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

Select the correct character(s) for "こう"...

This must be the hardest exercise I've encountered in the Japanese course...

Here are the ON readings of each of the four characters:

  • 学 = がく
  • 校 = こう (and extremely rare きょう)
  • 父 = ふ
  • 交 = こう

Where it gets even more confusing is the pronunciation audio that plays when you click them...

The audio for 交 sounds like a person saying こう. No surprises there.

The audio for 校 sounds like a person with a blocked-up nose attempting to say こう but failing... To me it sounds closer to "nnngghh" than "kou"! It's possible what it's trying to pronounce is its other ON reading (the non-jōyō reading きょう), but it doesn't sound much like it's that either...

Also, I noticed the instruction actually says "select the correct character(s)"... So, even though selecting more than one character is impossible in this exercise, with a lot of effort I managed to click both of them! :P

Imgur

However, only one of them was submitted... 交...

Guess which answer Duo wanted... Yep! 校. Not the one it pronounces clearly as "kou" but instead the one it pronounces as "nnngghh"! XD

January 4, 2019

10 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ehartz
Mod
  • 427

I think "character(s)" probably is listed in the directions for the situations in which it's asking for a kanji compound, which contains more than one character.

That said, this is the second time since I've joined the team in which someone has reported that one of these exercises has multiple correct options available, and I must confess I have no idea what the person who created these exercises was thinking. XD (Can't comment on the audio because I'm not in a place in which I can check the audio at the moment).

I'm going to disable this one for now and bring it up to the team for review.

January 4, 2019

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

Thank you for responding to this and for your efforts to improve this course! It's been really nice recently having contributors occasionally being vocal in the forums and letting everyone know a bit of what's going on. ^^

January 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Luke_5.1991

This has been fixed! It should be updated soon. This was my bad.

January 5, 2019

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

Great! Thank you for fixing this so quickly. I didn't really expect any responses, let alone within just a few hours two contributors replying and this exercise getting disabled and then fixed. Very nice. ^^

January 5, 2019

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

For anyone wondering how the audio for 交 (こう) and 校 (こう) sounded in this exercise, here are the links to their audio:

I might have been exaggerating a little by spelling that sound as "nnngghh"; but, considering they should both be saying こう and are both spoken by the same TTS voice (Mizuki), there's quite a contrast between the sounds of those two answer choices.

I'm still wondering what it was actually reading 校 as...

きょう? ぎょう? ごう? Something entirely different? Or is it actually こう too but merely a different pitch accent?

The 交 audio sounds like a falling high-low pitch accent こう. So maybe the 校 audio could be what a flat low-low pitch accent こう sounds like?

Still just sounds more like a blocked-up nose pronunciation to me, though maybe it's my hearing that is bad. :D

January 5, 2019

[deactivated user]

    Is the new tree released, or is that in the Tree 1.0?

    January 5, 2019

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

    This was just in tree 1.0.

    I believe tree 2.0 is in development. It's certainly not released yet. I don't think it's been all that long since they started work on it. Making a new tree takes a very long time.

    Are you asking because you see a kanji in my screenshot that isn't taught in tree 1.0?

    Tree 1.0 currently teaches JLPT N5 level. 学, 校, and 父 are usually listed as N5 kanji. These three kanji are already taught in tree 1.0.

    Tree 2.0 is meant to be bringing the course up to N4 level. However, 交 is actually usually listed as an N3 kanji.

    (Side note: 学, 校, and 父 are taught in the first year of elementary school in Japan; 交 is taught in the second year.)

    I don't think the presence of 交 in the answer choices list was any indication that this exercise might have been in tree 2.0. I imagine 交 won't be taught until tree 3.0. :P

    January 5, 2019

    [deactivated user]

      I have completed the tree to gold before many times, but I have never encountered that exercise even once. It seemed a little advanced, because, like you said, it had a N3 kanji and a similar one in reading to it, so I was surprised and curious. Sore dake desu.

      January 5, 2019

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

      Ah, ok. ^^

      As I mostly do Timed Practice I usually just completely skip character match and character select exercises.

      When I made this post I assumed that this exercise had been around for a long time and that I'd just somehow always skipped it until now.

      Judging from what Luke said in his comment, I'm guessing it might only have been fairly recently that he added this exercise.

      The course only graduated from beta just over seven months ago. It was around that same date that Luke joined the contributor team. So this exercise must only have been added less than last eight months ago at the very most. ^^

      January 5, 2019

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

      Update: I've now encountered an even harder question!

      Imgur

      校 (こう, "nnngghh") vs 高 (こう, "kou")

      Yes, it's nearly exactly the same as last time! The 校 kanji again, こう again, same two audio sounds again...

      What makes this one harder? This time both of those characters are JLPT N5 kanji. Both of them are taught in this course. Even if you were to know their JLPT level and even if you were to know which of these kanji are taught in this course, this time that knowledge won't even help when you're trying to work out which one it wants!

      Unfortunately I didn't get to find out which answer it wanted. I was doing Timed Practice and only just about had enough time to take a screenshot before the timer ran out.

      Since the correct answer of the earlier one that got fixed was 校, I guess it's quite likely the "correct" answer this time would have been 高? If so, then at least this time it was the one that the audio actually sounded like "kou". Maybe in this sense it might not be harder than the earlier one? :P

      Considering how 高校 (こうこう) is itself a word taught in the same skill as this exercise, it's funny how obvious it is that 高 and 校 will both have こう as a reading! XD

      January 6, 2019
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