Review Snapshot
Pros

It contains multiple modules to help you learn Japanese, such as vocabulary games, audio CDs, and culture lessons. Rocket Japanese is also one of the cheapest language programs online.

Cons

It's not as sophisticated as Rosetta Stone and can be too "textbooky" at times.

Verdict

This is an excellent program for beginners, but it may not be as useful for those who want to learn intermediate or expert levels of Japanese.

Reviewed by:
Annie Oh : I am a 20-something freelance writer who specializes in technology and health re...Member Reputation 124 • 110 active Krits
Rocket Japanese from Sayaka Matsuura
Rocket Japanese Review
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Rocket Japanese detailed information
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Review of "Rocket Japanese", by Sayaka Matsuura

Need to learn Japanese--fast?  Sayaka Matsuura--and her English-speaking partner, Kenny Squire--says she can help you easily master this difficult language with Rocket Japanese, an entirely self-guided language learning program.  It's been compared to language programs such as Rosetta Stone because it uses something called "integrative learning," a learning technique that uses multiple sources and experiences to help people learn new material--or in this case, a new language.  Matsuura even says you'll be speaking Japanese in 5 minutes, just by using the multiple learning sources that come with this self-guided language learning program.

So what should you expect in this review:
  • What exactly Rocket Japanese is about
  • Rocket Japanese's strengths and weaknesses
  • What real customers have to say about this program

We'll discuss what's in this program first.

What is Rocket Japanese?

Rocket Japanese, as mentioned before, is an entirely self-guided language learning program.  This means you completely control when, how fast, and how much you learn Japanese.  This gives it a bigger advantage over traditional learning methods, such as learning in a class, where you don't have any control over how you learn a new language.

Like the Rocket Language program series, Rocket Japanese helps people learn through multiple modules: A 30+ audio CD set, culture lessons, vocabulary games, and a pronunciation tool.  The main method of learning here are the audio CDs, however, which detail how to speak basic Japanese in a simple, step-by-step method, which can be listened to on CDs or downloaded online.

To enhance the learning experience, you'll also get access to a private Japanese learning forum, where you can discuss learning Japanese with other people, all around the world.

Although Rocket Japanese is similar to other language immersion programs such as Rosetta Stone, it's different in that it's very straightforward--it's not flashy or high-tech.  This bare-bones approach also makes it one of the cheapest language immersion programs you can buy, with it retailing for $99.95.  Most other programs easily cost over $300.00--a pretty steep investment for most people.

So, in conclusion, Rocket Japanese is a simple, bare-bones program that uses integrative learning to help you quickly learn Japanese, using audio CDs, vocabulary games, and culture lessons that immerse you in the Japanese culture.

Issues with Rocket Japanese

There have been a few criticism thrown Rocket Japanese's way--and ironically, they're the same criticisms that are considered its strengths among other customers.

For example, one expert criticizes Rocket Japanese's audio lessons because it "sometimes feel a little "textbooky" and maybe a little artificial, but they try to include as much useful Japanese in each section which is very good."

And again, we see another problem popping up with the program that seems to plague the entire Rocket Language series.  There are several complaints that Rocket Japanese simply isn't sophisticated enough; it doesn't hold up to Rosetta Stone in terms of quality, easeabilty of learning, and simplicity.  That may be because of its audio section, which, as the previous expert said, was a bit too "textbooky", like if you were listening to a lecture.  For some people, this may be an issue, but for others, this format fits in quite well with their learning experience.

What the Customers are Saying

Despite some harsh criticisms throwing Rocket Japanese's way, most customers like this product.  Here's what they had to say:

"I have Rocket Japanese, and I have found it to be a very good system for mastering basic Japanese and very easy to learn from." - Yahoo! Answers

"Rocket Japanese has been the most fun learning tool I have used out of the four I have tried.  It is not only educational but entertaining as well." - Amazon.com 

Conclusion

So here's the recommendation: If you're absolutely new to Japanese, and need the framework to learn the basics of it, then Rocket Japanese is a good investment.  However, it's not as advanced as other programs like Rosetta Stone, and this program won't help you actually master Japanese--remember, you're just learning the basics here.  
So, if that's really all you want to learn, then this is a good program.  Otherwise, you may need a more advanced program, such as Rosetta Stone.
Date Reviewed: February 28, 2012, 3:19 pm
Reviewed by Annie Oh
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Research Sources
http://genkienglish.net/genkijapan/rocketjapanesereview.htm
GenkiEnglish.net: Review of Rocket Japanese
http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20111207223929AA...
Yahoo! Answers: Discussion on Rocket Japanese
http://www.amazon.com/Rocket-Japanese-Premium-Plus-20cd/prod...
Amazon.com: Customer Reviews of Rocket Japanese
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