https://www.duolingo.com/Monty_98

European or South American Spanish?

Sorry if this has been asked before or if the information is easy to find somewhere else but I was wondering if Duoliguo teaches European Spanish as spoken in Spain or the South American version of the language? I assume there are some differences between the two like between American and British English? I live in the UK so I'd much prefer to learn European Spanish! Cheers.

6 months ago

28 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/spanishmasterz

When you click on "add a new course" and pick Spanish, it will give you a brief description, how many people are learning, etc., and there it says "On Duolingo, you'll learn a version of Spanish closer to what you'd hear in Latin America than in Spain, but the differences are relatively small and everybody will be able to understand you." So I assume you will learn more of South American Spanish, but really there are minor differences. I hope this helps you!

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Chilotin
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It is almost entirely North American. Most South American dialects have voseo or aspiration of s's or both. Other less frequent features are no yeísmo, zheísmo (or sheísmo), direct objects with repetition and "superfluous ser". Definitely, Duolingo isn't based on South American dialects, but it accepts their words.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Monty_98

Ah ok, cheers!

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jcragun

Well, voseo is mostly limited to Rioplatense, which is mostly just Argentina and Uruguay. Spanish is a very regional language (just like English). The version of Spanish here is pretty close to how most Colombians speak, so I wouldn't say JUST North American.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Chilotin
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In South America voseo is used in Rioplatense, Chilean (own style), Paraguayan, Eastern Bolivian, Zulian (own style) and some varieties from Colombia and Ecuador. Peru is the only Spanish speaking country in South America where voseo is almost extinct.

Yes, this version of Spanish is similar to many varieties of Spanish, including the way of speaking in Colombian Highlands. But it is more similar to Mexican because Colombian accents have aspirated h's, some of them aren't yeístas or their yeísmo is different, "usted" is used in familiar contexts and they have a very striking feature about "ser", not taught in Duolingo.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jcragun

I was speaking more to the vocabulary set than the robot voice.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Chilotin
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Vocabulary is mostly "common Spanish" because the level is too basic. Considering 2000 words, maybe 1900-1950 belong to all major dialects, 40-80 belong to most dialects ("carro", "tomate", "piscina") and maybe 10-20 are an arbitrary choice among common words (i.e.: "nevera"). Mexican Spanish is still the more representative variety.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/la_ricfoi

It teaches Mexican Spanish with Latin American influences. Where users have reported answers, Spanish is accepted but never taught.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Chilotin
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There are some exceptions in words: I've seen "coche", "patata" and some other Spanish words.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/la_ricfoi

Also in the new tree? Coche was replaced by carro, I do not recall coche still being used.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Chilotin
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Maybe you're right. I saw "coche" in the old tree but some people say it remains in some skills. "Patata" and "coger" are in the new tree.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jcragun

I would say it teaches a generic Latin American Spanish. The parts of Mexican Spanish that are unique to Mexico are most definitely not a part of this course. Tomato, for example is 'un tomate' in Duo and 'un jitomate' in Mexico.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Chilotin
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Yes, "tomate", "piscina" and "autobús" are good examples of not specifically Mexican words in Duolingo (I've heard some Mexicans saying "tomate" is used in the North). Most words are simply common Spanish ("perro", "correr", "verde", etc.). I consider it based on Mexican because of the sum of words, pronunciation, [robotical] intonation and grammar. If you make a checklist of features of this Duolingo Spanish comparing them to different dialects, Mexican gets the highest score.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Monty_98

cool, cheers for clearing that up

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Chilotin
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North American Spanish, from Mexico, plus words from many other dialects from Europe and South America.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Thomas.Heiss
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Hi Chilotin,

do you know what Spanish Lingvist teaches?

I wonder how hard it is to adopt from "Duolingo Spanish" to all the diverse Spanish dialects spoken in Florida (e.g immigrants from Puerto Rico, etc.) or to re-learn the Spanish which is spoken in Colombia (South America)?

Are there any further Spanish resources on Memrise & Co. to prepare learners for different countries like Colombia / Panama / Costa Rica in the long-term?

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Chilotin
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No, I don't know Lingvist, I'm sorry.

Well, it depends on group. [Very] Roughly, Spanish can be divided into "highlands speeches" and "lowlands speeches". Mexican and varieties from Colombian highlands belong to "highlands", Caribbean Spanish (spoken in Cuba, Puerto Rico, Colombian Caribbean coast, part of Mexican Caribbean coast and other places) belongs to "lowlands". You could adapt your "Duolingo Spanish" easily to other highlands dialects and native speakers are very familiar with Mexican Spanish, so you'll be understood. However, you could have difficulties for understanding "natural" lowlands dialects if you only are used to Duolingo Spanish. I.e.: if you listen to Puerto Rican people talking each other.

I don't know about Memrise, but Forvo, radio stations and Youtube channels can be useful. This is "dos" in Forvo, pay attention to pronunciations from Mexico and Venezuela: https://forvo.com/word/dos/#es

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/merkavar

At the level duolingo teaches is there much difference anyway.

You miss out on vosotros and get taught jugo instead of zumo etc

Doesn’t seem that big of a difference to me.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Nick_Pr
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While it's primarily Spanish from the Mexico region, with the new tree there are some idiosyncrasies that make me think an Argentinian may have worked on some of the lessons.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SunflowerS64420

There are other apps that focus on Spanish from Spain, like Memrise. Also look for Coffee Break Spanish podcast. That will help you with language and pronunciation.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Monty_98

I'll definitely check those out then, cheers

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mike413694

There are variations in Mexican, Colombian, Peruvian and so on , dialects. MEXICO has the largest single population by country of Spanish speakers .... 120 million

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/snowwolf0111
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yeah, there are minor differences. you could look it up on youtube. but don't worry to much about it mate, the differences are minor. they will understand you if you speak well enough Spanish. but again, if you really want to know, look it up on youtube I would suggest.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Thomas.Heiss
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The company which programmed VT comes from Spain and has their headquarter in Barcelona: https://www.languagecourse.net/vocabulary-trainer.php

You may want to give the Android app a look: https://www.languagecourse.net/mobile/comparison

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/nitsua23

hi, i'm from north america

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AnnKidd4
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It's South American Spanish and there are some differences which are obvious mainly in the pronunciation and there are also some 'tricky' words - just like the word 'homely' in American English means unattractive rather than 'welcoming/comfortable' as it is in UK English. If it's Castillian (Spain) Spanish, then 'wlingua.com' is the one to try. Buena suerte y adelante.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JosJavierS15

i was born in latin america and now live in spain. i did the check point passed for spanish and it was correct. not many south american words over spanish. so it is well balanced. it´s worth to try it.

6 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AnnKidd4
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Hola, wlingua.com has a European Spanish (Castillian) course.

4 months ago
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