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Levels resetting and Crowns disappearing - what about my fluency

Well I have been using duolingo for a while and have recommended it to anyone wishing to start learning a new language. I liked the percentage fluency that was slowly accruing, as it gave me a sense of achievement, but just some weeks ago, this was removed and replaced with crowns. So I began to accrue crowns, then just a short while ago, my crowns began to disappear, and in several levels, when I achieved my daily goal, the levels would reset and instead of 3 levels, I would only have done 1. This would not be a problem if the level was challenging, but it is hugely repetitive and feels more of a chore than a challenge. I am not sure I am am enjoying duolingo anymore, and am thinking of moving to other software - but which?

I would like the duolingo bots to recognise my correct answers, and not to repeat the same questions over and over, when I already got them right. I would also like the option of registering typos, so that the bots are not convinced that I do not know the right answer, and then hit me with even more repeats. Did I mention that duolingo is repetitive. I think I did. So duolingo asks the same questions throughout all five levels for each topic. When the fifth level has thirty or more reptetitive questions, this is punishment, so I no longer do levels, but hop around different topics. But to get to the ones that are still more challenging, I have to scroll way down and keep looking for them. Duolingo thinks I need to slug through basic levels after managing them for months. No, I do need to be occasionally checked on them, but I do not need to be dragged through the verbal mud. I also think that most questions should be translations into the language that I do not know, rather than the one that I do, because I understand the Spanish sentence and can easily write my native English version, but to write the Spanish version from the English sentence - now that´s not so easy and requires the learning part - especially for idioms and other phrases that are particularly Spanish - e.g. mañana por la mañana!

I realised that when I started to do the duolingo stories, which I think are excellent and very creative, the actual practice I had done on the different levels was far from sufficient to understanding and conversing in Spanish. So sending me back to basics is not the right way to go. I think duolingo needs to adopt a more proactive approach, which should be strongly correlated with correct answers, so that the challenge is always on the edge of ones ability. Of course one needs to register typos, so that the correct statistics are logged. I feel that the algorithms are now demotivating rather than constructive. There are many other issues that I could mention, but for now I would like to see a return to some measure of fluency, because ultimately that is the measure of a language-speaking ability - even if it is just a bot measuring it :)

June 2, 2018



So you want the fluency percentage back?

The inaccurate nonsense percentage that says you are 60% fluent after spending 40 mins learning a language?

Fluency is too complicated an idea to display it as a percentage in an app like this. Firstly how do you even define fluency? Or measure it?

Honestly I would rather duolingo display nothing rather than a number that means nothing.


I liked the percentage. Accurate or not, it was fun to see the percentage rise.


I completely agree with your assessment, but the reality of the fluency measure in an app is the factual evidence of the number of questions you answer correctly. Of course it does not mean you speak the language fluently, but it was a motivating number in terms of encouraging accurate answers - including all those acentos. I might add that it took me longer than 40 minutes to get the 60%. But then - what are the crowns for? They measure quantity, not quality - so not too motivating in terms of language proficiency. I still prefer the fluency number :)


I am 90% sure that the fluency percentage didn’t take accents etc into account. Or even correct answers.

It was based on the number of words you know, how important those words are and how likely you are going to forget them.

So I could do a skill and spell the same word wrong twice and then on the third attempt i get it right. This would then update that word in the list of words to 100% strength.

So my fluency for that word is 100% for the time being. So what exactly does fluency measure? That I got the answer right eventually after duolingo had given me the answer twice?

Really doesn’t sound useful to me. Or motivating. And likely one of the reasons it was removed.


Bravo. My sentiments exactly.

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