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The big positive of this book, especially if you are self-teaching (very difficult!) is that you don't have to wonder "What should I work on today?" Just go through the book page by page and you will gradually increase your technique, intonation, shifting ability, etc. You will also work on scales (far more important than you might think; they tend to show up everywhere in music) and start to learn vibrato. I would recommend using a tuner briefly to check the shifts, to train your ear as to the exact pitch, and your hand / fingers as to exactly where the note is. (No need to stare at it for a long time, just briefly, and it's for your ear, not your eyes.) I have a teacher, but I wanted the book so I didn't have to think about "what to do today" because that is too overwhelming.
The first book in this series, Essential Elements 1, is an astonishing learning tool, superior to anything else in any field. But the authors cannot keep it up. This 3rd book degenerates into meaningless drills, superficial glossed over explanation, and tunes that don't seem related to the learning points.
I'm an adult and multi-instrumentalist who is teaching myself to play cello. The book is fine, but a little too full of music reading exercises for me. Of course, if someone is also learning to read music while learning cello, that would be fine for them. There were also some nice drawings to show how to do things. I haven't listened to the CDs yet.
Essential Elements is always my go-to if I need to teach or learn. The books are reasonably-paced, and do a good job of teaching you the basics while keeping you entertained with the exercises. Fundamentals are important for any musician to learn before progressing to different areas.
As a music educator in teaching, I purchased this book for one of my string courses. This book has a very thorough way of explaining the concepts and teaches you from the beginning. I would recommend this book (over the normal essential elements books) for any aspiring string player.