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Problems with the Korean course. (Constructive Criticism)

[deactivated user]

    I'll be leaving the Korean course until Tree 2.0 rolls around, and I figured I would share what I found wrong with the course.

    1. Word dump. After the first Checkpoint, you are dumped with a bunch of words with no way to review these words unless someone tries to make flashcards, but that is difficult for people to do in their free time.

    Solution: Keep the Number of words taught in each lesson, but add a list of the words in the tips and notes section. (would also help of hanja roots were shown)

    1. Bad grammar explanations. I rely heavily on the tips and notes to explain the grammar taught in the skill, but a lot of the tips don't explain how the grammar works.

    Solution: Explain things a bit more, especially when an irregularity happens.

    1. Too much per skill. It feels like there is way to much stuffed into a single skill. This can feel very overwhelming for new comers, and can even hurt their studying experiance as it's a lot of infomation.

    Solution: Split some of the skills into smaller skills.

    1. Long lessons. The lessons are very long, which can often times be demotivating as it can make people feel slow and dumb.

    Solution: Have generally 8-10 sentences per lesson. You can have more sentences than that for the entire lesson, but during a session try to keep with 8-10. People can get throw this faster, making them feel motivated.

    1. Not enough variety. There arn't nearly enough sentences per lesson, not during the session, but the lesson as a whole. This can lead to repetitive practicing, and sentence memorization instead of word memorization.

    Solution: ad more sentences to the lesson as a whole.

    1. Long skills. Seeing a skill with 8 lessons can be very demotivating.

    Solution: Split the skill in two, one where it started, and another one further down the line. The second skill could also teach more advanced usage of that grammar point.

    June 9, 2018

    12 Comments


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/gamekkeut

    Word dump.

    Certainly agree with this. Considering this language has a different alphabet than every other language on earth, it should be taken slower. I still don't know if I remember the difference between the words for 'healthy' and 'don't worry'. I know Korean has a lot of near homonyms/phones already, but having them in the same skills too...It's a lot.

    Bad grammar explanations.

    I would not agree here. The grammar explanations provided aren't bad to me, but I do feel like there could be more in some instances (which I can't remember at the moment). I DO wish there were some way to practice conjugation of irregular verbs, though. Similar to French's skill on irregular pluralization.

    Too much per skill. / Long lessons / Long skills. / Not enough variety.

    I wish there were more sentences with fewer words. I practice one word with one sentence only, so it becomes more of memorizing the sentence rather than learning the word in different contexts.

    Korean could definitely become the longest course on Duolingo, just by breaking down everything they have so far, and adding on with Tree 2.0. I hope it does become a more manageable experience. After realizing your progress in Crowns does get reset with each update, I'm not sure I want to touch the course until this redo either.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AnonyLearner

    Crowns will get reset when they update the tree? Goodbye, golden alphabets... ;-;


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/gamekkeut

    That's what I'm seeing in the French course (it's up to tree 3.0 now). That comment made me laugh, my alphabets are nice and golden now because it took so long to remember them.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AnonyLearner

    I'm glad I could make you laugh!

    It is disappointing to hear that they will be reset, but the knowledge is there, no matter what color the skill becomes. :) At least it will encourage me to move forward instead of fixating on gilding my skills, haha.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Beehasduolingo

    I wish it kept the crowns after the tree update ;-;


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ryan.S.Lloyd

    I agree generally with this.

    My issues have been:

    • Excessive vocabulary dumped all in one go -- I don't need to know 1,000,000 Korean adjectives all at once, just give me two or three and show me how adjectives work in Korean sentences.
    • Not only do the lessons include too much vocabulary, but there are similar looking words or words with similar yet subtly different meanings thrown in too (why?! so unnecessary!).
    • Lack of variety of exercises, basically just all translating from Korean to English/English to Korean -- not very engaging.
    • Tips sections full of overwhelming and technical information, without much in the way of context or explanation to help you get through it -- I've found them so poorly written or overly complex (or both) that they're basically useless to me.
    • Notwithstanding their limited usefulness, you can't access the tips via the mobile app!
    • Too many grammatical rules incorporated into lessons at once, and not even in such a way as to make learning them the object of the lesson -- the point should be to learn the grammatical rules gradually, then add an expanded vocabulary to this foundation.

    A lot could be learned from the Chinese course imo -- it does a really great job of breaking things down into discrete, digestible parts, even though Chinese can be very complicated.

    I'm finding the Korean course hard to stick with tbh -- it's so badly thought through that it leaves you feeling a bit exhausted and stupid at the end of the lesson, as I think someone else here has also pointed out.

    Stubbornness is what's getting me through at this point, whereas with the other courses I'm doing I'm motivated by genuine enjoyment of the learning experience. It's a shame that the Korean course isn't inspiring the same reaction, as I was really excited when I started..


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IngeborgHa14

    A big problem when typing Korean sentences is that you cannot know without context, whether to use the topic partice or the subject particle, use the object particle or leave it out before the verb. i do not know how many times I was told to write 는, when I write 가, and when I write 는, it is the other way around. Or to leave out 를 or to put it. Terrible.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ngochuyen11111

    me too. i'm struggling with everything because i can't rememeber a damn thing


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eveespeaksital1

    Are the words and pronunciation right though? If we do have time to make flashcards and things, will it give us accurate information?


    [deactivated user]

      the meanings of the words are actually quite accurate, just that they are dumped on you before you have time to adjust to the new writing system and pronunciation.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BlueStreetLight

      I don't fully agree with all of these suggestions, but I do think more sentence variation would be nice -I find myself just skimming the shape of the sentence and then writing the translation down without taking the time to puzzle it out properly because I remember having to translate the same sentence several times previously and I don't think that is the best for learning.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JaguaYvyguy

      I wholeheartedly agree with your first point, but not so much with others (some of which, btw, seem contradictory). The main problem I personally perceive with the current course is that new grammar topics often introduce many new lexemes. As a result, instead of practicing the same words in different forms/contexts/environments (and thus internalizing the rules), one learns different words in different forms/contexts/environments, which makes it harder to build the connections.

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