1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Troubleshooting
  4. >
  5. Impossible to delete course i…


Impossible to delete course if it's the only one from starting language

I just tried out the English from German (my native language) course. Did the placement test to see if Duo deems I still need to learn something (answer: nope). Now I can't delete the course anymore. I am able to reset it, but not remove it completely, meaning I now have an English level 1 flag in the German->English forum (or however exactly the flags work).

I don't want this flag as it would indicate I can't speak English, while in reality I'm pretty fluent. How can I remove it again?

February 22, 2014



Hi sashambaer,

I suggest moving this to the Troubleshooting forum. You'll need to subscribe to that forum first. To do so, go back to the General Discussion forum, look to the right where it says Subscriptions and click Edit. Add Troubleshooting. Then come back, edit your post, and select Troubleshooting in the drop down menu at the top of your post. Make sure to add your Operating System and Browser (for example, mine are Windows7/Firefox).

Update These instructions are accurate. :)


Huh? I thought I posted this to troubleshooting... lemme fix this

Edit: fixed... I think



It was probably a user error on my side. I'm still figuring out now the new Discussion update and all. I just brained on the fact that ALL forums I'm subscribed to probably show up in the "Discussion stream". It would make sense. ^^;


Yes there is but it is slightly roundabout. Your English level (or any other language level) is combined across all the different user interfaces in different languages on which you are learning it. i.e If you are level 3 from Dutch, you will be level 3 from German and all the other languages you can learn English from too (but your trees will not be combined). If you want to delete your English progress from only one language, I'm sorry but I don't know how to do it. This method allows you to delete your English progress from all interface languages.

  1. Go to a user interface in a language which teaches the language you want to delete, English, and another language which you are already learning (but not necessarily from that interface language). For example, if you want to delete English from x language and are learning French from English, you could go to the Spanish interface as that teaches English and French. From now on, I will use this example, but you can substitute in different language combinations.

  2. Start learning French from Spanish. Your French level in the Spanish interface will be the same as your French level in the English interface, but your trees will not be combined. You will also be learning English from Spanish automatically, at the same level as you are in the English from x language interface, but again the trees are not combined.

  3. Go to the option in settings which allows you to delete or reset a language (still in the Spanish UI). Click 'delete' for your English progress. YOUR ENGLISH PROGRESS HAS NOW BEEN DELETED ACROSS ALL INTERFACES!

Basically, this works because you only have one level per language. This means that you only have ONE level for each of the Duo languages you are learning, even if you are learning the same language from several user interface languages. If you delete your progress in one language, it is across all the interfaces. Since you can only delete a language in a given interface if you are learning another language in that interface, you have to delete your progress in English from an interface where you are learning another language.

If the second language in that interface is one you are already learning, it will not make any difference to the number of flags shown when you are posting as levels are combined across all the different language interfaces.

If you still want to use the English/German forums or similar, subscribe to these BEFORE you carry out these steps. If you do go back to learning English you can delete it again using the steps above. Sorry if this has been quite complicated or unclear but I hope it helps. If you have any questions feel free to ask!

EDIT: Reorganisation to make this easier to read.


Wow, that's quite a complicated way for something as simple as this...


I know - sorry! Its not as bad as it sounds. I did this to delete my English from French progress by going into the Spanish interface and learning French. Hope this helps, even if it is complicated! :)


A lingot for the answer. A bunch more if you can simplify your explanation, because that would be useful for many people including me.

Maybe a flowchart/decision tree?

In my case, I accidentally added Portuguese from English. Can I just delete it now without any repercussions at all? Or do I need to add Portuguese from Spanish first? (if that's out already...)

I have and want to keep French from English and from Spanish. Also Spanish from English and German from English. No wish to mess those up.



Since you are learning other languages from English, you should be able to delete Portuguese normally. Just go to your settings and click delete or reset languages.

You only need to do the above steps if the language you want to delete only has that one in the UI language you are using. E.g. If you start learning English from Dutch, you can delete ALL your English progress by going to the Spanish interface, (Spanish is best because it has the most languages after English) and start learning another language from Spanish, e.g. French. You can then delete 'Learning English' in the Spanish UI and it deletes it across all the interfaces.

Thank you for the Lingot!


You're welcome, and another for the clarification. Hope it helps others, too!



Go here https://www.duolingo.com/comment/1426103 and read two sections, 1) Levels and 2) Resetting Tree :)


@tariqnisarahmed, That one won't be updated until the Duolingo Wiki is much further along (Duolingo Wikia: http://duolingo.wikia.com/wiki/Duolingo_Wiki#Getting_Help). I'm hoping the Duolingo Wiki will be better organized.

The FAQ I linked you to previously is a bit of a mess. It started out much smaller and required a lot of of formatting and image manipulation. So, when I added things, it was a lot of work to move stuff around. Eventually, I just started moving things to the end of it when I could get the time to update it at all.

As for removing courses, the target language (language you are learning) is what you want to be careful with.

No matter how many courses you are learning Portuguese from, Duolingo considers that you are only taking 1 Portuguese course total. So, if you reset any course that has Portuguese as a target language, you reset your entire Portuguese course. (Let me know if that makes any sense. If it doesn't, I'll find another way to resay it. It made my head spin a bit the first time I tried to understand what was going on. ^_^)

PS thank you for the lingot :D


How often do you update that post? It's a bit like a Hitchhiker's Guide in scope. :) So if I understood what I read, as long as I do not mind losing all my progress in Portuguese from any language at all (currently at zero), then I can safely delete Portuguese?

Obrigado. :)


My pleasure. :) (to give the lingot)

Also: have deleted Portuguese, and so far no ill effects to my DL account.


Thanks for this explanation! Even though it's so complicated (that's not your fault!).

I asked the same thing last week but never got a reply: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/1868194 The Troubleshooting Forum is sometimes not the most active... Hope this changes a bit with the new Forum view.


I'm not surprised that Troubleshooting is slow sometimes Staff was pretty limited. They are getting ready to hire many new people. And moderators are just community volunteers, we don't generally have Duolingo tech expertise. (I don't know very much about computers and programming at all, just bits and pieces I pick up from Duolingo. :) I would suggest trying the search bar there and experimenting with a few different keywords. Sometimes, a question has already been answered. :)


Yeah, I know. It wasn't terribly important, so I didn't bother any more.
But it's nice that it got answered here now. :)


Your level 1 English flag isn't visible when you're in the English section of Duolingo, as you can easily verify by looking at the flags next to your user name (Portuguese and French).

Also, did the placement test really tell you you have nothing left to learn? I took the German one and it placed me about two thirds down the tree, because of a few sentences where Duo expected a different answer. The same happened to an Italian friend of mine.


No, it just left me with the very last "level" undone. I had one mistake in the test, early on on something easy but I don't know if that's what caused this or if the placement test can't actually finish the whole tree for you.


I have the same problem, let's check if your tips worked...


Yes! Thank you. :)


Hi, I wanted to try the Placement test for English from Czech language. Now I'd like to remove the language, but I'm only able to reset the progress. How do I delete it? I don't want to add any course like English from French or such.


See the explanation above that was posted by person12345678. It is a roundabout way, I don't really understand it myself, but I think that is the only way since otherwise, Duolingo requires you to have at least one language per "language" you speak (unless you've never chosen a course for a certain language).

Learn a language in just 5 minutes a day. For free.