Spanish - Everything completed - and my retirement!
I began Duolingo last November 18, so I am just 2 weeks shy of my 1 year anniversary. Nonetheless, I have done everything there is to do with Spanish on DL. As I just attained to Level 25 today, so there is literally nothing else for me to accomplish. If another version of the tree gets released, yes I will probably complete it. Ditto for new bonus skills. By as of now, I am retired.
Review of Duolingo Spanish. Of course, DL teaches you Latin American Spanish. More specifically, it seems to teach you Mexican Spanish, with a few additional regional terms thrown in, and the occasional "vosotros" and "os" appearing during review of later skills, just to trip you up.
No, you will not be taught all of the grammar for the Spanish language. But you will will be taught all of the Spanish you will need (and then some), to read or converse with natives. In fact, if your travels take you to one of the poorer Spanish-speaking countries, you will like find that locals know far less about grammar than you do. Thus, you will be forced to avoid certain constructions, because people simply do not understand them (such as the past perfect in Dominican Republic).
How far can Duolingo take you, and how fast? If used as part of your learning program, DL can prove invaluable. It trains you to master a core vocabulary, using all of the essential words in as many ways as possible. Essentially, it is a very high-tech phrase book, with SRS calculating when you have to drill specific skills and words. Use it every day - get at least 50xp. Review when your skills un-gild.
Before starting DL, I had never tried to learn Spanish before. However, when combined with all of my other learning tools, and conversations with natives, I can confidently say that I have become fluent in less than a year. I would probably be rated as a B2.1, with some skills as high as C1.1. When natives avoid slang, or very fast speech, I can understand nearly everything they say. Reading articles, I am well over 90% first-time comprehension. It took a lot of hard work, but I am so happy with the results.
Where to go from here. I am not completely retired from DL, just from the Spanish program. I still have the German, French, and Russian trees on-the-go. To maintain (and even progress) with my Spanish, I am reading every day, marking unknown words for cue-cards; conversing a few times each week, and watching TV series in Spanish (so much about drugs). There are still a few years ahead until I'm really comfortable with the language.
tl;dr - I'm completely done with Spanish now that I'm Level 25. It took me about a year, but I would consider myself fluent (B2). DL is a great part of my program, so now I'm on to new languages!
If you want to keep working the Spanish a bit, you can always try the reverse tree ie; going to your setting and telling Duolingo that you speak Spanish and would like to learn English. I did that with French and found it helpful and interesting. The vocabulary is slightly different and it is written for native French speakers to learn English.
I suppose I could. But I am already at the point of reading Spanish magazines, and only looking up 1 word or phrase per paragraph. My vocabulary is more than 6000 words. So there is little benefit to be derived from more Spanish on DL. Unless I decided to learn another language from Spanish. Perhaps when Gaurani is released.
I am happy for your success. I will do as you are doing if I ever achieve your level of fluency. Hopefully, duolingo will add to the course so it stays interesting.
Are you planning on doing ES←FR or ES←DE? Although based on your level, you wouldn't learn much. And what about DE←ES and FR←ES?
Months ago, I thought about doing reverse trees and language laddering, but the system I am working from emphasizes use of real-world materials as the focus. When you have a book, magazine, or newspaper in your source language, and you can understand directly from that material, then there is no need to learn, for example, Spanish from German or French or Russian, because you are learning Spanish from Spanish. That's as native as it gets!
Congrats! I still have a quite a while before I reach fluency in any of the languages I'm learning, but good luck with the other languages you're learning. :)
As you were getting close to finishing your Spanish tree what other learning tools / activities were you performing? And roughly how much time per day? Did you go from almost nothing to such impressive comprehension in just a year?
Congratulations. I hope i can follow such an impressive example.
Prior to DL, I only knew a few Spanish words that I had heard in movies. After I finished the tree, I became intent on learning more, so I followed the direction in the book How to Learn Any Language. Here is a link to my review and comments on it - https://www.duolingo.com/comment/11117174