https://www.duolingo.com/SutcliffeTed

Why doesn't Duolingo just explain the grammar?

I wish Duolingo just explained the grammar after each exercise 'question' instead of requiring me to read through a discussion that may or may not be accurate or helpful. I find it a complete waste of time and it is my only complaint about a wonderful website.

2 years ago

15 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/chilvence
chilvence
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It's a concious decision not to. Duo is trying to be simple and fun on purpose, to get people hooked. It is targeted at young children as well as adults, so if you start talking in terms of grammar, that whole younger segment of the audience would simply switch off because the language used is too technical.

On the other hand, older learners are quite capable of reasoning and researching the grammar by themselves using the internet. In fact most of the volunteer authored courses already have excellent tips and notes for each course segment that can help guide the way, but the key thing is they are optional reading.

It may seem against common sense, but it is one of the things that sets Duo apart from almost everything else in that it doesn't try to hold your hand - if you are lost on a point, it expects you to work it out for yourself, and I am quite happy with that.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/bufferz91

For me the only grammar i have learnt is simply noticing patterns and common repetition, i believe by doing this you learn to use it even if you can't explain why? I am a native English speaker and i can't tell you half of our tense rules such as present perfect etc but i can use it. like previous poster aid maybe it is to support childlike learning

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/TheEeveeLord

Just look at the tips and notes before the lesson

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/eagersnap
eagersnap
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Not all courses have good tips and notes sections. Plus there can be nuances / difficulties in a particular question that are not covered in the general explanations as they have to be pretty short and high level.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/EvdogMusic

Can't do that on mobile :(

10 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/salihua
salihua
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Duolingo is not supposed to be your only language resource. It does a great job for what it does...teach sentence patterns into which you can put other nouns and verbs. It does it by example rather than by theory. You should have a good dictionary, a grammar site, some videos, a flashcard program such as Memrise or Quizlet, and, later, a French partner on Skype who want to learn English.

For grammar for French, I like about.com =

http://french.about.com/od/grammar/

You can find great descriptions of irregular verbs, when to use etre and avoir - and those pesky prepositions.

If you are a structured person, you probably want to do some flashcards. I don't like them myself, but I like the approach used by Memrise where users create memory aids for words. Many of the duolingo languages have already been typed into Memrise by kind volunteers. Look for a list in which they included the article with the nouns so you can learn gender while studying.

Good luck.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SutcliffeTed

Thanks for the about.com tip

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/slogger
sloggerPlus
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The person who wrote most of the about.com French site, Laura Lawless, now has her own French site, which is also very good, if not yet as extensive.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/eagersnap
eagersnap
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It could be good if the course moderators at least had the option of adding an official or "sticky" explanation at the top of the comments section.

It would probably be wildly unrealistic to do this for every question, but they could at least do it for questions with unusually high error rates or those that have some particularly confusing elements to them.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ProfesorAntonnio
ProfesorAntonnio
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The question is: Who would spend too much time to do that for... free?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/testskills

In theory other users could, and so the discussion forums beneath each exercise could take care of this. In practice, of course, they can get filled with nearly useless posts instead.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/2024817

I know that duolingo needs grammar but it is supposed to help you enough! I wouldn't like it and neither would the world if it told you all the answers. Plus this thing is a LEARNING game thingy... IT NEEDS TO DO THAT!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SutcliffeTed

Thanks to all for your comments.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/testskills

I think duoLingo positioned itself as not being in the business of explaining grammar at all, and I think they only added a few tips and explanations after incessant complaining by users.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/valleygirl69

I see that you are learning French. Sitesurf (now a mod I think) has been contributing hours and hours (after her working day), to answer questions, and to the extent that there are written explanations for topics, those wholly, or to a great extent, are her doing. Plus correcting xxx idiotic sentences in the original version. She's done this since I don't remember when.

Those learning French are exceptionally lucky to have Sitesurf as a totally unpaid volunteer guide. She is quite wonderful.

Unless I'm trying to rush through a lesson, I click on the discussion and look to see if Sitesurf has contributed. I've taken to making screenshots of her various comments, so I can review them later, as needed.

2 years ago
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