https://www.duolingo.com/Objectivist

Putting your Duolingo experience on your resume can get you a job!

Objectivist
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A friend of mine who used to study Swedish on Duo applied for a call agent job. The recruiter (who was familiar with Duolingo) told her that the company often gets calls from Swedish people, so her Duolingo experience gave her the nod over the other candidates. The recruiter also told her that they were impressed that she got to her level of Swedish solely as a hobby. Keep in mind that she learned all the Swedish she knows on Duolingo.

The lesson to take away from this is: put your Duolingo experience on your resume!

1 year ago

22 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/anggx0
anggx0
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This is very interesting! I'm not sure that I would feel comfortable enough putting it on my resume though, personally. As it is, I feel hesitant to put French and Portuguese on my resume and I've been studying/speaking them conversationally for a while (a couple of years in the case of French). I would be nervous that the employer would want to test me and that I wouldn't be able to meet their expectations. However, I've been studying and speaking Spanish for years and I speak it frequently, so I'd be less nervous about putting it on my resume.

I've never learned a language from scratch using Duolingo; I've always used it as a supplement. I'm kind of curious as to how much I could learn solely using Duolingo. I was planning to challenge myself over the summer to complete a tree in a language that I do not know at all and see how much I end up learning in the end.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/annika_a
annika_a
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As it is, I feel hesitant to put French and Portuguese on my resume and I've been studying/speaking them conversationally for a while

I would definitely recommend mentioning these languages, and trying to explain (briefly, of course) what your level is. And maybe brush up on your conversation a bit before an interview... ;-)

I might say "French: proficient at reading and intermediate at speaking" and "Russian: beginner" or something. In Europe, the CEFR levels are widely understood.

The most important thing is to be honest about what your skills are! But don't be afraid to mention them, even if they aren't strictly relevant to the job you're applying for.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Onagraceae
Onagraceae
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How wonderful for your friend!

It seems meaningless to declare one set rule for listing language learning on a resume since every job is different. Some like a lot of experience and skills while other jobs prefer the opposite (i.e, avoiding hiring over-qualified individuals for jobs they will get bored of quickly).

Personally, I would sooner write something along the lines of "Beginner/Intermediate proficiency in Spanish; actively learning" than "Completed Duolingo tree". In an interview setting, I would be clear that the learning is done through online resources such as Duolingo (and Memrise, LingQ, penpals, etc..), but that a daily commitment is made to do at least a little bit of review.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/wombatua
wombatua
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It's good this happened for your friend, but I'd be careful putting Duolingo on a resume. I hire people occasionally, and I'd be rolling on the floor laughing if I saw someone using Duolingo as the sole source of linguistic ability. Duolingo provides some familiarity, sure, and it's a good first step, but it doesn't bring one to fluency and it doesn't provide any sort of certification. If someone put on their resume that they had, say, ability in German and backed it up with a Goethe test score, I'd pay attention. I'd see Duolingo as a joke.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/pont
pont
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Agreed. Duolingo can be a very useful learning tool, but it's a terrible assessment tool. Especially now that they'e done away with hearts and massively weighted the questions towards L2→L1 translation, it's possible to complete a tree while gaining fairly minimal language skills. Personally I think a self-estimated CEFR level in one's CV would be preferable to a Duolingo level or fluency score.

dqxxmvyvoedn

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/annika_a
annika_a
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Also, the CEFR levels are pretty universally used in Europe. Duolingo levels or trees only mean something to someone who uses Duolingo (if even that).

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ictram
Ictram
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I think it would depend on the function, if the language is vital for the job you would really need to pass something akin to an IELTS or a Cambridge exam to prove your proficiency. If it's not important the CEFR estimation should suffice, it's at least a decent conversation opener.

And as a caveat to anyone reading, if you put a language on your CV at least be able to have a conversation in it, if the interviewer speaks it too and you don't you're not likely to get the job :p

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/pont
pont
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Sure, a qualification is always better, and if the language is needed for the job they'll probably make it a hard requirement.

if you put a language on your CV at least be able to have a conversation in it, if the interviewer speaks it too and you don't you're not likely to get the job :p

Indeed. And even if you make it through the interview, you might find yourself in trouble the first time a [whatever]-speaking customer or collaborator visits, and you're asked to liaise with them...

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/VincentOostelbos
VincentOostelbos
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I think "rolling on the floor laughing" and "a joke" is a bit strong, as you really can reach a decent level with Duolingo for many languages (it does depend a bit on the specific tree), but I do agree that to reach proper fluency such as one probably would require it for most professional purposes, other sources/methods of study are indeed required.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/wombatua
wombatua
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I'd be laughing because to me it would show a distinct lack of judgment on the part of the applicant. It would show me that they actually took Duolingo more seriously than they really ought, and that would affect my perception of their application.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/VincentOostelbos
VincentOostelbos
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Right, I understand and agree with that, qualitatively speaking; I just personally don't think Duolingo, even if used on its own, is bad enough to warrant that degree of amusement, quantitatively speaking.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/annika_a
annika_a
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The amusement (at least when I'm the person making the hiring decisions) would not come from someone using Duolingo, but the bad judgment would be mentioning Duolingo in the application material. Applicants should realize that that's the kind of detail that doesn't belong in a CV or a cover letter. In an interview -- possibly, if it comes up naturally in conversation, but certainly not in written communication. And even in an interview one certainly shouldn't go on about trees, levels, and XPs.

Unless you're applying to work for Duolingo.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/VincentOostelbos
VincentOostelbos
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Yes, I understand, that's what I had in mind when I made my previous comments as well. Still, it's only amusing to that extent, that the judgment is poor; and the judgment is only poor to that extent, that Duolingo by itself does not suffice/is lacking to learn a language. My argument was just that this extent wasn't that great, and so my amusement in such a scenario would not be that great, either. But I recognize that this is A) a quantitative, rather than a qualitative argument, and B) rather subjective.

I still agree that I would not be inclined to put it on my CV either, except in very specific circumstances, and further that if it is brought up at all in the interview, then the discussion (from the side of the interviewee at least, that is, unless probed specifically) should remain general, avoiding detail on trees, levels, and XPs, as you say.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/annika_a
annika_a
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From your comment below it seems we agree on the subject matter but have different senses of humour. :-)

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/VincentOostelbos
VincentOostelbos
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That might well be true :P

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Dessamator
Dessamator
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it doesn't provide any sort of certification

This isn't accurate, it does provide English certification that seems to be used by some universities [1] in the US and a lot of institutions in a particular country. An accurate statement might be that it doesn't provide certification in anything other than English. It seems to have given up its ambitions of providing it in other languages.

So theoretically, and practically one can gain enough English knowledge through Duolingo to get certified, use it to gain university admission, and eventually a job. In fact, at least one company uses it to evaluate its employees.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/EnglishTutorJay
EnglishTutorJayPlus
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100% agree. I cannot even tell you how many people have offered me work etc solely because of my language skills and I only study them as a hobby (currently).

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/zekecoma

So, I should put my A1 German knowledge on my résumé/CV and I can get a job speaking German to natives?

You should only put your language skills on a résumé, CV, etc. if you can actually have a conversation, a job interview, etc. without struggling, and if you have a CEFR B2 certification.

I don't see putting "I've completed a Duolingo language tree." as a measure of fluency.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AmineHadji1
AmineHadji1
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It really depends on your work. Personally, I put my A1 knowledge of any language on my resume. Of course, it won't be a real asset for your company, but you never know. Having a lot of language in your resume (with at least three with a B2 level and more) shows that you have an affinity with languages. It helped me got a job abroad because they thought "you like languages, you'll learn Dutch quickly".

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MauriceDun
MauriceDun
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It seems odd to me to do such a thing if you are seeking a speaking language job. I would consider it if Duolingo had a way of having conversation with natives in my target language. Maybe if I was apply for a transcription job I would note work I did in Immersion in my cover letter. I would say in general non-professional independent work might be more suitable in a cover letter. I would also bring it up in an interview.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Objectivist
Objectivist
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Maybe I should have been a bit more specific in my opening post. I don't think it's a good idea to mention Duo when you apply as a translator or a grammarian, but I do think it's a huge plus for any job that doesn't require you to be at a near-native level.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DaphneTheSnail

Wow! That's great!

1 year ago
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