For advanced German students: Sign in as (German learning English) for a better course...
Have to say, although I'm appreciating DuoLingo's German course (it's okay), I'm actually finding that signing in as a German wanting to learn English is far better and more effective!
The thing that frustrates me about the German course is that I'm translating everything into English. That's ineffective for an advanced student of German. Much better to translate English into German (which is what all English speakers do whilst speaking German).
Typing what you hear, of course, will be a yawn, but you'll learn quicker and much more vocabulary by pretending to be a German English learner.
This is done by many people, I'd almost say by most people who finish the German tree and still want to advance more. We call it the "reverse tree". I would still recommend finishing the "normal" German tree first. It is done for learners and then you can fill some holes by doing the reverse tree.
Has anyone here gone even further, jettisoning English entirely and learning, for example, French for Germans or vice versa? It seems to me that that approach might make the most sense for advanced double-language learners. It seems like a much better approximation of language immersion.
Many of us non-native English speakers are "forced" to learn new languages through English on Duo since there are no courses from our own languages. There should be a significant difference between learning from a language that you know very well and learning from a language that you just acquired recently. For example I had no problem to learn German from English, but even though I'm pretty good with it now, I still prefer to learn French also from English. Having said that, one day when I get better with French and even better with German, I would be happy to finish all 6 trees between English, German and French. So far I have done Eng > Ger and Ger > Eng and am half way down in Eng > Fre.
To some extent, I already rely on German to learn French and Russian because the online translation dictionary I use is http://dict.leo.org. For English-German, it is unmatched. But it is also great from German into any other major Western language. It is my "go to" resource when studying foreign languages. I'm with you, though. At some point, I'd like to make it through all possible DL course combinations of my 3 foreign languages.
I Speak Spanish natively and an almost native fluent English. And what I do is to do the German course from both languages, although I have to say that the English one is far better/comprehensive/longer than the one coming from Spanish. But it's always interesting, as there are some grammatical nuances that you would comprehend better if you have Spanish knowledge (like articles genders and verbs conjugations, for example). I'm totally doing both reverse trees and even going to use the new found German knowledge to get into other languages from it.
The most frustrating issue in Duolingo is that most refused answers are faults in the English translation. This is very annoying because the goal is to learn german. Anyway it would be a lot more challenging (and more productive) to do translations from english to german. I don't see what's the reason for that behaviour. The quantity of learned material is minimal this way. So I hope the contents of Duolingo will change in that direction soon.... Probably the public Duolingo aims at, are Americans and British, and they're happy with it ?...?!?