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[Suggestion] - teacher-created accounts should by default not have access to the forums.

Teachers who use the Duolingo for Schools system usually get their students to create their own accounts, and then join their DfS classroom. For younger and less savvy students, though, teachers can create Duolingo accounts for their students - these are the accounts we see in the forums whose usernames end with a string of six numbers, e.g. TestUser892366.

There's been a fair bit of forum spam recently from these accounts; people just posting "hi" in the main Duolingo forum, etc. This isn't surprising; young kids don't have an adult's experience, and in general they are less inclined to consider the effects of their actions. They also tend to think (accurately) that it's adults' role in life to clear up after them.

Would it be possible for Duolingo accounts created by teachers to have the "enable discussion forum" setting turned off by default? At the moment that setting applies to classrooms, rather than to users, so perhaps it should be that classrooms which only contain teacher-created accounts don't by default have access to the forums.

September 24, 2016



The simplest change would be to have the classroom setting default to no.

My experience has been that users (in general) do not feel responsible for settings they do not change themselves. If they have to change the value, for it to be yes, at least the teacher may feel some responsibility for the consequences.


My interest is in protecting my young users from predators or even just mature contacts. It's a concern to me that the student can remove their account from my classroom, thereby avoiding the privacy settings that I've configured for the class. It doesn't help me for the default to be different if the student can avoid it altogether.

It would be a nice intermediate step if I can receive notifications when a student leaves my class - at least then I can reach out to the student to get them back in.


I see one area where blocking teacher created accounts could be an issue. One of the posts recently from a teacher of an ESL class said his students didn't have email. My suggestion was they need to get email to fit into life in America but the option of him just creating class accounts was also discussed. They are a group that would likely benefit and be a resource for discussion


I'm not suggesting that those accounts shouldn't be created, I'm just suggesting that by default they shouldn't be able to create forum posts. They'd still be able to read the forums, and their class teacher could still choose to let them create forum posts if they thought it was appropriate for their class.


Ok I misunderstood that works.

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