Frequently Asked Questions
This post contains answers to the most frequently asked questions, reports and other issues that often come up in relation to the course (and not things like grammar and pronunciation).
Question: Why are there no speaking (microphone) exercises in the course? When are you going to add them?
Answer: It takes some time for speaking exercises to be implemented in an Incubator course. It is the Duolingo Staff who decides in that matter, not us. Russian already has speaking exercises (it was launched in beta just a few weeks before Polish), so it is likely that they will eventually appear in our course as well.
Q: Why are there no Tips & Notes sections in some skills? When will they appear?
A: We are still working on writing the T & N sections. They will be there eventually. Our plan is to add them to every skill introducing new grammatical concepts – one at a time, starting at the top of the tree. Unfortunately, it may take some time and it is difficult for us to estimate when this will be finished. You can check this thread to see updates on our progress.
Q: Why do the listening exercises in early skills sound so slow?
A: This is not a bug, it is how the TTS works in every course. Listening exercises in initial lessons are set to “slow mode” by default. It is supposed to make it easier for the learners to get acquainted with the sound of a new language.
Q: The TTS sometimes uses question intonation in statements and the other way around. It also pronounces some words in a weird way. Can you improve the audio quality?
A: We cannot alter the way in which the TTS pronounces the sentences. The speech is automatically produced by an external solution designed by IVONA Software. The only thing we can do is disable the listening exercises for some particularly broken sentences.
Q: Why are the word forms shown under the heading of each lesson not the same as the forms taught in the actual lesson?
A: This is a technical limitation, which does not influence the content of the lessons whatsoever – so there is no reason to worry. The words are added as entire sets of forms, which means they technically also include forms which are taught later. In practice, some forms do not appear in the sentences immediately, even though they are classified as belonging to an earlier skill – they are introduced in skills that feature the respective case. It is done this way to optimize the learning process. We would rather not see the more “advanced” forms displayed in early skills, but this is how Duo works, there is nothing we can do about it.
Q: Why is there no Immersion (translating articles) feature in the Polish course?
A: As far as we know, the Immersion feature is not being developed anymore. It is still present in the old in-house courses, but probably is not going to be implemented in Polish and other Incubator courses.
Q: Why is there no Words (flashcards) feature in the Polish course?
A: As of now, this feature is only available for in-house courses.
Q: Will there be bonus skills?
A: We have some interesting ideas for bonus skills, but they are not a priority for now.
Q: Is there a Facebook group for learners?
A: Yes! We have set up a Facebook group for Polish learners who want to learn more about the language, discuss the grammar with other learners and native speakers, and learn about the Polish culture. And who knows, maybe you'll even find a penpal? You can join the group here.
Freewrite report: I do not understand why my solution was not accepted.
A: We do do not know what my solution means, since we have no way of looking up the solution to which a freewrite report is attached. If you want to use a freewrite report to comment on your solution, please paste it into the report.
Freewrite report: Why is XYZ not accepted as a correct solution? It seems perfectly reasonable to me.
A: It is very likely that we have just missed this option when trying to include all the possible answers. We would have never ruled out a correct answer on purpose. A simple “My answer should be accepted” report should do the work.
Freewrite report: The hint for the word X does not have a grayed-out parenthesis with its number/gender/case.
A: We ask that you do not report such cases. These additional grammatical information is something we came up to help the students differentiate between various forms and consolidate the rules explained in the Tips & Notes sections. Unfortunately, they cause some in the mobile Duolingo app. We are not going to put much effort into extending or improving them – we prefer to think of them as a temporary solution, hoping that one day we will be able to present such information in a more convenient way.
Freewrite report: Grammatical information such as Acc./sg./masc. appears as one of the options in the exercises in the mobile app.
A: See the question above. Please do not report this. For now, fixing this is not a priority for us – it would require a lot of work, and right now there are better things we can do to improve the course. We hope that a satisfactory solution will be available one day.
Free write report is when you click on the report button and instead of just clicking a box to say my answer should have been accepted or something that you write a comment.
Some course were developed by Duolingo staff (eg: French) and they had more ability to add features and access features that are not exposed than the volunteers who release languages through the incubator, do.
TTS is text to speech. This means that the voice is computer generated (and can therefore say anything, although possibly badly pronounced) as opposed to the alternative where the voices are recorded which means that sometimes words or sentences have no audio because nobody recorded them.
In some courses (with other languages) that used to have this problem, it would help to strengthen not the entire unit but instead re-do the individual lessons inside that unit.
I think the ones this happened most only had one lesson inside the unit anyway, so it should take the same length of time.
Welcome to Duolingo :)
Have a look in the Duolingo Wiki & FAQ (unofficial, but still amazing). It's the first link you see when you go to the discussion section of Duolingo.
You could also look in the help section. There's a link to that at the bottom of each Duolingo page.
You could also look on the Duolingo Wiki.
You'll probably want to have a look at the Community and discussions guide on the Duolingo Wiki.
Good luck :)