The worst lesson so far.

This lesson has driven me crazy, many questions should have had more possible correct answers.

I guess it is either not so many people have arrived til this lesson or there isn't so much equivalence from english to french in gerund.

January 8, 2013


I've finished the tree, and I've encountered and reported many sentences not accepting enough possibilities. Some of them have been fixed, but I guess there is still more to find, cause I've done each skill only once, and I don't plan on doing more of these in the near future. Hopefully other French users will be able to improve this over time.

January 8, 2013

Be brave, you're only at half tree! There is still a lot on your plate and plenty of other occasions to get crazy... Bon courage !

January 8, 2013

What do you mean, only half the tree!! Are you trying to tell us it'll get harder? I've been here for a month now and I'm so looking forward to finishing the French tree - I don't think it will take me another month - at least I hope it won't :-)

May 9, 2013

Learning a language is not something you can complete in a month or so, therefore, be prepared to find new tough notions and once your tree is finished, chances are that you cannot claim you can speak/write nor understand French perfectly.

May 11, 2013

Yes, and sometimes people misunderstand each other totally even though they are both fluent in a language!

May 11, 2013

I too would like to finish off this skill tree ASAP. But that's not to say that I desire a shortcut claim to fluency. Rather, I'd see myself as finishing off the obligation to do any of these tests anymore, so that I could only concentrate on strengthening my vocabulary by translation/immersion. I'm sick of making mistakes after mistakes and often failing the lessons and then wallowing in psychological funk as a result. I have to admit I get very upset by failing the tests so as a Duolingo user I clearly see tests as a necessary evil at this point. Therefore, if I reached my goal of completing the tree, I could strengthen my skills in a less painful manner: translation/immersion.

July 11, 2013

The stories are less painful and have no tests.

February 5, 2019

I'd like to add to Sitesurf's comment and say that finishing the tree on Duolingo won't make you a fluent French speaker, as I don't think any other thing than speaking in real life situations can make you a fluent speaker (for any language). But concerning your writing and reading skills, you can achieve a very good level by studying hard (not only on Duolingo, you'll need other sources to complete your training), and also reading a lot.

May 11, 2013

Agreed this is a poor lesson and could really have used an info button like on earlier levels.

January 23, 2013

i think the main problem is the trickiness of translating. the french sentences don't seem to align very well with english, & vice versa. it might get better as more people tell duolingo that their answers should be accepted. there just needs to be more leeway in the translating.

April 30, 2013

I also want to add a thank you to all the people who reported errors in the past. It seems from the discussions both here and on Abstract Objects (first part), that things have improved a lot. Not surprising because the Duo workers seem to be very diligent!

May 9, 2013

J'avoue que moi même j'ai du lutter pour finir cette leçon. Le gérondif est l'une des formes les plus difficiles pour les anglosaxons (l'autre étant le subjonctif), mais elle est cruciale pour la compréhension de la langue.

May 17, 2013

boo hoo i like to complain about free, highly sophisticated, language learning tools online waah

September 10, 2013

I didn't find this lesson that bad. I got it at once, without having to report any error.

March 7, 2013

I just made it and I didn't find any error and also got it at once. Apparently they got things fixed.

September 4, 2013

Yes I agree. I too didn't find any issues. It is nice to have a site where improvements are being made. I really like this site and the community.

September 29, 2013

I'm sorry, but this lesson is completely unreasonable - most of the translations don't make sense. Some of the translations I give, I get penalized for silly typos instead of actually mastering the lesson at hand; or, my perfectly reasonable translations get discounted - for example, why do you treat "en etant" inconsistently across all of your sentences? Why is it sometimes "by being", sometimes "in being" and sometimes "being" - yet NOT interchangeable? Sorry - this lesson needs to be redesigned.

December 12, 2013

Typos are important. Memory works all the time, not only when you spell a word correctly. So if you don't try to type the words you learn properly, it's likely that you'll record wrong versions of these words in your long-term memory. That's why I think it's great that Duolingo is strict with the spelling mistakes. Also, there is still room for one spelling mistake most of the time, so if you regularly make spelling mistakes, it means that you don't pay enough attention to what you're typing.

As for the same words or expressions being treated differently, it's because the first answers proposed when the lessons came out were very limited, and as native speakers proposed alternatives, the staff studied these reports and, if they were justified, they added the new translation in the acceptable answers.

From this situation, three possibilities :

  • You think your answer should be accepted, but you're wrong.
  • You think your answer should be accepted, you're right, but didn't submit your proposition to the staff using "Report a problem" (it takes time, and you get an answer only if its accepted).
  • You think your answer should be accepted, you're right, but the staff didn't have the time to check your proposition yet.

I must warn you, it's unlikely that you're right if you're not a native, even if it seems logical to you.

If you still have some of your answers in mind, maybe I can help you with these.

December 12, 2013
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