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https://www.duolingo.com/OnkelD

Requiring a person to review 10 and MORE skills before they can continue on their tree is awful.

OnkelD
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I have enjoyed using Duolingo, and am quite aware of the adage that one should not look a gift horse in the mouth. That said, since they've added Dutch 2.0 (which I was elated to see), I have now reached the point of wanting to just give up and quit! When they strip you down in anywhere from 8 to 12 skills a day as you approach the last segment of the tree, you seem to spend all your time just keeping previous skills gold... and hardly ANY time to move on in the tree. It's ridiculous!

Surely it's fine to pick 3-5 of the weakest skills and have someone review them each day---but a DOZEN!!! That's a VERY discouraging task to have to face EVERY day/night. I want very badly to complete the Dutch course, but I'm afraid if they keep it up with paring me down 10-12 skills a day.. I'm going to just reach my "you win, I GIVE UP". point! How about setting realistic goals and not ones that frustrate someone so much?

OD

11 months ago

22 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/E.T.Gregor
E.T.Gregor
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If you have such a high decay rate it usually suggests that you're either rushing through the tree or making a lot of mistakes. Also, it's entirely your choice whether you want to keep the tree golden or not. You could: ignore the skill decay for now, just finish the tree and work on re-guilding it afterwards or slow down drastically to try and stay on top of your skill decay and just accept doing very little new every day. And, in case you're not using it, timed practise usually makes your skills stay gold longer.

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Katred2
Katred2
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^This. I felt frustrated by this sort of thing on my Swedish tree, but I found that going over earlier lessons was crucial to really mastering skills. And, if you keep at it, you will notice that they stay gold for longer.

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Christine_nl

This. If your goal is to finish the tree with all golden pics, finish it first, than make everything gold again. If your goal is to learn Dutch, ask yourself why topics decay, or why they decay so fast. Then decide what's better for your mastering Dutch: continuing the tree, or keeping everything gold. There must be some point in time where you have upped your skill so you'll make no mistakes and the topics won't decay so fast.

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Simius
Simius
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Unfortunately we (the Dutch team) have no control over this. Duolingo tries to keep track of how well you know each individual word. A skill decays when it think you've forgotten too many words in that skill.

To read more on how Duolingo tracks word strength: http://making.duolingo.com/how-we-learn-how-you-learn

For some good tips on how to keep your tree golden: http://gregreflects.blogspot.nl/2014/12/how-to-make-gold-duolingo-tree.html

That last blog post is pretty old, so maybe it's no longer entirely accurate. It's still a good read, though.

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/OnkelD
OnkelD
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Simius you have been a BIG help, more than once, and I truly appreciate all your assistance on my stumbling through the Dutch course... Dank je wel!

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/pentaan
pentaan
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That last blog post is pretty old, so maybe it's no longer entirely accurate. It's still a good read, though.

It still works very well.

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CarlosLM.
CarlosLM.
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I prefer going the Duolingo way, from easiest to hardest skills. The Greg's tip didn't work for me, because in the time I reviewed only one of the most advanced skills, I could review 3 of the easiest ones, and by the time I got to the hardest skills, they weren't so hard. My principal complaint of his method is, if your level in the language is so high that for you it's easy to start reviewing with the most difficult skills, why are you reviewing in the first place?? In this case, I would rather stay in contact with the native language, instead of the old tree where you are hardly learning anything new.

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/garpike
garpike
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Surely it's fine to pick 3-5 of the weakest skills and have someone review them each day---but a DOZEN!!! That's a VERY discouraging task to have to face EVERY day/night.

Well, just pick 3-5 then. If you do so consistently, they'll all eventually become gold.

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/pentaan
pentaan
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Requiring a person to review 10 and MORE skills before they can continue on their tree is awful.

That is a normal behaviour for a tree after a major update.
Many people have experienced the same after the update of the German tree last spring.

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/OnkelD
OnkelD
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I remember well the updating of the German tree last spring, and had no troubles whatsoever eventually gilding the entire tree again. It seems my Dutch tree skills just keep decaying so fast I can almost never get to the next skill... and I AM well aware of the mistake issue.. I've brought them down a lot. Anyway... I'll just do what I can... I can't keep up at this pace though... maybe bit off more than I could chew much less swallow.

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CarlosLM.
CarlosLM.
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After finishing the Portuguese from Spanish tree I've experienced a similar issue because I had rushed in the last part of the tree, it was exaggerated the amount of skills that I had to review. The worst thing was, that while I was gilding the tree along the day, new skills were adding to review. So it was disheartening, and took me a few days with a lot of dedication to get the gold colour. After that, and viewing that the rate of decaying of the gold colour wasn't slowing down much, I simply gave up and don't want to make my tree gold again any time soon. However, I keep reviewing some skills from time to time, but without worrying anymore if the tree is gold, and above all I enjoy the language watching Portuguese vídeos en Youtube understanding most of what is being said.

So now I only see utility in making all the tree gold, if you want to have your target language as fresh as possible for a special occasion. For example, you might want to prepare yourself to speak to natives, or you might have a test or exam in your target language.

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/OnkelD
OnkelD
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That's where I am... gave up trying. I have kept my German from English tree with little to no difficulty. I love the Dutch language; but for whatever reason they seem to decay a lot faster. I do NOT blame anybody (except perhaps whatever program Duo may be using) because team Dutch is a great bunch and very helpful. I'll work on specific skills from time to time, but trying to gild the whole tree just looks like mission impossible. In your Spanish tongue one might say, Que sera sera!

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CarlosLM.
CarlosLM.
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Sometimes I think Duolingo is more interested in making you return to the web that in the most effective way of reviewing. I don't find it logical, that after reviewing something after 3 days, then again you should review it in another 3 days. Other times I have the sensation that I am reviewing very known words, just to review very few of the unknown words. Wouldn't it better you were allowed to do customized review lessons, where you only selected what your weakest words are? Granted, they give you a link to the lessons, where supposedly a weak word is, but at least once I just could not find an exercise with the wished word. It's like it was hidden by a dumb random algorithm, and I had to be lucky to review the word I want.

OTOH I don't want to have the Duolingo words as fresh as possible, because IMO that doesn't assure you fluency. If that were the case, I would be happy to keep my trees gold, but sadly languages are more complicated than they teach us, so you must resort to other resources if you want to keep improving.

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JerriOyama

Ive been looking for a post that answers my problem. I am new to duolingo and the first 3 lessons went very quickly but now I just see the same words/phrases over and over and over. I am VERY. discouraged and frustrated.. What do I have to do to see new words? It says I leveled up to 4 and today to 5 but I still see the same words and phrases.for the first 6 lessons There is no explanation so I dont know if I have to have every single word perfect for all 6 lessons or is it a glitch in the program? The more frustrated I get the more mistakes I make. (punctuation & spelling) even tho I know them.

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/WappyJohnn

You should go to the next lesson, the picture that is not golden.

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/OnkelD
OnkelD
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Just wanted to follow up a lot of this. I put this topic up about 3 weeks ago by now (although it says 2 weeks, I think it's a bit more) At any rate... as SOON as the new Dutch Tree went up, I was so anxious to fill it that I neglected some of my other language studies completely. This particularly affected my German tree, which, for over a month, may six weeks, I hadn't done a THING on, while battling with the Dutch exercises. Needless to say when I saw the futility in pursuing a completion of the new tree, I decided to go back, and completely re-gild my entire German tree, which had now some 70 skills which had decayed, some substantially. In these past 2 to 2 and a half weeks, I have completely regilt that tree! No problems. I think that for whatever reasons, the German course is a little bit more forgiving of obvious simple errors and typing mistakes... this includes obvious typos, misspellings and similar trivial mistakes. They POINT THEM OUT... but don't "back you up" for them. On the Dutch course, however, I have found instances where if I'd put (and this is only an example as I can't recall the EXACT case--but it does happen) "har" when it should be "haar" -- I'd get the entire thing marked wrong and "back up". The levels of inflexibility are positively hair-tuggingly frustrating. This happens at an exponentially greater rate on the Dutch course. Now I am NOT trying to state this as a criticism, but as an observation. I truly do love the language, and would very much like to improve my mastery. At my age, I'll never get a chance to go over there and/or use it -- I'm doing it because I do like the Dutch language--but just today, with my German back to being fully gilt, I tried using the "Strengthen" (which I found DOES help enormously to keep things "gold".) within a few exercises I started feeling the frustration levels rise for simple errors that I honestly feel could have been pointed out without making me lose the entire thing. I simply shut the browser down and gave up again. This could be a Duo thing, I don't know. But I just wanted to make that observation.

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CarlosLM.
CarlosLM.
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I think that popular languages like French, Spanish, German, Portuguese have more polished trees than the rest, therefore your experience should be smoother with these trees than with the others. However, there might be exceptions like the Norwegian or Turkish trees, taking into account what I read in the forums.

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Simius
Simius
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Just curious: do you also feel that the German course is more lenient when it comes to English typos?

German is a so-called "in-house" course, which means it has features that the Dutch course doesn't have access to. I'm not sure if that includes typo-recognition, though.

We can add Dutch typos to a list (one by one), but it's hard to know where to begin.

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CarlosLM.
CarlosLM.
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One incredible feature you have in the English for Spanish course (clearly an in-house tree) is that in the exercise "Type what you hear" you can write the translation and not only the system accepts it, you don't have any delay in evaluating your response, whereas in my case if I write what I hear, I have a delay of around 1 second...

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Simius
Simius
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By the way, a large percentage of the reports we get are from people who are upset that their typo was marked as incorrect. I wish we could do something about it, but this is up to the developers.

You could try filing a report here: https://support.duolingo.com/hc/en-us/requests/new

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CarlosLM.
CarlosLM.
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IMO the most common typos which are usually accepted with a warning are:

  • transposition: exampel -> example
  • omission of a character: exmple or exampl -> example
  • repetition of a character: examplee -> example
  • adding a spurious space : exa mple -> example
  • omission of accents: cafe -> café

but if you mistype one character (e.g. examplo -> example) I think you don't get the green colour.

I wouldn't bother to fix particular instances of these typos manually, since there are too many possible combinations, so it's clearly a task for the Duolingo staff (programmers or developers)

11 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Simius
Simius
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Just did some testing and can confirm all five. However: if the misspelled word forms a different word (or a different conjugation, etc) that appears in the course, then it gets rejected.

11 months ago