Mandarin Chinese Issues
I love Duolingo. Chinese is one of my favorites.
But, sadly, there are some major issues. MAJOR. For ex., I entered in, "How should we get to the hospital?", and it said it was wrong and the correct answer was, "What kind of transportation should we get to the hospital?", and that makes absoloutly no sense whats-so-ever. I think duolingo also needs some American contributers for Chinese. (I am not qualified).
Also when I entered in, "Its quarter to seven", it said it was wrong and I had to say, "Its quarter to seven."
Don't you agree? I really think so. If you are an American, (Or British), speaker I think you should really help duolingo here. There are sure some major flaws.
It is been in Beta for a week.
By using the course right now, you are beta testing. That means you can expect problems.
Beta testers report errors, bugs, and extra/alternate translation suggestions. By doing this, the course becomes well built and as close to problem-free as possible.
Once the course is well set up, it will graduate from Beta testing, and become an official course.
It's not only that Duolingo is being very precise about the sentence solutions. It's due to the contributors of the rushed course.
The major problem is that:
Contributors lack the huge scope of how Chinese is spoken, read and written. After running through some part of the course via "Test Out", I understand the style of course implemented, which simply focuses on audience who are new to Chinese. Since I am very experienced in Chinese language and learning styles, I would like to share some issues that concern the major...
- Unnatural learning style - For those who are experienced with Chinese, like me, they can figure out possible alternatives for the solutions. When I post sentences that have either same or similar meanings to the given solution, then the sentences are marked wrong. If there are learners who are not used to Chinese, then they have to match (or closely match) their sentences to the given solution; otherwise, it's like trying to memorize each term by term from the flashcard. You don't want to be fixated to certain style, no?
- Inaccuracy - Of course, no one is perfect in making sentences and understanding vocabularies. However, when you put the vocabularies together in a sentence, it expresses meanings. There are some sentences I can find that need revision, but I don't want to get too deep into that.
This should explain why "Test Out" is not easy for those Chinese. In case you need to report any issue, please do so.
Completely agree on test out. With Chinese, translation is always 差不多. There are so many ways to translate one Chinese sentence into English correctly, it can be very frustrating when Duolingo says you are wrong just because you translated it slightly differently. I'm sure it will get better as people continue to report errors; however, it doesn't negate the fact that the Chinese course (so far) isn't that great. Because Chinese is character based rather than using letters, I think it has been harder for Duolingo to fit Chinese into its normal method of teaching language.