Previously, I reviewed one of Nihon IR‘s other popular English Language study tools, 出る順. Dr. コーパス is similar in its approach in that it isolates vocabulary and allows students to select from different review methods. Both apps are geared for English study, but as I hope to show, are excellent tools for learning Japanese. While this review will be short, it will focus on how and/or if Nihon IR have managed to create a good study formula.
Sights and Sounds
As in 出る順、Dr. コーパス also makes use of excellently-recorded voice tracks for students to compare/contrast in their studies. Similarly, the menu system, title screens, study and test modes are simply but beautifully designed. Nihon IR have put together a well-polished and aesthetic study app which is a joy to use.
In normal study mode, you can browse from the entire list of vocabulary words or choose from troublesome words. Study mode is the meat and potatoes of Dr. コーパス which features flash cards, word sheets, usage patterns and phrases to study. Here, you will control what and how you study, review pace what words need special attention.
This excellent and comprehensive section can be a real boon to your studies in Japanese or English.
Dojo is a review mode that features three different characters who will test you while performing some sort of martial art (I am not joking). If you like tests, dojo mode will be up your alley, but remember, without properly studying first, it may be hard to complete Dojo with good marks.Tests consist of fill in the gaps, listening comprehension and multiple guess sections. There is also a comprehensive test of 40-50 questions that borrows from each of the test modes. Dojo is a fun and cute way to review vocabulary and sentences. Each mode is short, gives immediate evaluation of your vocabulary retention and targets a specific area of vocabulary study.
Dr. コーパス is a great tool for reviewing vocabulary and sentence structures with excellently recorded audio and an easy to navigate menu system. Its audience is Japanese-speaking, but English students of Japanese will also benefit from this excellent app. The cartoon characters are cute and helpful, the music unobtrusive and the entire app is well polished – a great tool for language students of both languages.
While this app is well-engineered, like 出る順, it can be construed as too pricey. Nihon IR make excellent study tools – tools that would benefit the non-Japanese as well as the Japanese student. But, the marketing behind Dr. コーパス is targeted completely at the Japanese market. Nihon IR should translate some of their material and interface to attract the non-Japanese consumer. Current Japanese study apps in the App Store pale in comparison to Nihon IR’s simple, but beautifully engineered products.
Dr. コーパス is a definite Grab. It is wonderfully thought-through from menu items to recorded voice. Vocabulary, sentence patterns and phrases work together perfectly – this app has a premium feel from start to finish. Some may think it pricey, but it is worth it. Unfortunately, Nihon IR’s product is so well-made that it needs to be marketed toward the non-Japanese also. There simply is nothing this well-programmed in the App Store for studying Japanese.
|Title:||Dr. コーパス英単語道場 (V 1.1)||Developer:||Nihon IR|
|Price:||$8.99||App Size:||41.1 MB|