https://www.duolingo.com/wand13

Dialect Education

Does anyone know if Duolingo ever plans on introducing features to help teach users different dialects? (Or at least offer exposure to vocabulary used in some of the dialects) Perhaps an extra unit could be purchased from the Lingot store much like the current Christmas, Flirting and Idiomatic Expressions. For example, one could purchase a Castilian Spanish or Argentinian Spanish unit that teaches extra vocabulary only used in those dialects. Any one who wants to learn this vocabulary can (for example, people wishing to use their Spanish in Spain or Argentina), but it wouldn't be part of the main course. This could be useful for many of the languages offered (Québec French, Austrian German, European Portuguese, etc.) Just an idea, but I think some sort of education on dialects could be useful, particularly for the Immersion section. Any thoughts?

February 5, 2014

12 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/pleiadian_

This would be awesome but there are 20+ dialects in English, Spanish, French, and Arabic... things would get really messy and since there are no standards to follow, there would be a potential for disputes that have no way of getting resolved.

Also there's no "black-and-white" line to define where a dialect is from. My friend from Mexico said that the dialect in the south is different than in the north.. but I'm sure that others would disagree and say that there are more than just two main dialects of Spanish in Mexico. Same goes with any other language, how do we know how many dialects of French there are in France, Algeria, or the Ivory Coast? Is there only one dialect of Spanish in Peru or are there two? Three dialects?

February 5, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Aliciaftw

Not to mention social vs regional dialects.

February 6, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/wand13

I know it would get really messy when you get really specific, but maybe if they just kept it more general. I don't know much about the different Spanish dialects in Mexico in Peru but maybe they could focus on teaching words that are generally understood and used in all of the country/nearby dialects. And granted the point of Duolingo is not to educate people in specific dialects, but I just thought it could be a cool and pretty easy idea to implement if you don't get too specific.

February 6, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/GrgoCroatia

It's difficult. As dario_gerussi explained above: one country can have a lot of dialects which can be sometimes closer to other nation, depending on region, or even subdialects itself. I know that in US "dialect" mostly means different accent, but in Europe it means different words as well. So it would be very difficult to say "which dialect to choose".

Example from my language, Croatian; it has 3 main dialects and each of it has 10 different sub-dialects, each island has it's own dictionary and people can't understand each other without using standard Croatian. For one word in standard language there are 10 words in dialects. So then, which dialect would be here? Northern one, from NW? NE? Or south and sea where there's lot of Romance vocabulary?

German dialects are probably more extreme as North and south, including Austrian dialects, can be impossible to understand without Hochdeutsch.

Dialects are cool thing and we should preserve them but I think it's not for Duolingo, it would be something totally different.

February 6, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/856pm

We would need a lot more volunteers.

February 5, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Joeyshere

That would be really awesome. I'd love just to have one available for the United States. You'd have different units on the Boston accent, New York, Brooklyn, New Jersey, Carolinas, California, Texas and so on. That would be a lot of fun. And for English, they could help us with perfecting our British/Australian accent, if you're from America. Haha fun idea :)

February 5, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/MystyrNile

Maybe they should start with something a little less specific. Like, New York and New England. Then break that down into more specific dialects.

February 5, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Joeyshere

That'd be good too

February 5, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/wand13

Yea I'm sure there's lots of examples of English words that would be useful to learn. It could be more useful for English learners in Europe to learn some British terms. (flashlight vs. torch, trash vs. rubbish etc.) I think implementing an accent pronunciation thing would likely be very difficult, but at least education on local word usage could be great. (And to be honest after meeting an Australian I wouldn't mind having Duolingo teaching me some Australian English. They have so many different words than Americans!)

February 6, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Goldfish23

This is a good idea. As I plan on moving to Bavaria, Germany, I know that Platt Deutsch (low German) is a dialect commonly spoken in that region. I've only been exposed to it once, and it sounds nothing like Hoch Deustch. (High German).

Every language has its own set of dialects, if Duo could expose us, even just a little bit, to some of the dialects which are more commonly used, then perhaps use students could get a better taste of whatever culture we are learning the language of. :)

February 6, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/wand13

Yea and even if Duolingo can't teach you all of the dialect you can at least be exposed to some common features of the local German. For example I think they say Grüß Gott instead of Guten Tag in Bavaria. That's an example of a common aspect of the local dialect that would be really easy to teach and would be extremely useful to know when in Bavaria. Good luck with your German (:

February 6, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/MeesterSimon

Just today I was watching a stand-up comedy show on a flemish tv channel. ( Jack Dee live at the Apollo on 'Acht'). And I got very annoyed because of mistakes in the subtitles. for example: "I took my driving test pissed" and pissed was translated as angry. when an american says he's pissed, he means he's angry. When a brit says he's pissed he means he's drunk. I am quite aware of the difference between British and American English... Wouldn't it be interesting to point out some of those dissimilarities ? for example: thick, pissed, bender, fag, bird, fanny, carnival, coach, kit....

I love dialects but I think perhaps it would be more interesting to address the differences within the english language.

February 6, 2014
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