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Too many adverbs

too many adverbs to be assimilated in one chapter. Also the translations are quite rigid not allowing 'if needs be' for their answer 'if necessary' for instance.

May 30, 2012



I agree. There are way too many adverbs in this one section. It is also problematic that this section not only introduces a bunch of adverbs, but also introduces a number of idiomatic uses of the adverbs. As a result, knowing what the individual words mean is often of little help when translating, and because there are so many adverbs, it's hard to remember exactly how to translate the idiomatic phrases (plus, since they're idioms, there are generally multiple ways to render them in English). On top of all this, this section seems to have more errors than other sections. I had wanted to not take the test so that I could get more practice with the adverbs, but after having failed the refreshers multiple times (due, for example, to things like "I can just seeit" being offered as a correction to my "I can just see it") I just got frustrated and did the test. I would really recommend pulling all the idiomatic phrases out and putting them in a separate section devoted entirely to idioms.

August 21, 2012


This is by far the worst part of the German tree up to this point. This whole section needs to be redone, IMO. There is way too much confusion in the sentences, way too many new words and the dictionary is little to no help in many of the cases. Also, this nightmare goes on for 12 lessons, making also one of the longest sections in the tree. I am genuinely suffering here. :(


I am so glad to see your comment. since i myself have been frustrated over this section these days. thanks anyway=]


I struggled with the first adverbs section, not looking forward to this one.


Good points! An idioms skill might be in order. We'll definitely look into the adverbs issue and make those lessons more manageable too. Thanks for all the valuable feedback! Please continue submitting answers you think should have been accepted through the "Report a Problem" button :)


I also think a separate Idioms section would make sense, or even possibly several of them at different levels. Also, it could be "independent", with nothing later depending on it - nothing does depend on idioms usually - and thus people could work through it in their own time.


Thanks! I do like having the adverbs separate so I can practice them, it is just the large amounts in small lessons that hurts.


This lessons should be divided in place, time, frecuency, intensity... this is too hard and dificult to remember.


I'm joining the chorus in complaining about this section. It's a nightmare. Way too much going on, and it will be a disincentive for many to continue. I agree that it should be a high priority to rework this section and the way adverbs are introduced in general (in adverbs 1, too).


I can't agree more. This section was extremely too long, and now when I'm revisiting it (2-3 weeks after completing it), it seems I don't remember most of the new words of this section. It should be split into smaller chunks and have more practice on each word.


This section is very hard and tedious and may force me to quit altogether.


Yes, there should be a number of smaller skills instead of just one messy mound of words, and each of them should cover a separate type of adverbs (like Adverbs: Place; Adverbs: Time; Adverbs: Cause and Effect). These are conceptual things and they are very hard to absorb in a disorderly bulk.

Furthermore, please, use simple, non-idiomatic phrases for each taught adverb (unless completely unavoidable). No set expressions and emphatic particles: they distract and confuse. We need to understand what the core meaning of the word is first. Set expressions should go in a 'did you know?' box or something: a piece of additional information, not something that is required.

Otherwise, you end up rote memorising the phrases without proper understanding of what the lesson is supposed to teach.


I agree, way too many adverbs hurled at the user at once. I have to take a screenshot of the "correct way" to write down what is being asked for me to translate, so I can "advance" to the next lesson. Useless in terms of time invested here, frustrating, and does not add to the learning process. This particular lesson of the skill tree is undoubtedly the worst part of the German program. Adverbs 1 was bad, this one is worst. Too bad, I did enjoy learning German with Duolingo. I hope they fix it.


Duolingo should invent something new to teach adverbs. It is not as simple as nouns and verbs. Where are the pictures which we saw in previous sections? But how pictures can help for teaching adverbs? Maybe they can ask us to complete dialogs. You know adverbs are meaningful only in concrete situations. One sentence is not sufficient to give its meaning completely.


+1 , very tedious lessons. You guys need to figure out something. It's very frustrating.


Yikes. To this point in Duolingo, I have not felt like I should complain about anything as I have felt like I have been learning, but this lesson definitely needs more work IMO. Lesson #6 of Adverbs 2 was by far the most miserable experience I have had, I was more confused than I was when I started doing it, and made me feel like maybe I should seek my education elsewhere.


This section is extremely frustrating, and absolutely useless.


I struggled painfully through the adverbs section too. I ended up buying a copy of Hammer's German Grammar afterward. It helps make sense out of some of these things. Lessons are less frustrating when you know what is going on. After reading some of the explanations, I think part of the problem may be German. For example, did you know that denn can be used to make a question more polite, to make it rhetorical, to show reproach, to show surprise and in a few set instances can take the place of dann and mean 'then'? It gets worse... aber can also be used to show surprise. i have no idea what the difference is. The adverbs sections may need to get a whole lot longer to accommodate all the variety in meanings, and may need to be broken into far more levels so that users can have a sense of achievement and not get so frustrated. Grammar explanations could be helpful, either provided in these types of discussions, or as an intro by DuoLingo.

There's a light at the end of the tunnel... Don't give up :-)


I completely agree. Of the 10 adverbs I "learned" a few days ago, I only know two of them. I use DuoLingo every day, and I haven't gone back to do the 2nd lesson yet because it's overwhelming. I'm almost out of lessons to strengthen. Sometimes when vocab is hard, I type it into quizlet and study it there before trying to complete the lessons here. I'm not sure even that will help here because of all the idioms. I hope DuoLingo does something with this soon.


I spend half of my time trying to remember what precise phrasing Duolingo wants. These are easier in my worse languages where I have a more rigid understanding of what's right and don't know how to say things in different ways...such a pain for being punished for saying what sounds more natural (to me).


Well, I have just started. Wish me GL! :D


My personal preference for the number of lessons in a unit is 3 to 5. Anything longer than that and my motivation takes a hit. Though I really enjoy the content of these lessons, it is a lot to learn in one section.


It may be because "if needs be" is slightly incorrect. "if needs be" should probably have been "if need be".


not according to use in Britain, if needs be is fine. Perhaps it is one of those American / British English things, like restroom and toilet.


I didn't think about that. "If need be" is the American form, and we don't use "if needs be". Since there are definite differences between English, Australian, American, etc. English, it would be good for Duolingo to tell us explicitly which version English we should be expecting.


Maybe this could be a useful resource for getting to grips with some of the phrases here that don't appear to make sense: http://german.about.com/library/weekly/aa010806a.htm


They shouldn't have a section devoted entirely to adverbs. Instead they should incorporate these words little by little in the other lessons. That way people don't feel overwhelmed by all this new vocab. The idioms need to be better defined as well, like as a whole phrase, instead of word by word.


I am about to start, and based on the comments I am not looking forward to it. Does anyone know of an additional resource that would be helpful to cope with this section?


I would suggest being willing to make lots of mistakes as you install these in your memory. I found it helpful to go into the vocabulary section, too, to review them as they came up, word by word. Pace yourself, and go back to review other sections if you get frustrated, to get some points and remind yourself of how far you've come. Good luck and just push through it!


I would generalise this as a rule for all going through all Duolingo lessons: Don't be afraid to make mistakes. Going 5 or 6 times through the same lesson engraves those words and idioms in your brain :)


Agreed! It can be annoying, but keep the greater goal in mind.


Thanks! However, I am more referring to a grammar book/resource that would help contextualize many of the concepts present in this lesson. If you know of anything, please do let me know.


This is a pretty good overview from About.com: http://german.about.com/od/grammar/a/German-Adverbs.htm

Also—this is a bit random, but I've noticed that Memrise introduces adjectives and adverbs quite early, interspersing them in phrases and sentences—sometimes fairly common words that haven't yet come up on Duolingo. (Such as lächerlich—ridiculous, ridiculously...as in: "The Duo adverbs section is ridiculously hard.") Just spending a bit of time there might be helpful, too.


One peace of advise: Write down the correct answer when you fail and you won't fail next time. Afterwards read several times your notes so they are properly "digested"


Adverbs are killing me as well... And I completely understand ran_g's point of view. I have completed the section about 2 weeks ago and I am now practicing it but I can't remember a thing. I recognize the words if I see the translation but I seldom get the correct translation myself. Perhaps the teachers could help us associate these adverbs with various situations, pictures, phrases... they are too mixed up for me...


I agree with the above.


Thanks for posting this, I have the same issue with the Spanish section on adverbs. I found it frustrating, tedious and very discouraging.


This section should me divided into two. This is not only the hardest, but also the biggest section, with 10 lessons.


It is so frustrating I started a document with the corresponding translations when I got stucked in Lesson 5 And as I can read, it's not getting better, so here it is (now it has Lesson 5, but I'll keep going) https://docs.google.com/document/d/1aZnUMWmxz6OUSb33xziC1Bkiuywb-Sk_89GZpwhaimo/edit?usp=sharing


Try android tablet version of Duo. It is considerably simpler. It is 10 times faster than website version. Keep going.


This is the worst section of the German tree. Frustrating. Learning is definitely not a breeze here.


I have left the website version of duo after this section. I am now using apps of duo for mobile phones and tablets. I recommend you to use them instead of this site. They are considerably simpler and useful than the website. The only missing thing is comments.


Interesting! I'll definitely tell my 14-year old son, who is trying to use DUOLINGO to bolster his German language (his French school is terrible at teaching the rules of grammar)


I haven't started this one yet, will now but reading these comments is scary enough, you guys mean harder then the nightmare of (genitive)? that one almost did me in.


Yeah, like Adverbs 1. This is gonna be a killer. Not looking forward.


I agree! I'm glad it's not just me.


This section wouldn't be so horrible if there was a review mechanism before hand. Where each adverb is shown and described before just giving a German sentence and expecting an answer(which isn't translatable) and visa versa. Then continue on with the rest of the questions.

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