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Resources & Recommendations for Learning Romanian

Discussion in 'ENGLISH' started by bombuzal, Jun 7, 2009.

  1. bombuzal

    bombuzal New Member

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    Hello, everyone!

    I assume that anyone reading this is currently, or thinking about studying Romanian. If you've ever tried looking for books or resources for learning Romanian in your local bookshop - I'm sure you'll have noticed that generally, there is very little choice.

    I'd like to provide a list of *good* resources, and descriptions of each to help you learn.

    General Courses for Beginners

    Teach Yourself Romanian

    The Teach Yourself language series of books are probably the best, and most-respected of language course books available in English.

    Teach Yourself Romanian provides a course in the form of fun and interesting units which feed you vocabulary, grammar notes, end-of-unit tests, games and verb tables as well as background & cultural information on Romania. By the end of the course, you will have gained a good foundation knowledge of Romanian grammar and vocabulary.

    It's available in 3 different editions: Paperback book, Audio CD or a pack containing both.

    The ISBN for the book+CD pack is: 978-0340906293

    Colloquial Romanian

    Like the Teach Yourself release, Routledge's Colloquial Romanian provides good foundations for learning Romanian through dialogues, vocabulary, grammar notes and end-of-unit tests as well as verb conjugation tables at the end of the book.

    The Colloquial series provides a more serious, textbook-style course and uses more linguistic/grammatical syntax than the Teach Yourself series.

    Colloquial Romanian is available in paperback book, CD and Book+CD formats but is considerably more expensive than Teach Yourself for the pack. The ISBN for the book+CD pack is: 978-0415237857

    Online Courses

    Google can provide many commercial and free courses for learning Romanian online; too many to evaluate and list here. I recommend browsing Wikipedia, which is generally a sound source for such information:

    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Romanian_language

    Romanian Grammar

    Romanian: An Essential Grammar

    This title, published by Routledge and written by the same author as Colloquial Romanian (Ramona Gonczol-Davies) is an essential guide to Romanian grammar. It would make an excellent guide & reference for using during or after one of the initial courses.

    Online Resources

    Duke University's Slavic and East European Language Research Center is an excellent site for East-European, Slavic, Balkan etc language study. They have a good list of Romanian language resources here as well as a Grammar Reference by Dana Cojocaru, University of Bucharest and includes the Romanian Verb Handbook, by Professor Ronald Feldstein of Indiana University.

    Wikipedia also have a guide on Romanian grammar which is available here


    Verb Conjugation

    Romanian verbs can be difficult for native English speakers, especially for people who haven't studied languages other than English. Although classical Latin and Romanian are completely different langauges - many aspects have survived in modern Romanian. A knowledge of Latin can be both complimentary and confusing when learning Romanian.

    Romanian dictionaries will generally only list the infinitive form of a verb, it is up to you to construct the final form of the verb with the help of conjugation tables.

    A classic example of conjugation can be shown through the verb a fi (to be). Below is a comparison of the English and Romanian forms:

    Code:
      Infinitive:            be                  fi
    1st Singular:        (I) am                  sunt
    2nd Singular: (thou/you) art/are             ești
    3rd Singular:(He/She/It) is                  este
    
      1st Plural:       (we) are                 suntem
      2nd Plural:      (you) are                 sunteți
      3rd Plural:     (they) are                 sunt
    
    Verb Conjugation Resources

    Verbix has a few different resources on Verb conjugation in the form of a written guide, online conjugator as well as software for windows: FreeVerbix and Windows Verbix. A word of warning though, some conjugations may not be 100% accurate, when in doubt - double-check.

    Dictionaries

    Now that you know how to conjugate verbs, make conversation and structure your own sentences - it's essential that you build up your vocabulary. Here are some good resources which I have used.

    Teora

    Teora, a Romanian publishing house, publish many excellent books for Romanians learning English, and the reference books are excellent for English-speakers learning Romanian. The problem is that you won't find them on the shelves at Borders, Waterstones or even Blackwell's bookshops. Teora.ro do appear to allow online-ordering, but I haven't tried ordering yet and am unsure if they will ship outside of Romania.

    The primary dictionary which I use was compiled by Andrei Bantaș, has 75,000 words and cost around 58 RON (12 GBP) new from a stall near Obar Market, Bucharest. The ISBN number is: 973-601-791-5

    Online Dictionaries

    Dictionare.com is one of the most popular online dictionaries for English natives learning Romanian. As well as being a dictionary, the site also has an online verb conjugator and can also provide the declinations of vowels.

    Another good online set of dictionaries are available at:

    http://www.dictionarromanenglez.ro/
    and
    http://www.dictionarenglezroman.ro/

    These are much more like searching through a traditional dictionary - and an excellent addition to your studies.



    I hope some people will find this short guide to learning Romanian and resources available quite helpful.

    Bombuzal.
     
  2. bombuzal

    bombuzal New Member

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  3. kitten

    kitten New Member

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    Ha-ha, you're cute! Nowhere else could you find a higher concentration of people who are NOT (thinking about) studying Romanian, Bombuzal. For the mere (and merely stupid) reason that native speakers are generally supposed to 'know' their mother tongue by default. :) We are (almost) all Romanian. :)

    Good luck learning the language and do post your quandaries here if (WHEN?) you hit the buffers! :cheer: We'll be happy to help.
     
  4. kitten

    kitten New Member

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  5. bombuzal

    bombuzal New Member

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    Haha! :)

    This is the only Romanian ex-pat community website I am a member of, and have been for many months now but haven't posted much, (especially since the new system was introduced) - I thought it would be worth writing a guide (not just for here, but I wrote it on here first!) for people learning with the assumption that if I was here - there would be other non-native Romanian speakers/learners around the site who may benefit, lol.

    I still hope it will be useful for current or future visitors learning Romanian of the community to know what's available. :]

    Thank you for wishing me luck and encouraging me to post any queries I have with Romanian. I'm also available to help any Romanian students/learners with any issues regarding UK language (including colloquial or slang parts!), culture and law etc.
     
  6. bombuzal

    bombuzal New Member

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    Oh, bugger! I completely forgot about that - I'll blame the alcohol ;).

    Thanks :]
     
  7. kitten

    kitten New Member

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    Oh, definitely! That's actually an excellent idea! Thanks for your time and dedication on behalf of everybody who's masochistic enough to start studying Romanian! :laugh:

    Sounds like a good deal! Better take my list out then... B)
     
  8. bombuzal

    bombuzal New Member

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    Hah, Perhaps next time I'll write some British-English tips :p

    lol, British culture and English is full of questionable and obscure points - feel free :p
     
  9. silverfern

    silverfern New Member

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    kitten a scris:
    Ha-ha you're cute too! :laugh:
    There are plenty of Romanians (even on this site) who should at least think about studying Romanian.

    You mean all the Romanian children are masochists?? :laugh:

    bombuzal a scris:
    Don't tell me you learned about "tuica" and "palinca" too. I would suggest you to start with the grammar, and don't take the Romanian drinks as an intensive course. :laugh:
     
  10. bombuzal

    bombuzal New Member

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    silverfern a scris:
    Hehe. I think many native English speakers should consider studying English, too :p. The level of literacy knowledge in general is atrocious.


    Hahaha.
     
  11. kitten

    kitten New Member

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    silverfern a scris:
    I said 'studying', not 'learning', Silverfern. :p
     
  12. danutza33

    danutza33 New Member

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    sorry, but why would you learn romanian language? just for curiousity
     
  13. rebecca_uk

    rebecca_uk Active Member

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    Out of curiosity-limba-

    -perhaps husband wants to understand and feel more related to the in-laws
    -perhaps grandchildren want to use Romanian when greeting their grandparents
    -generally, to keep the bonds-dans-
     
  14. rebecca_uk

    rebecca_uk Active Member

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    Hi, again

    A very useful and 'cool' way to learn Romanian provided by the Romanian Government.

    If you have relatives/friends that speak Romanian, ask them to guide you through.
    Otherwise, just write here and I'm sure, other members will lend a hand:

    http://www.dprp.gov.ro/elearning/capitole/lectie/a1/2
     
  15. dumitrup

    dumitrup New Member

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    There is another awesome English-Romanian and Romanian-English dictionary (dictionar englez-roman si roman-englez). Check it out, it has over 300.000 words in db, it can translate even phrases or whole articles.
     
  16. ELLAWS

    ELLAWS New Member

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    Bun venit pe forum Dumitru si multumim pentru link -hipno-
     
  17. paul_w

    paul_w New Member

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    I am English and I am trying to learn Romanian and I'm only slightly mad! I have a few textbooks and am trying my best but I really need to practice speaking. Does anyone know where I could find a Romanian tutor in London or someone to speak Romanian to?

    Thanks for the advice on this page!
     
  18. rebecca_uk

    rebecca_uk Active Member

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    Hi, Paul

    I tutor for English, French and Spanish in the UK.

    If you need a tutor for Romanian, I may be a choice.

    This is the link to my profile, where you'd find my website.

    http://www.romani-online.co.uk/comunitate/rebecca_uk/

    Any reason why you want to speak Romanian?
     
  19. Kid-Nico

    Kid-Nico New Member

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    The best way to learn Romanian , or any other language, if you don't have time, is using the Pimsleur courses. Very useful. Awesome way of learning a foreign language just by listening and repeating. Of course you need commitment and will.
     
  20. ionika2

    ionika2 New Member

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    Listening to authentic material is the best way to learn pronunciation: cassettes/CD's,TV/radio programms, Bus/train /tube announcements.This is why I recommend English Attack platform.
     

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