I can't say that I'm well informed about all the benefits of these programs, because you have to pay for them to use them. However, I put them right up there with the "learn to speak English in 30 days" software packages that sit at the bottom of people's closets. Those I have seen and they're not much more than a computer book and workbook.
What do you think?
i think the "learn english in 30 days" touches on a bigger problem that some people think they can solve by studying online. the problem is, people don't want to do the work. they are looking for the easiest way out, whether it be in the class or online, just upload english into our skulls and let us be on our way.
i think if you take learning english seriously you will learn no matter if you are in a class or online. at least online each program is planned (hopefully stategically) to offer the most effecient and effective way to learn. you can't get that kind of consistency in language schools.
on a side note, after 6 years of teaching in korea i finally decided on my answer to the question, "How can I learn English?". i used to have a list of study tips and habits to follow. That was just met with groans. Now i just say, "You have to study hard. English is a difficult language to learn." This is also met with groans and protests but at least i feel better for being as direct as possible and hopefully some student takes that home with them to think about...