FSI Chinyanja Basic Course

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What is the FSI Chinyanja Basic Course?

The stated aim of this Chinyanja course is to provide students with enough of the language to speak a little of it well, giving them a firm foundation upon which to build as they continue to explore the language. It consists of 63 units based on dialogs that present the new language followed by drills and exercises for practice.

Unlike some other FSI Basic courses, this FSI Chinyanja course has been written to be useful specifically for people studying autonomously as well as for those studying with a teacher. The dialogs were originally accompanied by audio recordings – but unfortunately, at the current time, only the recordings for the first 21 units are available.

How was FSI Chinyanja Basic originally used?

This course was originally designed for US diplomatic staff who were preparing for postings to the areas where Chinyanja is spoken. They studied intensively, taking six hours of classes per day, supplemented by a further two hours of individual study.

They spoke only Chinyanja during lessons, and even outside of class, they were supposed to speak Chinyanja among themselves. In this way, after only a short period of study, they were able to acquire the level of language required for them to carry out their duties abroad.

How can you use FSI Chinyanja Basic?

Although you won’t be able to recreate the perfect learning conditions enjoyed by American diplomats, you can still benefit greatly from this free Chinyanja course, especially since it was written with autonomous students in mind.

Since not many other resources for Chinyanja exist, you will probably need to rely on this course as your primary study materials. By working through these lessons, you will be able to acquire a good grounding in the language, and if you can find any other resources to supplement your study, you will find that you are able to make even more rapid progress.

Taking it further

Of course, this Chinyanja course alone won’t be enough for you to master the language, and as soon as you can, you should look for opportunities to use your language skills in your daily life. Try to find native speakers who can help you practice – and once you do this, you will see how quickly your language ability begins to improve.