Translation:What is the doctor's name?
What's the doctor's name? When written in a contacted form, apostrophes are needed. What's is short for: what is. But doctor's is showing possession (belonging to the doctor) and is another brief way to say: name of the doctor. Without the apostrophes (showing contraction), the sentence is: What is the name of the doctor?
Its the same, but if you only say 医生叫什么名? The person will answer the full name, the family and given name respectively, but adding 字 in the end you specify you only want to know the "first" name, which I believe is the given name. 医生叫什么 and 医生叫什么名 are the same thing, adding 字 changes.
You got it backwards. 名 can be used as a verb (to be first named) similar to 姓 (to be last named), but adding the 字 makes it a noun (名字 = full name) and therefore needs a verb to build a complete sentence. 医生叫什么名字? Asks for the doctor's full name. [I think you may have gotten confused with Japanese here.]
The only difference is the written character and the context in which it's spoken. Characters in chinese with the same pronounciation and tone are a constant occurance. There are some funny poems where Chinese people can tell stories only using words with the same pronounciation (alas, not only the same tone too, but those are just about 1/4th as likely) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vExjnn_3ep4
That is funny! :D I learned a couple such "homonymic" sentences at university - the first one I remember learning was the very basic "妈骂马，马骂妈吗?" and there was another one using yi that I don't remember at the moment. But I've never seen an entire story this long before! Thank you for sharing it!
Etymologically it seems to make sense. Shung is pretty much
pupil it seems so far. I'm sensing Xue is related to general studies and Yi is medicine. Medicine being the study of one's own self/person/being/form.
I am thinking until I learn more that the writing differentiates because it is not referring specifically to the number one. This leads me to assume different dialects may have different pronunciations for doctor.
Sorry for any confusion. The answer to this is based on how the lesson was designed. Mine was a mobile app question that allowed me to write my own answer. The alternate choice for choosing building block cards for the sentence could be: What is the doctor's name. This way only one apostrophe is needed.
This particular translation seems perfectly correct to me. However, there used to be many others that used incorrect English, but I see the developers correcting them at a pretty fast rate. But I agree with your point that using incorrect English is not fair, because it makes these lessons a guessing game and detracts from the learning experience. There once even used to be a sentence in which correct grammar was marked wrong!
Using the English translation and applying the logic of using "jiao": "yi sheng ming zi jiao shi me" which translates to "Doctor name is called what?" | Doctor | Name | Called What?|
That does not even sound right when translated. But, I spoke the my wife and that is the correct way to write/type and/or say that phrase in Chinese.
Using what I was seeing, with the incorrect structure of Chinese Characters my response was "Doctors Called What?" As name was not implied. I guess I could have said "What's the Dr Called".
I am getting tired of offering Corrections.
My knowledge of Mandarin is Broken, I am not fluent. Though I am staying in China and I hear some of these phrases spoken around me, so I know DuoLingo have either used very formal phrases, or they structured the phrases wrong.
I put "the doctor is called what", which is technically right (i think? maybe?) Wouldn't that be the literal translation? 医生=doctor 叫=called 什么=what ***the above translation was made by the hover hints and NOT by a native speaker. It may not be correct; please correct me if it isn't
EDIT: I realized that of Duolingo changes this there should probably be some sort of record, so this post was on 7.9.2019
It makes perfect sense in English, but the context to me seems specific: ie. it indicates surprise, that perhaps someone has told you his name and you can't quite believe it. I don't know how the site can handle these kinds of nuances, but it seems to me that you do understand what it means.
Ok even though i got it right im really confused. The first time i got this part of the section i put, " They are doctors." AND IT WAS CORRECT. But now that i got it again the word choices are very different. So i guessed on it and put down, " What are the doctors name." THIS WAS ALSO CORRECT. The chinese symbol for " name" or " last name" wasn't on there. I dont understand.