Rosetta Stone Mandarin Review

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Rosetta Stone is one of the most popular online learning platforms around the world. The site is famous for being one of the leading reliable self-language learning sites. It has millions of users all around the world and Rosetta Stone has been serving them for almost 30 years.


There are a lot of Rosetta Stone Mandarin reviews and complaints about it. Some say that it restricts you to the basic level of language only. Others say that it costs too much for little. Everyone has their share of thoughts on the Rosetta stone. Instead of listening to biased reviews and opinions as opposed to facts, we thought we would take a look at their service, and find out for ourselves. Welcome to our Rosetta Stone Mandarin review.

(Last Updated On: July 27, 2021)

The Origin of Rosetta Stone

Before going to the Rosetta Stone Mandarin review, let us talk about Rosetta Stone first. The idea of Rosetta Stone came from the head of Allen Stoltzfus, when he was studying Russian in 1980.  Stoltzfus was having trouble in Russian, but when he learned German in his time of studying in Germany, soon he developed this idea of language learning through immersion. In 1992, when Fairfield Language technology was founded, Allen and his brother Eugene Stoltzfus, along with brother-in-law John Fairfield, developed Allen’s idea even further. As a result, Rosetta Stone was born.

When the business first launched, Rosetta Stone was a DVD programme that you could purchase and learn all by yourself. As technology advanced into the modern day, Rosetta Stone has now moved with the times, and developed its very own online platform for language learning. On top of that, Rosetta Stone now has its unique app for learners to download on their mobile devices, including iOS and Android users.

How Does Rosetta Stone Mandarin Work?

It is no lie that Mandarin is a very complex language. Sometimes, learners can get lost in the thought of how Mandarin is spoken in the real world. Chinese people learned the language from birth and through their surroundings. This is immersive learning – the method that Stoltzfus had used to create Rosetta Stone.

Rosetta Stone’s philosophy is based on this concept, with their language courses all based on this initial learning principle. It is a very interesting concept and is a practical way of learning a new language.

Through their years of research and expertise, Rosetta Stone has managed to create an immersion classroom setting for their learners to learn new languages. Immersion is a very effective way of learning a language. In such a setting, you are becoming part of the new language environment. By doing so, you are attempting to keep up with your surroundings by thinking like them, and as a result learning concepts quicker.

So, when you are learning Chinese/ Mandarin in Rosetta Stone, everything in the lessons and exercises will be in Mandarin. This also includes the live sessions with native teachers, which will also be in Mandarin. It could be easy to be put off by such a process, but in reality, this learning method will benefit your overall learning experience. The main menu will be available in your preferred language, so there’s no need to worry about being lost on the site.


Does This Philosophy Work for Rosetta Stone Mandarin?

In simple terms, we think that the overall answer to this question is yes. However, if we wrote this in every section of our Rosetta Stone Mandarin review, then it wouldn’t be a very extensive review. Whilst this process is a lot to take in at once, we think that it is a very successful way of learning a new skill like Mandarin.

The course offered by Rosetta Stone will give you the opportunity to think in Mandarin, as well as answering in the language. Therefore, features such as flashcards, images, short stories, and live sessions will all make you think using the Mandarin language. Rosetta Stone gives you an immersive Mandarin environment to learn in. They will not explain all the lessons in detail, but it does give you the opportunity to learn by yourself. On top of that, you can find your preferred way of learning and be independent when doing so.


Rosetta Stone Mandarin – Study Plan

Just like its philosophy, Rosetta Stone’s study plan differs from the other self-learning language platforms. Rosetta Stone claims that all of their courses are designed with in-depth research of the language and its country, taking into consideration nuances and subtle differences. Now, we’re going to look at the site’s course plan for Mandarin in this Rosetta Stone Mandarin review.

Rosetta Stone Mandarin has 20 units of content in total. Each of the units focus on different sides of the language, and the lessons will build your foundation and command in Mandarin. Unit 1 to 4 focuses on building the foundation of the language. You will learn some basic Mandarin words in that language and start to get familiar with them. Units 5 to 8 teach you how you can navigate yourself in foreign surroundings by asking for direction. In this unit, there is a hint of Mandarin grammar. They only teach you tenses.

Meanwhile, units 9 to 12 take the previous unit lessons and work on your conversational skills. For example, you will have the chance to freely express opinions and statements in Mandarin. Units 13 to 16 works on your deep understanding and how to deal with certain scenarios. Units 17 to 20 teach you new things like how to deal in emergency-type situations in that language.

Each unit also has different lessons like reading, picture matching, character recognition, pronunciation, and more. The pronunciation is something we highlight in our Rosetta Stone Mandarin review as a huge benefit to those learning a new language. The Rosetta Stone team works to a high standard to make your pronunciation sounds like a local native speaker.

There are also live sessions where you get to put your new language skills to test with a small group of people who are also learning Mandarin. Your lessons are also designed based on the reason you are learning them. Rosetta Stone will ask you about it in the very beginning after purchasing their service.

You will be given four options. Basic & Beyond, Family, Travel, and Work. Each of these options has its own customised games and stories. For example, if you choose work, all the games will have images of a workspace.


Study Plan – Our Review

In this section of our Rosetta Stone Mandarin review, it’s worth stating that we think that the available Mandarin courses are very effective for learners to study. The study plan definitely creates an immersive environment for learning Mandarin, which is a great way to learn a new language. Having the ability to think and speak in Mandarin is what helps learners to build their understanding of the language further.

As you are in an immersive environment, Rosetta Stone does not have much explanation about the words being shown. However, with how the platform has been designed to teach the language it does make is like that. With the lack of translation within lessons, it almost forces those to use Mandarin to develop their knowledge.

Perhaps the biggest flaw in our honest Rosetta Stone Mandarin review would be the grammar explanation. There is a touch of information about the vocab on the courses, but we did not see any other mention of the grammatical aspect of Mandarin in their course design. Grammar may not be a necessity in the beginning, but if you truly want to learn Mandarin inside-out, then grammar is essential. It would be nice if Rosetta Stone added more grammatical courses about Mandarin in their Mandarin language course.

Recently, Rosetta Stone has added the translation feature in some image and text sections of their language courses. With that said, this option is only available for those using the app on iOS or Android. The web and desktop version does not have the translations. This is at the time of reviewing, but could change in the near future.

If you’re looking to introduce yourself to learning Mandarin, then we think Rosetta Stone’s study plan could be a course to get involved with.


Rosetta Stone’s Payment Plans

Rosetta Stone is notoriously known for its cost of lessons and this may be the most highlighted part of our Mandarin Rosetta Stone review. Moreover, the contents you are purchasing are accessible for a limited time. However, the downloadable and CD-ROM versions are owned for life.

In the past, Rosetta Stone used to be a one-time purchasing product (CD). Now with the integration of the internet, it is a service with an online subscription model. There are three types of subscriptions available – three months, twelve months, and a lifetime option.

In the three-month subscription plan, you will have to pay $11.99 per month and you will get all of the available lessons in one language. In the 12-month subscription plan, you will have to pay $9.99 every month and can learn as many languages as you wish from their collection. In the lifetime subscription, you will have to pay $179 as a one-time payment.

In the monthly subscription plan, the total sum of money will have to be paid at the beginning. That sums up to a total of $35.97 for the three-month plan and $167.76 for the 12-month plan. The reason for the cost being so high is to bear the research cost that Rosetta Stone put behind every language course.

Is Rosetta Stone Mandarin Worth the Money?

We know how hard it is to learn Chinese/ Mandarin. The general language classroom forces you to memorise the words and learn through a hard way. With that said, our Mandarin Rosetta Stone review found that this method is different and undoubtedly much easier for the majority of learners. So, if we are talking from this easy learning perspective, then it is definitely value for money.

9Expert Score
Our Final Conclusion
We’ve come to the end of our Mandarin Rosetta Stone review – what do you think about the online learning course? We think that Rosetta Stone Mandarin is great for learning the complex language. It may not give you an inside-out coverage of the language, but the courses will teach you Mandarin in the easiest and most effective way possible. We also discovered just how engaging their learning environment really is, and is a big help to those learners that are much more hands-on with their learning. When the environment is this engaging, one can easily learn Mandarin. You can use that experience in learning more about Mandarin by yourself in the future. So yes, from our Mandarin Rosetta Stone review, we can say that it is one of the best language courses for learning Mandarin.
  • Detailed content
  • Free three-day trial
  • Opportunity to engage with live sessions
  • No advanced levels to Mandarin course
  • Could be seen as quite expensive

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