Yay, finally finished the Chinese tree. It took me just under a week. Had to work as well, but still amazed at how many folk seem to be way ahead of me. Finishing the tree put me at level 11, but I note one user is already level 20!! Baffled how to rack up so many points so quickly. I think I took a week to discover the course was open, so I think it started a couple of weeks ago, but still! Anyway, a few observations:
Haven't analysed it, but I think the vocab was roughly equivalent to about HSK level 4 but I suspect lots of holes in that.
It was a good idea to retest vocab from previous lessons BUT the same vocab seemed to be tested over and over [despite getting it correct every time, so I don't think it's basing what it's testing on previous wrong answers...I suspect it's just fixed]. I don't know how many times 室，五，and several others were tested. Occasionally I did spot a good test where they'd have homophones with different tones tested in the same exercise. I always thought it was more useful to click on the pinyin first to make it more of a test recognising the right character.
My favourite example sentence: 多儿是一只很聪明的猫头鹰 love also both the transliteration of duolingo and the word for owl [cat headed eagle]
I think it would have taken me twice as long to do this beta course than when it gets to the final release due to all the disallowed translations. This is not a complaint though, merely to be expected of a beta course. The staff have been very prompt at emailing me with now accepted translations [as I'm sure they have the many users ahead of me] so it should already be smoother.
If you've taken a placement test or tested out of any sections, your level will always be lower than users who spend a long time in a given language tree.
For instance, I am a native Italian speaker/teacher. I wanted to evaluate the Italian course because students/friends had been asking about it. I tested out and was given completion at level 12. Levels seem to be based on XP rather than skills completed. I've found that I can increase levels even when I'm only strengthening skills
Congrats on finishing the tree!
Congrats! I started the Chinese tree yesterday (in preparation for an upcoming trip to the PRC) but I'm having trouble keeping all the characters straight in my head and remembering the sound and meaning of each one. Did you use any outside resources to help you with that, and what general advice would you offer to someone struggling with that aspect of the language?
Yes! I'd have to agree! It is challenging to keep all the characters straight! For me at least, I find Duolingo does a great job at helping you link the symbol and the pronunciation, but for me at least, I found it hard to translate the symbols to English because they...didn't do the greatest job at teaching the English to Chinese translation-Did anyone else have this problem??