Updated Spanish Tree May 2018
The tree just updated, which in itself isn't a bad thing. I appreciate the opportunity to learn many more categories of words and phrases. My complaint is that I was nearly half done, and now I'm going back to the beginning to work through the new material and it's overly redundant. I've typed out "Donde esta el bano/hotel/hospital/aeropuerto" and "Por Favor" probably close to a hundred times now. We need a new "shortcut" test to skip over some of these super basics. Any suggestions??
They used to have a "test out" option, so learners would be able to complete a Skill that they had already done in the past, but got lowered. It would be nice if Duolingo would add it back to the tree :)
My account updated this morning (1 June 2018) on the web and app version. The app version has a few TEST OUT buttons, but the web version just says "Checkpoint passed". I haven't tried the test out function yet, and have to go to work now.
Anyone else willing to report back from the front line?
My tree also updated today, but I don't have an option to test out of anything, on either my phone (Android) or the website. (Before today, I had 2-3 crowns on every skill in the tree. Now I have 0 crowns in the 58 new skills, and 1 crown in each of 8 others.)
Same situation. Literally it has sent me back to the beginning on almost everything for the second time. No notification or explanation. I am beginning to think this is purely designed to make me pay. After 279 day streak I am literally back at the start learning words like 'please' I was doing prepositions. Am going to stop using this app as there are now what looks like a hundred icons before I get to where I was
There's not reason to stay with those basic lessons - you are not "sent back to the beginning". Step it up until you find a challenging level. It's not about Crowns and badges, it's about learning the language, so find a place where you're doing that and the crowns and badges will take care of themselves.
same here - its a waste of time. I had a 279 day streak but can't be bothered anymore. I was finding it so repetitive just to get through one section. I don't know how many times I wrote LEs animals beben leech. Very sad but am out of here
I agree. I have a streak of over 700 days, completed my Spanish tree, and achieved level 25 in Spanish. I am also reading "El Amor en los Tiempos del Colera" in the original Spanish (never got around to reading it in English).I feel like I've been kicked in the back of the knees. I think I'm done with DL Spanish. I'll concentrate on the other languages I'm studying. Maybe when I finish my Italian tree I'll add German.
Not a big fan of Crowns, but the new tree does add a little bit of content - just don't try to do every skill up to level 5 before you move on, otherwise you're going to feel discouraged and demoralized enough to quit.
@ krejd - That little? I must have stumbled on the lessons that actually had new content by accident :) I've only done a few lessons in the new tree, because right now I'm more interested in Clozemaster, but it seemed to me that, while a good part of the content was old news, there were new words or constructions here and there. Too bad, I was hoping for more. And I totally agree that it's not worth the time invested.
"A little bit of content" (like 60 new words probably?) is not worth spending like 10 hours which you need to progress each skill to level 1.
Yes, the new skills were things I already knew so I just tested out on the app. If you can do so it is recommended, especially to obtain tons of XP!!
Did you test out of each skill individually, or did you use one of the checkpoints? I can't do either one, on the app or online.
Wow! I had previously completed the tree so just tested out of the first section +2,290XP. Loco!
Can someone explain how to test out. Is it only on the phone app? I'm not seeing it as an option on the desktop.
It's on the iOS app - but if you already finished the tree once, it doesn't do anything for you: it doesn't increase the number of crowns, it doesn't change the color of the skills, it just makes you do one long lesson and you get in excess of 2,000 xp points for it. That's all.
I'm actually really upset about all of the experience I got from testing out of two sections. I have been working for months, slowly (but satisfyingly!) watching my experience and levels go up, and I basically doubled my experience in two tests with very basic information. Now I feel like I don't even care about my level because it's not based on the work I've put into it.
The web version now has a test-out feature for every module, apparently at every level. When you select the module, click on the "key" icon. The mobile devices offer a test-out feature on those modules where your level is 0 - or that's what I saw the last time I looked on my iPhone. I am using only the web now, since it is much more useful and interesting to try to test out, even if I have to try more than once, than to repeat many times the same things that I already know. Thank you, Duo, for the test-out feature!!
The test out (key) option is also available on your mobile device. Just log into the web version on your mobile device using your browser. I never use the app now, it has become redundant. P.S. I’m on iPhone.
If you have an internet connection, you can use the web version on your mobile device; if not you must use the app.
I was able to test out of some levels on my iPhone app. I don't see any way to do that on my laptop.
KelleyAynn try this URL: https://duome.eu/WanderingAbout/progress except where it says WanderingAbout put your own Duolingo name. By each skill on the right there is a key for testing out. Also if you click on its icon at the right, the new words are listed. Lot of things there.
mine got changed over about six weeks ago to the "crowns" system. That took a little getting used to, but it didn't set everything at zero. It set everything at crown 2 (green) as I recall. I went through and got about half of them up to crown 3 (red). Then I started doing french and haven't looked at the spanish one for about a week.
Are you referring to a subsequent "upgrade"? Is there another "upgrade" since then?
Some Spanish users have had an additional 52-58 modules added to their tree. This is not really an update to the software or the learning method (as was the change to the crowns system) but rather an addition of content to the Spanish curriculum. There is another thread on this addition at this site: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/27494319$from_email=comment&comment_id=27525827
The "test out" buttons only exist on the iOS app, not on Android or Web versions. Borrow an iPad or iPhone and save yourself a lot of time if you're further along and don't want to type "dónde está" a zillion times to get to the appropriate level on those skills.
THIS!! So much YES! Thank you. I borrowed my husband's iPad, logged on, tested out of 10 levels and gained +2100 XP for redundant level one lessons. You are my hero.
But it's only testing out of 0 level. You can't continue to test out to upgrade the levels.
Wrong to the lot of you, there is the test out feature on desktop, but it won't be availiable if you have gotten to the bottom of the tree already. IOS does allow you to test out even after you have gotten to the bottom. (also I tested out on my phone 3 times and my level shot up by 3)
Yeah, it's not perfect, for sure. For me there's a whole bunch of new ones under another section that I couldn't test out of. But still, as far as the OP's question goes, it was really nice to test out of a bunch of the super basic stuff that got inserted in above already completed stuff. Sucks they don't have that available on the desktop or Android, but glad I had an iPad around to do this with!
Web versions have the option to test out of any module at any level. iPhone versions have a few test out options - apparently for the new modules where your current level is 0.
06/02/18. It was a little disorienting when unbidden my account suddenly updated itself with the new DL Spanish Skill Sets on 06/01/18, thereby adding many new ones and deleting more than a few. To get my bearings, I did a little inventory. When I started DL Spanish in Jan. 2018 and continuing through the Crown upgrade, the DL Spanish 'Tree' had 61 Skill Sets. It now has 113. So, it appears DL has now added at least 52 new Skill Sets (113 - 61)[all of the new ones now appear in Level One purple]. But because the following 10 former Skill Set titles no longer appear (in order Basics 1, Basics 2, Possession, Questions, Sizes, Determiners, To Be, Object Pronouns, Pronouns, and Haber), it appears there are actually 62 new Skill Sets (52 + 10)[likely the vocabulary lists from these deleted Skill Sets were absorbed into one or more of the now existing Skill Sets]. Additionally, the former Skill Sets "Household," "Nature," and "Directions" have retained their titles, but now appear in purple, so maybe they have changed significantly enough to also be considered new Skill Sets. If so, that would bring the new Skill Set total to 65 (62 + 3). It appears from this quick inventory that DL has more than doubled its number of Skill Sets. Am curious how much the addition of these new Skill Sets has actually created 'value added' by introducing new vocabulary in the course? Am reserving judgment until I have a chance to play around with this a little more.
06/09/18. Now that I've completed the first level of the first 22 Skill Sets since the 06/01/18 DL upgrade, I'm in a better position to assess the 'value added' by the new Skill Sets. Before the 06/01/18 upgrade, I had completed at least the first level of all 61 then existing Skill Sets and kept an Index of Vocabulary by Skill Set for all new words as they were introduced. This pre-upgrade Index has allowed me to determine which words in the new Skill Sets are completely new to the DL Spanish course. (According to a DL moderator on another discussion string, all new words for a particular Skill Set are introduced in the first level of that Skill Set.) Of the first 22 Skill Sets in the 06/01/18 upgrade, it should be noted that two of these have exactly the same vocabulary as two of the old Skill Sets (new SS01 "Intro" = old SS01 "Basics 1"; new SS02 "Phrases " = old SS02 "Phrases") and two others have the same titles they had in the old Skill Sets, but actually introduce fewer new words than the two corresponding old Skill Sets and introduce no new words that were not also covered by the two corresponding old Skill Sets (new SS05 "Family " < old SS11 "Family"; new SS08 "People " < old SS23 "People"). So, setting aside the 4 current Skill Sets discussed immediately above, that leaves 18 completely new Skill Sets in the first 22 Skill Sets of the 06/01/18 upgrade.
Q: Of the first 18 completely new Skill Sets of the 06/01/18 DL upgrade, how much 'value added' is there by the addition of new words that were not covered anywhere in the former DL Spanish course?
A: 39 new words (roughly 2 new words per new Skill Set).
Assessment: While each of these 39 new words are very useful to know high frequency words, the fact that on average only two new words are introduced in each new Skill Set means that there is a tremendous amount of mind numbing repetition in the exercises in order for a student to level up and move on, thereby significantly diluting the 'value added' by these new Skill Sets.
Thanks - that is helpful to have someone try to explain the visible differences. It is a big change.
I am concrned that there are much FEWER grammar notes (not that Spanish had many to start with). We've lost 4 out of 13.
I also just want to mention that the new tree covers all A1 vocab and grammar and a lot of great new content!
It is way more than that, would be what I think, from reading the curriculum documents.
Please be aware, I am volunteer here. And not proficient in Spanish. And , I am responding not on behalf of Duolingo, but in this case through my knowledge of language learning curriculum's I have observed and been part of in Australia and in France.
I agree; I would think it's A2 / a weak B1 (and as far as I know, this is what several people here think).
Maybe with the new skills, all skills taken to crown level 5, there might be a B2? Not sure -- when I read my Spanish magazine (for German learners of Spanish), there is a huge variety of vocabulary and sentence structures in the sections marked "intermediary". Not sure if that can be covered by Duolingo. But I'm open to new insights.
It's simple, just skip ahead. I was feeling smug about how fast I was banging all the easy early lessons out and chalking up the XP, and then I decided to skip ahead to something like Past Participle... oops, not so smart any more. When I want to feel smart, I go back to the easy stuff now, and even then I can feel it locking into my memory. There are still plenty of challenges in the upper levels, though - give it a whirl.
And btw, I plan to be here at least another 500 days and I expect to see the tree will fill itself in as I go. I can see that "conquering the tree" will never be a simple task again, but for me it's about learning the language and not about playing the game.
That's not an option for anybody who made it beyond the first three lessons and did not complete the tree. Our progress has been arrested.
I'm all for having new content and vocabulary, as I have tried a few lessons of the new tree, I find the new words very few and far between and a lot of the words were taken from other lessons from the old tree to create new topics.
For example, the words introduced in "School" include maestro (teacher, which was from "People"), boligrafo (pen which was from "Objects 1") and escuela (I think previously from "Education")
I get that this gives new learners some comfort level to ease into the language, but for more advanced learners it felt a little too easy .
I agree but I would like to allocate my time on words that I need to master. I think it is okay to ask for choices. This will help students manage their time and focus on words that require additional attention. Perhaps there are duplicate testing requirements that will ensure the students know the material such as pop quizzes.
Repetition is good--but repetition at an appropriate level of difficulty is much better!
Ah, but there's redundancy and there's redundancy. Duo's level has reached ridiculous and then flew past that into completely useless. I really don't think that repeating ad nauseam words that you already know will make you improve. I agree with repeating words and grammar until you master them, I don't agree with repeating "tia, tio, madre, padre, hijo, hija, primo, prima, familia" for over 30 lessons. It would be so much more useful if it had the option of testing out - bring all the words into the test, if you must, but give users the option of moving on to things they find more challenging and difficult.
I totally agree. It's not only that since this morning i lost about 40 crowns, but it seems that i've also 'forgot' about a 126 words!!! Yesterday I knew 2970 spanish words, now i just know 2844. Wow, it might be that I don't remember everything always, but I'm still far away from dementia.
@AndreaDani - If I may offer an advice - judging by your Duo level, you don't seem to be advanced enough in the tree to profit from other websites that are sort of complementary to Duolingo, like Memrise or Clozemaster. If I were you, based on my own experience, I'd stick with Duo for the time being, just don't try to get every skill to CL 5, because that's not only going to get a lot of time, but also a lot of wasted effort. Just go through the tree until you get everything CL 2 or 3, and then move on to other sites. I really think that would help you - I know it's demoralizing to see all your progress reset without notice, but if you get past that and try to see the good parts, I think it'll benefit you in the long run.
I can't believe how many times Duo gives me manzanas! I'm sick to death of manzanas now. LOL
LOL - am also fed up with being sent back to the start - talk about demoralising
I know, right? At least throw in a few melocotones, peras, ciruelas, cerezas, melon, etc. You can't make a good fruit salad with just manzanas :))))
I was ONE lesson away from completing a second tree. Went to the site today, about 60 skills that used to be at level 3 or 4 are now down to ZERO. I've lost about 25 crowns, and to top it all off, I no longer have my golden owl. I don't see a way to test out of these beginner lessons (with a tiny font I can barely read on my laptop). Very frustrated with DL today.
Try logging into the app. The app seems to allow people to test out to a certain degree
Are you referring to testing out of individual skills, or testing past a checkpoint? For me at least, the former was disabled when they introduced crowns, and the latter was only possible before I initially passed the checkpoint. App vs. web makes no difference.
Every time a tree is updated, you gain more topics, but you lose the tree and are set way back.
I got the update just right now; I was working on Adverbs and looking forward to reaching the preterite soon. Now it looks like I'll be building my vocabulary for the next month or two instead... Can't even test out of anything because all of the checkpoints are passed.
This is somewhat nice, because I've always thought Duolingo's greatest strength was teaching vocabulary and wish it would do more of that, but I'm disappointed that even the most basic of grammar concepts, past tense, is so deep into the tree and we have to do so much before being able to practice it.
No actually, it's not nice at all, it's as if I'm being made to repeat school.
but don't you have the option to just skip and do the tree in whatever order you would like to once you pass all the check points?
You can test out of individual lessons. Click the lesson then click the key instead of start
All this 'I am here to learn a language ...'-blabla stuff is crazy. Do you think you will learn a new language by being constantly made to repeat the same words that you already know by heart?
Sometimes these updates just make me so fed up.
One work-around could have been to check which vocabularies are already known to the reader and check the lessons where those are now in if one can rearrange the vocabs from all of the lessons so that you have only to learn those that you do not already know. Right now it seems like e.g. School 1 has in its first lesson the new words, say, 'bolígrafo', 'libro' and 'teacher' and in the second lesson maybe 'estudiantes', 'aprender', 'lección' and if all of these words except for two - for instance 'libro' and 'lección' - are marked as know to you, then you still have to do two complete lessons. But then they should be rearranged so that one lesson is marked as done already and the next lesson you have to do contains 'libro' and 'lección'.
In the end this should not be that hard to implement either and it would safe you a huge amount of time/energy/nerves/whatever to not always being made to learn many of the simplest vocabs over and over again.
I just got the expanded Spanish tree today (June 1, 2018). I thought I would need to do about 3-4 lessons to get my Spanish tree "golden" again (using duome.eu). What a shock when I found I now have 80 lessons to do because so many new ones have been added. I am no longer motivated to keep my tree golden, because it is an unattainable goal. Once again I have to evaluate what strategy I can use with Duolingo to reach my language goals.
My first goal is to use/repeat what I have previously learned from Duolingo often enough to avoid forgetting it. Since my "golden" lessons would fade over time, I thought that by bringing my tree back to golden every day, I was reinforcing my recall and becoming more fluent. Now I have to find another way to retain what I have learned from four + years with Duolingo. I hope some other users have a suggestion.
My second goal is expanding my vocabulary, as I cannot express myself with the limited vocabulary in the Duolingo course. I had expected to increase my vocabulary by reading stories, news articles and other material of interest to me, and by conversing in Spanish with real people about real life topics. I do not want to spend a lot more time practicing simple and mostly useless sentences just to learn some new words.
I now understand that I will never have a sense of accomplishment from playing the Duolingo game. Whenever I am about to reach some milestone, Duo changes the program. It's like going to a university to expecting to attain a Bachelor's Degree, but never being able to attain a degree because the requirements for completion are constantly changing. Who would go to a school like that?
I need to find a course where I can identify my proficiency level, start learning at that level and progress to a higher level. I welcome any suggestions.
I don't have the update yet - eagerly awaiting it - but can you not do a quick set of lessons to get back to Crown level 1 and move on?
I use Duolingo as one method to help with learning Spanish. I have a lot of love for it because I wouldn't have gone full steam ahead learning the language without it. The tree is useful to go back to and strengthen some lessons, but as many of the complaints in this discussion reflect, the added lessons are mostly too easy for anyone who was close to or had completed the original tree. Please add some more lessons in the subjunctive, conditional, and other more advanced parts of the language. For those intermediate to advanced users who haven't yet tried Duolingo Stories, which is only available on the web version in the "Labs" section, definitely check it out. I feel this is the method of teaching that Duolingo should be more focused on.
For those out there who want to seriously learn the language, and couldn't care less about a golden owl, Duolingo should only be one of many methods you use. Thanks to these discussion boards, I've found many ways to greatly improve my ability. There are a series of very affordable books called "Practice Makes Perfect," which you can get on Amazon (get "Complete Spanish Grammar" and "Spanish Verb Tenses" for sure). There are some free podcasts, two I use are "Notes in Spanish" and "Spanish Obsessed." There's a website called Librivox (librivox.org) where you can download free audiobooks in Spanish. Watch shows on Netflix with Spanish subtitles when the show is in English, and watch stuff in Spanish as well.
But then there's the real goal for most of us: fluency. In order to get better at speaking the language, you have to actually speak the language. You know that conversation we're constantly having with ourselves inside our own heads? There's a perfect opportunity to translate from English to Spanish. Of course, that isn't enough to improve your skills with talking to other people. For that, there's a great website called "Conversation Exchange" (conversationexchange.com), where you create a profile, and link up with other people to practice. Thanks to apps like WhatsApp and Skype, you can easily find people to speak with over the phone, and it won't cost you any extra when you're on WiFi or as long as you don't eat up all your data. In the "Labs" part of the web version there's also a section called "Events" where you can meet with other people to practice in person. I've also used meetup.com to find such groups.
Anyway, the point of all this is that crowns are not an actual measure of one's Spanish communicating abilities, and neither was that fluency percentage meter thingy they used to have. The real game is to effectively understand and communicate in Spanish, and these new additions to the tree should in no way discourage anyone. Happy learning!
Wow, thank you for your thoughtful post and for all the resources you mentioned - I'll sure give them a try. To return the favor, I wanted to mention Clozemaster - it did wonders for me. I've been at it for about 40 days and it's amazing how much I learned without even realizing. Plus, it's addictive (for me, anyway :D) I learned a lot more grammar there (as in the imperative form, which is sorely lacking on Duo) and a lot more vocabulary then was in the old tree - I just got the new tree now, so I can't compare it to Clozemaster. It's the first time in almost three years that I actually started thinking in Spanish.
You're welcome, and thanks for mentioning Clozemaster. I just started using it and it's pretty cool :)
Thank you for mentioning Clozemaster. I checked it out and found it to be quite appealing and if they really introduce the number of words they say they do this would take me way beyond my current vocabulary. I will be using this in addition to Duolingo for a while.
You're very welcome. As I understand, Clozemaster was designed to be sort of a continuation of Duolingo, so it makes sense using it in tandem. As for vocab, I don't know how many words they say they have, but what I can tell you is that I learned A LOT of new words in the past month. Not just from the "clozes" (the missing blocks), but from the sentences as well. Another metric that I found extremely useful is the percentage of "right" vs. "wrong" answers, as that seems to be a lot more accurate in determining how much you know then anything else. I only play "text input" now (vs. "multiple choice" in the beginning), so as to increase the difficulty and challenge myself, and it's really encouraging to see how many answers I get right :)
Anyway, I'm glad you find it to your liking - happy learning :)
No, but many skills were added in between the first basics and the rest of the skilils, so you have to complete those first (most of the content in which we had covered in different lessons) to move on.
Not happy that the format was suddenly changed without an email giving us a heads up that it was coming. Hopefully the "new" format will improve on the old one since it contained many mistakes.
Today, I've got the update, too. Looks great. I've lost crowns, though -- from 113 to 90.
But this is no problem because I simply want to learn the language. And all the new skills are purple, but I can open any of them, and also the old skills that I had already taken to a certain crown level.
So, overall, I'm happy. I don't have to study in a repetitive way; I can just jump around my skills as before, with many more to choose from. Cool. :-)
I had to laugh at myself as the extra lessons were added I was upset that in order to "win the game" it would take much longer and considered this a setback lol! I quickly realized that 'winning' is learning Spanish and all the new lessons are a means to that end... And I love the new travel and restaurant lessons much overdue.
I really dislike the latest change. I didn't care for the change to crowns, but now this latest change is like a kick in the gut refusing to acknowledge the work I've already done. I suddenly lost about 40 crowns, and some of the new stuff (specifically have done level 1 of the "Travel" skill) is infantile, especially the pictures, such as a cartoon picture of a train, and asking which one is the train.
Agree! Just logged on to do a bit and found it has all changed and back to complete basics and totally fed up with it. Wanted to continue not go back to square one. Not sure I want to continue any more which is a pity.
Me too. What a shock to work so hard for a year. I was three away from completing the tree once (since the last update now made me have to go through and do the tree numerous times, which I was okay with). Now I feel I am back at square one, and no way to get out of typing in phrases and words I know extremely well! It is super frustrating!! I appreciate the opportunity to learn new words, and I don't mind reviewing known words with some frequency as I learn new material. And I need help with verb tenses and pronouns, so I would love more intense time with that! But typing in elementary phrases is just frustrating!
I'm beginning to understand how Sisyphus felt - every time I'm close to getting the rock to the top of the hill (or tree), it rolls back down.
I'm totally confused. When I logged out on my PC last evening, I had about 20 Skills to Level 3. My intent was to finish two more which got me to a test out point. I planned to go back and do more practice on all these levels before moving on. When I just logged in, I have three Skills to Level 3. The rest are at zero. I don't get it!
I just feel like I'm lost as to where I was and where I need to go next. I wish they would have left it alone for people who were already using it I guess this is progress for the greater good!?!
The skills themselves didn't reset; they were just mostly replaced with new ones.
Sheesh! I was just getting used to the new crown system, after having twice completed the entire Spanish tree. I like the crown idea better, as it allowed me to still have at least one crown for every icon, 3 for most, and 2 for the rest. I then brought everything up to 2 crowns, and was well on my way to raising the rest to 3 crowns, when all of a sudden, without any warning, many of my crowns went away and lots of new lesson icons appeared. Fortunately, test out options were offered for about half of them, and I was able to immediately test out of all those, replacing those zero crown icons with 1 crown each. But now I'm having to work through at least 4 lessons each of another 40 or so lesson icons that frankly are still pretty simple compared to what I was working on just before this latest change. Overall, this upgrade doesn't seem to offer me much besides an opportunity to do another ton of exercises covering material I already know. Ideally, I'd still like to raise all the icons to 3 crowns, but now lack trust that doing so will ever be allowed due to similar future changes.
Did you see "test out" options on the desktop (web) version? That's the version I use and I don't see any test out options at all on the new lessons.
(FWIW prior to the introduction of crowns and the new lessons, I'd completed the tree several times and Duo puts me at Level 20.)
One minute my tree is golden up to the current lesson and the next.. :( Back to square one, well not really but that is how I initially felt. But I am here to learn a language and Duolingo thus far has been helping me greatly to accomplish that so for now I am going to just trust that they know what they are doing.
When I am sick and don't know what to do I go to the doctor and I don't try to tell the doctor what to do or how to treat me to help me get better, I just trust that he knows more than I, so I give it a try. I had to stop and ask myself the question...
Would you rather have a Golden Tree or would you rather be able to Speak with a Golden Tongue?
Duolingo, lets do this I am all in.
While I applaud your positive attitude, I think you're comparing apples and oranges. Duolingo is not a doctor and does not know best, unfortunately. They proved that with the Crown move, which went against most scientific principles about language learning - doing away with the SRS and the skills decay was really poor judgement on their part.
I think that this used to be the best language learning site I found - the key word, unfortunately, being "used to be". They slowly chipped away at everything that made this site stand out in the crowd.
The new Spanish tree is yet another proof of poor decision making. A lot of users have asked for new content for ages, but I really don't think this is what they had in mind. Having additional skills sounds great at first, until you realize that those skills contain a lot of words that you already learned in the old tree and the new additions (few and far apart) don't really warrant the name of "new skills". It would have been so much better if the new content were to be introduced IN ADDITION to the old one, not ON TOP of it. That way, you could have done all the new material in one place, instead of being forced to hunt for it in various lessons.
Couple that with the fact that many lessons contain a lot of errors and unnatural sounding English in the "correct" responses, and you can see why so many users express disappointment.
Agreed. I've been wishing there was more vocab and skills, but it is frustrating to see them all added at lower levels and vocab I've already done a million times not transferred over. There should be a test-out option for people who have already completed the tree. I'm really feeling diminishing returns as an intermediate user––not sure how much longer I'll stick around.
I was an Alpha Tester for the new skills and have been working on them for two or three months now. My opinion is that compared to the old tree the new skills fill in a lot of holes in grammar and vocabulary, and offer a better all around learning experience.
I had completely finished the old tree and I appreciate the new content. There is some redundancy but repetition is the key to language learning (for me anyway) so that doesn't bother me.
06/02/18. Good to hear from someone who has actually been in touch with DL directly. Curious how you were contacted and what they said was the basis for the new Skill Sets? Thanks in advance.
Wordwing, I saw (I think via an e-mail?) a request from DL for Alpha Testers, then I sent a note to a special e-mail address saying I was interested, then after while (a month or two) I got an e-mail thanking me for joining the Alpha Test and my tree updated. The new content was described as a re-build of the progression of skills, and addition of new skills, which I found to be the case.
There is a lot more repetition of basic words as people are noting here. But also in the later units there is lot more practice of stuff that's not so repetitive, such as compound and past tenses, useful words and phrases that weren't in the old course, and more complex sentences with different word order than English, to name a few.
I sent lots of comments back on individual exercises. Most often it was a translation I thought should have been accepted but wasn't. I would get responses back on those days or weeks later. Probably a dozen of my suggestions were accepted. Also, I thought that two of the new units were just a mess and that they should be thrown out and rewritten. I never heard back on that e-mail but I hope it was read and considered. Aside from a couple of e-mails saying thanks for testing, that was about it for interaction with DL.
New format clearly needs work. Very slow and does not update lessons completed. I have had to redo several because of this. Not encouraging.
It happened in a blink of an eye...very disappointed...I guess that's just the way it goes...
I guess reading this will not get me any crowns jajaja. But for sure I felt ripped off, I lost about 40 crowns. On to the bigger picture I am here to learn a language and now I have a lot more to learn. I just wish the little owl wouldn't go away, I liked him sitting there at the bottom of my tree. hahaha
Interesting; I had previously completed my tree, but after this update the new skills were at zero. However, my skills at the bottom of the tree were still at levels two or three, and my pretty golden owl is still there.
Interesting! Otherwise, it's the same with me: New skills at level 0, other skills at the level at which they were. But no owl. ...
(I now think that this may be due to the fact that I hurried through the tree to get the owl last year. So probably all your skills are stronger than mine. There may be a threshold up to which the owl disappears (my case), and above which the owl stays (your case) because the system assumes that even under the new conditions, you have earned it.
When I first checked my nice owl was there, with the same message when you click on it and everything. However, I just checked again now and it's gone; well, now I have something more to work for!
It might be true that all my skills are stronger, however, because I spent three or four years slowly completing skills and keeping them all golden (on the previous system) and all my crowns were level three or four . . . but my owl's not there, all the same.
I have lost more than one owl, but with good behaviour it'll come back. It's a relationship thing I guess :)
Although i'm happy more content has been added, i feel like fundamental and optional skills should be separated, at the moment they all seem to be placed into the same area which can be a little confusing as some modules are much more important to learn (such as grammar/adjects etc) whereas others are less so (travel/school etc.).
This would make it much easier for learners to feel like they have built a solid foundation of the language before tackling more mundane and day to day subjects.
But you need some "mundane" stuff (vocabulary of various fields) to bring variety, thus difficulty, to the grammar topics.
I think your goal of focusing more on the topics you perceive as serious is implemented in the crown system. Leave the mundane ones at crown level 1, and develop the other ones to 5.
How can I update my Spanish tree to have all of the categories other people have?
Apparently Duo is rolling this out in phases - as different users are getting the update at different times. Just wait - you will soon see your tree has been enlarged by about 58 lessons.
If you only use Duolingo on your phone try updating the app. I never got updated to the crowns system until I updated my phone app.
:P I'm on my computer and can't do accents. I use the mobile app for lessons.
What kind of computer are you using?
If you are on Windows, you could use the Spanish keyboard setting, that I think has accents.
If you are on Mac, you hold down the letter key that you want accented and a tab should pop up with the different accents you can use on that letter, along with numbers under the corresponding accents. Press the number according to the accent you want and it should become an accent :)
I use alt-codes for myself, kind of a tiresome workaround but I feel good knowing I can type the accents on any windows machine ever.
ALT+0201: É ALT+0233: é ALT+0225: á ALT+0243: ñ ALT+0191: ¿ ALT+0237: í ALT+0252: ü ALT+0250: ú
06/05/18. Thank you, philbonk1977. A little added instruction below: "To type a special character, using an Alt keyboard sequence: [This applies only to keyboards with a separate numeric keypad on the right.] 1. Press the Num Lock key to activate the numeric key section of the keyboard. 2. Press and hold the Alt key. 3. While the Alt key is pressed, type the sequence of numbers (on the numeric keypad) from the Alt code in the table below. 4. Release the Alt key, and the character will appear."
I use AllChars, a little free Windows program that sits there waiting to be activated with the control key.
Plus !! I did have 88 out of 307 crowns, now I have 68 out of 587 !! I will have to go get some breakfast before I can begin to understand that.
I had about 210 crowns and then suddenly found I was back at about 175
I did try the test out option - that brought me back up to near 200 by giving me Level 1 on about 20 if the new options - unfortunately can't test out to higher levels
On a positive, I have already spotted some new words so that is good
Where did you find the test out option? I deleted my Spanish tree a while back and have since gotten 2214 words on my word list, however today after doing 100xp I did not gain any. Originally I had around 2990 so maybe testing out misses words. I used to like the word list and I would redo lessons that had weak words, I wish that feature will be brought back.
I thought it's only beta-testers tree has changed, but looks like it has changed for everybody...
Nope, not for everyone; it looks like to me that less than half of the Spanish learners have the new tree.
If you haven't gotten more than fifty new skills and less crowns, then you haven't gotten this one.
I prefer the new version in comparison to the older version of Duolingo when you would have to constantly practice your levels to keep them golden. I like this version, but it takes much longer to complete levels--Which isn't a bad thing-- The more you type out 'simple phrases' the more they get locked into you mind. I only use Duolingo on the computer, so I could see why using it on a device would be more challenging to constantly type the same words out.
My tree also updated today (June first, 2018—it seems that this is a June update, as many people don't have it yet) and it is really quite annoying because I had completed my tree and was working on getting it golden, and now it's just 57% done.
They used to have a test out option, but that disappeared. I finished the tree, and came back to learn French, but I like being able to say I finished the Duolingo Spanish tree, so I had to start at the beginning, typing "Nosotros somos ninas" over and over and over.
If you haven't already passed a checkpoint, you can try testing out of those. I think you can do it on the app as well, although I haven't been using that and have only been reading comments elsewhere.
I tried testing out on my phone just now - it didn't affect the look of the tree in the least, nor did it affect the number of crowns. I tested out of the first skills past the basics - and yet I got you are a man, you are a child, i am a girl, etc. I did get in excess of 2000 XP points, though :))))
Edit - the test out option on the iPhone works even if you passed the checkpoint, it just doesn't do anything for you.
I had the entire tree to level 3 with some level 4 and 5. It's kind of daunting. Oh well. I think it is better than just maintaining the golden tree in the older version.
I agree the new tree is overly redundant and some type of credit or shortcut is very much needed. I'm at the point of stopping for at least a while as like you I started going back to begin working the new material. I may just stop entirely as I'll never keep up. Hope this helps as I really don't have any suggestions other than the credits or the shortcut you already mentioned. Buena surety.
I don't like the upgrade. What I had studied is now mixed with what I have not studied. So when I do the practices I get a whole host of words I have never seen before. They did not just upgrade that scrambled the order and that has crated nothing but havoc. It is bad enough that I'm thinking of dropping out of duolingo.
I do wish they added at least more checkpoints so you could test through the almost doubled tree size near the bottom.
If you click on the individual lesson, on web or mobile, near the "start" button there is a little key to test out of that individual skill.
Yes, I noticed this change a few days ago. I'm very thankful that it is now possible to test out on the individual lessons, but still feel like I'm covering a lot of old ground.
I'm still working testing out of the added sections. I just finished "memories" and noticed it contained a lot of preterite. However the "past tense" lesson is still further down the list. Would a newer user who is still completing the tree encounter seeing past tense translations before having the duolingo lesson on it?
07/20/18. The short answer to your question is "yes."
A completely new user to Duolingo Spanish would first encounter the Preterite tense in the new Skill Set No. 52 "Memories" before being able work through and learn the new Skill Set. No. 80 "Past Tense" (Preterite). This is because of the specific sequential order of the current 113 Skill Sets and because the new Skill Set No. 80 can only be unlocked by a new user after progressing at least through Level One of all prior Skill Sets.
Pedagogy Query. Implicit in your question is another important question I have never seen explicitly asked in any of the DL discussions: Why would DL introduce a new verb tense in Skill Sets before the specific Skill Set on that particular verb tense is covered?
Old Skill Sets. In the former 61 Skill Sets (pre-June 1, 2018), this was largely not done [with the exception of the Present tense (which was nonetheless introduced early in the old Skill Sets as Skill Set No. 9 "Present 1") and a couple other very minor and limited exceptions (such as old Skill Set No. 48 "Haber" (which required the conjugation of only that verb in certain previously covered tenses as well as in the not yet covered Future and Present Subjunctive tenses) and old Skill Set No. 56 "V. Modal" (which used certain already covered tenses in addition to the not yet covered Conditional, Imperfect, and Imperfect Subjunctive tenses))].
New Skill Sets. In the new and current 113 Skill Sets, there has been an expansion of DL's use in Skill Sets of verb tenses that have not yet been covered in the specific Skill Sets related to those particular verbs tenses. With the new Skill Sets, there is no 'tense specific' Skill Set at all until the new Skill Set No. 66 "Present 1." In the first new 65 Skill Sets leading up to new Skill Set No. 66, one is nevertheless called on to use the Present, Near Future, Imperative, and Preterite tenses and (to a very limited degree) also the Conditional tense [new SS No. 26 (gustaría)] and Imperfect Subjective tense [new SS No. 47 (quisiera)].
Total Tenses Covered. Both the old 61 Skill Sets and new 113 Skill Sets cover the same grand total of 15 Spanish verb tenses- 9 Simple Tenses, 4 Compound Perfect Tenses, and 2 Compound Progressive Tenses. Certainly, learning not only each of these tenses by themselves, but also and especially how they relate to and differ from one another, is one of the most challenging aspects of Spanish. Nonetheless, even once one gets to the first 'tense specific' Skill Set on the DL 'Tree' (new Skill Set No. 66), it and the other subsequent 'tense specific' Skill Sets are interspersed among all the remaining Skill Sets.
It makes me wonder whether this highly intermittent approach to verb tense presentation, which includes the introduction of new verb tenses in Skill Sets before the specific Skill Sets on those particular verb tenses are covered, is really the best method for students to integrate their understanding of these interrelated tenses and use them appropriately?
My concern was not so much that they introduced preterite. It would be alright to have a sentence or two with a past tense. However the whole thing seemed to be more of a preterite exercise with a "memories theme". To have this without having experience with the preterite, let alone having access to the preterite chapter, makes these chapters all out of place. One would have to depend more on outside material, which may burden some looking to use duolingo as a casual means of language learning.
I hope everyone realizes by now that one can test out on the web by clicking on the "key" icon that appears when you select a any module. This has made Duolingo much more enjoyable for me. I would not have spent hours upon hours repeating words that I already know. On the mobile device, the test out feature is only available for those modules where your level is 0. So for now I am doing most of my work on my laptop. When forced to use the mobile device, I try to be mindful of which modules are most in need of repetition - e.g., my weakest areas.
The key to test out is also there on mobile, for anyone reading it that prefers mobile.
If you are able to use your computer with DL, it has a test out option. This does not require using Lignots, which, I believe, the iPhone app does. It has been a real timesaver.
Neither on web nor the (just updated) Android app - has anything changed
Is that update not for everyone?
Is the update more of the same, or can I - with the new tree - select which lesson I want to do, fx lesson 2 in "Vocab 3"
BTW, I hate the Duolingo crowns with passion, because on my level (24) + all the other learning resources/websites I am using - I had for a long time ago had and still has s a really good picture of what i am good at, and what i'm not so not good at.
Thus for me cherry picking lessons are much more useful use of my time than using duolingo crowns.
I want to learn in context, so I don't want to use Tinycards (flashcards): https://tinycards.duolingo.com/courses/AnLaX/duolingo-spanish-course
@larsth - The update is for everyone, but unfortunately not for everyone at the same time :) It was rolled out a few months ago, I just got it two days ago - you'll probably get it soon. Just don't expect miracles :p
You still can't cherry pick lessons, just skills, but it DOES have a bit of new content. It's just spread wildly across skills, so that in one skill you actually get new words, in others you get back to learning how to say "nine" based on a picture with the figure "9" on it :(
Try Memrise and Clozemaster if you want to learn words in context, they have more believable real-life sentences :)
Thank you for this post! I have signed up for Clozemaster. My first view of it is that it has more to offer in a more orderly fashion than Duo. I will use both Duo and Clozemaster for a while until I see which one is helping me most. I have always used sources other than Duolingo.
Actually, in the new tree that I got, most "new skills" are in the upper part of the tree, not at the bottom.
This is strange. I have 60 crowns in Irish and haven't done that much and haven't been doing it that long. Yet I was almost finished with the Spanish, but now only have 83 crowns. This is frustrating.
I feel your pain. I haven't found any way to avoid these redundant lessons. After struggling to find interest in DL, I decided to complete one lesson from each category and move on to the next until completing the whole tree. Of course, not every category has the same number of lessons, so you'll be earning crowns at different times. This seems to connect the skills I'm learning. I think the language makes more sense to me if it's put together piece by piece from basic lessons all the way to the end of the tree.
What happened to Practice? I was happy to gain one or two golden circles back by working through the practice review. Now it doesn't seem to matter much.
A whole bunch of mine just went from 1 to 0....not that it matters much but I was just surprised.
I for one did not know any Spanish before Duolingo and I need all the repetition. I work on 3-5 different lessons at a time and slowly move up so I don't get bored but still get the repetition I need.
Are the other languages going to get Tree Updates? I know hardcore users that are possessive of their achievements will get upset or angry, but I think it's nice that they're including vocabulary and phrases that one would use if visiting another country.
At first I thought it was nice that there were more vocabulary words that seemed geared towards visiting a Spanish speaking country. Now I hate it because the sentences are so simplistic and not challenging that I don't have the patience to do them. The sections of where I was pre-update are now a little too difficult for me to do now too.
What are the last lessons on the tree as it seems my Spanish Tree got shorter?
Mine are: Subj. Past, Vocab 3, and Cond. Per
gcabildo, those are the last three nodes on my Spanish tree. The only thing missing from my tree is the owl, which disappeared after the addition of 50+ new nodes. Try refreshing the web page, or restarting the mobile app. If you still think your tree has been shortened, then I suggest you file a report here:
wow! I think it happened to me today. Or recently. I have been working on French and didn't check in to spanish for a few days, but today I went to do some lessons and noticed that I was all over the place. I have aqua, purple, green, and red. (the different skills range from level 0, 1, 2, to 3). Not sure why it's that way but it must be the new "update."
It's all good. I can probably use the practice.