https://www.duolingo.com/WinterSoldier.

Dreading doing Duolingo

I don't think this is quite right: I sat down at a computer and logged into duo. Pretty soon I was at the end of my rope. I try to do one skill a day, and (I used to) test out a crown level on a skill I knew. Since thats gone there is nothing to plan for or get excited about. I kept telling myself "Just three more practice sets to do before that skill is done....just three more....hang on..." Duo isn't fun anymore. I used to count the hours till I could get one. Now I can't wait to get off. Duolingo used to be the high point in my day. Now its something I have to do...if I wanted more work I'd get it. Anyhow...who am I to complain? Its not like they are selling my data to facebook or bombarding me with adds right?

Thanks for reading...now time to tackle that skill....

March 11, 2019

43 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/alpha3099

Just a friendly reminder that you DO NOT have to use Duolingo for any reason, unless you are a student and required to by class. If you do not want to do it, that is perfectly fine. Humans have wants and desires.

However, if you do not want to do it, you simply shouldn’t. By forcing yourself you are harming yourself in two ways. You are making it harder for yourself to learn by viewing it as a chore. The mind shuts itself out to what it is experiencing and makes it harder to absorb new things. And Second, you are cheating yourself out of fun you may be having.

I would recommend that you either take a break and do other things that are fun to you, or attempt to reframe your mind using some other tool available to you (crowns, less xp, outside assistance) so that you can make your own experience fun again.

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/ChevyBarnes05
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I think they mean they need to, as in a desire or want so strong it becomes a necessity. They probably meant that they want to learn Spanish, but find it boring and not as fun to do. I felt that way a while ago. I just made myself a challenge and have stuck by it.

March 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/siaure
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But... testing out is still a thing that you can do??

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Surl.
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Only if you have 20 lingots spare to buy it!....

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/siaure
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Is that some new app update? Bc I tested out 20 levels on the browser version today and I wasn't charged any lingots for it...

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Tronni22
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Not sure if it's like that on the web version yet, but you have to pay 20 lingots to test out on Android.

March 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Sharon275517
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Looking at your tree, you've got many crowns to level 5, while you still have half the tree left to unlock to crown level 1.

Instead of trying to get skills to crown level 5, you might reorient to getting the whole tree unlocked (to crown level 1), perhaps doing more lessons in previous skills when duome.eu shows strength weakening: https://duome.eu/WinterSoldier./progress .

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/_ClaireAnna_

Everyone has their own hobbys. While some may like learning a language, others may like to write or shoot hoops. Every second wasted grumbling is a second of fun you lose. If you don't want to do Duolingo, you don't have to. One way you could learn happily is turning everything into a game do you know any bilingual friends? Well, If you learn that language, you can have secret conversations without parents finding out.

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/redneckray

Beginning musicians often hate playing scales. Beginning tennis player get bored practicing service. Beginning ballerinas hate being corrected when doing basic stances.

Expert musicians do them every day. Expert tennis players pay a lot of money to have a coach improve their service. Ballerinas are quite pleased to do the basic exercises under the guidance of the best artists available.

If you want to be better follow the experts.

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Myah061

Well, it seems that you are getting higher in levels. And the higher you get the longer it will take. So you shouldn't dread it. Because you had to have expected for learning to get harder.

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/WinterSoldier.

Its not the hardness....its the fact that the only motivating aspect was stripped from it last week.

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/alpha3099

I do not see this statement as accurate.

The thing that you felt was the motivating factor for you was lessened. XP certainly was not stripped, because we are all still getting it.

There are still plenty of motivating factors. Crowns. XP (at smaller amounts). Learning a language for fun. Learning a language for work. Learning a language for school. Learning a language because you are interested in someone and want to communicate with them. Learning a language as a competition with friends. And i can keep going.

I am not trying to tell you how or why to learn a language. Do as you please. But the only motivating factor was not taken away. There are plenty of motivating factors that other people are using to do anything in life.

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/AndesSky
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Well said. I'd just like to add that in the diverseness among humankind, living things really, some feel more strongly attached to a thing, a rule, a routine, a method, and have a separation anxiety much more than others do. I'd offer that lessening attachment solves a lot of unhappiness problems; and increasing flexibility/adaptability/creativeness creates lively motivation -very much so in this case too.

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Jileha
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Then maybe you should take a break and a step back to re-evaluate your goals.

If you really are interested in learning languages, then try to find other aspects within or outside the game to motivate you. It will just be at a slower pace. Personally, I get much more satisfaction from finishing a skill the “normal” way instead of testing out.

If you can’t get excited again about DL, find other ressources. Read books, watch YT videos, etc. Spanish, at least, should have plenty of other ressources.

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Myah061

Well, the power of XP was being abused. And made things, might I say WAY TOO EASY. So I think that this new update of reducing how much you get is a good thing! Things have changed alot! On Duolingo. If you have been here for as long as I have you'll learn to adapt. You can't expect it to always be the same.

Personally, I think this change is for the better honestly. Makes it more of a challenge. And I love me a challenge!

Anyways, happy learning. And I hope you'll love Duolingo as much as I do, again.

~Myah061

March 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/xbreezydeer

I find this too. I still enjoy learning, but as time goes by and lessons get harder the initial excitement of learning a new language dies down, and the realization of the time and effort it takes makes me lose motivation.

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Judit294350

This is normal. This is why people who have experience in learning languages (as opposed to starting learning languages) recommend choosing a language you have a passion for. It will get hard; it will get boring. But the goal - learning the language so you can talk with your grand-parents, read history from the "other side", understand song lyrics, write poetry, translate Harry Potter - that keeps you going.

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/WinterSoldier.

@Judit, thanks! Will try to find something more interesting do do....maybe read El Gran Gatsby

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/alpha3099

I would argue it is Common with everything. New job. New song. New car. The excitement for something goes down over time naturally.

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/xbreezydeer

Thank you for this

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/diego201978

sound like first world problem

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/AishahSaza
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I feel you. I was so bumped out during the weekend to see my XPs at such a measly number. It used to be so easy hitting thousands of XP in a day but now i could barely hit a hundred! But I kept doing the tests and even doubled my effort, and after a while it didn't feel so bad. I love languages and dream of being a polyglot so I will study no matter what. You shouldn't force yourself to do what you don't want to. Learning should be fun, and I hope you'll find yours soon :)

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/WinterSoldier.

@AishahSaza, thanks....I'll try

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/RomanticRose

I feel like I'm dreading Duolingo too. I keep doing it because it's such a great resource though. It'll carry me through the beginning stage, which is my goal right now: to be intermediate as soon as possible.

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/GreenAM
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I hear you. I used to be able to test out on the easier stuff and get full credit for it since I'm tackling both getting to level 25 in all my trees and earning my golden trees. The sharp cut in XP when testing out and the comments about not being a serious student, being a cheater, being motivated by XP only, not loving languages, etc. are spoiling the Duolingo experience for me. I find myself not wanting to come on anymore. The only thing keeping me here is the completion of my trees. I'm halfway thinking about leaving the site after all four are golden. I love Duolingo and learning different languages, but I can find other resources to learn a language. I don't have to stay on a site where either the company or the community makes someone like me feel unwelcome and unwanted.

March 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Laykilibre
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There certainly has been a lot more of that lately - all the "well, you shouldn't care about XP/levels/crowns/testing out etc." Similar to the tired old saw about how day streaks "don't matter." None of that has to matter, to any given user. And yet many of us do care about some or all of those things, FOR OURSELVES. I couldn't be less fussed about anyone else's day streak or number of crowns. I don't use leagues or leaderboards, and although I used to belong to a couple of the old clubs, I couldn't have cared less if I "won" every week or any week. I'm just happy that so many people are taking the opportunity to learn languages, to whatever extent and for whatever reasons.

March 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/WinterSoldier.

@GreenAM that is exactly how I feel

March 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Mirandak122

Don't worry! Just hang in there and you will be rewarded for your hard work. Just keep thinking about all the benefits of knowing a new language, such as understanding lyrics that you couldn't before, or helping other people with it. Also, you don't have to do a new skill every day. I would recommend staying on one skill till the second or third level, then start one new skill a little at a time while you finish the first one, and so on... :)

March 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/whispmelle

Are you trying to get every lesson to level 5 before you move on to the next one? Doing all 40 lessons from 4 to 5 in one sitting? That's the kind of thing that will burn you out fast.

For me, my goal was to get every lesson plan to level 3 over the course of 3 to 6 days. Do 3-4 lessons a day (about 15-20 new words). By the end of the week (or less), you've gone through the lessons for every word 6 times and should remember most of them. Then move on.

I didn't consider myself having completed the tree until I had every skill to level 3 (including the last one, which meant I waited several days before announcing to everyone that I had finished) - but I had none over that. Now, I'm going back through to review everything and get the whole tree to gold. At this point, I don't care about the XP change so much, because it's about making sure I remember what I've learned. Some lessons, I remember everything. Some, I've had to repeat each "set" of lessons two or three times before they stick again.

I used to have my XP goal set to 50. Now, I just have it at 10 because some days, I don't have the energy to do that many lessons.

Mostly, though, if it's not fun and feels like a chore, you're probably doing something wrong. Ask yourself why you started learning the language in the first place, and if you still want to learn it for the same reason. Figure out why you're so hard-set on continuing the way you are if you don't like it. Take a break if you need to. Find a way to make learning a language fun again. It's not a race, and not a competition (no matter what Duo is trying to make us think ATM).

March 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Shakeira1218

I feel the same way. I've recently fallen into a pit of just doing my daily 20xp and nothing more, and I don't even do a lesson, I do a practice of a skill that I've already done. I need to pick back up on the lessons, but I just haven't been able to.

May we both find the answer to our problem, Shakeira

March 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/bookrabbit
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Imagine xp points are now worth ten times what they used to be wirth -which they actually are as now no one can acquire them without doing some actual work, and think of those twenty xp as 200 so you can feel fulfilled by them the same way you used to. It is completely possible to reframe things this way and is an important life skill. Moaning only makes you feel worse. So add a mental zero and be happy! Simples!

March 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Lola651219

Practice makes perfect

March 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/hanspersson
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There has been no change what so ever in the possibility to test out of a crown skill.

March 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Laykilibre
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Nobody said there was. The issue is that a motivational factor has been removed, suddenly and without warning, for many of us who have enjoyed that aspect of Duo. Whether we “should” be motivated by XP (or rather, by progressing toward higher levels, for which one needs XP) is irrelevant. And yes, of course we still can progress, but sometimes at an unnecessarily slow rate. If I want to go to California, I COULD walk, but why would I when there are cars and planes.

There is no good reason why people who know the material shouldn’t be able to test out for a fair reward. I probably wasn’t going to do it very often henceforth anyway, because I’ve reached the point in German and probably will soon in Italian where I probably can’t actually do it successfully and therefore the slog is going to be the way to go. But that’s just me, and the general point remains: Maybe it wasn’t the best strategy to take away a lot of people’s fun to try and stop some others from cheating (which the cheaters WILL find some way to do).

March 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/hanspersson
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Except the OP: "I try to do one skill a day, and (I used to) test out a crown level on a skill I knew. Since thats gone there is nothing to plan for or get excited about."

As usual, it all comes down to the definition of "fair". You think they should get the same amount of XP as they would for doing all the lessons. Others think they should get XP for approximate time spent on Duo, which is what is happening now.

In effect, the current system makes the interesting thing to check for the language level of a user the number of crowns. This was true before the change as well, since the old immersion users had broken the XP system already,

March 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Laykilibre
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Yes, I do think that proving you know the material should be rewarded with the same # of XP no matter whether you test out (entirely or partway through) or do one lesson at a time. Why reward unnecessary slogging with far more XP ("je suis une fille" x 200 repetitions, no thanks) than one can obtain by proving one already knows it in a timelier fashion, and then moving on to harder material/other languages? It's supposed to be about the knowledge, as we are often told, and not about the XP. So why take the XP and thus the ability to gain levels in a more time-efficient manner away from us if they "don't matter"?

But putting that aside, "there is nothing to plan for or get excited about" is pretty much my point. It was an important motivational tool for many people. Many people had set goals for themselves that they suddenly now cannot meet without putting in tons more time than they had planned for and/or than they may actually have available. For those who don't think levels or XP matter to them, this change does not affect them.

If Duo wanted to make this change (which I still think is counterproductive, still leaving "fair" out of it for the moment), they ought to have warned people. Annoying many people who are taking it seriously, who are trying to learn, and who aren't the cheaters is not a good strategy. If it had been 20XP for testing out all along, it would still be silly but at least predictable. Yanking the motivational reward out from under people is both silly and ill-advised.

Immersion had been a major skew factor, no doubt, and one can make a valid argument that the XP have been wildly inconsistently awarded over the years. If for example they now want to make the test-out feature more difficult by, say, adding more questions (I think it's around 20 now?), especially for the easier skills, then that's super - just give a little warning. I am talking here about those of us who don't know or care how many crowns, level 25s, XP, etc. someone else has - we are/have been trying to meet our own goals on our own timeline, and some warning would have been nice if they were going to take away a tool that we had come to appreciate and use. Doesn't affect me personally that much (a little, probably, and clearly I disapprove but I'll survive) but it's just really bad judgment. Frustrating good people drives some of those good people away. And they're supposedly doing an IPO next year - is this supposed to help that?

March 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/redskiez
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I totally understand. I feel like I have to scramble to finish doing Duolingo lessons because I like to keep the streak going. If that's gone, I completely slack off and don't do Duolingo for months or even a year. I really want to learn Norwegian but with the recent mess of it all, I just completely lost my motivation and it feels like a chore that I have to do. I don't even think I'm learning anything anymore.

March 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/IanC798471
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You probably need to change your method somehow. I was annoyed at the XP update, merely because it moved a goal of getting to level 25 further out. But rolling up the tree is another goal, and it remains possible by testing out.

My method is to do 5 lessons every day in a given language. When Crown level 2 is an option, I can try to test out. If I fail, I then do a lesson a day in that one until it is done. Same thing up to 5. Each of the 5 lessons is at a different crown level, so I am working down to the bottom of the tree, strengthening basics, and revisiting learned material. Testing out is mostly to avoid otherwise useless repetition.

That means many days, I do finish a Crown level, but some days it just isn't there because I don't know the material well enough.

I also don't do it in one sitting. Each lesson is ~5 minute break in other activity, so it sort of functions as a reward.

The Xp cap is annoying, but in the end it relates to levels and leaderboards. I don't care about leaderboards, and while I care about levels, they are not really representative of anything.

March 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/chromalogue
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I'm furious about the update too. I didn't get a proper weekend, because instead of testing out of a couple of skills, I had to go through and do everything separately.

I have a method for tackling boredom on the weekdays, when I generally work on languages I'm not very good in. I open all the skills I want to work in at once, in different browser windows, and periodically switch between skills and languages. But it doesn't work very well on the weekends, when I know that all the other things I could be doing are more fun than listening to the owl mock my filthy peasant French.

March 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Sharon275517
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You had to go through and do everything separately? Why? Because running up your XP was more important to you than having a proper weekend?

March 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/chromalogue
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I'm not interested in running anything up; I have a set minimum, and I'll change it if I have to but I would really prefer not to lower the bar for myself because of someone else's decisions.

March 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Sharon275517
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Thanks for explaining. I’m not sure of what mix of lessons vs. test outs you usually do. To me it wouldn’t seem like lowering the bar to change your XP goal proportionately to how the test out XP has been lowered.

For example, my daily goal is 20XP, but if Duolingo changed lessons from 10 XP to 4 XP, I’d lower my goal proportionately to 8 XP.

Are there other factors in how you value the XP rewards that makes this kind of approach seem like lowering the bar, rather than a valid rebalancing, for you?

March 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/chromalogue
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Usually I do lessons during the week, and test-outs on languages I know well during the weekend. I was testing out of Danish, too, because I needed the whole thing fast and it was so close to Norwegian.

I guess if I have to lower my goals I will, but right now I'm trying to use language learning to meet some professional goals and quiet the little inner voice that says I must not be trying hard enough. Having a consistent goal and sticking to it seems to be the best way for me to do both of those things. And I know if I drop my goal for weekends, then I will find other excuses to drop it--conferences, migraines, busy days, sick days, burnout days, deadlines--and I just won't get things done. I'm still hoping that they'll rethink the XP cap, so it doesn't come to that.

March 13, 2019
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