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IOS Health Bars - Please Remove this.

First I would Like to say the I love duo lingo and have enjoyed learning a new language. I have been using it casually for 3 years now, but I am getting close to finishing the German tree and now have a goal of finishing it. The new Clubs feature is great, nice addition.

So I log in today on the IOS version and there is now a health bar where if you make 5 mistakes, you are locked out and can't continue.

This is absolutely horrible. Why are you trying to dictate how much time I spend in a session and which sessions I work on. If I make 5 mistakes in a particular area, how is going back other topics going to help me on the one I made mistakes in? I need to keep working where the mistakes were made so I can learn. This is completely backwards!

I wanted to sit down this afternoon and do a few modules, but No, I'm locked out, because I made a few mistakes on a brand new module with words I have not even learned yet. Give me break.

People make mistakes, that is how we learn. Don't punish us for making mistakes, who cares if it takes 10, 20, 30 mistakes, people learn differently. On new modules your going to make lots of mistakes.

Sure, I can understand having limits if you are doing some sort of test after you are taught something and are tested on it after, but duolingo does not really work like that, you are thrown into new topics without being taught anything (especially on IOS) and you learn by doing.

The game was perfectly fine before this update. The decaying modules are perfect, it makes sure you stay fresh on different topics that we all forget over time. I plead you to take this crap out of the application and let people learn on their own time and their own pace.

Sorry for the rant, but I feel very strongly against this.

Thanks for Listening

May 27, 2017



I wholeheartedly agree with this message; I haven't yet been locked out of anything yet, but I feel like being locked out of what you need more practice on is the opposite of what is necessary.


FYI, you'll find:

  • here a[n older] discussion about the same subject: "Please get rid of "health" it is HORRIBLE".
  • here another one few hours later: "Please remove the Hearts system."


Are they really just going to ignore all the complaints about the recent changes and leave it to moderators to clean up the forums all day?


No matter how counterproductive this is for learning, we'd better get used to it as the stats obviously say it brings in more cash... There's no other plausible reason for it! This is of course fair enough and absolutely understandable, but I do wish at least duo would come clean with us and not add insult to injury by pretending it's for our own good :-/

I can only hope they will fine tune the parameters a bit... One step was to disable health for courses still in beta. Another might be to reduce the time lock, to increase tolerance for first time errors, or to allow at least a second chance at a new lesson, for example. From what I've seen so far, at least with my current settings, multiple attempts at testing out of a lesson are still allowed and don't affect health (as long as you haven't already run out!)... not an ideal way to learn, but hey duo is still free so we mustn't complain ;-)

If I do get too frustrated it'll be over to Android or the web for me, or over to the missus' iPad, which fortunately had auto-update turned off! :-)


If you pretty much already know the language you can google questions or would be answers or use google translate and power on. For new languages outside of beta iOS is just about useless. It being broken is a feature not a bug. The idea is to inculcate so much frustration and helplessness you'll queue to unbreak the product. The more you complain the more they know the plan is working. The educational mission statement of the company has been compromised. I've contributed a few bucks here and there to duo and I feel regardless of what happens I've already gotten my money's worth, but I feel terrible for the course contributors. Presumedly they bought into the idea they were going to actually help people.


Go to iOS app store and rate it a one with a note that it's specifically because of the health bar


You may be interested by Luis'(*) answer about "will doing that make Duo change its mind?" in this other discussion.
Namely, Luis's 3 answers (up to now):

(*) Duolingo's CEO


Use the desktop or mobile browser. It doesn't have that garbage on there and not dumbed down.

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