My own observations about the Welsh course.
I don't know if anybody is going to improve this course but from the ones that I use the Welsh one is fairly constructed in the worse way. I have completed 25 skills so far and I think I can give some impressions for now.
I basically still can't say anything in Welsh. With my around 17 skills in Turkish and 12 in Hungarian, it is possible for me to say a lot more and use a much bigger percentage of the skills that I have learnt in those languages.
It is probably because of the way the Welsh course is constructed: instead of using full sentences I learn just words. It is much harder to remember something detached from any context and use. It is the same with practising the skills (I am right now during big strengthening sessions after a long time of travelling thus no practising) - I just get single words repeated, without any practical use, basically no creation of sentences - look how is the Hungarian course constructed, I understand the language much better because I can learn how to construct sentences and I do it all the time, every skill! It is maybe more difficult but much more efficient and satisfying.
Also: the learnt skills/words don't mix between new lessons. I don't know if I ever saw "orenau" or "bresych" anywhere else other than in the lessons where I learnt them. It is the same with nearly everything I learnt, even with grammar. Then I am strengthening the skills and I even don't know that I have ever encountered the words that are being strengthened at the moment.
Dialects. There should be just one dialect in the course used by the site, the same way as in the English or Spanish courses (afaik there is no standardised Welsh). Other can be added as the last skill or a different course.
Thank you for your comments. Constructive criticism is always useful.
Firstly please bear in mind that you are not the target audience of the course, however we are grateful to you for giving it a go. Our target audience are people learning Welsh in Wales, both as adults and also school children, where there is a shortage of good digital resources.
In fact the course is popular with its target audience and was recently voted the best digital resource for learning Welsh.
The best way to use the Duolingo course to learn Welsh is to use it with the text books that we based the course on. They are actually available free online here:- https://cls.byu.edu/welsh/BYU_Cwrs_Mynediad.html
As regards not enough sentences the problem we have is that we have no control over the algorithm that produces the content in any unit. Every word we have is defined both as words and also as sentences and ideally each lesson would contain a mixture of the two.
We have actually revised quite a bit of the course and are waiting for our new course to be released, which hopefully you will get more out of.
Again thanks for your comments.
- Instead of giving hints about a single word there are given tips about the whole phrases/sentences. Most of the time.
EDIT: number five at the beginning is automatically changed to number one, wtf. xD
Not sure if you gave up on this or not..I have just begun the course and was doing fairly well at the beginning then hit a wall with trying to memorize the names of animals, etc. And I thought the same thing..No base creation and use of sentences. It is my understanding, however, from reading the introduction to the course, that it is structured in a way that meets certain criteria. I found SSiW much more helpful in learning the language...
See, and I, personally, failed so utterly with SSiW for a variety of reasons that it almost put me off of learning Welsh altogether with complete frustration. For me, finding Duolingo and supplementing my learning with the resources suggested by the creators of the course here has rekindled my interest and has brought me to the point where I can now hold my own in conversations about pretty much any topic within 2 years of learning. To each their own -- I needed what Duolingo had to offer, others might fare better with SSiW. It did not meet my personal criteria for language learning.
I wrote my comment 3 months ago, just before signing up to do the SSiW Intensive Course. I find it very demanding...and at times, off-putting. Living in the States, though, limits the resources at my disposal. I can't nick down to the pub and try out my Welsh, or go to the supermarket, or whatever. If I had 8 hours a day to study Welsh using SSiW, I'd be fine. Not an option for me. I have other things going on in my life. I wish there was a combination course, SSiW and Duo......I felt more successful with Duo, frustrated with SSiW and have limited options. What other resources did you use? Do you live in Wales? Can you point me to some help? Thanks
I can't nick down to the pub either as I'm situated in Germany where there are few Welsh learners to be found, as you can imagine.
Aside from Duolingo, I use Memrise which is flashcard-like learning. There are courses on it that follow the Duolingo course and help me retain the vocabulary better.
Also, I use online classes that convene once per week, as a regular class would, only via Skype. The ones I am taking are through the University of Bangor and can be found on https://learnwelsh.cymru/
I also have an excellent one-on-one tutor with whom I conduct a weekly lesson, following the Cymraeg i Oedolion books upon which the Duolingo course is based. The tutor is associated with Coleg Gwent.
And last but not least, there are two apps on the phone, LearnCymraegGo (Mynediad and Sylfaen) which offer listening and reading exercises in short, bite-sized bits.
Additionally, if you want to look into other venues of learning, here is a permalinked list of resources for beginners (and those a bit further along in their learning) from a facebook page I am a part of: https://www.facebook.com/groups/WelshChatForLearners/permalink/646911419039848/
I hope that you will find something on this list to help you out :)