle of anticipation
Rather than simple listen-and-repeat, you also have to translate phrases and answer questions in the target language during the lessons.
Pro Learn while you commute
Pimsleur uses daily 30-minute audio lessons. You can probably fit this in while you're driving to work.
Pro Very effective for beginners
Pimsleur is based on proven memory science, it's not perfect, but it is very effective. Intermediate learners may not get as much out of it.
Pro Graduated interval recall
Spaced repetition in and between lessons are timed for maximum recall. This also means you can't skip days between lessons, or work ahead. Each level takes one month.
Pro Teaches pronunciation well
Uses the backchaining technique with native speakers.
Con Translations are sometimes inaccurate
This can be a problem when in a given sentence there are multiple words that could go in the text field, and the translation narrows it down to one possible answer, but then it turns out the translation gave the wrong word for that slot. This is particularly an issue with pronouns for some reason.
Con Not a good starting place for beginners
Clozemaster jumps right in with expecting you to fill in word blanks in the language you are learning.
If you have little or no understanding of the language you wish to learn, it doesn't give you enough information to get started.
Con Some sentences are inaccurate
Sentences are from the user-curated database Tatoeba and not all of them are written and checked by native speakers. It is impossible to know the original source of a sentence. Additionally, because they do not control the database they pull the words, reporting individual sentences will not help that much.
Con They do not know the languages they teach
You cannot teach something you do not know. The sentences are taken from [Tateoba], and most of the time, the developers have no clue about what the written sentences say.
Con The alphabets are not taught
There is no problem if you're learning a language that uses the same alphabet as your native language, but if you speak English and you want to learn Russian, Arabic, Yiddish, etc., this app is not a good start for you.
Con This app will ask you fill in the translations of given names in the blanks
The app randomly selects a word from the sentence and ask you translate it, and this word is frequently a given name, like Tom or Stuart. or the names of cities.
Con No writing practice
Pimsleur is an audio-only course. This can be easier for beginners learning languages that don't use the Latin alphabet, but for serious language learners, it's a gap they'll have to fill using something else.
Con Limited vocabulary
It teaches hundreds of words. A great start, but not enough to achieve the thousands required for fluency, even with all three levels. Pimsleur deliberately focuses on the most common words of the target language for maximum recall.
All the CDs for one language cost nearly a thousand dollars. The .mp3's are about half that. Your local library may carry the CDs, those that don't may be able to get them via inter-library loan (ask your librarian). You can also find them used and re-sell them for nearly as much (depending on how long you want to wait), after you finish. Be certain to get the same edition for all levels.
Con Too slow-paced and repetitive for some learners
If you learn quickly, you may find that the 30 minute lessons covering only a small handful of vocabulary move too slowly for you.