suggestion: questions and answers
hey, I really have no idea where to suggest so I figured I'll do it here. anyways, I've used duolingo for a long time and recommended a lot of my friends to do so themselves. but it seems there's something missing in the way duolingo teaches: independent construction of sentences.
I'll explain: in the time I learned french, I understood how to read sentences pretty well. but I couldn't make any of my own. so I came up with an idea for a new type of er.. test? that would ask a question, and the person answering would have to think and construct a sentence by themselves. it's harder than translating or writing the same sentence, but it can be rewarding, as the person will know why they failed or succeeded.
what do you think?
By which means do you think the person will know why they failed or succeeded?
Meant that after the person submitted their answer, the computer will show which part was right and which was wrong (like the current tests), and so the person will know what were their mistakes.
/sorry for the crippling english, it's not my native language/
Unfortunately, as far as I know, no computer can identify mistakes in an original sentence.
For the current tests, the machine compares your sentence with the correct translations that human beings registered in the database.
At best, the checker will identify what's wrong, but it will not tell you why, nor what would be correct instead. It still needs people to do it.
With free writing, the checker would have nothing to compare with, or not much except a list of independent words or short phrases.
You know when they teach you the penguin eats an apple, they leave you with a great many sentences to construct and practice on your own.
- I eat an apple
- He eats an apple
- She eats an apple
- They eat an apple
- We eat an apple
- The man eats an apple
- The woman eats an apple
- The child eats an apple
- The entrepreneur eats an apple
and many more ...
And then you can start combining stuff for more complex sentences from the simple examples they share in the lessons.
I think it's a great idea but that it would be very difficult to implement.
To be of any real use, the questions would have to be open-ended (not just yes/no questions). And open ended questions would be practically impossible for a computer program to parse and "grade" as right or wrong.
I do agree that after a course, a person gets pretty good at reading and comprehending what they see, but it's an amazingly big step to get to producing your own sentences "from scratch". For this, I think other resources are more appropriate. A couple of suggestions:
http://lang8.com - Lang-8, where you submit your writing for native speakers to correct, and in turn you are expected to correct the writing of people who are learning your native language.
http://www.conversationexchange.com - ConversationExchange, where you can create an account and search for pen pals (and video chat partners) who speak your target language and are learning your native language.
lang8 seems really great! I assume it probably takes a while before you get an answer, though. that can make the process a bit longer and less fun. but as you said, having a computer do that is practically impossible so ¯_(ツ)_/¯
I think Duolingo should have full texts for we to translate them and answer questions about them. I'm not talking about texts from Immersion, but texts created specifically for each lesson, using only vocabulary the students have seen in former lessons.
The same way Duolingo already does it. Duolingo has a database of right translations for each sentence in the lessons. It can have a database of right answers for each question and translations for each sentence in the texts too.