"The teacher debates with the student."
Translation:Die Lehrerin diskutiert mit dem Schüler.
If you mean that a teacher discusses with a university student (or someone studying at an equivalent institution in tertiary education), then your sentence is correct. If the teacher discusses with someone at school (primary or secondary education level), it is a Schüler.
In addition, the dative sing. form would be Studenten.
a young person is more likely to say "I'm at school" rather than "I'm a student".
That's quite a definitive statement for something I believe to be very dependent on the circumstances.
Although it's been a little while since I was at secondary school, I only remember saying "I'm at school" when I was within the school premises. And if someone would ask my occupation I'd say "I'm a student" long before I'd say "I'm at school".
P.S. Was there a particular reason you replied to this comment of mine? It's just that your comment doesn't seem to have anything to do with "der Student" being a weak masculine noun.
The links don't work on my android phone, and some later answers are partially hidden.
To paraphrase, some words like Student and Junge are weak masculine nouns. In accusative, dative and genitive they take an added -n or -en ending. So we should say dem Studenten in this instance.
Why can't it be a female teacher talking with a female student?
As far as I'm aware it can be.
Die Lehrerin diskutiert mit die Schülerin
That, however, is wrong because you didn't use the dative after the preposition "mit". Your sentence would need to be:
Die Lehrerin diskutiert mit der Schülerin.
You used the article for the male "Student" (here "Studenten" in the dative case), but used the female "Studentin". So your sentence should have been one of the following:
Der Lehrer diskutiert mit dem Studenten.
Der Lehrer diskutiert mit der Studentin.
However, as it's a teacher and not a professor or lecturer debating with the student, Duolingo will probably insist on translating "student" in the sense of a school pupil—i.e. "Schüler*in"—rather than the term used for university students, "Student*in" (though that's changing more and more to "Studierende*r"). So you'd probably needed to have submitted one of the following sentences instead:
Der Lehrer diskutiert mit dem Schüler.
Der Lehrer diskutiert mit der Schülerin.
Was your answer correct, or was your answer wrong anyway because of another error as you mentioned here?
Should it have been the latter, I believe the correction system simply shows the preferred solution if they haven't set up all the other answers to show up as well.
If the former is the case however, I'd recommend taking a screenshot next time, to better understand what went on.
You definitely want to read up on German word order, it's not something that can be quickly summarised in a comment (check out this article for starters).
Simplifying to answer your question, there are two 'main' types of clauses in German:
1. Independent; &
2. Dependent clauses
I typically refer to them as main and subordinate clauses respectively.
As you can imagine, there are all sorts of independent and dependent clauses, but how I define them is that an independent clause represents a complete thought, that doesn't require any further information to make sense. For example:
The teacher debates with the student.
At the end of this sentence we're not expecting any further information. German indicates that a clause is independent by putting the conjugated verb (here it is "debates" which is conjugated from the infinitive form "to debate") in the second position:
Die Lehrerin diskutiert mit dem Schüler.
A dependent clause does not represent a complete thought, and sounds incomplete on its own. For example:
When the teacher debates with the student.
I definitely feel like we're missing some information here. This needs an independent clause to either precede or follow it, in order for it to sound complete. For example:
It always gets heated when the teacher debates with the student.
When the teacher debates with the student, it always gets heated.
German marks these clauses by placing the conjugated verb at the end of the clause:
Wenn die Lehrerin mit dem Schüler diskutiert.
Es wird immer gespannt, wenn die Lehrerin mit dem Schüler diskutiert.
Wenn die Lehrerin mit dem Schüler diskutiert, wird es immer gespannt.
I don't want to sound rude, but I've got this sentence in one of the last lessons in language tree, and although I still sometimes am confused with verb placement this is fairly simple sentence. This is the beginner question, so how did you end up in here? Or maybe it's used somewhere else? Not to be rude, I'm just wondering
My answer was: "Der Lehrer diskussiert mit dem Schüler". My verb was wrong, but the offered translation was "Die Lehrerin diskutiert mit dem Lehrer", hence my remark about the gender of the teacher and the incorrect use of "mit dem Lehrer" in stead of "mit dem Schüler". I also note that the use "Student" as opposed to "Schüler" is very confusing.