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  5. I lost interest in doing less…


I lost interest in doing lessons after the recent changes.

It didn't happen intentionally, I had previously finished the entire tree ( made it gold ) and kept coming back to keep it up.

But then the changes were made that turned everything into a tier base (1,2,3,etc). I continued doing the lessons in the new format, passing a one tier at a time, but it felt like there was no sense of achievement. Little by little I started slacking, and I haven't done any lessons in the past couple of weeks, when before I would do lessons nearly every day.

Anyone facing similar lack of motivation with the new format?

May 22, 2018



Yup. I used to do about 200-300 XP per day; since the demise of spaced repetition I'm on about 20-30, on the app (I always thought the app to be far inferior to the website, but at least my app still has spaced repetition). Spaced repetition was why Duolingo worked; there is no other magic way to learn a language and retain it.
Unless DL brings this back it will be throwing away its raison d'être, and will become one of those apps that makes you think you're making progress when, in fact, hardly anything you learn will ever find its way into your long-term memory.


This crown system has been a real bummer. It is hard to see where you are and an enormous amount of time is used to make any progress. I can see why people are going away.


Unfortunately I think this is why it won't go back. Duolingo gets new users everyday and people who find it too slow or preferred timed practice will become frustrated and leave. Before long the old system will just be forgotten about.


Why remove timed practice? I think the idea of the update is that target language phrases increase as you increase in level. But the amount of work is completely unreasonable. How long would it take someone studying more than a few languages? They assumed no one was past level three and did not even add a test out option. If the intention really was to become more flexible to different level learners and teach more effectively then I would say it is a complete fail as it really does the opposite. I wonder if they were really just looking for ways to keep people online for longer and appeal to younger people.


Did they remove it? I still have timed practice. Man, if they remove that, no quick gains. Nothing stays burned to the brain in the same way as when you have to remember it quickly.


Well they haven't removed the practice button yet, however, this suggests that they are planning to "We want to replace this with something more satisfying in the future." https://support.duolingo.com/hc/en-us/articles/360002253251-With-Crowns-what-does-the-practice-button-do- The option of choosing which lesson to practice is only possible once reaching level five which is a ridiculous amount of work and not really worth it in the end if you want to unlock it for all lessons. I don't understand why they have to remove things that people use and aren't really causing any problems.


Hello, PotatoSanta, I have you on my friend list. I was just wondering, how in the world are you able to do 8000XP a day? Is there multiple people using same account? It's just crazy. There were times I was competing with you on a leaderboard, but now it seems you have more than 24 hours a day. Just really curious. Regards

  • 1048

The old format is still there - on your Duome.eu progress page!

https://duome.eu/Your User Name/progress

Your skills show the same gold as before (you don't have to reach crown level 5) and they decay over time. So you can focus on keeping your tree golden, just as before!

[deactivated user]

    Yes, other than keeping my daily 10 xp diet, I can subscribe your post word by word.

    Even though I think I've milked the German course for good, this new system makes it very hard to feel any sense of achievement and thus motivation ends up going away.

    Duolingo has somewhat dumbed down with this update.


    I used to quite enjoy doing Duolingo. It was very helpful to me in my German class. However, after the recent update, I have lost motivation considerably.

    Firstly, I cannot stand the concept of crown levels. My motivation came from keeping my lessons gold, which forced me to review lessons. Now that that is no longer an option, reviewing lessons has become random and frustrating. The "Practice" link is virtually useless, as it only goes over the first few lessons, which I feel I have down pat. Since I can't review individual lessons at all anymore, I can already see a decrease in my understanding of the most recent lessons. Instead, I am forced to redo each lesson that I think I might be weak in.

    Second of all, the lessons are much easier now, which is a great disappointment. Learning takes a challenge. Nobody learns well from something that easy. It used to be that you would have to think of every answer, but now you just click on the words depending on what order they have to be in. This is not education, it is quizzing your short-term memory.

    Another problem is that there is no longer timed practice, which helped me think fast. I could learn conversational German more easily that way, as I had to quickly translate each sentence in my head.

    Nobody I know that has had Duolingo since before the recent update prefers it this way. They all just want it to go back to the way it used to be. While I appreciate that this is free and effective (or used to be), I cannot stand it this way. This used to be the best free language program that I could find, but I would no longer recommend it to anyone.

    If anyone has a suggestion for a better free program, I would greatly appreciate it, otherwise, I am going to stop using the internet to learn languages. Hopefully, Duolingo will change back.


    I don't disagree. But I actually found it worse under the old format. My French tree had stayed gold for at least three months, most of the time the Practice button simply produced exactly the same repetitive drill of content that everyone dislikes about the Crown system. Timed practice felt like a typing test more than a language test most of the time. Other than the XP counter and the streak, there was absolutely no difference between doing lessons and not doing lessons.

    For now at least, the Crown system lets me spread around where I put my daily sessions (50 xp per). Pushing Basics to level 5 admittedly seems pointless, but I can target areas where I think I need work.


    I understand how you feel because initially I felt the same way. Like you, I use to admire my gold tree, especially in German. However, I am too involved in perfecting that language to simply let it all go. Rather than trying to re-gold my tree, I.m redoing each skill to crown level 4. I also work on the reverse tree the same way. In addition, I'm studying French from German. So I'm trying to work the new format as best helps me. Of course I still do practice on the regular German tree. Since you've finished German to level 25, please don't quit! If you figure out what works best for you, you'll see your interest come right back.


    yes. I don't understand the new format and I have also lost interest.


    Just logged in after three weeks, and was wondering if anyone else felt the same. Unlike other commenters, I was about half-way through finishing my "tree". It wasn't the removal of the gold per-se, but the fact that I couldn't see what subjects were deteriorating that turned me away.


    I am not sure I understand this post, so please feel free to clarify. Keep in mind I am RELATIVELY new to Duolingo; I've been here intermittently, with my longest run being over the last couple months or so.

    I find the learning methodology really good. Most importantly, I'm REMEMBERING what I learned. For me, this is significant. First of all, I have always had memory retention issues for all sorts of matter. But, now pushing close to 60, I am finding learning new material more challenging than ever. Duolingo has helped make that a bit easier to a large degree.

    As others seem to agree here, I also find the repetition exercises are extremely useful to me. What is particularly nice, I think, is the fact that you can even clarify learning WITHIN a unit by going back and using the unit "Practice" link, or even review the intro material (lightbulb icon?) if desired, and I do both of these often, in addition to the main "Practice" link covering all material learned so far.

    Do I have a few issues here at Duolingo? LOL. Of course. And I frequently send feedback to the system using the various facilities of Duolingo (Discussion mainly, and the individual exercise checkoffs, which are sadly inadequate in many cases with no place for "other" complaints not fitting neatly into one of the few categories offered.) But I will not claim that Duolingo is a complete loser because of this. At least, not so far. You can see just a few of my own bellyaches at https://www.duolingo.com/comment/27380767, https://www.duolingo.com/comment/27360605, and https://www.duolingo.com/comment/27360294. I assure you there are more.

    Now for what seems to be the primary sore point among users here, the issue of the amount of work required. I find that I am still putting in hundreds of XP worth of work each day and am not finding that particularly difficult to do. I am NOT saying that any of you are wrong about this, only that I am not finding it too hard. There IS a time commitment, to be certain, and I accept that that is the nature of doing anything thoroughly. I think this pertains to every pursuit, and that applies whether I am a very, very busy person or a person with loads of leisure time. The needle doesn't move simply because of one's own situation.

    If I want to learn something, I have to make time for it. Now, perhaps earlier on, Duolingo was an "easier" place for users, but I would not know. I see postings dating back many years lamenting various shortcomings of the system. If it is the case that it really was easier and faster to achieve gold status back in the horse-and-buggy days of Duolingo (and that is certainly possible), could that be explained by the availability of fewer exercises? I ask this because I recall seeing a post somewhere that Duolingo had added something like 1200 new exercises to one of the courses. That has to have an impact on the amount of time required to learn the additional, new material.

    I am trying to have a sort of online interaction with you all, so please don't accuse me of making anyone wrong. I am just presenting my own experience of the site. I am open to the possibility that different users learn differently at different rates with different retention capabilities (and I personally will vouch for that point!). I invite you to respond to me, if you like, and explain what I might be missing about Duolingo.

    Overall, this is a site I really enjoy, despite areas for improvement of a system built largely by volunteer(?) effort.


    I completely agree with the point that Duolingo is (still) a very good tool for obtaining an initial grasp of a new language.

    I think that people who feel the most demotivated by the changes in Duolingo are those who have already completed their language tree/-s and were planning to continue using Duolingo to maintain their skills in these languages.

    Now, I think that it's generally better to improve one's language abilities by using other resources once a Duolingo language tree is completed.

    However, it's also true that the new practice system (the general revision of the studied material via the Practice button) is inferior to the old one. The new practice system has much more repetitions of the same phrases and sentences (often in a row) during one session. It significantly reduces the amount of the material that can be revised during one session. Moreover, these endlessly repeated phrases and sentences usually are incredibly easy. It makes practice sessions virtually unbearable from time to time. I, for example, get really frustrated when I have to type "Butter und Marmelade" in slight variations for about 5-7 times during one practice session, while I could use that time for repeating something more difficult or at least diverse. The old spaced repetition system was not perfect, but at least the problems in it were not as pronounced. It allowed people to revise the skills they had recently acquired and those they hadn't practiced for the longest time. So the system generally helped people to keep their knowledge fresh.

    I don't always know what exact part of vocabulary or grammar I may have forgotten, so the general practice of all the material and not just separate skills is still necessary. But after the recent changes in Duolingo, this general practice got much less efficient. I appreciate all the positive changes Duolingo has made and continues to make, but it would be nice if they could bring back the spaced repetition system for general practice and make it more focused on the actual weak points of each student.


    What "algorithm" or such does the new practice system use then? Because I was not around during the transition, I am not sure what is being compared here; I did not observe any extreme changes.

    However, I do notice ridiculous numbers of repeats in the practices, sometimes the identical exercises immediately together! I get through them, but I do agree about that part. If you can provide a link to where the current system is described, I will look at it.

    I don't notice any "timed" practices -- I may misunderstand this term, but I have not been cut off (timed) in any exercise I can recall, either recently or in the past year when I have used Duolingo.

    Thank you for your interactions. I find this very interesting.


    According to Duolingo, the current Practice option is exactly the same as it used to be: https://support.duolingo.com/hc/en-us/articles/360002253251-With-Crowns-what-does-the-practice-button-do- But according to my impressions and the impressions of many other users here, it is not. It feels like there is actually no algorithm to the revision available through the Practice button after the changes. They just make one randomly and extensively practice a small part of a certain skill during each session.

    In this discussion, PotatoSanta suggests that Duolingo actually wants to get rid of the Practice button altogether, based on the information from the link above. This can be an evidence that there is actually no algorithm at this point. But maybe Duolingo just recognizes the flaws of the current system and is working on fixing them. So as of now, I prefer to stay optimistic about it.

    As for the general algorithm of revising skills in Duolingo now, it seems the idea is that once one finishes all 5 levels of a certain skill and makes it golden, this student will never forget this skill anyway. Then, if a student does feel that he or she is getting rusty at a certain skill, this student can use the option of practicing that specific skill separately from all the others.

    As for the timed practice, this option can be purchased additionally for 10 lingots on the website. I hope Duolingo will not eliminate that option in future (because some users already say that they don't have this option).


    Oh, Duolingo actually IS working on improving their current Practice option (the one that used to be based on spaced repetition before the changes). I have just found this link with their statement about it: https://support.duolingo.com/hc/en-us/articles/360002253131-Crown-level-decay-and-spaced-repetition


    I hope they leave the unit practice and overall practice separate. There are times when I want to work on only specific skills, and other times I want to do overall review.

    Thanks for these updates.


    You know, now that I think about it, I have noticed that sometimes two identical exercises appear one after the other, and I've seen this same exercise repeated in several contexts, including the strengthening ones.

    At any rate, thank you for your ongoing posts about these issues. I'm sure they cannot be too difficult to resolve.


    Yes, it does happen a lot. Particularly in the strengthening exercises. Though, I also think that Duolingo will eventually find a way to fix it.

    It was a nice discussion anyway. Thank you for your participation.


    Same here! I completely lost interest on duolingo after the changes. This is my first time using Duolingo in 8 months! I dont understand the crown system. I liked it better when it showed how fluent you got. it once showed that i was 57 smth % fluent in Spanish and that gave me a motivation to reach 100 and learn more Spanish. but now its just boring. I strongly suggest the developers of Duolingo to go back to the old ways..


    People are different and learn in different ways. I'm not the one who wants to be perfect in anything specific but want to improve my understanding how things are interacating. Even though many people were complaining about the old system, not understanding that 100% were not an achievable goal, it worked very well for me while I feel lost in the new one. I even found the old heart system better, that forced you to stay at really difficult skills while letting you progress in your own pace. As information about the golden state of a skill is still available in the system, why not indicate the golden state by a second golden inner ring? This way everyone could choose whether to progress by working on specific skills or by working on the whole bunch by reguilding.

    Btw. The spaced repetition had some serious annoying flaws and may be they couldn't get rid of them, so they dropped it, but there also were quite well working workarounds.


    Nope. I love it.


    i think it's just better with these changes that they've made.


    Definitely. I wish there were a way to revert back. I want to see that I’m keeping everything gold!

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