https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok

Grammatical errors in the English versions of sentences in later parts of the course

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I feel quite certain that none of the developers for this course were native speakers of English, because it really shows. It is extremely frustrating to have to endlessly memorise sentences which are never fixed and use incorrect English. This course is in stage 3, these problems should not exist, yet I see no end of sentences which are grammatically incorrect, pointed out repeatedly to be grammatically incorrect both by reports and in the discussions of the sentences, yet are never fixed by moderation.

I'm almost at the end of the tree, but I'm unsure if I'll ever finish it because of the low quality of the later lessons and seeming fecklessness of the moderation. In addition to not fixing erroneous sentences, the number of sentences is quite small, I have memorised a large percentage of the sentences in the course (I shouldn't be memorising any sentences at all, I should be learning Vietnamese) along with their often ridiculous translations yet by no means would I feel ready to talk to a native Vietnamese person. At a similar stage in the Spanish course I could look for native speakers and felt reasonably confident in my ability to have a conversation in Spanish with only a few words of English for things that I didn't know the words for. I had also only seen a fraction of the sentences in said course. I couldn't dream of the same in Vietnamese.

I'm not even going to talk about the fact that only about 20% of sentences have audio, which is something I also hate, but is a 'lesser issue'. I additionally believe it says everything when the little owl appears to tell you some kind of motivational message in Vietnamese, and I don't understand most of the message.

Moderation, please wake up and start fixing translations. I have submitted many reports (frequently multiple reports for the same sentence) which outline the errors made and often explain them, yet have seen no action at all taken to fix them.

1 year ago

12 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Helenengland

I agree. Firstly, I wish to say that this is the best free programme I have found so far, so thanks to all those who have developed it. However, at level 13, I am getting increasingly frustrated by the errors which mark my response as incorrect when it is correct. I appreciate that it must be very time consuming to fix these issues but when I see that the same issues were reported months before by others before I report it, then I wonder if there are sufficient resources employed by Duolingo to improve the programme. I would also welcome the opportunity to skip modules I am not interested in (I hate the module on politics!) and to have flexibility to design my own upgrading programme so the vocab I learn will be valuable to me. Many thanks again for such a good programme.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
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I fully agree, I myself would gladly take on some role in fixing these reports, my Vietnamese isn't especially good, but I can at least identify bad English

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/dolinod

I agree. The awkward English translations (and the inability to recognize standard English as correct) was annoying but understandable when the course was younger, but as time goes on and I keep reporting these errors, the fact that nothing seems to be corrected is less and less acceptable.

To be fair, for other languages, I often receive notice that my reported corrections are accepted perhaps weeks or even months after I submit a report, but it's much more noticeable here due to the increased frequency of such errors.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
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True, plus it's been months without any of my corrections being accepted. The devs have walked out on the course

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/laivantruong19

Can you tell me a example? I am a native Vietnamese speaker and I also have learned Vietnamese Course for English (though I've completed English course for Vietnamese). I feel this is quite hard to me. Some sentences I did right but they didn't accept. I've just finished a half of the course then I don't want to do that anymore, until they fix all my reports.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
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There are, for example, a lot of errors regarding prepositions, 'can I invite you for a glass of wine' was marked wrong, with their translation being the extremely strange 'can I invite you to a glass of wine'. Then there was 'Do you believe in that theory' as one answer, but one believes in Santa or dragons, not a theory. The correct translation is 'Do you believe that theory', but said translation is marked wrong. English prepositions can sometimes trip up even intermediate and low advanced English learners, which is why they should really have had a native English speaker to check all of their sentences before releasing the course into beta. There are a lot of problems with sentences involving the verb 'lodge' too, and sometimes their alternative translations are poorly done. I can't remember the exact sentence, but my English translation used a synonym of the expected answer, but the synonym that I used began with a vowel sound instead of a consonant sound. This changed the indefinite article but their alternative translation didn't consider that, and marked me wrong. As I said I don't remember the phrase but if their main translation was 'a limitless supply', I put 'an endless supply', but their alternative translation was 'a endless supply'. The course doesn't understand the difference between stressed and stressful (suffering stress versus causing stress to others) and had the sentence 'He felt very stressful', or something to that effect. I can't remember any more at the moment, but there were a lot. The fact that these errors are frustrating learners doing the reverse tree too really shows how problematic the moderation is. Bad instruction is often worse than no instruction, and I deeply hope that this course has not caused your efforts in learning English to suffer

EDIT: By the way, I hope this helps: quite hard for* me, not quite hard to me; I've just finished half of the course OR I've just finished one half of the course OR I've just finished the first half of the course, not I've just finished a half of the course; all of my reports, not all my reports

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/laivantruong19

Thank you so much ^^ I didn't notice it but you're right.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
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No problem :-)

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/laivantruong19

So... where do u come from? England or United States?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
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England, are you from North or South Vietnam?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/laivantruong19

I live in Hanoi :)) But I am staying at Ha Nam Province now.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/dungna93

I'm a Vietnamese. I'm doing this Vietnamese course to see about whether I can offer any help. Please keep up with the good work you are doing.

1 year ago
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