After about three weeks of work, I completed my first tree on Duolingo. For reference, I had completed several months of self-study leading up to the course, so I feel I had a solid grounding as far as many of the letters and some of the most common words when I started here.
Moving forward, I hope to reinforce the skills learned. The start point for me is to establish and keep a golden tree for some time, facilitated by following the Memrise course (located in the resource sticky - I will be able to complete it now, and will refine it over time). I also hope to start diving into native material (also located in the resource sticky).
To supplement learning I hope to dig more into the culture of Vietnam, so over the next few months look forward to posts explaining Vietnamese culture and history.
For everyone else working on the course, keep at it! Please be sure to share feedback in the course comments or this forum, so that the great team behind this course are able to continue refining it.
Well done! You might well be the first.
Incidentally, may I ask what you did and what materials you used to study Vietnamese beforehand? I'm finding it exceedingly difficult to remember (even basic) words with the correct tones, etc. I don't see myself reaching the end of the tree in a very long time.
I use a lot of pen and paper actually. One thing I started with (and continue to do) is go through material and pick out words and phrases that are personally relevant, and then write them down and say them in different ways. For example, for family terms I don't really need to know thím, though I do need to know mẹ. The more I write and say the latter, the easier it is to recall. I will write a sentence containing mẹ, draw a family tree with mẹ and other relevant words, and say the word out loud while imagining mẹ của tôi. This amount of work will limit the amount of raw vocabulary you practice, though I think it will accelerate the learning of active vocabulary that you will actually use.
So basically, focus on picking out vocabulary that is useful to you, and start by learning that through repetition and various forms of associations.
@Kuah, I notice you are now a contributor for the Vietnamese course. Just curious if the course is still being worked on. I'm just getting back into the course after a long hiatus and I can see that many of the issues that the course experienced in its early days are still present. Primarily, there are many awkward or incorrect English translations that have gone unaddressed. Numerous comment sections suggest that people have submitted translation suggestions but have gone unreviewed. The tips and notes sections are also incomplete and are littered with many grammatical errors in English. Learning bad English translations to finish lessons takes away from the Vietnamese learning experience. Definitely don't mean to complain, I do imagine that fixing these issues requires time and manpower. I'm just hoping this course gets a bit more polished. I did see some comments two years ago by your fellow contributor ckhadung regarding tree 2.0. I take it there are no current plans for that? Thanks and best~
I like it; a lot of humor and some nice cultural references throughout. I think there is a jump in difficulty at the end (sentences get very complex, and there are more lessons per skill on average), and there are more rough edges toward the end. Since fewer people have reached the later levels there are also more odd sounding translations and word choices that will hopefully be ironed out.
I'm at level 25 and only halfway down the tree (I take every module to level five, then go back and practice previous modules constantly). But I am getting so frustrated that I feel like quitting after every day because of the very issues you mention.
Worse, DL has a points system now awarding bonus points for not making mistakes, and when you make 'mistakes' that aren't really mistakes because of incorrect or arbitrary answers, then that makes you JUST WANT TO SCREAM. It's like having a horrible teacher who marks your correct answers wrong and fails you on a test you actually aced, or a boss who gives you a bad rating or hassles you for a job you actually did well.