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Incorrect answers

I feel that if I ever make a grammatical mistake in English, Duolingo shouldn't count the question as being done wrong; this is especially true if it doesn't change the meaning of the sentence. For example, I have a older brother. Here I used an incorrect form of a, but it really doesn't matter since the meaning is the same. What do you guys think?

Edit:Thanks for the responses, I see what you guys mean. Another thing is that the system nitpicks about using exactly what they taught you. So I've spoken Chinese for all my life, but I'm illiterate. It does make sense that it forces you to use its definitions, but for example, 饭, usually means food, not rice in Chinese. 我很好 is the same as 我不错. Or I am fine is the same as I am well.

December 12, 2017



I think that you are right in theory, but it isn't really realistic to expect the course contributors to add almost correct translations in addition to the correct ones. They have enough work to do as it is. Unfortunately the software is unable to recognize these things automatically.


I feel the same to you. I'm a native Chinese speaker, too. Chinese system here is really terrible. Whether Chinese from English, English from Chinese or Spanish from Chinese. (I've tried all of them.) I've been learning Spanish from English here. It's much better more than from Chinese.


I agree with you and I think that in an ideal world, this would be the case, or at least, there would be the OPTION to turn off strict enforcement of grammar in English.

However, there are two reasons why I can see this being problematic:

(1) It takes a huge amount of effort to enter new possibilities for ways you could be marked wrong. you'd also want to make sure the course contributor accepting these sentences was TOTALLY fluent in English (some of them aren't quite) so that they could distinguish between a gramatically correct wording that made a correct translation, a minor grammatical error that corresponded to a correct translation, a gramatically correct (or minorly incorrect) wording but incorrect translation (which you'd still want to mark wrong). This seems like a much more difficult task than what course contributors already do, and it's something only a certain subset of contributors would be qualified to do, so it doesn't seem practical, especially given that most course contributors are already overwhelmed and have a massive backlog of reports to review.

(2) many people taking "(X language for speakers of English)" courses are not native English speakers and many of these people might actually NEED to be corrected on their English, in order to fully understand the content of the course in the language they're learning, and might also actively want to be corrected to improve their English too.

(3) some people (including myself) really like being corrected on my English. An exception would be when it's a typo, but DuoLingo usually detects this accurately already.

So yeah...I kinda feel you on this one, but I think there are a long list of other things I'd rather the team be prioritizing.

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