Suggestions for new vocabulary page
It is gone, and most of us agree that it should come back. But I think it should come back better than it was before! So I have a few suggestions:
I want to be able to search for a word in both the base and the target language.
I want genders/ articles displayed with the word.
I want to be able to rate the strength of my vocables myself, so I can decay a word I don't feel I have learned yet when duo thinks I have.
I want to be able to sort for lexical category, f.e. that it shows me all verbs, not just those of a specific lesson like "verbs 3".
a flashcard function would be great! It would be even greater when we could customize them, f.e. by adding pictures or an example sentence.
Do you have any more suggestions?
I agree with sakasiru, especially for points 1 and 4.
Also, I don't know how feasible it can be and if the effort is worth it, but I'd like to have on the upper bar a "search word bar", in which one can type a word and a pop-up bubble appears with meaning and sentence examples. It would be lovely if it had an auto-completing function. I think it could be useful in order to avoid to load the dictionary on a different browser tab.
That's an interesting perspective. But I think it can be even simpler than that. All duolingo has to do is pull sentences from immersion (containing that word) and show them to the users, or alternatively show the users articles that contain those words. That will make it easier to gain new examples as the vocabulary improves overtime.
yeah, that also could work. I don't have the means to judge it from a "pedagogical" point of view though. I mean, which is the best way to learn things? by providing definitions? examples? both? is there a universally accepted best way?
Pulling sentences from immersion sounds really a smart idea anyway! But I want the pop up-thing! :P
I'm not a teacher so I wouldn't know, but I believe both are necessary to learn something. But truthfully, your idea is nothing aside from a glorified dictionary. Duolingo could simply link to some online dictionary and you can see your definition and example...
3 - Totally. I used to have words that Duo thought I knew, that I never saw again after the lesson, that I'd look at and have absolutely NO idea what they were.
Vocab's GONE? what in the world's duolingo's reason behind that? I found the dl's vocab section one of the most interactive and user-friendly lists ever! Hope it comes back soon refurbished and better than ever. oh, and sakasiru, those are some cool suggestions. Totally agree on all of em
I would love it if we could select words from a vocab list to create our own custom lessons for the areas we have trouble with. A bit like creating playlists.
Thanks for your suggestions which I fully support.
I would like to have the flashcard function working offline to be able to study everywhere when you feel like studying. An export function to other flashcard systems would also be great so that you can add your own vocabulary picked up from other sources.
I appreciate the DL team wanting to "integrate" the Vocab section into the learning experience, or whatever (it sounds like bafflegab, but I'm sure it'll work out fine once it exists...) but why on earth disable the whole section in the meantime?
Even if it's ugly and not "integrated", leave the Vocab section in place while you develop the replacement, please!
The only suggestion I disagree with here is No. 5. I don't think Duolingo should adopt flashcards. This is because flashcards take out the natural learning environment. Sentences are much more natural than flashcards. You can see more about it here -> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rt3e6cpUjQQ. As Steve from lingq puts it himself. One alternative could be like what they had before where you could practice the word, except you could set the amount of sentences you wanted to go through.
that's a really interesting opinion! After having seen that video I started pondering that after all I'm using Anki myself to remember mainly idioms, and I find it more useful than for example memorizing those German adverbs outside their natural environment.
Like you, I'm not sure Duolingo should spend much time trying to create a flahcard system. However, the reason for this in my point of view is not because flashcards are ineffective but rather because there already exists very good systems out there.
For example, I use Anki with which I created a deck of flashcards for every word in my Duolingo vocab section (850+ words). On the front side of the card I get the word in the target language plus the pronounciation sound. On the back of the card, I get the english translation plus an example sentence using the word in the target language. That way I feel I don't lose too much of the natural learning environment. And thanks to the flexibility of Anki, I can also practice words in reverse order, i.e. from english to the target language.
Still, for me flashcards remain a complement to Duolingo.
But if you find them useful, why don't you want them on duo? This way, we all wouldn't have to make our own sets elsewhere.
That's a good point. The main reason I guess is because given the scarce resources at Duolingo vs the ever expanding wish list from users, I feel it would be more profitable to concentrate on other issues instead of trying to replicate something that already exists elsewhere and works fine. But I grant you that if you have to create your own set, that means substantially more work. But then again, I think you're likely to remember more stuff doing it.
I understand people who like using flashcards because it's a way for them to practice their passive vocabulary. Maybe an API or feature could be added where you could put all the words you know to an anki file and download them. I used to do this for Japanese. However, I agree with @birdie222 with the statement that duo shouldn't add a flashcard system just because there are better systems out there. Furthermore, I would like to see something where you could add words and be able to practice sentences with -along the lines of what @Zelah_Meyer was saying. In conclusion, I think that Duo shouldn't have a flashcards system, but instead a sentence practicing system.
Please include a clickable link to the lesson in which that word first appeared.
All the things I miss most: The ability to practice a specific word - seeing 3 or 4 practice screens working on that one word, the ability to sort the list (or results of a search) alphabetically, by part of speech, by "last practiced" date, by "first seen" date, etc.
An easy way to export / print the word list for a lesson (I know that some people have done this, I just don't know how to do it myself)
I'm fairly new to DuoLingo (18 days) so I'm not too sure I can comment on how effective the previous vocabulary section worked (or didn't work?). However, I do like all the ideas put forth here and hope they are implemented in the future. While I've learned in French there are some general tips to help discern the gender more often than not I will get the exact phrase or wording correct but the gender wrong. (See here for tips http://french.about.com/od/grammar/a/genderpatterns.htm) I really like the idea of colouring or distinguishing the genders. Here's why:
If we look at the way people learn (a language or new skill) we find that everyone's learning style is different and unique. We all love or loath in varying degrees the method or HOW new information is acquired or is taught to us. Some of us hate repetitive flash cards and don't find them very useful and to others it's a necessity or an enjoyable game. Moreover, some of us (myself included) are more visually-oriented. Images and colours help stimulate my learning and memory process more effectively. "Sensory preferences influence the ways in which students learn ... Perceptual preferences affect more than 70 percent of school-age youngsters" (Dunn, Beaudry, & Klavas, 1989, p. 52). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Learning_styles#Learning_Modalities
What I like about DuoLingo is there seems to be good mix. I just recently started Spanish and found the pictures in the first basic lesson section to be helpful for memory retention. I had often heard or read the word "la mujer" several times but found the picture image of a woman stuck better in my mind. Sometimes it requires a combination of seeing, reading, hearing, saying and some might add experiencing a word to fully grasp it's meaning.
On the idea of flash cards (for those of us who find it enjoyable or useful) -- A few people have mentioned that they make their own. Why not make them more interactive? What if there was a way we could make flash cards for others (not just for ourselves) but to share, practice or challenge others on DuoLingo? For example, what if we could let's say have a flash card with a picture of a clock on it and you (or the other person you are challenging) had to use the word "horloge" (if we're using French) to a create a working sentence, with proper grammar, gender, verb tense, etc.? Would this not resolve CalebHenni1 concern around removing the word from the sentence or natural learning environment? I don't even know if it's possible or how easy or difficult it would be to create such a thing? But it's just a thought. While some people may despise flash cards having it as an option would be beneficial to those who enjoy them or learn differently. Chacun son goût
I really like this idea of creating a proper sentence from a word and a picture. It would be really exciting if the community or your followers could get in on it too. This way it becomes a social way to learn. This would allow you to learn new vocabulary and ways of constructing sentences using proper grammar from others as well as Duolingo. It would also make people ponder deeply upon words and really learn them by being creative with them. The best part about this is that it seems quite natural to experiment with words and see what you can make with them.
Definitely 3, and/or give us the option to practice "least frequently seen words". There are always words in my vocabulary section that I have "last seen 3 months ago - full strength". Nope, they are not full strength, for sure ;-) ! Also this way there would be more variety.
I was just about to post asking for 2 and 4 to be added to the vocabulary tab. I find it's quite hard to use with all the words just thrown in together - I'd really like to be able to revise nouns as a group with the gender shown
Would love to have a phrase dictionary, for those idiomatic phrases that make no sense when translated word for word.
This is good. You guys are coming up with some great suggestions and I hope DL is taking note and will take action.
I would like to be able to find a word that begins with a certain letter. For example being able to easily access all the words beginning with an 's' more easily without having to scroll down the whole list which takes ages.
Or maybe a word ending in a certain letter, for example in Spanish ciudad, responsabilidad, felicidad etc
I wonder if Duo could include a linke to bilingual dictionaries somewhere on the site? That would take care of 1 and 2, and might help with 4. I hadn't used the vocab page so I don't miss it, but I HAVE missed a link to a dictionary -- now I have WordReference.com bookmarked.
By the way, does anyone know why was the vocabulary removed, and if it will be back?
We've been told it is coming back, but we don't yet know in what capacity or when. I hope they do the right thing and add features (and squash the bugs) rather than remove them. It was the most (manually) useful tool in the box, in my opinion.
Word about the reason behind removal was that metrics indicated that it wasn't helping. Well, it certainly was helping me (and a lot of others who have spoken up), so that's a failed metric. I appreciate the testing and scientific side of it, but you've got to allow for the human side too.
I'd love to (and need to) practice my "Ihr", as I have depended on several times before the updates. It's getting rusty very fast, and I currently have no direct way to focus on it specifically, and refresh myself on all of the little definitions and example usages I had access to before the change. For now I'm reduced to waiting for it to show up by practicing certain lesson(s). That makes me enjoy DL less; I wonder if there's a metric for that. :)
Well put. Agree totally. Personally I'm looking at other language programs that suit my needs. I miss the "old" owl and your post reminded me. Bring him (her?) back!
I just bombed out of a timed test because I couldn't remember the German word for "expensive" (because I haven't seen it in so long, even though the algorithms suggest that I'm fully gold/strong). And now, I can't even look it up on DuoLingo; I have to go to a different site to do so. That's just wrong.
So add a vote for the suggestion to allow lookups in either language.