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

Stop telling me my kanji is incorrect!

I really really can't believe I'm the only person who feels like they're banging their head against a brick wall trying to learn Japanese with Duolingo when it keeps telling me my answers are WRONG because I'm using Kanji instead of Kana. ごはんをください is somehow right but ご飯をください is wrong?? They're EXACTLY THE SAME and in fact 99% of the time you'd see it as the latter not the former. Further, computers are perfectly capable of automatically converting one to the other so why does duolingo keep telling me my answers are wrong?

I've really lost all enjoyment from using Duolingo because of this (and similar problems).

November 28, 2018

22 Comments

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

I submitted so many 'this answer should be accepted's when I went through the tree. Believe it or not it's better than it was... Really atm the listening exercises are the ones that are still the absolute worst because you can't submit corrections.

November 28, 2018

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

I reckon every day I use duolingo I submit at least 10. Some of them are possibly wrong, but I'm completely sure about the others. I never had that problem with German or Spanish.

November 28, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NasuSamaruk0

The issue of creating a Japanese tree like this is that there are more Japanese translations to a specific sentence than Chinese and Korean translations, though Chinese-for-English tree have the same amount of similar issues as Japanese trees.

As few dedicated Japanese learners here commented, the Japanese tree still needs improvement and flexibility over time. Even if you believe your sentence is incorrect, that would not mean it's absolutely incorrect. I have also created sentences in my own to become less fixated to given sentences; yet, I know the type of translations that are acceptable instead of following what the tree expects.

November 29, 2018

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

You can find in the linked discussion à "testmoogle" comment who listed about 300 accepted kanji: https://forum.duolingo.com/comment/24381687

November 28, 2018

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

To be clear to anyone who might just glance at that page and come away with the wrong idea:

I did a run-through of all 185 lessons (all 40 skills) in the Japanese tree. I recorded all the Japanese sentences I typed and tracked whether Duo accepted them or not. After completing this run-through, I gathered all my accepted sentences together and made it list all the unique kanji within that bunch of text. This is where that list of those 300 kanji came from.

What I'm trying to say is, the contributors may add 私 as an alternative way of writing わたし in the acceptable answers of one sentence, but it only applies to that one particular sentence. Any other sentence containing わたし still won't accept this kanji until a contributor manually adds it as an acceptable answer to that sentence too. Just because there are 300 kanji in my list, this does not mean those kanji are therefore accepted in every sentence where they should be.

(Also, it was 14 months ago that I made that list. Back then the course was still in beta, listening exercises didn't even exist, the course actually wasn't supposed to be accessible on web at that date, and thus there weren't even meant to be any exercises for typing in Japanese! So it would be very interesting now to do this same experiment again, to see how much things have changed in these 14 months.) ^^

November 28, 2018

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

Jesus Christ I hate that so much ;-;

November 28, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JenniferLu888446

I submit a lot, too. It seems like a lot of kanji aren't recognized, which is a shame, because I'd love to practice reading kanji as well...

November 29, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WilliamCSt1

Yea, I was actually going to submit one when I found this. I am really enjoying Duolingo, but Japanese learning is why I'm hear, and I just now got to the greetings, and noticed that the Kanji had wrong pronunciation. At first I thought maybe it was a modifier but after staring at it I looked up the Kanji character, the sound is proper, but they had the wrong hiragana. Its like they combined the KUN and the ON readings to have the ON pronunciation yet with the KUN reading characters.

Again I still can be miss understanding something, but now I have doubts, and wonder if I will learn improper speaking or reading on fundamentals.

I even noticed some of the だくてん is improper. Like づ all of these have the same sound as ず, even when written, but in all other classes and other sources I have used say it should be "dzu" and not "zu".

May have to find a new platform, with issues like these, because unless I guess the platform, how do I know if it is correct.

November 29, 2018

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

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Romanization_of_Japanese
↑ I think Duolingo is using Hepburn romanisation. づ is written as zu in Hepburn and Nippon-shiki romanisation, and written as du in Kunrei-shiki romanisation (which is the one Japanese children are taught in school).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hiragana
↑ Have a look at the Hiragana table on this page. If you look for づ and ず, you'll notice both have the same pronunciation spelling in IPA (International Phonetic Alphabet). It says [(d)zɯ] for both づ and ず.

November 29, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WilliamCSt1

yea that could be, I wonder how much I am going to run into with different pronunciations. Its just when I first heard that pronunciation it was a native Japanese citizen and English was their 2nd language so when the say how to pronounce something, it pretty hard not to follow their lead.

It also makes some since due to the fact す would be "su" and つ "tsu" and that it is a vibration of the saying that transforms it it would be the same a "te" becoming "de" so "su" becomes "zu" and "tsu" becoming "dzu".

November 29, 2018

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

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yotsugana
↑ Have a look at this page. ^^

The "standard language" (標準語) in Japan is based on Tokyo dialect, which is presumably what Duolingo would be teaching.

Maybe the Japanese person you mentioned is from somewhere like Kagoshima prefecture?

November 29, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WilliamCSt1

That could be. I know their recording studio is in Tokyo for my source, but I'm not sure where the teacher that did the pronunciations is from.

It does make me wonder how much it would mean in the grand scheme of things because once you get into saying sentences how much of the details like that is picked up.

English alone there are plenty of words that people say incorrect all the time, but it just exists and no one seems to mind that much.

November 29, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IB-01

"Again I still can be miss understanding something, but now I have doubts, and wonder if I will learn improper speaking or reading on fundamentals."

This is something that worries me a bit ... just started to learn japanese by myself. Hope they fix the problems stated above soon :-\

November 29, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jmbrill81

I think the difference is just super subtle - the Romanization doesn't really help, because it's just an agreed-upon way to transliterate, not like a hard-fast pronunciation rule. Korean is like this, too. For instance, you'll see a lot of people named "Choi," which is actually pronounced "cheh," and sounds almost exactly the same as the name "Chae," which is pronounced "chay."

November 29, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WilliamCSt1

Yea I do try to focus on the sound more then its romaji counterpart, especially with ones like "ふ" "を" and others that sound different then how its written, but in other sources it is talked about how there will be these combination of sounds especially with R column.

Here since there isn't a discussion outside of these to break down the sounding, I believe it could lead to what people believe sounds correct but really not.

I could be splitting hairs here, but way as I look at it, if I am going to spend the time and effort to learn this. I don't want to have issue like that slow down or potentially reverse progress.

I guess my discussion can also be compared to of why it is a good idea to have numerous points of view.

I personally started with flashcards and learned each sounding for Hiragana and its characters before even trying this platform.

November 29, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jmbrill81

Just go with it - the contextual pronunciations can be frustrating, but just accept it and understand that you won't get it until you've been using it a lot and it's second nature. This won't happen unless you like move to Japan and immerse yourself in the language. Otherwise, just accept that what you will be able to learn on your own, no matter the platform, is going to be limited.

November 30, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WilliamCSt1

Yea, one of my goals is to move to Japan and live abroad indefinitely. Even if it doesn't work out I would of been able to add it to the stuff I have done.

November 30, 2018

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

Absolutely. Especially in the listening exercises where 零 is wrong but ゼロ is correct.

November 28, 2018

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

The listening exercises I basically only ever use hiragana for (even for words I know should be katakana) - for a start you can't even report that your answer is correct.  But unfortunately for some execises (e.g. in the Time lessons), it only accepts kanji for 時

November 28, 2018

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

In the listening exercises, doesn't it accept both hiragana and katakana as being equal?

With English sentences, I think Duolingo doesn't check whether you use lowercase or uppercase letters; it just wants the correct letter. And I believe it's the same with kana, that it doesn't check whether you used hiragana or katakana; it just wants the correct kana.

I'm not certain about this though. I never have the listening exercises turned on. Just interested to know whether this is correct. (I guess I could just turn them on and test it myself actually..)

November 28, 2018

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

I understand kanji can be daunting at first and that might be the reason why in the course some words in japanese are written in hiragana, some people will also prefer to see the kanji from the beginning though, so having the option to toggle it can be the way to go; hopefully with furigana or kana when you hover over it.

And that could also make the problem that Dylan_Nicholson is describing easier to solve, cause they should be able to more easily add the phrase with kanji to the correct answers.

November 30, 2018
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