Visual Learning (Images, words, maybe voice recognition)
First I have to say this again, Duolingo is great. Everything about the service has been incredibly useful to my language learning experience.
If there's one thing, though, that I would say has been lacking from my experience on Duolingo - it's Visual learning. I am inherently a more visual learner, and I learn MUCH faster with images than with words.
I've, thus far, used Rosetta Stone, Pimsleur, and Duolingo - as well as a variety of less elegant iOS apps.
While Duolingo has been, by far, my favorite - I remember way more from Rosetta Stone because of the visual approach to learning. I can still remember many things from Rosetta Stone lessons I only did once or twice, where I feel it takes three or four times the effort to retain Duolingo info.
What I've done to supplement my Duolingo learning is create a folder in iPhoto, and use Google/Bing translate to name/tag all of the images in it with the words they represent (sunset, duck, tree, etc). I've found that by just thumbing through that folder a few times with the "info" displayed on the right side, I learn and RETAIN new words much more quickly.
While I know there is a very minimal visual component to some of the lessons, I'd love to see Duolingo greatly expand the visual training element to help those of us who learn more that way. Even if it's only supplemental to the lesson, in which you play games with the images for "Practice". Whether it's just to type the word for the image, speak it, pick the correct image from a set to match a word, or pick the word from a list of words to match the image.
Everything about Duolingo has been great, but for us visual learners, it would be great to see that aspect of the learning expanded a bit.
Thanks for everything you guys do!
Nice, thanks for the recommendation! I hadn't seen memrise yet. I'll play around with it a little more but on the surface it looks pretty cool, especially the ability to create your own lessons.
Ultimately I think the formula for visual learning is pretty straight forward, and doesn't need to be nearly as complicated as what memrise seems to be offering. Show an image, speak the word. Then show the image(s), make me speak/type the word. Then for those of us who construct our conversation visually, we see an image of a tree in our minds and speak "albero". It's basically a slide show where we have to type/speak the correct word to go to the next image.
You can of course expand it by showing words, and making us pick the correct image. Show an image and make us pick the correct word. But all-in-all I really think simply giving us more images to represent words (particularly in the noun sections) and allowing us to practice with the images would be a huge leap forward for visual learners.
Yeah, I've found Duolingo to be great for grammar, forming sentences and such. If you want to learn vocabulary though I'd say memrise.com is better due to it's use of images and such. Although introductory courses they do do the image thing sometimes on duolingo...not sure why they don't continue it throughout the whole learning process...