Gems and Health FAQ
As mentioned earlier by Luis, this week most Duolingo users on iOS will begin to see their Lingots converted into a new currency: Gems. We are switching over to a new currency system that will improve the old system, ensure Duolingo remains an effective learning tool, and help sustain Duolingo as a free service for years to come.
We’ve heard you. There are a lot of questions and concerns about this change (and some misinformation floating around), so we want to take the time to clarify and answer your questions. We’ve included some frequently asked questions below, but encourage you to ask (and vote on) additional questions in the comment section.
What are Gems? Gems are the virtual currency replacing the existing Lingots in Duolingo. You will continue to earn Gems as you would have earned Lingots for completing lessons on Duolingo. Over time we will introduce additional and optional ways to earn and spend Gems, but to be clear, Gems are auxiliary: they are not required to learn on Duolingo.
Do I need Gems to use Duolingo? No. All learning content continues to be available to everyone, for free. While Gems can be used to motivate and inspire learning in different ways (and allow more experienced users to adjust their own pacing), they are not necessary in order to learn.
Wait. Why did you replace Lingots? Remember how a number of users ended up with a lot of Lingots and not enough things to spend them on? This resulted in an “inflation” of the Lingot economy that needed to be addressed in order to improve the system. Gems can be earned or purchased and provide users with more options for how they want to use and support Duolingo. On the flip side, they give users another (optional) way to support Duolingo’s mission to bring free education to the world.
Do I have to buy Gems? No. You earn Gems by reaching your daily goal and completing skills. This means that you can earn Gems every day just by practicing your language (even more if you finish new skills).
What is Health? Health is a way of pacing Duolingo lessons to discourage binging behavior, which is shown to be ineffective for learning a new language (consider users who don’t care how many mistakes they make but simply progress through lessons to achieve status). You lose Health by answering incorrectly too many times, which has been encouraging users to pay closer attention to what they are answering before hitting “submit.”
How do I restore my Health? You practice previous material to restore it. Each lesson practiced will restore one bar. Or you can take a break and let it refill on its own. Five bars is considered “full” Health. For those who still want to binge on Duolingo without taking a break or taking the time to review lessons, Health can also be refilled with Gems.
But why? Because it’s better for learning. Our research shows that if people advance too quickly on Duolingo in one day, it can actually negatively impact their learning because they are less likely to remember what they’ve learned. We know that users learn best when they study every day and take the time to practice and review what they’ve learned. The Health feature encourages users who are making mistakes to take a breather and review previous lessons before moving forward.
What about other platforms? Health and Gems are only available on iOS for now. We will be testing these mechanics on Android in the future. We do not currently have plans to bring this to Web.
What are the results? We’ve been testing the health mechanic on new users for the last eight months, and we’re seeing a positive impact in engagement thus far. While we can’t make every one of our 170 million users happy, our top priorities are to ensure that Duolingo remains an effective learning tool and to sustain Duolingo as a free service for years to come. So far, this update is allowing us to achieve both.
We appreciate your support and hope Duolingo has been helping you learn the language(s) you love. Thank you for your suggestions and ideas. Find additional answers in Luis’ post on The State of Monetization at Duolingo, or post and vote on questions below. We will address as many as possible.
What about new courses where correct answers are not yet accepted? I have reached a section of the hungarian course where clearly few reports have been accepted as of yet. Can you delay implementing this until new courses leaves beta when reports have settled down.
Also will you take how much a user is able to remember into account? Over the three years I have been using duolingo I have become much better at learning new vocabulary. Most of my mistakesnare typos. I think Imwill leave that timely example in! I have arthritis and make lots of typos. I don't want this to ruin the wonderful part of my life that duolingo has become.
Also my website version just updated and the top bar no longer resizes along with the page and the exercises jump all over the place on Silk the kindle browser. I would appreciate this getting sorted, it was not a welcome duoversary present. For three years duo has worked perfecty in silk, now it doesn't:((
Per LauraNestler's reply, it will continue to be the case that courses in beta are not subject to the health system (as they have not been for a couple weeks now for those of us who have already had health).
The real problem is that false negatives are not exclusive to beta courses, and all mistakes are much weightier within Health's system.
This health system sounds awfully similar to the system used back when I joined Duolingo in 2013. I ended up using Duolingo for 5 months before quitting because of the 3 hearts system.
Essentially some days I would only find a few spare minutes around a long day at work, and on some occasions I would have to use the internet to give me the answers solely to maintain my streak.
As I said, eventually I became fed up with the heart implementation.
So, a reasonable amount of time has passed, and a few months ago I found that that the hearts system and the static lesson length has been replaced with a variable progress which steps back when I answer incorrectly. This change has been the best alteration I have seen Duolingo make for casual Duolingoers.
Personally I hope that the old hearts system is not re-introduced to the Duolingo community.
I have 2 questions:
My friend has 26 Lingots converted into 500 Gems, I have about 200 Lingots converted into 700 Gems. So the exchange rate is not linear?
Since Lingots in the web interface are preserved, does that mean I have "free gems"? e.g. I can buy extra skills with the converted Gems, and my Lingots won't be deduced. Isn't that unfair to non-iOS users?
I keep seeing: round down to the nearest 50 and add 500 (Although they could be A/B testing different schemes)
So in this thread I'm hearing that the new rollout will no longer have the sentence discussions. Already it does not contain Tips and Notes, which people have frequently asked for. The only reason I can think of for not including sentence discussions is that the download would be too big if you decide offline functionality should be part of your $10 a month premium service. Why won't you just set a reasonable price for no-ads? There's nothing attractive about limiting the functionality and then calling it a premium service. The more I read about other language apps and services, the more I wonder about monthly costs. A digital subscription to The Washington Post is $10 a month. I can't get a sure lock on the number of employees, but it’s between 1,700 and 5,000. Salaries may be lower than programmers, but news gathering expenses are high. Physical overhead is higher in Washington than in Pittsburgh and according to glassdoor.com Duo has between 51-200 employees. I could very well be comparing oranges and apples, but why is a for-profit language app company like Forvo able to balance its budget (with crowd-sourced sound bites, requiring media storage) with the $3 one-time fee they charge for an ad-free app?
There's something wrong with this picture. I do question what direction you're moving toward when app functionality becomes crippled by Health, shutting down activity streams, even cutting out sentence discussions in the app. This really needs to be addressed.
Sentence discussions are off on iOS? It's the first time I hear this, but if it's true it's the worst thing they could possibly do. Sentence discussions are the only reason why I am still on Duolingo. They are the only place where I still learn something. I understand why they may not be available offline but that is no excuse to take them off completely.
This is the first time during my 4+ years on Duolingo that I hear sentence discussion having been on iOS.
I love Duolingo a lot and I think this option makes sense at first glance, but the way it's approached overall is just horrible. With all due respect, I just don't agree with this update overall. A recent article even pointed out that the best time to practice skills after finishing them, is once it has become un-golden and halfway through the memory bar thingy majigger.
If we're going to have any form of health and binging, it shouldn't solely be on mistakes. As someone else said, it's just very similar to the old hearts feature and is again a step back. I agree that binging is a problem that many people have with this app, Duolingo is quite addicting and learning on this app can be very alluring. But to stop people from binging according to the amount of mistakes they make is so harsh and intimidating and even detrimental to learning. Yes, we focus on the sentence more and we try harder, but we can't try much harder with new content that we are unfamiliar with like genders, cases, plurality, etc. And to make people go back an practice on GOLDEN skills? It's a waste! You're not really helping memory at that point.
I'm sure many of us language learners are familiar with the Spaced Repetition System Methods, and apparently this app tries to use that to help keep words in our memory, and that's what the article addressed as well to help our memory. We shouldn't be practicing things that we are fresh on, we need to continue forward, but if our health doesn't let us continue with fresh content because it's too fresh and we keep messing up, well then our memory isn't doing much exercise really.
I like the idea of our "Health" bar going down when we've studied/learned too much, not messed up too much. I think if we do lose Energy though, we can revive/refill it with re-doing skills that AREN'T GOLDEN and AREN'T OVER TWO BARS/HALF-FILLED. I don't exactly know how this would work, but I'm sure it's possible. I also don't hate the option of making deep texts, more new skills, personalization options, games, etc. For anyone who knows HelloChinese, their games seem pretty innovative, fun, and helpful for learners.
Duolingo is probably one of my favorite apps, and probably my number 1 go to with language learning or being introduced to new languages. I love Duolingo a lot and I think many of these new things are cool and with good intention, and I know how hard it must be to have a community that constantly won't agree and be kind and considerate and I feel bad for that because you guys must really do work hard. However, this is really important because this isn't just a new feature, this is a hindering feature for those of us who enjoy learning and understand the benefits of making mistakes. I thank you Duolingo, for lots of things, and I encourage change, but I encourage beneficial change. And although this might be a bit more beneficial than now, it could still be better.
What new items will you implement in the game that can be bought with Gems? Will there be more options for things you can buy with the new currency? Also, will lingots remain the standard currency on non-iOS devices?
What new items will you implement in the game that can be bought with Gems?
We are working on things, but I am not allowed to spoil the goodies before they appear there.
Will there be more options for things you can buy with the new currency?
Also, will lingots remain the standard currency on non-iOS devices?
As the post says, "Health and Gems are only available on iOS for now. We may test these mechanics on Android in the future. We do not currently have plans to bring this to Web."
If binging is BAD in the app why aren't you implementing health on the web as well? Surely if it's as BAD as you say in the app it's BAD on the website
Just a question... why rename it to gems? It seems like every single app in existence has "gems." Why not make Duolingo stand out? I'm fine with changes to the currency system, and I get that calling them gems probably makes coding easier and shows that things have changed, but please come up with something more original than "gems." Other than that, keep up the good work :)
I think it is because "gems" is descriptive and easier to translate. But if you have cool ideas, I'd like to hear them ٩(●ᴗ●)۶
Well, I guess that does make sense. I've always loved the name lingots though :)
Me too! But I think that keeping that name would have been confusing in this case. =]
I have tried to be patient and understand that this may be better for our learning, but it really isn't. Im trying to learn Russian and I am a fairly new beginner. It is very difficult for me as they have a different alphabet. I feel as if I am totally unable to progress at all due to this new health system.
People learn from their mistakes. If you tell them they are wrong and then deprive them from attempting the same question again, how are they going to remember?
I havent felt this frustrated in several weeks.
I love this learning platform, it's purely awesome and I am so grateful.
But I feel like this is a wrong move, at least in respect to how I learn.
I think it might be appropriate to make a deeper behind-the-scenes type of article explaining some of Duolingo's views for the future and future features, mainly related to gems. I think that's the best way to address the large amount of concerns people have atm. That is if one of the planned uses of gems includes something directly related to learning and can be interesting for students. If gems are mainly related to monetization, you can forget about this suggestion as in that case it likely isn't something people would care to hear about in the current situation.
A behind-the-scenes about future content is dangerous on it's own but if you guys have something in development that fits in the following categories: gems + directly related to learning + interesting for students, teasing it might be enough to smoothen out the bump a bit.
i have just come to the website now because the mobile app is now useless for new lessons. i get the need for revenue but i would gladly pay for the app rather than this candy crush cash grab
Thank you for the answers. I've read through them, and it has confirmed what I've been thinking for some time now: As soon as my app is switched to the new system, I am deleting the app.
How to spin a cheap money grab as "inflation that must be addressed." I can buy gems, not lingots. Call it what it is. If someone is "abusing" the system they are abusing themselves, because Duo is a learning tool. I like the lingot system and I think you guys are making the same mistake Evernote did with their "sync with only 2 devices or pay."
As an Android user, this makes me consider moving towards Memrise and purchasing their pro version whenever this moves towards mobile. I use Duolingo because if I make mistakes, I can go back and practice till I understand, even if it takes me 10 times to properly understand sentence and word formation. I like the fact that Duolingo lets you correct sentences that you got wrong. This has kept me engaged and interested in Duo compared to other platforms that don't have this option. However, these changes make me less likely to want to engage on the mobile app when I can't access the desktop.
Hang on, can you do Global Practice? You should get enough XP in Global Practice to reach your goal, which will recover health and help you reach your streak, as well as give you bonus Gems for reaching your goal. Are you doing all your lessons on iOS?
I fully agree with other posters that the main reason for gems is money and money alone. I personally dislike the in-apps purchases and have consequently deleted the ios duolingo app from my phone. I will therefore use the website in order to continue to learn languages. Note that I would be happy to pay for a reasonable monthly and/or annual fee in order to support duolingo (I find the EUR 9.99 too much for a monthly fee).
I also note that they claim they wanted to reduce the inflation in lingots - with the new system they in effect did a huge devaluation of them. 1 lingot is more or less 2 gems on conversion, but the streak freeze goes from 30 lingots to 100 gems (should have been 15 gems!). Appalling and not fair!
This morning after completing my goal, and then being offered to choose a chest for my gems reward, I received a message saying I'd already received my reward for the day and couldn't claim a second time. At that point I hadn't claimed any reward and my gem total is the same as yesterday. Very disappointed. And I constantly receive messages to rate duolingo with regard to recommending it to others - this is not the first time I've not received my reward for completing my daily goal, so I would be (and have already!) warned people there are lots of mistakes in the system! And it's not easy to give feedback, or rather know, whether feedback has been received.
Hi! This was a bug and should have been fixed by now. Can you please let us know if it is still happening?
I'm not a fan of the heart system. I understand what you are trying to accomplish but on some new lessons I cannot pass them with full hearts. This means I am having a lot of trouble progressing more than one lesson a day. It is a huge inconvenience. I am going to give It time but I will likely just look for another app to use
I HATE the new "heart" health feature. It makes me feel like there's more pressure to perform, and it's no fun. It was enough for me to get a red banner with the correction and have to repeat the question more often. Now, I am visibly losing something and cannot gain it back before losing some more, and now it feels like an uphill battle. It zapped all the joy out of using this app, so much so, I quit mid-lesson. Someone please tell me when there's a way to turn this feature off! I really loved DuoLingo the way it was! Meanwhile, I'll be searching for another app that's more fun.
I wanted to add my voice to those who are finding this to be a negative change. I really don't like it & since it appeared on my iPhone, I've actively used DuoLingo much less. My iPhone version is now being prescriptive about what I can learn when, which is demotivating. I want to work on the next new section of words, but after a few mistakes, I'm forced to do generalised practice for quite a long time before I can go back and work on learning the area I want to work on? I've dropped from consistently doing 250-300xp a week to a point as part of my approach to learning Polish, to likely less than half that & mostly only when I have time to fire up my laptop and do the web version, because this has really made me not look forward to opening the app anymore. I support your desire to run a self-sustaining business. I dislike the adverts, but I understand them and if you introduce a sensibly priced way to skip adverts or pay for extra features, I will actively subscribe and pay for your service, but I will NEVER EVER buy gems in their current form. I'd be paying to support a mechanism which penalizes me for learning the way I want to learn, which I have found effective for me, and which tries to force me to learn in the way that someone else believes is best for me (or which the cynical part of me says has been prioritized for the sake of clumsy monetization). Please consider my voice to be a vote for rolling back this ill-considered change & for looking for another approach to monetizing your previously excellent app.
was learning 9 languages, learning 3 @ four lessons a day, and 6 @ 3 lessons a day, but now because of your changes i cant. this app used to be the best there was. now it is severely limited, alienating its fan base, and becoming more and more obviously disinterested in what it's fan base wants, while simultaneously focusing ever more on how to make a profit. this app, at it's current state, is going the same path as GOPHER did
i've used this app for five years. until this recent update i would have given duo lingo 5 stars, a shining & glowing review, and would continue to try to get as many people as i could on board with this app. now im reluctant to keep using this app, every single friend i have with this app on IOS no longer uses it because of this update, and i will no longer be recommending this app to anyone with an iphone. if these new "innovations" get implemented to the android side then i will no longer be recommending this app, period.
this app was, from an academics perspective, perfection until this latest update. now it is disappointment, tinged with personal insult as a loyal and devoted user, advocate, and polylinguist.
you have earned my ire and disdain. your "update" ruined perfection.
side note, instead of devaluing the currency, how about you provide more things to spend it.
Not in the same way. In this system, you earn Gems by meeting your daily goal (which extends your streak by nature). So everyone gets a reward every time they extend their streak, but you will no longer be rewarded for every 10-day streak.
The amount you earn will vary with random chance – you will receive a random reward chest when you meet your daily goal.
Up to how many XP points do you consider "binging"? Thanks in advance for answering.
So how do we report errors with the new system? On Thursday I completed my daily goal of 20XP and got the 'pick a chest to win gems' option, where like in the previous 3 days I'd 'won' 20 gems. On Friday (probably earlier in the day than Thursday, so not quite 24 hours apart was my reasoning), I completed my daily goal of 20XP and got the 'pick a chest to win gems' whereby it said, sorry you've already had your daily gem allocation today. OK so last 24 hours. But then my next go was Sunday, and I get the same message?
This was a bug :( -- It should have been fixed by now. Is it still happening?
Why does running out of health make me stop in the middle of a lesson? Why is this not an optional feature for those of us who pay? And I question the thinking behind this, as all the best research in educational psychology (read Mindset, by Carol Dweck, for starters, or just google "growth mindset vs fixed mindset") indicates that the worst thing educators can do is make students afraid of making mistakes. I plan carefully when I'll be on Duolingo during my day, and instead of focusing on the words now, I've got one eye on the health meter and am worried about it making me stop in the middle of a lesson. This is really awful and has seriously impacted my use of Duolingo for the negative.
If Health has been added to discourage ineffective lesson binging, then why giving people a way to overcome this limit by spending gems? It defeats the purpose of the whole thing, right?
I'm sure the real motive behind the change is only to raise revenue, which, wanting to raise revenue by itself is fair enough. But it's the dishonest way they go about that is most frustrating.
I think a lot of people, at least on the forum, feel a lack of honesty from Duolingo the last number of months.
Agree. Feeling v discouraged. It worked so well before the change. So if they need revenue then let everyone pay a small sum for the app
We would prefer that people didn't "binge," so we are discouraging it—but we decided not to completely remove the ability to do so (or prohibit it). In other words, I believe it is to give users who really really really want to set their own pace the option to do so. And as SLEJ4 said, the upside is that these super learners are helping Duolingo remain free for all users.
We understand that you are trying to prevent binge studying, but the fact is it discourages even people who are studying limited amounts. Now I am forced to be cautious and nervous about answers where before I could afford to take a risk and hope I spelled/answered something correctly. It may be effective, but it certainly is NOT fun studying this way!
And i think this will lead to avoid exercise when you are not in a confortable place, it often happens to me to study "on the go" when i have the chance, like on metro/bus etc. I clearly do more errors in those moments rather than when i'm at home, but it's still time spent to practice!
So true. Some of us are careful/cautious enough to start with, and benefit from a looser approach to "making mistakes."
I understand the desire to prevent people from bingeing, or from just racing through to gain another trophy. However, considering a lot of what is learned new on DuoLingo is through trial and error, penalizing someone who is legimately trying to learn a language is not encouraging. If you taught by teaching, rather than testing (which is essentially what is happening), this wouldn't feel so punitive. Perhaps the limit of five errors allowed on new units should be reconsidered, particularly when one is trying to grasp the tricky grammars and sentence structures of a new language. For example, if the first question in a new unit is to repeat back or spell something you haven't been taught, that is very discouraging. The iOS lessons don't have the tips and notes the web version has, leaving a learner frustrated and considering other options.
To add to my last comment, has anybody ever met a baby who didn't make mistakes while learning its first language. Do we consider mutes to be better speakers of a language? Do the people who are afraid to speak in a language class for fear of making mistakes learn faster than those who speak? Of course not.
Exactly. I have taught ESOL in several countries and can confirm that cultures that are relaxed and informal produce better language learners. Anxiety, inflexibility, and fear of making mistakes inhibits language learning.
And obviously, if a person is trying to study without sound sometimes, but doesn't want to turn off the sound feature, then all the questions that require sound are going to be wrong and sometimes that is seven or eight in a lesson
If I lose all my health on my first lesson of the day, a completely new lesson, due to mistakes in completely new material, is this also considered to be "binging"?
Please consider turning off the health penalties for brand new items (I believe you already have a similar approach with some hints only being available upon the first 1-2 encounters?).
True, I don't think they way Health was devised affects binging directly. It affects all kinds of tree progress or even exercise-directed practice, and only in the sense of hindering any tree progress it affects binging. After all, since the actual percentage of binging students is probably small, if it was actually aimed at reducing binging (meaning progressing towards the end of the tree without practice), it would not be lucrative. The program was designed to impact all users indiscriminately, since by doing that the amount of payers is prone to be higher. I don’t see that as a problem in itself. The way it impacts language learning for all users, however, is extremely negative. It encourages people not to practice intelligently, but randomically. And, after all, is not that that a kind of binging as well, as the content reviewed is not chosen according to the learner's difficulties?
You are not preventing people from binging though. Let's be honest about this.
If you intended to prevent people from binging, you'd let them access one new lesson and if they made too many mistakes, you would prevent them from doing a new one until they have mastered the first one. You would allow them to try that lesson again and practice it to learn those skills before moving on. Working on ONE new lesson until you figure it out and get comfortable with it isn't binging in any way.
Or you could set a timer or maximum on the number of new lessons one can do in a row. Or any other number of things that actually prevent binging. You would let the users choose what to review to earn new health for instance . The health certainly wouldn't carry from one language to another.
Instead, you are barring someone from working on a lesson if they've made 5 mistakes. It's clear that it's about the money and the claim that it's better for learning is a mere pretext, a (failed) attempt to make it more palatable.
I haven't downloaded the app yet, I was thinking about it but I certainly won't now. I am glad Duo won't use this on the desktop, probably because they recognize it isn't actually better.
Edit: I am also curious as to why the quizz were suppressed, especially for people - like me - who had already paid for it and didn't get a gem refund.
My question is... sometimes a lesson is difficult to get through the first time (or fifth time) you do so. Could you make it so that you can finish the lesson you are working on, whether or not you have run out of health? I'm using Android and the web at present, and know if there came a time where I was kicked out of a new lesson because I made too many typos or mistakes (easy to do for Polish, or any language that doesn't have a lot of lesson notes), I would simply stop studying the language on duolingo.
For the money then. I like the honesty, even more so because there was no way you could've justified this through the rationale behind Health alone.
I would also really really really want to be able to set my own ratio for translation into the source language higher than what Duo gives me. Would you ever consider making that possible?
At least two settings:
- a "normal" one: current ratio
- an "advanced" one: 50-50(*)
(*) or, if "50-50" is really seen as too much by staff, 60-40 or any other ratio with (far) more "write in target language" exercises. And/Or with more than two possible settings.
However (as you know, Arnauti), this is being asked for years by users (and contributors) without being addressed hence (in order to not have too high expectation) I don't expect it to be changed.
I don't expect it would ever happen either, just couldn't resist bringing it up again since it's the single most important thing that could easily make Duo so much more helpful to me personally. So it's something I think of every time I use the site, more than once a day. :)
I am using the lesson review for this (after a session, I click on each question without looking at it, only looking at the answer, and try to mentally translate the answer to the question). So I get the opposite of what was asked in the lession. Combined with the lesson before, this provides a very intensive and effective learning experience.
Okay, well I'd prefer you not to lie about your actual motives for this, but that's not gonna happen eh? The reason you did this is for money. Nothing else.
I've been on Duo since 2014 and would gladly pay over $20/month for membership, and I know there's users who would donate hundreds of dollars just to keep the site up. People used to ask all the time how to donate and were told it'd be free forever with no ads.
It makes more sense to let people set their own pace and you know it. There is NO upside, these are NOT super learners. I make more than 5 mistakes per lesson because of typos, and I retain the information. On the app I'd be blocked from continuing learning for five hours, until I pay $5 so I can continue.
This will discourage casual use, those of us who like to "taste" multiple languages, like to challenge ourselves by jumping from one to the other, really don't mind making mistakes in them, but don't intend to become fluent in any of them.
I totally agree with you. I have a couple of languages I am serious about, but I like to dabble with a few others to learn slowly by osmosis (just see what sticks). In recent trips, I have made some people very happy just by being able to say a couple of phrases to them in their language. This has happened with Italian, Arabic and Sinhala. I'm not seriously studying any of these languages, but casual study (where one doesn't worry about mistakes) can gradually give you a fair repertoire. I also feel that jumping from language to language is a wonderful exercise for the brain, but one is bound to make more errors. It is such a shame that Duo is making this decision. The reason I liked Duo so much is because I found other applications made it very difficult to progress past basic if any errors were made. Now Duo just sucks like all the other language applications.
The best feature about Duo is that my mind was able to pick up the general idea of the language with all the tenses, rather than to be stuck on present tense until you perfect that. Children learn by hearing all tenses and then the brain gradually sorts out the rules and the language starts to sound right. In time the child chooses the correct form. I liked being able to learn as a child. With the casual languages, I haven't been learning the grammar rules. That will come later. But now, I no longer have that option. Very stupid move, Duo
To really give users this option, the health refill needs to be affordably priced. It's currently 450 gems, which would leave me nothing spare if I wanted to use a streak freeze, for example, and I could only buy one refill - which may not even be enough to make it all the way through a level and save my progress, if I'm trying out something brand new or especially difficult.
I'd be happy to pay to have infinite health, but at about $8 for every two refills it is simply out of reach to 'set my own pace'. Yes, I can go back to practice, but the selected practice session is often something from the very beginning that I know backwards. It's extremely tedious to revise this five times just to return to the new lesson I had been exploring.
I know you guys are trying, and you accept that not everyone can be happy, which I completely understand from a business point of view. However I really hope you will consider our feedback that the changes - specifically on health - are hugely frustrating. (I really don't care about the currency as I never really spent it, except to buy new modules.)
My main response has been to practice on the website instead of in the app, but as I don't have a desktop computer at home this significantly reduces my opportunities to practice.
Use the mobile browser instead of the app. My understanding is that the iOS app doesn't have Tips or sentence discussion so you're not losing anything, except the health feature.
would work if you're using an ipad, but the resolution on a phone screen is really tiny.
Have you tried with the new website? I feel like doing lessons on your phone has been made much easier than before.
Superlearners? Didn't you say that binging was ineffective? Shouldn't you be calling them something more appropriate in that case? Suckers perhaps
I think that when it comes to other peoples' learning, it's not really about what you "prefer"...
It would be wonderful if anyone from duo lingo responded or even if they had a customer service helpline. I think that if you're charging people, you should at least have a way (other than a message board like this) to make complaints and ask for refunds. A very poor show!
This is absolute bull****. Its just a way for Duolingo to get money out of people, which is a shame. I always saw this as a great free learning platform.
I think that if DuoLingo wants to make money it should find other ways than spam (that's how these ads appear to me) or paying to not receive the ads.
The Lingots to Gems conversion doesn't make much sense to me either. Maybe DuoLingo should start making advanced lessons you can buy for a reasonable fee?
For French I switched to "Frantastique" because the level is much higher, the topics are more advanced and also more interesting, not to mention more fun. I'm paying for that; money DuoLingo could have earned.
Other than that I liked DuoLingo better how it was ~4 years ago when lessons were like a game. That would IMO also address the binging issue.
I'm pretty sure when they will see how many of their users left from Duo they will reconsider all these choices, the mobile version is just like a little guinea pig for them to see how people will react, that's all.
PS my Android açcount is in an AB test. Every weekend I'm offered the option to buy a weekend freeze amulet for $0.99. So spaced repetition takes a backseat to revenue generation. Don't p down my neck and tell me it's raining. It's the dishonesty that I really hate.
This is awful. I am quite capable of doing my own pacing thank you. Take the stupid health bar away! i have changed my review on the app store from 5 stars to 1 following this appalling change and I hope every else does the same.
Another thing that irks me about this development is that I don't want Duolingo to tell me what to do. Just because Duolingo feels that it is ineffective to binge does not mean that I shouldn't do it. I am the one who should decide how I want to spend my time studying, and whether I want to review something or not. Telling me that I have to review some basics that I already know because I made too many typos or didn't know the meaning of a word I'd never seen is rude and condescending. Again: Why not reward success instead of punishing failure? What about giving extra Gems for getting a certain percentage right?
Not to mention that Duolingo is used by many elderly people as a game that'll keep their minds active. They don't want this hold-out-your-hand-for-a-slap approach in their learning-for-pleasure.
I've been using duolingo for a while and have loved it. I just tried to get my eleven year old son to try it out as he is going to take a language next year in school. First thing that happened... he wasn't able to complete a lesson. He made too many mistakes. Given that duolingo teaches through trial and error, there is no way a new student will do anything but make a BUNCH of mistakes. This is normal and healthy. It's not like you step them through a lesson teaching them the vocabulary and concepts before going through the exercises..
Health is very punitive. In this case, it is not slowing down a binge learner, it is stifling a fledgling learning before he can barely get off the ground.
In an ideal world I would do an equal amount of learning each day - I manage to do my chosen level each day- BUT what you call a binge is the weekend when I have more time to spend & review my week's work. That's the time I do more. This means your heart system penalises me and is extremely discouraging if you have chosen a "difficult" language. I can sail through some languages with no mistakes, but one of them is so tricky that I make mistakes. By the way you learn through your mistakes so don't think this heart system is right. I'm losing heart with Duolingo.
Why not reward us with a health bar for completing a new lesson? That would be a reward, and positive reinforcement, rather than the punishment of just losing health bar for mistakes?
What makes me sad about this development is that by punishing errors, Duolingo is moving away from what made it so attractive in the first place - the lack of pressure, the lack of criticism, the ease of the exercises. In short, Duolingo was fun, and did not remind us of some nasty language teacher we had in school.
I understand the logic behind discouraging bingeing, but this method moves in the wrong direction. Punishment is not an effective tool for changing behavior*, and while reviewing old lessons is good, it does not help with learning the words that you got wrong. Why not do more of the opposite? Make the rewards for consistency more meaningful. Encourage the desired behavior and don't make us feel wary of mistakes.
Thank you for your hard work in updating Duolingo and keeping us posted with the changes! Although Health and Gems might not be what works best for me, I respect that it will improve your retention of people who turn up for 1 day then delete the app. If I only use my iOS device for Japanese (which is what I'm doing at the moment) will I still be able to earn lingots from Japanese that will carry over to the web version?
For those who are wondering, I learned a new skill in Japanese today and was rewarded with the normal 2 Lingots - the Lingot system seems still to be in place for Japanese :)
Yes, I know that Health didn't exist for Japanese and the other beta languages but I wasn't sure if Gems were universal or not.
If I login on my ipad (still haven't because of the update) will I still have my lingots on Android and the web? Will it know to not convert between platforms??
Yep! Your experience will be segmented by platform. Since Gems are currently only on iOS, you will see Gems on your iOS devices (like your iPad) and you will have Lingots on Android devices and Web.
I'm not an iOS user, but it doesn't sound all that bad to me when you gain a health bar by doing a single lesson.
One question is, how many mistakes cause one health bar to disappear? The post says "You lose Health by answering incorrectly too many times". Will I lose a health bar when I make five mistakes in a single lesson, or ten mistakes?
From what I've read, only the overall "strengthen" button restores health? I can see where that comes from. One can use a single skill strengthen session to gain health and never review other skills, but the overall strengthen eventually reviews all of them.
It's one mistake to one health bar and there are only five bars. You regain a (1) health bar when you either complete a 5-10 minute review or wait 5 hours. Learning and/or practicing individual lessons uses health on mistakes and it's easy to drain the whole bar in one lesson if you make to many mistakes (or have bad lag which can make answers automatically counted as wrong) at which point you need to either wait 25 hours or spend 25-50 minutes on only 'health practice' to completely regain it.
I'm going to take you at your word, and
one mistake for one health bar sounds like a downright disaster, and a very discouraging one.
How come Duolingo suddenly becomes caring of the system's effectiveness?! What about all the suggestions made in all these years?
If this keeps up, I hope iOS users will take down Duolingo's popularity on Apple Store by writing negative one-star reviews.
And thanks for the info, AiriaIFCI.
I hoped the same, that we could protest with one-star ratings in the app store but it doesn't seem to be happening. iOS App users, take a few seconds to give a one-star rating so we can fix our app!
Luis has said reviews don't matter (whether that's true or he's just trying to discourage us is another matter) but not using the app or completely deleting it will hopefully show in their metrics. You can still use your mobile browser when you don't have access to a computer.
No, but over time ratings will drop as new bad ones influence the average right? I don't know how the averages are calculated, of course...
And Duolingo is still a good app, so it's not like people will start giving it rock-bottom reviews. It's just a lot less good than it was.
I don't know if you looked at the link but unlike Android, Apple also shows the rating for the latest version. Of course, if only 10% of iOS users have Health then it's harder for the rating to drop, but if most people have health then it should show immediately.
I've tried to leave a review to do exactly this, but for some reason my iPhone refuses to give me the option in the AppStore. Not sure if it's because I've previously reviewed it at some point in the distant past, or DL have changed something. But I can find no way to leave a review right now.. :(
I think it's literally impossible for Duolingo to forbid rating and such on iTunes, but I have an idea of what you mean. I'm a user of iTunes on Windows, and they don't have the smoothest review submission system I've seen. I think my reviews don't get submitted. :-/ Though I can assume the software would work better on a Mac. Maybe try another OS?
Why do you sometimes in the new version get nothing for completing a lesson? Also the rewards don't always get paid?
being able to collapse comment threads and having much larger sentence banks to reduce repetition would be two better things to focus on in mt opinion
My gems have not been awarded the last two days. It says I already claimed them not true
Hi, since the last update to gems instead of limits it keeps telling me I've already had my reward (the gems) for the day and I can only have one reward per day when I definitely haven't already used Duolingo that day- I've successfully got my rewards chests a few times but this not giving me any has happened at least twice now :(
P.S. I love Duolingo :D
That was a bug and should have been fixed by now. Can you please let us know if it is still happening?
i tried to use the app on the plane (no internet) but after a couple of mistakes my health was used up. i could not continue for another hour because the practice option was not available offline. i do not mind the health option in general but there should be a way to earn health offline or circumvent it. i was stuck on the plane with nothing to do. time wasted starring at the back of someones head.
It appears to me that multiple lessons has been completely disincentivized. Less lessons means less ad views. I don't know yet about health dropping as I've been full since "the (unwelcome) change". Even ten more consecutive days fails to provide gems. As best I can tell, only meeting goal and selecting a box gives gems ... and money of course. And $ 10 bucks for an ad free month? Might as well go back to Rosetta Stone. I've been a huge fan of duo. I have recommended it to too many to cite. In many countries. But now it's become intimidating. And difficult to follow. And I have A LOT of consecutive days. All this to avoid binging? I used to do ten a day ... I was getting married and wanted to learn before. I always kept my tree gold -- to wherever I was. I still keep it completely gold now. But learning aggressively now seems to be punished. Seriously good habits are not rewarded anymore. Capitalism teaches they will falter ... soooo ... reward what is good. Punish what is not. But completely and totally disincentivizing more than a lesson a day. Dunno if a "chat" gives gems or not ... will see. With 762 in the upper left corner I'm considering quitting. Was that the intent of this DRASTIC change? Not incremental at all. I get the inflation thing if they want us to spend them ... other than Christmas what's to buy? Streaks no longer incentivized (no more five will get you ten bets). As for binging ... I do it whenever I visit say, the Dominican Republic ... in a manner of speaking anyway. One thing I'm pretty sure of ... if I dump on a 762 count (couple of late flight streak freezes in there but very very few) I don't think I'll come back ... and (used to) generate a bunch of ad views. Finally: ad views generate revenue ... and every lesson generates an ad view. So ... fewer lessons means fewer ad views which means less revenue. I gotta believe this is about SELLING gems ... period. And with so little to earn I find myself instead of considering spending them being motivated to save. Geez.
hey your new upgrade is getting trashed on the apple app store. there are 66 reviews and half are one-star. ironic, but your upgrade is "unhealthy."
I went through the app store's of several countries and couldn't find a single one with a higher rating than 3/5. Especially Canada's 2/5 is quite impressive even if it isn't based on as many reviews as the US one.
The previous version had a 4,5 star rating in the US store and all the all time ratings I checked were also at least 4,5/5. Maybe we should hold the final judgement until the review numbers for the current version have significantly increased (the latest version was released only two days ago). The rating in the Russian store for example has increased to 3,5 since my last comment.
true. the one-star reviews are quite detailed and a lot of thought seems to have been put into the comments. no shy folks here! i read somewhere that the gems/lingots change came as a result of bingeing. i don't quite understand the idea that bingeing is bad. who cares? they don't bother me, they don't cost anything, so wtf? i'd rather pay a small yearly fee. that would pay for a customer service person to answer questions and solve problems, something that doesn't seem to exist now.
Look at Twitter. Users hating gems and health and calling it demotivating and unpleasant!
Does that mean that when the conversion happens, the amount of lingots on the website that I currently have will be reset to zero?
original number of Lingots on the web and also have a number of converted Gems on iOS.
Copying from the post above:
What about other platforms? Health and Gems are only available on iOS for now. We will be testing these mechanics on Android in the future. We do not currently have plans to bring this to Web.
People shouldn't be afraid of making mistakes. That's just wrong. There's no way that it's "better for learning". Just please, please, please leave the desktop version alone, I stopped using the app because of too many annoying features and I would be so sad to see the desktop version have the same fate because I really do love Duolingo but I'm not happy with some of the changes being made
I agree with Felipe about mistakes, and we should also think that there are a lot of mistakes in the exercises too and contributors are often not able to keep up with them, or they may not be able to fully provide all possible translations. People will complain so much more for mistakes in exercises (or for what they believe are mistakes). While it's useful to receive feedback about wrong exercises, there will always be mistakes, and people cannot be punished for giving correct answers to wrong exercises.
A Duolingo contributor
I agree. And what will happen is the complaints will show up in the threads devoted to each sentence used in a lesson. I was surprised to find bitterness on what sentence structure (or words) in English Duo accepted as correct answers. It made sense when I realized the old Hearts system (Health) made it such a big deal to get the right answer right out of the gate. It seems the current Health system is worse.
Ditto here. It is not easy to remember the mistakes that the various language aps I use regularly repeat to get the correct answer. Sometimes I have to give a different word in Spanish if I am studying Portuguese than if I am studying Italian. It is not easy to remember all the errors the various language applications make. I think remembering errors in language applications could possibly more difficult than learning the language itself. In one application I use to study Arabic, I have to give two meanings for a word. If I put these two correct meanings in a different order than the ap, it is wrong.
You are right-we shouldn't be afraid to make a mistake. No one is perfect, so why punish someone for making a mistake? :/ Its not very fair for new people either! For they would be new and they would lose a lot of Health. Duolingo was much better without "Health".
Yes, I understand discouraging people from binging on new lessons, and even support it. However, I do not understand why this is tied to making mistakes. Why not lose health for finishing a new lesson? It seems like that would work much better towards the stated goal.
Maybe people would feel like they are being "punished" for finishing a lesson, so it might need a re-branding: don't call it health, but "energy" or "power" or whatever.
Because some people use duolingo as a revision tool or to re-familiarise themselves with a language. Bingeing is surely only bad if you are making mistakes and not taking things in.
I see your point. But on Duolingo, making mistakes is not the same as "not taking things in". The app teaches things largely on a trial and error basis.
For example, new nouns aren't always introduced in a way that shows their gender, while the user might be expected to know the gender the next time they come up. Same thing for verb conjugation.
The great advantage of the progress bar (over the old hearts system) was that it didn't punish trial and error learning. The new health systems seems to be a step back, in that regard.
Yes! I am new to duolingo, but so far I loved the fact that mistakes do not have any consequences. I just keep learning. And: yes, I am a binge learner, with everything. Saying that this would be generally wrong as a learning strategy is just... too general. Brains are different. Mine loves binge learning. I haven't understood yet if I can keep "binging" lessons as long as I don't make a lot of mistakes, but only allowing a certain number of lessons or mistakes per day is really really a bad idea for many people.
Alokin78...In regards to binge learning, I'm with you. I'm on my 235th straight day of doing at least 50XP per day and some days I do more than 50XP. I'm not a fluent speaker yet, but I'm beginning to understand what French speakers are saying when I listen to French radio and TV shows and I'm able to decipher most written material. My goal is to make it to 450 days at 50XP per day.
I binge, but I'm also patient and persistent. In addition to 50XP per day on Duolingo, I take daily lessons on grammar, watch French language TV shows, and listen to French music with published lyrics (so I can follow along) all on YouTube. I have several favorite French singers now! :-) ...and by the way, I do have a business, a family and I'm taking post-graduate education.
I didn't learn English in a year, I don't expect to be a fluent speaker of French in a matter of months, but I want to accerate the pace to the best of my ability. I'm headed to France later this month. I'll find out how well I'm really doing!
By the way...I have 635 lingots (gems) and nothing to buy with them. What are they good for?
Cian is quite right. The quote from Luis is from his post, the State of Monetization thread listed above. I thought it very forthcoming and am impressed he gave his reasoning. He also stated it was suposedly good for learning. I'm finding the resistance and reasoning of users more convincing.
"Health" is a little "ableist", anyway, I agree that another term would be better.
Cian8656's idea is good! Especially if they could tweak the ungilding process a little to make it more similar to realistic forgetting. (But they seem to be busy tweaking it already.)
It's ableist in more than name - think of all the people with dyslexia or memory problems or learning difficulties for whom Duolingo in its old form made learning a pleasure; now, when it's behaving like a traditional Irish National School teacher - "Sín amach do lámh anois" - it's frightening for anyone who can't be "perfect".
'What not lose health for finishing a new lesson?' Instead of losing health for mistakes.... Well, there is a science behind it which wasn't explained in this post. When I was learning piano, my teacher had a system similar to this. Every time I played a song for her, if I made a mistake, she made me start at the beginning rather than keep going. This is because most of piano playing is actually muscle memory, especially in the beginning. So if I played the song through, connecting in the incorrect notes, it would become harder and harder for me to unlearn my mistakes. Learning a language is also muscle memory. I am learning French on Duolingo and it is actually very helpful to not (a) be allowed to binge and just whoosh through lessons without fully absorbing and (b) not be allowed to learn something the wrong way. Lastly, Duolingo is an education app, not a feel good app. Somehow, they've managed to make it both educational and feel good (gems/rewards/cute owl). I think there is a lot of 'political correctness' being brought into this issue and letting that go could relieve a lot of frustration for a lot of folks, but I'm just here to let ya know about muscle memory... Peace. <3
My piano teacher taught me the opposite... what good is a musician who stops every time they make a mistake? Average Joe wont notice anyway, particularly if you carry on as if it was intentional. But by golly will they notice of you stop. And the analogy goes both ways. How much time would you have for someone who only ever got halfway through their sentences because they couldn't construct it perfectly?
When learning anything, continue through the mistake. Take note of it, and fix it next time. Someone will tell you if it's critical. Forcing the learning patterns of perfectionists onto everyone will do more harm than good, long-term. And that is the path Duolingo is taking with Health.
There was never any rule stopping someone from quitting themselves if they felt they got too much wrong. If that's your bent, by all means quit every lesson the instant (or 5) you get something wrong. But don't make it mandatory for everyone else.
Disclaimer: I'm not a great pianist.
I couldn't agree more! I also had piano lessons way back and I had teachers and a mother who followed the same approach of Esmeree's teacher - and today I can't play the piano.
On the other hand there is my choir conductor who says that you cannot be a musician if you cannot play through your mistakes. And this playing through any hiccups, not loosing your nerves, carrying on regardless, keeping the rhythm and not losing track of where you are is a skill that also needs to be trained, a muscle that also needs exercise.
So the way DL works on the (old) app is actually quite a good combination. It lets you continue within the lesson after you made a mistake but it does not let you leave the lesson until you got it right at least once.
I am a piano teacher, and my approach is a bit different. When a student makes a mistake during a song and keeps playing, I do not stop and correct them. It is VERY important to learn to play through mistakes, because absolute perfection at all times is not attainable. However, I show them efficient ways of practicing at home (reviewing the measures that tripped them up, including the previous and next measures, for context). They practice the tricky parts 5 or 10x more than the easy parts, by beginning with that and plugging it back into the song later. It would be a complete waste of time to start over. You might end up practicing an hour or more because of 2 or 3 little measures!
As far as Duolingo is concerned, I like that it shows us the categories that we are weakest in (by our fading strength). It is like my method when it comes to practicing piano. It allows us to focus on one thing at a time until we get it worked out. I don't think that losing health is the way to go. That would be so discouraging to a student - think of it! "No, you've made too many mistakes. Go home and practice some more. Maybe you'll be able to play it for me next week!" Suzuki is famous for saying "Success breeds success." You have to find a way to make the learner successful so that he will enjoy the journey and continue to be successful.
Wholeheartedly agree. When you are speaking another language the hearer gets the gist & helps you with your worst errors, doesn't shut you down because that's enough for today!!!!!
As a violinist, the teacher you have depends. Some may just start a few measures before the mistake and others just continue on as they take note and have you play that part repeatedly until it is perfect. Some however, make you play the entire section which depends as if you are a beginner, then the piece and etude should be short and make sense to start over. If you are advanced, but just begun piece, makes sense, unless you have one of those very strict teachers that are quite crazy on accuracy and playing and have you repeat again.
Note: Not a good violinist despite 7 years of playing.
But language is not a piece of music you canmemorize and then perform. Language is organic and requires improvisation and interpretation. Even natives make mistakes _all_the_time, I don't see why it would be helpful at all to punish someone for every mistake they make. One thing I was taught about learning (when studying how to teach Finnish as a L2) is that when a student is just about to understand a new concept or rule they'll suddenly start making a lot of mistakes as they try to apply the rule everywhere (even where it's not needed). The best way through this is a lot of repetition and you can't get that if you are thrown back to earlier lessons after five mistakes.
But you could immediately try again, until you got it correct, right? She wouldn't force you to wait for 5 hours, or to practice a childs song for 5 times to regain "health" ;)
A more sensible idea would be to simply block new lessons unless the tree so far is gold. But that wouldn't conveniently pave the way to frustrating pay to play mechanics so I doubt Duolingo are interested.
You mention unless the tree is gold: that would wreck me, there is one branch (occupations) that for me, will NOT go gold, no matter how many times I strengthen it. I've given up trying to get it to go gold, I've answered the stupid questions about the kings and queens 100 times. I'm sure its some glitch, but I'd be screwed!
Hi Cynthia129671 - I had a couple that wouldn't go gold on the strengthen option, but they do go gold when you go back over and revise one or more of the individual lessons on that section. I just redo the lessons and that seems to work for me. Hope that helps! Cheers.
The revenue of the pay to play mechanisms is next to nothing, compared to the ad revenue. I really don't believe it was their main motivation for the health system.
If the users do 20% more practice sessions to regain health, this means 20% more ads shown, hence an increase of 20% in ad revenues.
Either that or immediately mark all lessons from the prior day/login as needing to be strengthened (one point). I do this as a default, go back to yesterday's stuff to make sure I remember it properly. The way it's implemented now just punishes you for trying to learn, it's awful.
Help me here I'm confused you are implementing gems because of lingot inflation "resulted in an “inflation” of the Lingot economy that needed to be addressed". But, the website isn't changing to gems it's still in lingots. How have you ended lingot inflation? Now I can earn lingots and gems on the same day, it looks to me like you almost doubled the rate of inflation.
I find it OK health was implemented as a means of controlling binge Duolingoing. But I don't find it OK you will drop out of a lesson once you made five mistakes (unless you pay gems during the lesson). This looks a bit like a progressing commercialisation of Duolingo - a more or less gentle prod reminding us to give money for gems. Some lessons are pretty though and are hard to complete without making several mistakes. I think it should be possible to finish a lesson no matter how many mistakes one makes. Instead, I think there could be a threshold amount of health that is required to start a lesson.
I prefer the old Duolingo prior to the update. It's because I spend more time "fixing" my prior subjects than I do learning new ones. Also, I am not unable to the "double or nothing" wager on my iPhone. I would have to do this on my laptop. That actually motivates me to continue my streak.
*Also, I noticed that the past 2 days the app keeps stating that "You've already claimed a reward today", in which I haven't. So I think it's a glitch in the new system.
Regarding the loosing lives, I could not understand why I was being punished for making mistakes. learning a new language is difficult and mistakes will be made. However I can see also that sometimes I do make grammatical errors, simply selecting the wrong word for example, and then presss check. This results in a failure. Thus I must learn to pace my learning and make sure my answers are as good as I can make them. Still hat the fact that I cannot carry in learning when I use all my life's though!!!
I loathe the gems system but instead of a whinge, I will make a constructive suggestion to improve it.
Health need to refill faster. If you have no health and go to sleep and have a refreshing, resting night's sleep when you wake up health should be refilled. It absolutely should not take 5 hours per bar. Waking up to find only two bars is not motivating, it is the opposite - demoralising. This would still address your stated reason of discouraging thoughtless bingeing while keeping the app fun and usable for the rest of us. At the moment, the current system is almost too infuriating to use.
One problem is that what Duolingo considers "mistakes" can be things as simple as a misspelled word in English when translating foreign text, so one is penalized for not being a great speller in one's own first language, even though the context is clearly correct.
I greatly dislike the idea of the health system. People have different methods of learning, and if that means doing ten lessons today and ten tomorrow, so be it. I went through Spanish extra fast like that... And made my fair share of mistakes... But I already knew the language. So I was whizzing through so I could practice everything, not just Hola and buenos dias or Yo juego con mis hermanos and other super basic stuff.
Not to mention, many times the bulk of my mistakes come from spelling English words wrong in my translations. Or my keyboard not putting down a letter I thought I had. Penalizing me extra for these mistakes would be extremely frustrating (especially since I am already frustrated with making them in the first place) I already know if I make lots of mistakes I should come back and study later. And I will. When I decide to, not because I have to refill "health."
Duolingo is for fun, free language learning, at your own pace, in your own style. Please do not force us to adhere to some "scientifically" prescribed form of language learning.
health sucks. that is one reason why i stopped using duolingo back when you had hearts. i make mistakes, especially in the harder levels. let me try and try and try and finally get it.
making me worry and stress about spending time and then not being able to succeed is demoralizing
Went to use Duolingo yesterday on the phone as I was down the country. I just couldn't work it at all with this 'Health' thing. One language after another shut me out, demanding a 'health' ransom. If this extends to the web version, I'll reluctantly abandon Duolingo. I'll lose my 'streak' when I go to France in a couple of weeks, because I can't use Duolingo on my phone any more; a pity, as I liked using it and it was a help in learning.
This is frustrating, and it has been close to a month since I have had new content to practice. Health punishes us for trying to learn new content, it takes away our chance at repetition and by the time health is restored we forget new content. If you want to slow down the pace, just don't open new sections until we practiced the above sections enough, but once we have access to a new section we should be able to practice it. Is there a way to just pay for the game so we don't have ads and we can get rid of Health, which just seems like a way for you guys to make money anyway. I would pay to have the game revert back to the way it was before health.
Why not just add more things to spend lingots on, instead of replacing them? There's only a few things you can buy with lingots and that's how you end up collecting too many.
People should not be discouraged (or lose health) for doing a new lesson. While review is important to our learning process, being able to move ahead and learn new words, phrases, etc., is also important and encouraging to learners. While I understand what you're saying about some people wanting to "binge" learn new lessons, if Duolingo wants to discourage this pattern then perhaps there should be a way to prevent or discourage learners from doing too many new lessons in a day.
For example: perhaps Duolingo could determine a number of new lessons in a day that would be optimal for learners. For the sake of this conversation, let's say that number might be two new lessons per day. Then maybe a system could be put in place to discourage or prevent people from going past that number. Could the system lock a person out of doing more lessons in a day than the "optimal" amount? Or even better perhaps Duolingo could stop rewarding lingots once a person surpasses the "optimal" number of new lessons per day. It should not stop rewarding lingots on review lessons.
People should be allowed to do at least one or two new lessons, or whatever the optimal number is, in a day without being penalized for it. (Especially for people who have progressed well into the program.) We all have to have encouragement and reviewing past lessons all the time is not the answer to that.
Additionally, learner's should not be charged for making a mistake. This process will prevent people from wanting to try. Trying and making mistakes is how people learn. Again, determine a number of mistakes per lesson that would be optimal and then find a way to let the learner know that they are making a lot of mistakes.
For example: perhaps Duolingo could increase the number of lingots earned or offer a bonus of two or three lingots for an "error free" session. Duolingo could then allow a certain number of "free" mistakes and after that number is passed then reduce the number lingots earned by one lingot per mistake.
After all we must remember that some of these errors are not actual errors in Spanish but rather a simple typo or spelling mistake. Also Duolingo itself can cause an error. I've had the microphone operating during a lesson and then something happens on Duolingo's end and I can't hear the question. Then Duolingo marks me wrong! I'm sure others have had similar experiences and we should not penalized for that.
In short, people should be rewarded for learning new things, making progress and doing well. They should not be punished by losing health or lingots or gems or whatever the reward. Limit the number of new lessons per day as suggested above. Then offer bonus ingots for "error-free" lessons, allow at least two "free" errors per lesson, then reduce the number of ingots earned per error. That way the people doing well and being careful are rewarded and the people that are trying but make a typo or have Duolingo "hiccup" on them are not being penalized unduly. Finally, the people that are rushing through and making lots of errors won't be rewarded.
P.S. The Health feature is not a good one, it is not conducive to good learning.
This completely ruined Duolingo for me. I was learning Spanish at my own pace for around 3 months and this horrible update made me delete the app. I'm only on duo now as I was seeing if the system had been reverted back to the great old way, but sadly it's still the new health/ gem format. Shame.
As a dyslexic learner the 'gems and health' system makes Doulingo a completely futile platform for learning a new language. It takes me more time and repetition to fully make a new skill stick. Having to halt the momentum of my learning process because I messed up 5 times (often because I spelt a word wrong) means I learn nothing.
By the time I get more 'health' I have to start learning the new skill again for the first time because I wasn't afforded the opportunity to process any of the new information the first time.
I am disappointed in the programs choice to dictate the speed at which every student should learn. I hope things change so I can use the program again some day. For now this makes learning a new language for anyone with a learning disability harder than it already is.
Health is ridiculous. Read the comments--many great points on why it is not good for learning...especially in a trial and error type environment. I don't understand why it is still around.
Health is terrible. I've had all of my past lessons at gold but will have to go back and re-do already gold lessons because I'm trying to learn new words on a tree and run out of health. I refuse to use the app now unless it's to practice old lessons. Awful, awful, awful feature.
Hey Duolingo. Your new health bar sucks. I'm sorry to be one of the many people to tell you this. But it sucks. Your logic is that it helps prevent people from binging. Well guess what? It does, but at a huge expense to people who simply want to learn new material. Binging implies doing it non stop. But for 99% of the people here, they are not binging. They are simply starting a new lesson. A new lesson with new words, unfamiliar words, words that they sometimes have to guess is right because hey, go figure, they haven't learned them yet. So how do you learn? Well, learning is made from mistakes. Mistakes are not meant to be punished when it comes to learning a language. They are meant to be corrected. But what are you doing? You are punishing willing individuals who want to learn. You are inhibiting learning, not encouraging it. Do you know how easy it is to make 5 mistakes in a new lesson with words and phrases you are unfamiliar with? Well if you read all the comments here, you'll get an idea that it is very easy. Imagine you are in 3rd grade and are learning multiplication. You have a test in a week and you are having trouble. The teacher is trying to help you figure it out and they start to walk away. You say, 'Hey, where are you going?' To which the teacher responds, "Sorry, you got it wrong 5 times, now you have to wait 24 hours before I can try teaching you again. Why don't you go brush up on your addition and try again later" But you already know addition, you're trying to learn multiplication. Now you can't. Do you see how asinine that situation is? That's the situation you've made with these new updates. You need to do a rollback and start listening to your audience. You are becoming a pay to win company and it's heart breaking to see. You used to be one of the best language learning apps out there. Now with this new direction, I fear that won't be the case any longer.
I am currently learning (mainly) 2 languages - Italian and Polish. Because of other languages I have learnt in the past, Italian is significantly the easier of the two for me, so my approach to the languages is different on Duolingo. Will the health apply over all languages or per-language? I'd rather not have my inevitable Polish mistakes hamper my Italian learning if possible.
I remember reading Luis saying that there were no plans to bring Gems to the website. Is that still the case? If so, what happens to lingots on the website?
Wow, Italian and Polish at the same time sounds tricky! In its current state, health applies over all languages, so it would affect all your languages. Do you usually practice on the app? Also, just as Luis says, there are still no plans to bring Gems to the website, so the lingots will remain here.
I prefer to practice on the web but move to the app when I can't use the web. Any chance of amending health to per-language then? Even for a large ligot/gem sum? Or perhaps expanding the max health relative to the no of languages actively being learnt?
Those are good suggestions. =] We are still experimenting with improvements to the health system (and most features), so I don't think anything is out of the question!
Great to hear!! Do consider the different levels of difficulty of the languages (and, to be honest, different levels of quality of even graduated courses) when looking at the numbers!
So, I should have full health (I ended up at zero last night), but it's at three "bars". I just did a review lesson (two, in fact), but there was no improvement. If these are supposed to refill in five hours, there seems to be an issue. Is it five hours per bar, or to fully refill? Actually, I've realized where to find the review for health lessons. This is a bit totalitarian, is it not? I am constantly working to review lessons, but to gain health, I don't have a choice about which non-reviewed lesson to choose? Something else to reconsider...
Did you click the health icon at the bottom and hit review from there? I noticed that if you go to an individual skill and hit strengthen then it won't affect the health but if you go through the health icon then each practice gives you back one health bar.
Perhaps you can have a health bar, and the level of the language corresponds to the amount of health you get. Example: I'm level 25 in Norwegian, so I would have 25 health bars, but only 9 in Greek, etc.
While I would prefer not to have health at all, that definitely sounds like an improvement over the current version. However, there would have to be a minimum level like 5 so that people who have just joined aren't locked out after two questions because they didn't know there is a feminine version of un and un mujer is wrong.
Perhaps I misunderstood, but doesn't this make it easier for someone on a higher Level? So, a person with Level 3 can only make 3 mistakes, whereas a person on Level 9 and make 9 mistakes.
Yes, it would make things easier for people in higher levels, but be aware that this was only otsogutxi's suggestion. In Health, the mistake limit is currently 5 for everyone.
@Fernando-SC Yes, I was just trying to understand the idea. Thanks, for confirming.
One addition to this: Not all languages will have Health. Courses that are in alpha/beta status won't have Health enabled.
There is still a difference in quality between the mature courses, and in how well the sentence discussions function as a way of added learning.
Absolutely! And isn't it the case that the iOS app doesn't have sentence discussions anyway?
You are right. No Tips and Notes and no sentence discussion in the iOS app, so for serious study there's a need to switch between the web version and the app, or supplement in other ways.
What will happen when I switch on iOS between a language that will have health and a language that does not. For example, studying German and Japanese in the same day. Will German earn Gems and Japanese earn Lingots?
Good question! Gems are consistent on iOS regardless of the language you are learning. Japanese, however, does not have the Health mechanic, so while you will continue to earn Gems, you will not lose Health if you make an error.
Please offer us the the option to pay you to disable the Health system. Duolingo was really great before it started penalizing users for mistakes. I don't binge, but now I don't look forward to Duolingo, either. These new changes really made me unhappy with your company.
I have the same issue. I am currently working on German and Hungarian while trying to keep my six completed trees (Italian, Turkish, French, Russian, Spanish, and Dutch) reasonably golden.
I haven't been converted to Gems yet, but I am very concerned that making mistakes in Hungarian will prevent me from reviewing my other trees. The most likely outcome is that I will stop trying to learn challenging languages. I suspect that I will abandon Hungarian and give up any thought of continuing with Japanese as soon as I am converted to Gems.
Also, I have to do 10+ lessons a day just to keep my head above water. On the average, I would guess that I miss one question out of each lesson --- more misses with Hungarian, fewer with French. So, now I can do five lessons, and then I have to wait five hours before I do another lesson, regardless of the language? That's a scary thought.
By the way, I greatly prefer the app for non-latin alphabets. There is no way I would do Russian, Greek or Japanese through a web browser.
Changing keyboards on your computer is as easy as on the phone. Sure, you don't have a similar visual aid with the mapping but at least with Russian and Greek there are not that many different letters, so all you need is a couple of keyboard stickers.
Thanks, but I need the visual aid. The native Russian keyboard is drastically different from a latin keyboard, and the phonetic keyboard is not available on the phone. At Level 18 I still have to hunt and peck. I agree that the Greek keyboard is similar enough to be usable.
From what I understood the health system and being stopped from learning only applies to NEW lessons. You can always repeat old lessons. So keeping you existing trees golden should not be affected.
Thanks, I am going to give the Gems a try when they finally come. What I understand, though, is that you still lose health from repeating old lessons. The way to regain strength is through the "Practice Skills" button, which for me always seems to be at the "He is a man"/"She eats an apple" level. By the time I get to level 20+ I don't care to keep repeating the basic lessons.
I wonder what happens to an iOS user (and their gems...) when they switch to Website version and back... (like I switch between Android and Web at least 5 times a day).
The platforms will continue to operate independently. When you use iOS, you'll earn Gems. When you're on Web, you'll earn Lingots. (If you earn Gems using your iPhone, this won't add to your Lingots on web, and vise versa.)
So an iOS user will come to website and find zero lingots and can start over with earning them (which I guess would take care of the inflation of Lingot economy) OR will they find their original number of lingots on the web and also have a number of converted Gems on apple version?
The latter: original number of Lingots on the web and also have a number of converted Gems on iOS.
What is the ratio of lingots to gems? If I had 1000 lingots, how many gems would I have?
I'm not entirely sure this is the case...I had a metric boat-load of Lingots. Basically so many I don't think it could properly display on the web version. Mine converted today and I now have what appears to be 990 lingots (and 10240 gems on iOS).
You have 9908 lingots. I guess you'll find out yourself soon, when you either earn another 2 or spend 9. :)
That's strange, as others have claimed their Lingots were not touched. Are you sure that you don't still have 9900+ Lingots and the display is being truncated. [For example: I lose the last digit with Chrome on iPad]
If you are on the desktop, you could try resizing the browser window, or using inspect element.
Although, you would still puzzle me as you don't follow the pattern of: round down to the nearest 50 and add 500. So 9900 + 500 = 10400. You would be the second exception to this I have come across. Is it possible you might have spent 160 Gems?
I think you're right, I'm on iPad so can't change anything. But I had one lesson almost done so I just finished and got 2 lingots but it still says 990 so I must still be missing a digit. Used to have three little dots next to it showing that it wasn't all there but not anymore!
The pattern I keep seeing is:
round down to the nearest 50 and add 500.
So 1500 + 500 = 2000.
(Original Lingots untouched)
You want my money? Fine, charge me to turn off the health system and roll back to the previous version on iOS.
This doesn't make much sense to me. This makes it seem like Duolingo on the web and Duolingo on iOS are two different apps. The system should be the same on both platforms so Duolingo is unified.
encourage you to ask (and vote on) additional questions in the comment section.
Yay! This is great.
You lose Health by answering incorrectly too many times, which has been encouraging users to pay more close attention to what they are answering before hitting “submit.”
The Health feature encourages users who are making mistakes to take a breather and review previous lessons before moving forward.
This would make more sense if there was actually some "teaching" going on before the "testing", so to speak. But if you get kicked out for an hour after making (5?) mistakes when learning new material, certainly in more challenging languages, how are you ever supposed to advance?
I know you're following your numbers, but I guess what I'm asking is: Are you looking at the data per course (and maybe at different stages of the tree, as the ends of the courses tend to be more difficult and less well made / have had less beta testing) than the beginnings)? And adjusting the number of mistakes allowed accordingly? Since practicing easier stuff more is not going to make the French subjunctive any easier to get through, so it doesn't actually help one learn that skill...
haha, good point, I would never be able to advance in Hebrew, when I do a new skill I sure make tons of mistakes, even when I do it second (3rd, 4th) time, I still make MANY mistakes...
We are looking at data per course, and adjusting when necessary. If one language is disproportionately difficult or affected by Health, please let us know!
Obviously what is seen as difficult depends on a person's native language and previous exposure to foreign languages. For me, subjunctive is very difficult in Italian and only marginally easier in French (which I studied before coming to Duolingo). Basically subjunctive is not used in my native/first language, so there's no real basis for comparison of patterns. So five mistakes is just not much in that case.
Cool! But how can we let you know? It's not possible to write on your streams anymore.
I've finished my Russian now, but I think I would not have been able to do that with health. That's the hardest course I've done here, but I'm sure some of the non-European ones are even harder.
I'm terrified to continue Russian now that there is health. Once I finish German, I have no idea what the next good choice is. Terrified!
I am finding it difficult and frustrating to advance in Hebrew. If you don't believe me, I invite you and anyone else who loves the health bar to try to learn Hebrew this way. If you are going to implement this wretched system, you should at least make the number of allowed mistakes proportional to language difficulty. According to the Foreign Service Institute Language difficulty rankings, Hebrew is about twice as hard as Portuguese for an English speaker. I shudder to think how hard it would be to learn Arabic this way.
Please show me the part of that research that shows, as you claim, that "if people advance too quickly on Duolingo in one day, it can actually negatively impact their learning because they are less likely to remember what they’ve learned"
That is a separate study, and even so, says nothing to suggest that advancing "too quickly" (where too quickly apparently equals a mere 5 mistakes) can have a negative impact on your learning.
But anyway, part of the method proposed in your link is taking a 5 minute after 25 minutes of study. Duolingo is now imposing a 5 hour break after every 5 mistakes in new lessons, which is far more break and far less learning than the 25:5 ratio suggested in your link.
Duolingo is now imposing a 5 hour break after every 5 mistakes in new lessons
Or you can go back and review some more basic lessons, regain your health, and try the new lessons again. No 5 hour wait required.
Or you can go back and review some more basic lessons
Literally, which I think is part of the problem. I don't want to do Basics 1 or 2 (what the strengthening offers me) 5 times for every lesson on the subjunctive. I know my basics, let me regain health by practicing skills I'm weak at. Or better yet, don't force me to regain my health.
@lrtward You can't, only the 'health practice' will give you health. Strengthening individual skills does nothing (this usually only covers the same 10 words) and going through the lessons in the skills actually costs health. This is insanely frustrating because if you finish the first lesson in a skill to review it you have to either
Pay for health to review it and the more you try to review the more mistakes you make if only from typos and weird auto-correct.
Binge through the whole skill (sometimes up to 9 more lessons) without reviewing at all and hope it's part of the strengthening, if it isn't you have to do 1 anyway.
Or pay you off no wait required. How much is it to just buy level 25? Of course I won't have learned squat but you will get revenue.
Or you can go back and review some more basic lessons, regain your health, and try the new lessons again. No 5 hour wait required.
Or pay money. No waiting or reviewing required.
What's behind the link is not at all the same as "stop me from learning the new material until I have regurgitated the old material (or paid money)", though.
while I agree that binge behavior is counter-productive to learning, and have often cautioned Duolingo users against it, I am concerned that a static formula approach to 'errors' might be too restrictive.
It seems to me that I make a lot of errors on the 'type what you hear' questions, mostly because I cannot figure out what is being said, in large due to flaws in the mechanized French pronunciation tool.
Similarly, keyboarding issues also account for a significant percentage of my errors. Perhaps what Duolingo needs is a 'mulligan' feature, where if you make a mistake that might only be a typo you get a warning and the question is repeated a second time without being classified as an error.
If it is keyboarding issues on your computer you won't lose health as this is only for the IOS app currently.
If you think a specific lesson or course is particularly difficult to the point where you get stuck even after practicing, please please report it to us! SLEJ4 is right about this only currently being available in the iOS app.
If you think a specific lesson or course is particularly difficult to the point where you get stuck even after practicing, please please report it to us!
How? You don't. Period. She doesn't care! Just pay your $5 so you can learn two more words.
I'm giving them the benefit of a doubt... I've asked "how" twice in this thread after she has asked us to report to them multiple times.
I hope you're wrong, but so far it's not looking good.
Obviously they all are if I don't have my sound on and don't want to disable it, but just want to do a quick practice without sound. Since there are always six or seven questions that require sound and I'm going to skip them all, of course I'm not going to get through without mistakes no matter how often I do a lesson or no matter how simple the lesson is. This just makes it very difficult (actually impossible) for me to do a quick review without sound.
The person at Duolingo who is responsible for this crap should be fired, that's my opinion. My questions: do you actually believe that nonsense about "pacing" and "binging" yourselves? Do you think we are all stupid?
No one is a bigger fan of Duolingo than me... and after having used ut daily for over two years, I have to agree with Portofan ... Adding health and gems is a big mistake. If you needed more funding, you should have offered optional perks for lingots like advanced texts that could be purchased or games that could be unlocked. Reducing this marvelous tool to counting health lines hinders the progress of those of us who actually do use it as a learning tool and aren't afraid to make mistakes and learn from them. Those who use it for status are only deluding themselves - this is a language learning platform, not a casino where lingots are cashed out for bitcoins meaning whatever progress you show, is only valuable to yourself because after all, either you can speak it or not and that's all that matters.
Your "advanced texts" and "unlockable games" suggestions sound far better than most new features that have been recently introduced by Duolingo. ( who needs clubs anyways )
You should be working for Duolingo as you obviously know what the people want. Here have my lingots.
I also read your entry further down the page, but there was no room to reply. You could be just what Duo needs. Brilliant suggestions, here and lower down.
I agree. If I'm struggling with a subject in a language, I would like to continue reviewing that said subject, not be sent back to a subject I already know.
If I feel that I'm losing grasp in a subject, I'll go back and review it myself. I sure do hope that this feature isn't introduced to the web version.
I think the system might be better suited to children and teenage users who might not be as likely to check their own learning as they go along. But I am not in school and would rather have more control over my own learning than be told things like I am not allowed to binge. I am feeling more and more like this site is now for children and people with devices rather than anyone who would like free learning.
I've just been supervising my youngest siblings (5 & 7) in Dutch, their grandfather's language. They are using my android device and loving it. But they make far more than 5 mistakes first time through a new lesson. So we haven't installed it on their ios devices for fear of the health system. They do get it eventually, and are so excited about what they've learned. The point of this story is that what doesn't work for adults is really unlikely to work for children. And I'd really like my siblings to be able to use DL on their own device without fear of changed rules. To this end the website workaround is not a suitable replacement, because it doesn't have the drag'n'drop that makes the app so accessible.
And one of the first things I'd do for children is pay for something without advertising, since ads are absolutely terrible for kids. And since that seems (I don't use Apple) to eliminate mandatory Health, it wouldn't be a useful factor for children.
Where are you getting the idea that pacing is nonsense? Here are some scholarly studies that support it:
You can find many more by Google Scholar searching "distributed practice".
If pacing is such a great idea why can I buy my way out of it? Duo knows the apps don't introduce new topics and vocabulary so they know you will make errors.
I love duolingo but this time they have really disappointed me. The motivation for health and gems is money and money alone. The ones listed here in the post are just lies to cover the fact. When this new system will come to Android I'll surely un install the app and only continue to use the website (if they don't ruin it too in a way or another )
The pacing and binging thing is probably a half-reasonable justification to cause you to spend your in-game-currency. They are not hiding that they want to do more monetization, it's all free after all. I'm sure creating all of the language practices, and software for grading and creating new challenges, a few different mobile apps, a website, and even running a minor blog and user meta-data service costs a good bit of money. To stay on their mission, they have to stay afloat.
Binging ís bad, at least in the sense of people who speed through a tree without any reviewing and with an extremely low retention rate. This way people can finish a tree quickly but remember barely anything. When they realize how bad their retention rate is they can get demotivated and quit, "bad binging" is one of the worst things you can do if you want to learn a language. I'd even go as far as saying that every second spent on "bad binging" is time completely (100%) wasted, as the value of the few things you retained is likely to be negated by the demotivation of having to relearn almost everything.
On the other side, I do believe that not all binging is bad, but probably a larger amount of people are guilty of "bad binging". Many people look for "magical" solutions which would allow them to speak a language like a native without any effort, these people are probably the most susceptible to "bad binging".
In general, I absolutely don't think that a heath system is a bad thing, I haven't yet been exposed to Duolingo's health system thus I can't say much about it. The main thing I'd like to see accompanied with it, is an improved reviewing system.
When applying what I said to myself. I've done some "bad binging" in the past too, while learning Portuguese. I wanted to try if I could learn faster, I only "bad binged" for a week or maybe 10 days, yet it took several weeks to recover from it!!! It was by far the period of the worst progress I've had while learning Portuguese.
On the other side, by "good binging" I completed the Spanish tree in just 6 days. (Spanish is very similar to Portuguese, which explains the speed). This time it was good binging since I (on average) reviewed all the voc 4.5 times during those 6 days and had a very high retention rate at the end.
I guess I don't really understand this term "binging." I believe immersion is necessary for learning a new language and to me that means studying, listening and speaking as much as possible on a daily basis. Speeding through a tree for the purpose of speeding through a tree has no benefit, but rapidly completing a tree if it facilitates learning is a good thing, in my opinion. Who decides what limits should be placed on learning or determines how fast a learner should learn? How do you differentiate "binging" from "immersion" and what makes something a "good binge" versus a "bad binge"? I think the goal of anyone who spends their time using this program is personal development and I'm not sure how health and gems are applicable anyway. I don't know what my health stats are and I have 634 lingots and no understanding of why they exist. Today I will complete my 235th day of doing at least 50XP per day. I like how this program works...
Immersion isn't necessarily the same as massed practice ('binging', or in school a term that comes close to it is 'cramming'). Pacing is important.
But pacing is also relative and should be left to the individual. One fixed pace for all is bound to be inadequate for the majority of users. There is already an adaptive pacing mechanism in place (degilding skills)... who needs another one?
Yep, I wholeheartedly agree. That's another reason why Health is a horrible idea. I was just bringing up binging itself. And many people binge mostly just for the sake of a "status", even though the real goal is to learn the language(or grasp some of it). If you love language learning that much, you can binge all you want. MY method of learning is more like random energy spikes than it is organized periodic studying sessions as well. I've just been seeing tons of posts totally bashing the concept of pacing yourself, and that's just untrue. Thanks for being civil btw. ^^
Binging is a real issue, but the health thing in itself is extremely flawed and limiting for only giving you 5 chances and forcing you to go back and revise. Also, doesn't take other, more complicated languages into consideration.
I doubt very much that binging is a real issue here: for who? For the .0x% of users that binge? I've been binging here for years now and it hasn't done me any harm, or duolingo!
The more I binge, the more I report. The more I report, the more I contribute to duolingo "for free". :-)
The .0x% comment proves to me that you're not being reasonable about this. There is such a thing as massed learning(basically binging) and spaced learning. There are experiments which have been conducted that prove spaced learning to be more effective and a long-term solution. If you want me to direct you to them, I will. We're all here to learn, right? And I do admit that we don't have the same brain and something that might work for me might not work for you, but pacing IS important. That being said, the health feature is utter crap and I hate it. Learning a language IS muscle memory after all, but health takes it to an extreme. I just don't hate the developers for bringing forth the issue of binging. It's real. Health and gems are stupid for many other reasons.
0.0x is an educated guess... I don't feel there are orders of magnitude more bingers than ex-immersion users, and immersion users were quoted as being roughly 0.05%, if I recall correctly ;-)
I don't hate anyone either, but I dislike being told the health system is for my own good, as this was clearly not the primary motivation.
It's a pity that duo doesn't release enough statistics for us to make an accurate estimate. In the wiki page they say they have 150M users, but I'm not sure if that includes people who do reverse trees/other courses or inactive accounts. Health has only been implemented for the benefit of making duolingo more money. I understand that it's a business and it needs to make money, but this was the absolute worst way to go about it. Such an infuriating way to use gems as well.
Will languages in beta be excluded from the new gems/health rules as their translations are still being corrected by the course authors and errors are not always the fault of the user?
I am not an IOS user so it doesn't affect me, but if I was I would probably have given up on Swahili by now if I was thrown out after 5 errors especially as I have read that the mobile apps do not contain the Tips And Notes.
PLEASE NO!! Can I pay /support to keep my old duolingo??? I went from being able to afford everything to not being able to anything!
I hate this. You're basically not letting us (users) do what we want to do. We aren't children, we're people who came to this site because we weren't limited by our mistakes. Please, stop treating us like children!
But why? Because it’s better for learning.
There are so many ways Duolingo could improve learning without introducing this. Off the top of my head:
Have more translation from the target language into the native language. Sometimes I go whole lessons without doing any translation into the target language and I don't feel like I've learnt anything
Don't make the drag exercises so obvious by capitalising the first word
Add tips and notes. Seriously, I don't understand how you can expect someone to passively learn grammar rules, tips and notes make this so much easier
On desktop: Bring back the Progress Quiz! It was one of the few features that Duolingo added over the last few years that I actually liked and now its gone! Truly mind-boggling
These have been issues that have been present since I started using Duolingo a few years ago. If Duolingo was really serious about being "better for learning" then some of these changes would have been made, but sadly, (and this is the impression I get from Luis' Reddit AMA,) it seems as though "metrics" are becoming more important than language learning.
Wait, you said you have more native language into target language translations? That's impossible, everyone else receives almost only target into native translations.
One small remark about "Add tips and notes": this is volunteers' work, not staff's work.
Don't put it all on staff's shoulders, leave some for volunteers' shoulders. ;)
I believe that referred to Tips and Notes on mobile (only the last dot is "on desktop"). Transferring features to other platforms is still staff's work, no?
(only the last dot is "on desktop")
The first one too. ;)
I mean, "not enough 'translate in target language' exercises" is occurring on all platforms (including website).
Transferring features to other platforms is still staff's work, no?
Yes, I meant just for mobile, when the volunteers have already gone through the effort of producing really good quality Tips and Notes but mobile users won't ever see them!
Wait. Why did you replace Lingots? Remember how a number of users ended up with a lot of Lingots and not enough things to spend them on? This resulted in an “inflation” of the Lingot economy that needed to be addressed in order to improve the system. Gems can be earned or purchased and provide users with more options for how they want to use and support Duolingo.
This doesn't make sense. There's nothing new in the store except for buying health, so now instead of ending up with a lot of Lingots, I'll end up with a lot of Gems.
I'm on the iPad app and there's just a Steak Freeze and Health Refill. German also has 2 bonus skills. I'm pretty sure I have less stuff to buy than before, at least before I could buy clothes for Duo!
Is it still the case that strengthening an individual skill gives no health, but you have to the general strengthening through Health tab? Because as people have pointed out multiple times in the past, the general strengthening feature is utterly useless to some of us because it keeps giving sentences from mostly the first 2-3 skills even when you have finished your tree.
Edit: As for your metrics, one size doesn't fit all. I understand you can't offer all sizes either but please give us at least some control over our learning (L1 -> L2 setting, anyone?). Our ways of customizing our learning were already limited and now you punish those who are trying to figure out the meaning without looking up every word, or experimenting with different ways of saying things? You know, just like in the real world.
"You just used imperfect when you shoul've used preterite, don't talk to me until you have practiced some animal names" - Every Spanish native I've talked to.
This is the kind of thing you post before you start switching people over. Still, thank you for trying to improve communication.
There's another very frequently asked question that you seem reluctant to answer: When are you going to remove Gems?
Never put this on the computer version. Ever. Please.
It's honestly disgusting the way they're communicating it. They're blatantly lying. Sure, you can twist this by saying it's free, but it is LITERALLY pay to play. They keep reiterating that it's free -- and the "super learners" (❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤, everyone makes over 5 mistakes in 2 lessons) who want to pay the $5 and continue will keep it "free" for the rest?
I'd honestly be less upset if they said "we need money, we're making Duolingo pay to win on the app and eventually the desktop version" but they have to be sneaky about it and won't be the slightest bit transparent.
Everyone knows exactly what they're doing, none of us are 8 and gonna fall for their lies. Just makes it worse they'd insult their loyal community (who before all this likely would have donated a ton regularly) by treating us like we're idiots who 1) can't learn languages at our own pace 2) can't understand when we're being lied to so blatantly.
What about those who fail a lesson due to bad or declining sight, or because of unsteady hands? What about those who for whatever reason make more mistakes than average (cognitive impairment or some physical/mental limitation)? Do you really want to slow them even more with an artificial barrier?
It seems to me that for a company that aims to spread the learning of languages, this design is not very inclusive. Let people learn, each at their own pace, and find other ways to finance the product.
I completely agree. Health offers no inclusion or differentiation for learners with disabilities or any complications that may increase the number of mistakes they commit. The fact that the staff keeps repeating the same offensive and disrespectful straw-man -- "consider users who don’t care how many mistakes they make but simply progress through lessons to achieve status" --, rather than addressing the real arguments presented by dissatisfied learners, is frustrating.
I tried today my first Danish lesson using this system. First of all, using the iOS app we are at a disadvantage because we can't read the lesson instructions. After a few listening comprehension mistakes (which are fairly easy to do considering how different words sound and written in this language) I lost all my health. Duolingo now tells me I can either revise 5 lessons or spend some money. If I won't be able to do less than 5 mistakes then I'll be stuck to the same lesson.. This doesn't sound like a system based on reinforcement, on the opposite, seems like I should be afraid of making mistakes and no, I was not binging.
There is another issue with equating mistakes with "bad learning": I guess that many people learn languages from English although English is not their native language. I am German, but there are so many more courses starting from English and I understand well enough to use it as a basis for learning. Yet, I might make spelling mistakes or confuse something, simply because it is still a foreign language for me. I can recognize, as I lear, whether my mistake was due to a problem with the learned language or with my english spelling - but "health" would not distinguish such mistakes.
True! And how about mistakes that cannot be avoided simply by grammatical command? The Swedish gender system, for instance, is not easily predictable. The only way for a student to learn how to correctly represent the gender of new vocabulary is by extensively practicing new words, but Health discourages this kind of content-directed practice, even more so for skills not yet completed by the learner. The only way to avoid such mistakes in the new Health system is by always checking a dictionary while using the app, which is generally counterproductive.
I am incredibly frustrated with this decision.
I messed up spelling new vocabulary too many times, which kicked me from the middle of a lesson. In order to go back and continue learning, it appears I have to do 5 practice lessons (5?!) to be allowed back in. I presume if I mess up spelling the new vocabulary again I will have to do 5 more rounds of practice (or pay or simply wait a day).
I'm trying to learn to spell new words in a new alphabet, but at this point I feel incredibly demoralized. If I wait a day with no activity, my streak will break. If I do the 5 practice lessons, I won't have time in what's left of my lunch break to get to the lesson I was wanting to do all along.
Not to mention, with the talk of beta lessons being separate from the health/gems situation, I'm wondering if participating in hatching and beta courses is now essentially a waste of my time? If I'm going to make mistakes (and I will), I'd rather dedicate that time to doing all the practice lessons Duo now requires for health instead of doing courses that won't count.
Don't get me wrong, I agree 100% on the need to limit binge behavior in order to better encourage better learning. However, this new system is much too restrictive for the type of behavior it is trying to correct.
- Would it be possible to at least let a learner finish the lesson they are on instead of being kicked out halfway? If I'm not allowed to do further lessons for the day, that's fine. Kicking me out when I suddenly have that language "a ha!" moment is not.
I agree, and good point. The context of those learning more unfamiliar languages in Duo has also become more uneven with Health.
ok. change is coming! a few questions about "health", "bots", "clubs" , and "shop" on my iPhone, 1) on one page i have the word "health"at the top. Then there's a broken red circle with a red heart in it. Under that it says "full health." Under that, it says "practice." to the left of the word "practice" there is another broken circle with one red dash and inside the broken circle it says "+1" in red. What does that mean? under this it says "Refill for 350" and to the left there is another broken red circle and inside it it says "+5" What does all this mean? 2) how to get rid of "bots?" this is dumb and not explained anywhere. next to the icon on the phone is a red dot. meaning? it's very annoying 3) I'd like to get rid of the clubs too. who thought this was a good idea? i'm learning a language (two, actually), not signing up for matchmaking. 4) the four choices are streak freeze, health refill, idioms and proverbs, and flirting. all four are "full" or "equipped." do these ever reset? are there streak freeze limits? once a month? once and forget it?
one final comment. taking the language off the top of the page makes it harder to change languages. i'm doing 5 lessons in portuguese and one in dutch. at the end of the portuguese i earn a chest with mystery prizes. at the end of the dutch lesson, nothing. what's up with that.
Before the conversion to gems, I could afford about 23 streak freezes if I needed them. Now I can afford 1... unless of course I buy more gems with actual money.
You built this whole fake monetary system to make Duolinguo addicting, and in the process, you induced people to work hard and devote time consistently to your website, so you could make money off of advertisers. Now you devalue the fake currency overnight without any warning.
It's already a hard sell getting people to care about fake currency but many of us did anyway. The devaluation is such an obvious ploy to monetize the site further, which is your right to do, but just be honest about it. It's not right to treat people like they won't understand what you're really doing.
Duolingo is based on rote-learning, ie learning from mistakes. Health punishes you for making mistakes, until you are not allowed to make mistakes. That seems counter-intuitive to me.
Some people might 'play' to 'achieve status' - but not all do. And in any case, why does that matter? Each to their own.
I'm learning at my own pace, in my own fashion. It might not be what Duolingo thinks is 'best' - but I'm very happy with it. I started Duolingo after the hearts were removed, and I know I wouldn't have stuck with it under that model. Health bars seem a regression, to me.
A huge part of learning a language is being free from the fear of making mistakes to learn from them. Remember, a foreign language is both an organic and a different mental paradigm for communication. Since we are here to learn the language vocabulary, it makes no sense for us to enter a skill with absolute mastery over the grammar and vocabulary when we ourselves are still learning it.
You claim your metrics say that health is good for learning because it hinders binging.
Figures have to be interpreted, and how do I know that you do it "right"? (For example, look up Rogoff/Reinhart if you don't know what I'm talking about.) It could just be that many people vote with their feet and the ones staying with the app are the ones that are very motivated anyway, more than the average person, and of course they would do better.
Can I be sure that you tell apart those that learn only with the app, those that started with the app and switched to the browser version because of the health feature, and those that use both?
I've read so many sensible arguments against the health feature that I have trouble to believe your interpretation of the figures.
I think that the whole "health concept" is pretty great and makes you pay attention to what you are typing. BUT, there is one thing that is driving me crazy. When I use the "Restore" option to regain my health, it ALWAYS uses sentences from the first few lessons, such as "Alphabet", "Basics 1" and so on... This way I am forced to go trough the same things over and over again, while the more "advanced skills" are being omitted. This way I usually have my strength bar at maximum for only the most basic skills. It might be a good idea to randomize the selection of skills for practise a little, maybe based on the strength bar level. This way, all skills would be practised equally. Having to go trough things like "my dog", "his rice" or "She doesn't have milk" is quite irritating. Other than that, I really like the app and appreciate the work you guys are doing, just please, think about this. Thank you.
Today is my third day with the new system and for the first two days I had a treasure chest to open after I met my goal. Today when I met my goal I didn't have anything to open. It just told me I met my goal. Is this working as intended or did my account bug out and I was supposed to have a chest to open?
I've only ever done one language but I'm interested in picking up another after I finish my French tree. Is the new health system based on per language or one health system per account?
Also how does picking up a new language work with your streak? I currently have 360ish days in French and if I occasionally wanted to learn German as well would it make my streak go back to zero?
Thanks so much for all you do! I'm a big fan of Duolingo and I appreciate all the time and effort you guys have put into this. <3
Health is per account, not language (though languages in beta are not supposed to have health). Your streak reflects the amount of days you have done Duolingo, not some specific language in a row, so your streak would remain intact.
One of the things I've liked about the current system is that if you have an alternative translation, you can try it out without real penalty. It also encourages you to try to remember rather than hover over the word for a hint. This is one way of learning, and also of improving the course by submitting a report for alternate translations. I didn't like the old heart system, but at least you could immediately start over if you wanted.
It has occurred to me while watching this controversy is the impact it will have on people who are laddering, and on those who HAVE to ladder because the language they want to learn isn't available from their mother tongue (Guarani and Catalan, for example, which are only available through Spanish). You are GOING to make more mistakes in a single lesson in that situation because you are not as competent in the originating language. This might also apply to reverse trees - I found myself making more mistakes on those than I did when going from English to the target language.
Hopefully, the web will never be infected by health, so that I'll always have a way, except when travelling, to learn at the pace I want. (disclaimer, my phone is Android, so I'm not yet affected - and don't want to be.)
This is a blatant lie. If you make 5 mistakes, you gotta pay $4.99 for the gems to continue learning.
Have fun losing your entire customer base. As someone who would have gladly paid upwards of $20/month just to use Duolingo as a membership fee, I'm going to make sure never to spend a single cent with your company.
It's disgusting that you would like about Duolingo being a free service forever, do this, then continue lying about it. You're ruining you're service.
Regarding health and learning:<pre>
I am a level 11 in French and am not even past the second checkmark. This is due to my constant re-viewing of all the lessons. I am not in a rush to move on until I am confident I know what I am doing in the past lessons. Reading and re-reading tips and notes under skills is a helpful way to remember what you are learning/had learned. Completing and re-doing earlier lessons to where you are now even if they need not be strengthened is a very effective way to ensure you keep up with the knowledge of previous skills and lessons, that could easily fade from your memory if not practiced enough. I think the new health system if a excellent and effective idea to all Duolingo users.</pre>
However, there will be complaints from users who do not like the new idea and health system, and wish to make progress and blow through lessons as they please. 1. If they are truly passionate about wanting to learn the language, then I guarantee even if they do not like the new ideas right now, they will come to love it as it will help them continue to gain and keep knowledge as apposed to what they were learning then forgetting before. 2. If they don't like the new system because they want to stay and go as they please, and they don't really care anyhow, then what is the point for even trying to complete anything on this/these course(s). For most new updates and changes in the Duolingo app or site, I am usually 100% O.K with them because I know that it's all for us and our wealth of knowledge, as well as keeping in mind that they managers, mods, and owners do this for our sake, especially to keep it free for us, when full knowing that they don't have too. For this I thank them and wish them the best of luck on further updates to the site and app.
I don't know how it happened, but if you edit it, take out the <pre> </pre> Also anything else in this bracket style: <>
You accidentally wound up with some html text marking.
I only asked because there is no html coding whatsoever in my comment. Not when I edit or when I first posted. It just shows. I thought a mod did it a first or something, but I'm not sure what happened now.
I have discovered another issue - which partly explains the problem in my previous comment: If you are not connected to the internet, your health is not revitalizing. So, while I get a lovely notice that my health is restored, it actually is not. I am one of those rare people who do not have access to the internet at home. I rely on off-line lessons on weekends to be able to maintain my streaks. However, if I make a mistake, or (gasp!) five on Saturday, I'm essentially locked out until I get to work on Monday or go somewhere to connect to WiFi - because you cannot do reviews offline. You encourage a few lessons a day. I cannot do that if I am locked out.
I have a further problem with the fact that it takes five HOURS for one bar to come back. HOURS! Even a 30 minute break would stem the tide of binging. This is a very frustrating factor.
I am using DuoLingo to legitimately learn languages and improve my view of the world. I have recommended DuoLingo to several people in the past, but now question whether I would. For beginning users, the prohibitive nature of being penalized in new learning units - which is all units for beginners - this shuts them down before they can even begin. For people who have been using this honestly and for the right reasons, this is just an abuse of loyalty. I know it has only been a few days, but I think you understand how frustrating most of us are finding this development.
If Duolingo wants to “discourage binging”, than what are we competing for in the clubs and leaderboards? Who has the most patience to put up with health?
Before I start, I would just like to say that I am heart broken that I can no longer buy some nifty wear for my owl :(
People who binge in a detrimental way to their learning will quickly figure out that they need to change their learning habits. It doesn't take long for someone to figure out that they are doing it wrong when they cant remember a word from the exercise they studied just moments earlier.
In respect to how I use the app, this update really doesn't work for me.
Likewise FelipeNandes, I am actually afraid of making mistakes xD. I lose most of my health to petty mistakes. For e.g. My device autocorrects what I wrote at the instant i click enter, I forget to write a word despite intending to, or I accidentally click enter with my fingers hovering over the screen.
This is very annoying^ :(
I really enjoyed the freedom of being able to learn how I wanted to.
Please reconsider, and thank you for this awesome learning platform!
I think that I can agree that binging is not good - that's if we define "binging" as excessively rushing through new material at a pace at which it has no realistic chance of sticking to your head. The question is: how to measure it? 5 mistakes in a new lessons doesn't seem much to me. I observed myself over the last couple of lessons (on the web were I am still allowed to make as many mistakes as I like) and found that I easily make that many mistakes in languages that I speak really well. They are just silly mistakes like typos or not understanding the computer voice well because the volume is low in order not to wake the neighbours.
But OK, let's suppose there is a way to measure it. You say the intention is to make sure people revise before they move on. But from what I gather from all the remarks is that the only way to re-gain health (barring buying and waiting) is by doing the general "Strengthen skills" feature? (The one that everyone agrees is useless.) Wouldn't it be enough to just disable all new content? Either for a certain time on the clock or until a certain amount of XPs are collected on old lessons? Why is there only one way to regain health through revising? Why not letting people the freedom to chose how to do their revision? Why would re-guilding of skills not count for regaining health? I don't see the point.
You are throwing the baby out with the bathwater. Sure you should discourage bingeing - but not by making people afraid of making mistakes. People come to Duolingo not just to learn languages, but also because it is fun. Being punished for making mistakes is not fun, and it is also not conducive to learning.
It punishes people for making mistakes and I will not be convinced that's a good thing.
"Completely free, no annoying adds, no misleading in app purchases, no subscription fees"
"Language free at last"
Also remember "Free forever"?
This is AWFUL. In fact I would post my friends description but it had too many swearwords and they've deleted the app as they think the whole idea of Duolingo is ruined. And it is. You shouldn't be punished for making mistakes or progressing. If someone from Duolingo is reading this, change it. As somebody else mentioned whoever came up with this needs to be fired. Immediately.
What I don't get is that Duolingo had managed to create a large and loyal user base, with a lot of members willing to volunteer big time and working for the community and working on the site pretty much every day for free and then they just throw it all out by introducing punishments. Why not take advantage of the goodwill of all these users and introduce a system where you can get more (actual learning content, not just suits for Duo) if you pay. With a user base this large, I bet it would have worked out fine. Now that they've chosen to change the rules, how do they expect the users to be willing to pay for anything, when paying just feels like a punishment. During the two years I've been on Duolingo, I've seen many uproars over changes, but nothing like this. It makes me worry about the future of Duolingo.
Punishing people for making mistakes is ❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤. It gets even worse when we all know that some courses have some really awkward lessons, especially those grammar ones where there is no such grammar structure in English and we still have to translate those sentences into something that sounds really weird. I agree, of course, that just urging to finish a tree is no good, but there are several better ways to deal with that. For example, allowing just a x amount of lessons per day or requiring a given amount of xp in order to go to the next one. Also, even these are not the best solution, and that's because people learn differently. Take me for example, I'm a native Portuguese speaker learning Italian from English. All at all I'm just learning a different Latin dialect, and therefore some vocabulary lessons consist almost entirely of true cognates, the same stands for grammar lessons with structures so similar to my native language that there is no point in reviewing it several times. This totally changes if the learner is an actual native english speaker, who will surely find Italian harder and couldn't go through the lessons as fast as I. Native language is, of course, only one out of many factors that influence language learning. For now, I'm just happy that this isn't coming to the web anytime soon. Let's just hope that Duo doesn't decide to be agile with this specific change. Peace.
Count me amongst those who loathes the new changes. Losing health per mistake is INCREDIBLY demotivating for me, especially since, as others have expressed, the app doesn't teach you how to conjugate words when first introduced, leaving you to guess how it's done when you encounter them later in the lesson. What you're doing is essentially punishing your learners because you refuse to teach them proper grammar when introducing new words/concepts which is unfair and screams of a blatant money grab. If the goal is truly to discourage binge learning then people should be dinged a health per lesson, not per mistake.
Since I updated my iOS app, I went from 10 lessons a day (2 new, 8 reviews on previous lessons as I don't generally use the 'practice' feature since I prefer to get more in depth on individual lessons than a generalized review) to 2, which is the minimum amount I need in order to reach my daily goal. I'm likely going to change my goal to 1 lesson a day, reducing my use of the app even further.
In monetary terms, I went from seeing 10 ads a day to 2, quite likely 1 once I adjust my daily goal. That's a significant decrease in ad revenue for the app.
By all means, keep the gems! Give me reasons to spend gems (more outfits/avatar choices, ebooks/magazines in the language I'm learning, whatever you can come up with) and I'll buy them! I have no qualms supporting the app with gem purchases to get nifty little things like that.
But I flat out refuse to spend money to buy gems for health, ultimately perpetuating a feature I hate because it's so horribly demotivating to me and others.
I love using duolingo and seeing it evolve is amazing. I am so happy my teacher introduced my to this amazing site. Grazie. Ciao.
Not happy with these changes. I have enjoyed Duolingo, it has been a nice and entertaining way to learn. But it is not anymore. Duolingo, don't destroy the basic idea, please, don't try to be a school. Learning should be fun!
This new update is what made me delete the app on IOS. My mother toungue being spanish makes it very hard to get a polish lesson first try making it impossible to continue with my daily goal. I feel i am being punished for making mistakes and shouldent we learn from our mistakes? This completely ignores this concept. If the web version become the same you will make me stop using duolingo. I hope this gets changed, only then will I use the app version again. Maybe you could add hearts as a option for people. People could turn it on if they want to limit themselves or to add more challenge but for me all it does is put a barrier between me and actually learning.
Hi I wanted to add another perspective as well.Perhaps this goes into another section, but it is related to this change re: mistakes. I am partly (mostly) deaf. I usually do lessons with earbuds to hear the language but also sometimes don't bother, and just skip past the listening tasks. Even when I am listening sometimes the sounds are next to impossible for me to hear clearly. I think duolingo used to allow you to turn off listening exercises at least for the app (I can't see that anymore-- if its there still someone let me know!), but in any case just skipping the lessons as they come up when I don't feel like listening has been the best solution so far. With these changes I no longer do new lessons on the app, even with earbuds since I know I will lose so much health, and stick to desktop instead. If you are going to continue with health, also find workarounds for people to avoid being graded on listening trials (honestly I would most like to have the option of doing them still without risking health)
Duolingo should definitely be allowing you to turn off listening exercises. Which app are you using? (system and version)
Another disappointed user on the new health concept. I've spent 170+ consecutive days enjoying the flexibility of new lessons and practice sessions depending on confidence levels and what else the day holds. Only in the last few days with a de-motivating health concept have I started to dread or waver over my daily lesson. If I have started to feel this way after just a few days, I doubt I'm going to be around to reach 200 consecutive days. Such a shame you have unnecessarily complicated such a previously wonderful and simple learning app.
The 5 mistakes and you're out doesn't make educational sense to me as a university professor of 20 years. I get not advancing before the concept is learned but mistakes are easy to make early on and sometimes helpful learning especially at the beginning of a new module. The "5 and out" would make sense if the necessary practice to earn health points was linked to the problem area of learning but it isn't. So someone struggles with a new concept, gets booted, needs to wait, or practice something unrelated and begin all over again. I'm at a loss for what educational principle that follows. Please modify, I get the not rushing through only partially learning I don't understand the educationally principle behind this the (non) remediation approach. Thank you
Especially when they add in words not learnt - for example on the animals shark is only introduced when added to a sentance about it eating something. And again in clothing we learn garments but then get a suit added in as a sentence which has to be known or guessed at.
Im doing 5 languages. If you run out of health in one or two of them you are prevented from practicing the other three for 5 hours. This is ridiculous. Im doing it in my lunch hour. I can't wait for 5 hours because I won't be home before midnight. Stupid new system. Oh yes, unless I "buy" health. Then why not be upfront & ask us to pay for the app? Practicing my languages keeping my trees orange does not earn me gems. Why ever not?
So are the day streaks now irrelevant? Do they not help language acquisition?
On the contrary... streaks over 10 days are an obvious sign of binging, and binging is bad! :-p
How about Duolingo plus members can switch back and forth between lingots and the rubbish health system. Sometimes I like the pressure of health but only on semi familiar material like if I'm trying to ladder one known language against another. And for the rest of the unwashed Miño lingual masses how about you pay gems to switch a section to lingots for 30 minutes or some such. As it is it's essentially impossible to learn an unfamiliar language such as Russian let alone a non indo European language with health throwing up a paywall. That just reeks of the worst kind of self dealing vulture capitalism. People come to this app to learn about other people, to show respect for other cultures, to fight dementia, to fight depression, to fight isolation, to try to think outside the box, to reboot their brain and fight their own parochial thinking. It's abhorrent that some screwball monetezation scheme has thrown these people under the bus. It literally makes me sick. I'm trying to stockpile gems now just in case some other half baked scantily researched slick used car salesman scheme gets jammed down our poor little ginea pig throats
Another point is that most people here already speak multiple languages and therefore want to take the same course from all of them, when available. Not only this, but if you learn from English, chances are there'll always be a reverse tree, which is also interesting. In this case, where you're doing a tree you've already done before, binging is life. Health and gems will destroy that (too).
If you cross train one language from another the material often seems different. New words, new phrasings. That's because they have passionate volunteers creating the courses, not half baked marking ppl. Meshing languages vs each other or even (gasp) trying to learn something new via a non native base isn't pavlovian preschool push the practice button, so isn't valued. Nice job talking down to us and nefing the product. You're treating users like we have bolts sticking out the temples and your ripping off your volunteers and likely violating copyright law. If the base code base was available open source it would have been forked one day after this rubbish was pushed. At this point clearly somebody should pro bono lawyer up and go after the leadership team. And Google or whoever is the angel investor should do the right thing and lean all over management to figure out double time quick how to open source the code base and still stick money in their pockets. Since they have no product without volunteer course creators, that's would be the "right thing" to do. How to go hat in hand and beg cloud providers for pro bono server time - that they can subsequently brag about and potentially even write off - and how to leverage open source to improve the base product and focus on monetization via premium features. Duo's management is straight out of 1999. They are two decades behind the curve.
I also do not like GEMS. I travel for work and end up in multiple time zones. I've "lost" a day because of not being able to access the app while on the plane or simply because of crossing the international date line. Now having to spend 400 GEMS to preserve my 400+ day streak would wreck me in short order. This seems like a blatant money grab. If it keeps up I'll go find another free service. Then there won't be any add revenue from me.
Trom a mobile phone you should nonetheless be able to get onto the web-version of DL. There streak freeze should still only cost the 10 lingots you always used to pay.
How do people learn when they are afraid to make mistakes? With the new health system, people can't learn as well as they could otherwise. If people are afraid to make mistakes, they will just be more tempted to google the answers and thus not learn anything.
Also, if you remove the health system, you will see a rise in lessons completed (since people will make mistakes with no punishment). This will lead to more time spent in the app and more time spent looking at ads, this means more ad revenue.
Different people learn at their own pace. Also, Why hinder the people who are actually getting things out of DuoLingo. I know people rush the tree, but that should be their decision! Plenty of people are still being affect even though they don't rush the tree. Five bars of health! That's nothing! You can only get 0-3 lessons done before you have to strengthen to regain bars. People make mistakes to learn! If they get something wrong, they learn from it. You shouldn't be scared to make a mistake while you're learning! Some people might start cheating, and using google translate because they're afraid to get it wrong. I think you'd rather people rush the tree and catch a little bit than have people cheat and learn nothing at all!
If they want to "discourage binging behaviour", why bit bring back the old system of health for lessons that shows up on the test? Then it makes people aware of their mistakes in that particular one without impeding on their ability to do other lessons without refilling health. I feel though that this will soon fail, just like the competitive reviewing failed a year or two ago.
This is ridiculous. I have switched to Babbel as it is now a far superior platform that charges a reasonable yearly subscription. I hope you continue to lose users until you revert back to the original interface.
HEALTH MAKING ME SICK
The Health Idea doesn't work. It actually is not good for learning, I spend more time worried about getting things wrong than enjoying learning. I appreciate the importance of a financial viable app but I am begging you to find a different way to make the app financially viable as the health option is not the way.
I would prefer to pay for the App out right than to have to deal with the Health.
I hate the new system and it is very offputting. I'm not one to usually comment on forums but this new system has really put a damper on my usage and has made it a burden to learn new topics. I study at my own pace and I don't need the website to set the pace for me. If I did need the pace set for me... I would take an official class like everyone else. I'm on a 90 day streak at the time of posting this comment and seriously considering switching to babbel or rosetta stone. The update is the worst and I'd rather pay for a system than use one that touts being free when it really is not when your pace is faster than they think you should go.
I updated my app and now I have the health system. Is there a way I can delete it and download the older version onto my iPhone again with out losing my progress? This health system is bogus. It's a grab at getting money, which is fine just don't dress it up as something else
I suppose I can't really argue with your research and if the health feature has a positive impact on learning I surely won't oppose it.
But as others have mentioned, the health feature portrays making mistakes as bad or 'unhealthy' which might have negative effects on motivation in the long term. From my experience, being afraid to make mistakes in English kept me from using English in real life because I was feared being made fun of and, you know, learning a second language is quite useless if you don't dare use it.
So how about renaming health (or even stick with lingots) and make new lessons cost lingots/new currency? That way, mistakes won't seem like something that needs punishment but instead, learning new stuff seems like something desirable (as it has a value attached in form of lingots/new currency), but still like a luxury which has to be earned through practice first.
Please give me back my lingots and keep your childish gems. Yes, duolingo was helping me learning the language i love, but since then the help itself became very annoying. Hopefully many people will quit the current iOS app and move to the website. It's is better anyway, albeit it a bit less convenient.
and really, the 'research' really did nothing to convince me, the web is full of "xx things successful people do" lists and none of them is worth the paper they're printed on.
You want to monetize? I've read tons of good ideas in these threads, and i'd happily pay for nice extra feature's within duolingo. Oh, and speaking of monies: you stole the owls clothes i've paid for with hard earned lingots. Hopefully you realize that's quite dishonest and a really bad example, right?
I do not 'binge' learn. I do go through spurts of doing a lot of lessons. And other spurts of doing almost none. I know this isn't the most effective approach, but it is what I have time for in my busy life. And I accept that it is not duolingo's fault that I am having a less than optimal learning experience. What helps...
* lessons that take longer to complete when mistakes are made as concepts are repeated
* gold lessons turning back to non-gold to encourage practicing a lesson again
What doesn't help...
* penalizing mistakes by taking away health and kicking me out of a lesson... That's just discouraging and makes me want to quit.
* penalizing mistakes when the main learning approach is trial and error which guarantees mistakes will be made.
I was converted today. I was unaware anything was going on. I immediately deleted the app. I am not going to waste my time with a system that intentionally rations learning time.
I will keep my 304-day streak going on the web until Duolingo ruins that as well.
I understand the need to monetize Duolingo. Just sell a subscription to the app and stop turning it into Candy Crush.
6 months on I still disklike and avoid practice with the iOS app because of these changes. Th se changes defiantly hurt, not help, my learning. It’s not just that I do not understand how gems and Lingots relate to,each other, it’s confusing for sure that buying things in one system may or may not correlate to the other. The bigger issue is iOS has too many interruptions like “who hoo 5 I’m a row” and things that make me click to dismis dialogs for gems, add, treasure chests, etc... too many damn interruptions. I want immersion not a click trail f language switching dialogs.
With the crowns system I do need gems to use the app. Once i run ot of hearts (and not by learning new skills, but just by studying old ones), i have to either refill hearts by spending gems or practice (which is not suitable for me because i am interested in practicing only the skill i am being focused on and not the whole language). By the time i run out of gems, i wont be able to countinue using Duolingo with the desired frecuency.
FWIW I like the change, don't listen to the haters. Having health also makes it a bit exciting :D
It's really awful that I have to use 400 gems to test out a skill and my friend on Android can test out for free. Mobile duolingo on iOS is awful
I just learned about gems from a post on a social media site.
I have to say – as someone who has been using Duolingo for many years and is passionate about this site, the gem idea sounds terrible to me.
I understand the science behind not binging. However, Duolingo’s translation algorithms are far from perfect. I am a native Russian speaker, but used Duolingo to improve my vocabulary and grammar. I also speak Spanish semi-fluently. I’ve noticed a pattern – because the Spanish course is more developed, I often can test out of a lesson that is too easy for me without making any mistakes. With Russian, I’ll make several “mistakes” but in reality these are just limitations in Duolingo’s own software, which do not allow me to use my full vocabulary in precisely the way that Duolingo wants me to. Duolingo, while wonderful, is not perfect. Even advanced speakers make mistakes which have no root in lack of attention or practice.
Moreover, the courage to make mistakes while learning a language is critical to acquisition. I’ve been able to learn 5 languages with near fluency because I am not afraid to make mistakes. Mistakes are how one learns. To train language learners to avoid risk is disparaging. Sometimes, I try writing sentences incorrectly on purpose, just to see if something can be said a certain way. If not, I learn what not to do in similar circumstances. Language is all about playing with different ways of expression.
Yes, binging is not a good habit, but the gem/health system does not seem to be an effective way to moderate a negative behavior. Instead, it punishes current dedicated learners. The feedback is overwhelmingly against the use of gems. I sincerely hope that the Duolingo team pays attention to the feedback from their customers and chooses not to introduce this feature globally. While I absolutely adore Duolingo’s current platform, I know that my usage would shift away from it if I am discouraged from making mistakes in my lessons.
I personally dislike the heart system. I find that getting the answer wrong helps me learn my mistake better than being penalized for it does. If this is implemented onto web I must bid farewell
can you make new games on duolingo that you can buy using enough lingots or gems
It sounds like there will be new items in the shop, not sure what yet. To quote vivisaurus:
What new items will you implement in the game that can be bought with Gems? We are working on things, but I am not allowed to spoil the goodies before they appear there. Will there be more options for things you can buy with the new currency? Yes
I like getting loads and loads of lingots.I don't know why people want MORE to spend them on.
According to other users, no. Health has been implemented even for those who chose not to update the app.
Partially true... I got health all of a sudden on one iPad with a later version of the app (after a while of using it without the health system), but another iPad with a (much) older version has been spared! :-)
You have a beautiful collection of language icons there! You must be one of those poor users who have demoralized themselves by advancing too quickly!
Demoralized? Nah! I'm determined to stick around here binging on as much as I can until duo (or whatever it mutates into) finally offers Finnish to binge on! :-D
Now, I wonder what you show up as in their stats... Someone who persisted despite having caught it, or someone who avoided catching it?!
On iOS, Duolingo has also removed the "Practice" link so we can practice our skills without selecting a specific topic, in order to replace it with the learning-limiting "Health" link. This has made Duolingo more difficult to use.
if you click to regain a health segment on that screen it will do the same as what practice used to
does each user get the same number of gems as everyone else or what? because it was like 10 lingots to freeze, and now it's 600 gems, and it's a bit annoying to think that where id saved up extra lingots for if I wanted to take a couple days off or something but now ive been given only 500 gems and cant?
(also, not as important, but yesterday i got my reward thingy for the day, and rn which I grant is about 1am but counts as a new day app wise i was going to but when I clicked the redeem button it said i couldnt because id already gotten one for today)
The most common (but not the only) conversion method is apparently rounding it down to nearest 50 and then adding 500. So while your situation is annoying, think about the people who had 90 lingots (9 freezes) and now have 550 gems (0 freezes).
that is pretty much my situation ;-; except my lingots were in the 40s so I dont have the extra 50 gems
The good news is that you still have lingots on the website so you can buy your freezes here.
next time I feel like having a lazy day ill be sure to make the 60 minute round trip to the library to do so lmao
Not that I'm against people visiting libraries but you should be able to use your mobile browser to buy your day off. Just go to the Duolingo home page and click Store on the bottom right corner.
my phones browser doesnt work for whatever reason - store is gonna look into it but not for like a month for some reason. im only able to do this now because im at a friends house
Question: when lingots are converted to gems, is it going to be the same amount: EX, if I have 25 lingots, do those get converted to 25 gems? or is there a different "exchange rate"
apparently round your lingots down to the nearest 50 and add 500 to get how many gems you'll receive. so 25 lingots would be 500 gems, 371 lingots would be 850 gems
(thats not been confirmed tho i dont think)
I doubt you guys will read this but, have you thought of allowing people to choose if they want to see ads on the desktop version? If you added this i'm sure a lot of us would be cool with it.
Also, have you thought of making a Duolingo app for computers?
I'm not sure if this will work for me...But I am patiently looking forward to the android version, hopefully I'll like it. ^ ^ Thank You <3
I'm curious about how lingot/gems will work for those of us who use more than one device. There was a definite difference in the cost of a streak freeze on my phone and on my laptop. You've stated that you don't have plans to bring it to the web. Will that change or should we just do our purchases on web to avoid bloat?
When I first heard about this I was very wary of it. But I would like to try it now that I've read this explanation of it.
Hi! I sometimes use my Ipad with IOS and sometimes use my PC. On IOS there are GEMS, and on PC lIngots. Will the lingots achieved on the PC be converted into GEMS when I use IOS and vice versa.
"We will be testing these mechanics on Android in the future."
You've said the same thing about the bots...
But the exchange rate is crazy. My 300+ Lingots could only exchange for 800 Gems, while the bonus skill previously costs 30 Lingots, now requires 1,000 Gems!
I have two questions:
1.) How will the app and the website now interplay? There have been synchronization problems between them in the past, what will happen now? Does reaching my daily goal in the app still prolong my streak in the website? Can I recover gems in the app by strengthening skills in the website?
2.) What will happen to the lingots? Are they going to be converted, or will they just disappear?
I just had a couple of comments. (For the record, I should note I'm only studying German right now, and I had some German in school so some lessons were at least a little bit review for me.)
1) I don't mind the health mechanic, actually. I think that there are indeed valid reasons for making sure learning is paced. I have lost 2-3 health over the course of one or two new lessons, but I've never been booted from a new lesson.
2) For anyone who is wondering, the global practice on the health screen will, in fact, target specifically those lessons which have gone stale and make them gold again for you, sometimes two at once. Therefore, my preferred approach is to start my daily study with new lessons and then go back to practice--either the 'old' way or via the health screen depending on if I need to regain health. Which brings me to my next point:
3) The interface could be a little better. I think it's confusing for users that there are two ways to initiate practice/review (health screen and on the knowledge tree) but only ONE lets you regain health. Could the developers make it so that any review will automatically restore a health bar if a user's health needs to be refilled? The simpler things are for the user, the better!
and 4) WHY are there no plans to bring gems and health to the web?? Maybe I'm just a stickler for consistency, but it bothers me that if I am on one platform I have one set of user mechanics and one currency, but on another platform I have a different mechanic and currency. Surely it would be simpler for everyone--users and developers alike--to have one simple and consistent interface. If health and gems are good ideas, they really should be implemented across the board. And that brings me to
5) Somewhat off-topic, but since I'm on the subject of consistency, it saddens me as an iOS user that clubs and bots do not exist on the web platform. It would be really, really nice for all features to be available to all users regardless of where they are accessing Duolingo from.
And that is my (rather lengthy, sorry) feedback.
I just want to point out that I think it's great that the web version doesn't have any of the features you mention. I don't want the health system, it would ruin my way of using Duo (which is based on making a lot of mistakes). I don't want the bots, because the pictures seriously creep me out. I wouldn't be able to use Duo if I had to look at them :D And I don't understand the point of clubs, it seems like it's just a bad replacement for the real thing (activity). So as long as none of these things are on the web/android versions I can still use Duolingo.
It's fair enough if you have a different learning style from me. The new system suits my learning style just fine so far, and since there were fewer people like me speaking up on this discussion post, I wanted to offer that viewpoint. I might point out, in addition, that one is in no way required to use bots. It's just an additional feature and it would be nice to have it at least available to those of us who do want to use it. Most importantly, I stick by my major point about consistency. If Duolingo works a particular way or offers a particular suite of features, I really want it to do so consistently across all platforms so that I always know what I'm getting. That may or may not be as important to other users, but it IS important to me and I wanted to express that.
I cannot do translations from English to Spanish or from audio Spanish as the panel of accents has stopped being displayed
I still can't do the microphone questions. Don't know why my microphone doesn't work.
what happens to the lingots if the update were to pop up, would the be reserved as gems or be reset
Trying to understand the conversion rate on the lingots. I had over 600 at conversion and received a little over 1,000 gems. A co-worker had 56 lingots and received over 500 gems. Seems that I should have about 6,000 gems. Buying one of the bonus skills used to be 30 lingots. Now it 1,000 gems for the same bonus skill. How does this make sense? One additional skill brings my gem balance to near zero after 238 days in a row of using DuoLingo. Really?
Frage: wieso kann ich nach erreichtem Tagesziel die Belohnung nicht erhalten? Meldung: "Du hast heute schon eine Belohnung ausgewählt", obwohl das nicht der Fall war.
Das war ein Bug und sollte eigentlich behoben sein. Vivisaurus hatte hier mehreren Usern so geantwortet:
Hi! This was a bug and should have been fixed by now. Can you please let us know if it is still happening?
Falls das immer noch passiert, kannst du einen Fehlerreport einsenden: https://support.duolingo.com/hc/en-us/articles/204728264
I have a positive view of health now. It's actually helped me learn Russian better. It makes more sense what it's for now.
Can you elaborate? I feel like Russian would be the worst possible language to learn with health because of the different letters. What benefits did you get from the health system?
I'm definitely one of the people that used to breeze through languages just making lots of mistakes. But now, if I get something wrong initially, when I encounter it next, I think about it and try and understand what case it is, what the grammar is behind it, and I'm thinking deeply about it until I can get it right the next time and eventually make it second nature. The health forces me to pace myself and if I run out, it makes me review past lessons, which is also good.
I totally agree with all that you say. Keep up the good work. I know I am striving to do my best and to succeed.
Thank God I don't own Idevice/s, because I would be in some mental institution right now!
Yeah, it's kinda cool to prevent just copy/pasting. But!!! Something which fu$# my blood pressure, is translating the sentence correctly, but forgetting to ad a* in front of A word, or misspelling and instead of plural I write singular.
It's really cool, but...make system more prone to mistakes..
I havent recieved the update yet on my ios device. I still have lingots...why is this?
I for one avoid using the iOS app now.... I actually used to prefer the iOS app in many ways because lessons when quicker and speaking practice was a great benefit to me. Now I only ever use it as a last resort to keep my streak going and can't get to a desktop.
Ironically I think my hatred of the new iOS app has helped my streak by making me even more diligent to practice when I have a computer handy ;)
I don't really care about Lingots or Gems, I'm curious what the ratio is, and how they interact... When I get 23 gems opening a treasure box, how many lingots is that?
Any reason why my reward chest has gotten stuck on 9, 10, and 11 gems? It's been a week of the same numbers every day. My partner gets different numbers every day...
So basically people should be scared of making mistakes on a LEARNING application... lol okay
After 90+ days I can report as a result of this change I practice less. It’s not that I get shut out b the health system, that did happen the first few days trying to learn a new language (French, while for a couple weeks), but rather be I hate the iOS app in its current form, and just avoid ever using it, opting to put off studying until I can do so on a desktop. In Spanish, a language I’m just maintaining, health and gems is irrelevant. In French and Italian languages I’m just starting to learn it stopped me in my tracks and I gave up even bothering on iOS.
Health is a big part of that, but the sheer number of pop ups and interstitial pages is unpleasant as well.
Why does my French course have Gems, but my Japanese Course has Lingots instead? I’ve only ever used the app on my iPad, so I don’t see why they would have different currencies.
Hello I just subscribed to Duolingo - I love it! But I was surprised that it asked me to buy gems ? Is it that Because i am trying too many lessons today ? From what I have just read it seems to be a way of slowing people down unless they are so hooked they want to learn all day - am I right? I do hope I am now as free though. Best wishes Beverley
I hate health on IOS very much!! Please consider removing. I am actually using the Web for my lessons because I cannot pass my lessons on my phone and then I am in jeopardy of losing my day streaks. I only have 15 min at work and before work to work on my lesson and with health I never get 2 lessons done in the time I have because I always mess up a spelling or put a word in the wrong order and then I don't get to finish the lesson cause I run out of time. Please take this function off!
Also I'm not liking the crowns either. I feel like I have to start at square 1 now and feel like I'm not learning anything.
In um phone os gems anda has life. Beth bad this. I liked more the old version, no health and lingotes. But, I didn’t still understand what is the principal difference between lingotes and gems. For me, gems come a lot when open the chest. Please Duolingo, fix this. Android version is the better. Lingotes and no health.
It seems to me that the introduction of health was motivated by $$$'s, not because they think it was better for learning. If it was better for learning then they would not have excluded health from the desktop version. On mobile, however, people make purchases of gems, a revenue stream for DuoLingo. Some people will purchase gems in order to top up their health when they really need to advance. $$$ purchases are not available on the desktop version - you cannot buy gems, therefore there is no revenue stream to be had from introducing health on desktop. Or am I just being paranoid?
I wrote this then noticed the dates on the initial post and comments. So I guess HEALTH is a done deal. Wow.
I just switched from android to iPhone. I was surprised by health. I like iPhone 100x more because it has much better voice recognition. Navigating through parts of speech is very difficult. I can’t make it through single lesson without running out of health. I would pay real money to have health deactivated or go back to doing lessons on Android.
It has totally ruined it for me. I have moved on and barely use Duolingo any more.
This is now a year old, and it looks like health is here to stay on iOS. My eldest son started Duo before health came in and was making steady progress, but gave up soon after the new health system started. He found it too stressful because he felt that mistakes were punished. My other two started after health and did not continue - and health was certainly part of their decision.
Personally I am quite nervous of making mistakes in this system now. As the health counts down, the pressure to not be wrong starts to build, and when I'm down to my last health I often call up google translate to check my answers before entering.
I appreciate the need to monetise the app... but I feel this monetisation was not done to help make the app better for the users. It detracted from the user/learning experience for a great many people. Your monetisation efforts should be pointed towards 'how can we make our app better for our users with some extra features', not to destroy what works. Streak freeze is a great example (I'd pay a few dollars to have that). Specialized lessons, such as scientific or dating would also work.
Really is true, using health in a tool that uses trial and error to teach is really counter-productive. I hardly use Duo at all anymore...used to love it!!
I'd rather just keep Lingots and have the option for Duolingo Plus, rather than it become an outright "free to play, but not to enjoy" pigsty.
I’m testing out of skills, which costs 400 gems. As I complete each test, I’m told I’ve earned 400 gems. This is great! It encourages me to quickly test out of stuff I know. Except those gems aren’t being delivered, which sucks. What’s up?
Can you only earn a limited number of gems a day. I am on iOS iPad and after a certain point when I click on double your gems, nothing happens.