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German Word Strength Decaying

So I'm learning German and I am not very far into it. Currently I'm on level seven and I try to practice at least 45 minutes a day, if not more. One thing that I have noticed throughout learning German is how fast some of the word strengths decay! I do at least 2 practice and strengthen rounds before I go to any new skills every day, but even when I get all the questions right, some word strengths just refuse to move. I will even go to that particular skill and practice but it won't change the strength meter and says I haven't practiced it for 2-3 days. I didn't really mind at first and I have been trying to ignore it, but it's getting increasingly more annoying. Is this an error on my part or is this just a bit of a glitch? I tried to learn some other languages and the words haven't decayed as fast as the German has... I just really want to finish the tree with all the words being strengthened. Oh, and I also use Tiny Cards to study when I'm not learning new skills, so it's not really a matter of me not knowing the words. If anyone has any idea of what might help, I am completely open to suggestions. Thank you :)

So a bit of an Update: Thanks so much for all the replies, I am glad to see that a lot of people are having the same trouble I am. I have been doing the same things I did before, with the strengthening of skills, but I wanted to add that the actual bubbles are now decaying so much faster than I expected. I usually practice once or twice before I go to sleep, then again when I wake up. I noticed this morning that though my tree was all golden last night after I practiced, seven skill bubbles were no longer golden this morning. It's very annoying to see that even though I am putting so much work into learning German, I am not seeing the results on the website (though I do think I have been getting a lot better in reading and speaking) Again, I tried to ignore a lot of the issues, but I might report it as a bug to hopefully help fix it or at least bring more attention to it. Thanks so much for all the suggestions given :)

June 22, 2017



The decay rate on my French tree slowed down after a few weeks the Spanish tree never did seem to. At the moment I'm ignoring them both to concentrate on the reverse Spanish and french from spanish. Eventually I will likely regild them but the number to redo on spanish was nuts. I understand the goal is to keep us practicing but I can't see anyone redoing 12-25 skills everyday just to keep a tree gold.


There was a time for maybe a month when German skills were decaying really fast, I couldn't keep them golden with 200 or more xp per day, but that seems to have stopped around a week ago for me. Now it still decays faster than I was used to before, but then again, I used to practice really a lot and now I don't anymore, so it makes sense that they still decay a bit.


I've got German words that say they haven't been practiced in a year and it's dead wrong, both in reality and even in Duolingo land. The words in question are concentrated in earlier lessons, possibly ones I tested out of when I first started. I went back after placement and did each and every lesson and in fact have gone back repeatedly to the lesson indicated when you click on the word itself and practiced the word. But the word is stuck in some limbo of "over a year". I've got roughly 200 of those words! Fisch, Zucker, Apfel.... You know they come up in lessons constantly. But they won't update in the word list. I've done Food 1 again and again, all the lessons and the strengthening. Same with the other stuck words. I'm definitely not getting the word wrong when I practice, either. Very frustrating, and it's the situation with about 7% of my words. Have reported it as a bug, but nothing has changed and when I look others have the identical issue.


i wonder sometimes if you make mistakes in the more advanced lessons it decreases your strength in the earlier ones? ii noticed when i got a lot of die/das/der mixed up the "basics" strengths fell off a cliff


It may, I don't know. But the case I'm citing it doesn't say the word is weak, it's saying it hasn't been practiced IN OVER A YEAR.


It happens to me as well. With mine, it seems like the lessons I've taken most recently are the ones that decay the fastest.


I have completed six trees and Duolingo, and the decay rate is German way beyond anything I have experienced on the other trees. I realize that German is longer than some of the other trees, but that doesn't explain what I am seeing in the German tree.

For example:

  • One day the "travel" skill had to be reguilded three times in one day.
  • Yesterday, I reguilded a skill, and by the time I reviewed a second skill (within minutes of doing the first skill), the previous skill had already decayed again.
  • When I woke up this morning, 13 skills had decayed overnight.
  • Just now, I reviewed seven skills that were at the three bar level. On one skill, I missed two questions, on one or two skills I missed one question, and on the other skills I got 100% correct with no peeking. Only one of the seven skill reguilded.
  • I have 1100 XP this week in German, almost all of it review material, and my tree is in worse shape than it was this time last week.

I have never seen anything even close to this kind of decay rate in any of the other languages I have studied on Duolingo. Sure, I make some mistakes, but I honestly don't think I make more mistakes in German than I have with any other language.

I am now approaching level 14 in German. With every other language I have studied on Duolingo, I have been getting close to a completed and golden tree by this stage. In German, I am only half way through the tree, and almost nothing is golden.

Either something is seriously wrong with the decay rate in German, or I have wound up in the most fiendish A/B test ever.


You must be in some A/B test. My tree is all golden, I usually only hit the strengthen button. Rarely does it show me a particular skill not being golden. Maybe twice a month AT MOST? Now, word-wise, I've got 3009 words on my list, clearly hundreds of words are not golden because I'm not hitting 3009 words every day. In fact, 200 or so show as "last practiced" over a year ago even though I could have practiced them just five minutes ago -- cannot get those words to show as practiced no matter what I do. But it's not affecting my skill bubbles.


My German tree works exactly the same. Not fun.


Just keep doing it. The same happens to me with Portuguese. After about a month it slows down. Tinycards has no affiliation with giving XP and strengthening words on Duolingo.


Honestly, Duolingo's system of keeping skills "golden" sucks. It put so much pressure on me I would go days (even weeks) without practicing anything! My advice? Just keep moving forward down the tree and don't worry too much about keeping skills golden. Just see it as a way of measuring what skills you might want to strengthen if you feel like practicing something. It doesn't affect anything past how shiny your tree looks.

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