https://www.duolingo.com/TheLearnerOfFre

The vocab tab

Duolingo used too have vocabulary tab that showed each user how many words that they know. This was very much helpful, but Duolingo removed this in January,2014. Many users find this upsetting because all you know is how many words but not what the words are. I think that if enough people upvote this document that the Duolingo team might consider adding the vocab tab back to their website. I am very thank full for all the efforts that the Duolingo team has made too let us have a fun yet educational experience learning a second language or becoming bilingual.
THANK YOU DUOLINGO!

4 years ago

31 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/killary45
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The reason given for its removal was "After a lot of testing, we found that in its current form [the vocabulary feature] wasn’t helping you learn a language faster or stick with the language you are learning longer."

I wonder if this was based on a misunderstanding of the site statistics. I suspect that the Duo team found that people who used the Vocab tab often made slower progress than those who did not, and were rather more likely to drop out. The conclusion they could have drawn from this testing was that the Vocab tab was counter-productive and should be scrapped at once, and that it would be better to have no such feature until a new version without the defects of the old one could be created. If that was their thinking then I am sure that they were wrong.

Let me explain. I am using Duo to study four languages, all of which I have studied before. Of the four I know a lot more French and Italian than I do German and Spanish. I have therefore been able to progress faster in French and Italian, making fewer mistakes, and I rarely had to use the Vocab feature for those languages. In German and Spanish I progress more slowly and make more mistakes. When it was available I used the Vocab feature for German and Spanish quite frequently.

If someone analysed my record they would see that there was a strong correlation between use of the Vocabulary feature and poor progress. They could look at my French and Italian performance and say, "Look how well he is doing without using the Vocab tab". They could look at my German and Spanish track and say, "See how relying on the Vocab tab is slowing him down." But of course this would be drawing a false conclusion. I was not slower in German and Spanish because of the Vocab tab; I used the Vocab tab because I was a slow learner in those languages.

I have no doubt that if Duo had produced a graph showing the average weekly progress of learners against the number of times they used the Vocab tab, they would find a significant negative correlation. But correlation is not causation.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/maddyis7

What an entirely logical response. Bravo.

"Damned lies and statistics" and all that.

All I know, was that the vocab section gave all who used it a depth of strength on words they were inconfident in.

This Vocab Topic has been brought up so many times over the past few months, that you'd think it would get boring. But I believe, the sheer number of posts on this topic, is the one statistic that should be paid attention to.

I know the team have talked about the many hours of re-programming involved. But one day, soon, the discussion pages will be full of comments on the hopefully Newly Improved Daz. (I mean Vocab Tab) :)

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/valleygirl69

What an excellent comment! Have a lingot.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/killary45
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Thanks to everyone who has given me a lingot. I have never been so popular! But pride comes before a fall so I suppose I will soon get my comeuppance.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/S0R0USH
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That is probably a very logical speculation, but we'd have to hear from the Duo staff to be sure. But yeah, this is why statistics should be taken with a grain of salt... A drug may work on mice very well versus a control group of mice that don't use the drug, but it could give you a heart attack if you are human (this actually happened, no joke) because of trivial reasons (that are not so trivial after all)! Unfortunately, this is one of the flaws of animal testing because it indirectly generalizes that a mice's physiology works the same way as human physiology.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/niklasmf
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Nicely explained, but I can't imagine that they made that kind of mistake. After all, statistical analysis is very much at the heart of Duolingo. No, they probably compared users who had the Vocab tab with those who didn't have it.

That said, I don't understand why they removed the Vocab feature either. It can't have been that bad for progress, and many people obviously liked it.
It could also make the Immersion section more attractive (for me at least) by including words encountered while translating.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tonyph17
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Silence is very worrying. Please Luis let all users have an honest update.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Melaninja
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Never give up!

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/TheLearnerOfFre

I will never give up!

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/TomHilton1
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Never surrender!

/galaxyquest

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Mikey89

I agree. I really enjoyed seeing what word I knew and what my strength was in each word.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Bill-Roca

While we wait check out Memrise

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MadsHG
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Otherwise, Quizlet is also a good source to find Duolingo vocabulary lists for each language. Just search for Duolingo or Duolingo + the language you're learning :-)

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CatherinGregory
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The issue I have with a duolingo quizlet is this: DL says I know 1183 Words. The largest quizlet I've seen after a search for Duolingo Italian is less than 100 words.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MadsHG
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I use this one to see the vocabulary from the italian course: http://quizlet.com/class/657397/ I don't think it covers all the words, but still a big part of them :-)

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/D_O_M_O
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Yes, it was supposed to be back a month ago...

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/TheLearnerOfFre

Just wanted to thank everyone for all their upvotes to my discussion forum!

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Peremptor

I started with Duolingo directly after they removed it and wondered how the heck I should be able to learn a language without a vocabulary. Then somebody made a script in Greasemonkey, using the old system that had still been somewhere on the servers, but last month they also removed this, so now I've got about nothing to keep track.

At the end of May I asked someone who looked like someone "official" but got no reply.

I really don't know this strange way of programming. Normally, you program things in the background, on your testing machine. If everything works fine, you upload it to the server. I never heard about removing a feature from the server first, then programming and testing and maybe after half a year you upload it to the server...

The most important features for learning a language are for me:

  • fun
  • vocabulary
  • grammar

Actually Duolingo only gives me the fun. And only if I'm at the computer, I get a tiny bit of grammar.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/sabanehal

I agree with you CharisSharp and Killary45 and I totally support your stand. Being in 11th grade I find it hard to balance my time between school studies and French learning. It was quite natural for me to miss practice for a few days, but when I miss practice for a long time(like now) I find it really stupid to continue the lessons from where I left. It's not that I need to repeat but I forget the meanings of many words. The vocabulary tab always came to my aid and in one day I was able to revise all words and continue my lessons. This was very encouraging but I guess my poor performance may have been seen with its relation to vocab usage. Another benefit of the vocab tab was that I could see the verb conjugation clearly. And this feature had helped me understand what conjugation is altogether. In the verbs skill I was bombarded with so many words. I am certain I don't remember more than half of the lot. Sadly I will have to repeat the lesson and delay my progress that is already at a snail's pace. I really hope the duo team listens and responds, I need the vocabulary very badly and it's absence is a hindrance to my progess.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/valleygirl69

Bon courage! Keep the faith! Don't know if this idea will help you, but my approach has been to copy and paste questions and answers into an Excel spread sheet, with tabs for various lessons or groups of lessons. I started doing this when Duo axed vocab feature, and it's proven very useful for reviewing. It takes extra time, but worth it to me.

Have a lingot.

Also, some lessons or groups of lessons in French are totally discouraging (at least to me) b/c there is so much info / so many lessons everything starts to look the same to me. I just grit it out.

I know that people have various ways of learning verbs. But, I have a copy of "501 French Verbs" (readily available) and it has verb conjugations, but also a lot of guidance in Intro and appendices. You might want to check it out.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/prky
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I agree that some lessons and groups of lessons nearer the end of the tree are discouraging because there are so many words...Some of these "skill levels" might benefit by being made shorter - that might keep the interest level higher.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/valleygirl69

Yes! thank you for your comment. I agree with what you say. Earlier today I was on the part of the French tree where there are three sets of lessons in a row. Objects, Adj 3, and Places. And, all have a lot of words. It really is a huge chunk of material to absorb before moving on.

edit to above: p.s. thanks for giving me the opportunity to vent and blow off some steam, even though that wasn't your intention. ;)

Back when I first started on this "bar", I copied and pasted all of the words into an excel file, for reference. I did this some time in May. At first I started out switching between the three topics (above), just for the sake of variety. Then I decided for whatever reason (can't remember now) that I had to slog through them from left to right.

So, today, I was closing in on finishing Places. And, damn! Now there were 10 lessons in Places, instead of the nine that were there when I started this row.

And, I had finished lesson 9. Which I thought would be the end of places. But, oh, no, more words.

I was just so aggravated! Like what? I get thrown another batch of places, when I really really want to slog through this to get to the Verb tenses. I was so discouraged I was muttering to myself that I should give up on Duo. I've been through this "so many words" thing on other lines of lessons many times before, and sucked it up, but suddenly more words?! Another lesson?

You say: Some of these "skill levels" might benefit by being made shorter - that might keep the interest level higher.

That is a much more polite statement than the one I would have mustered earlier today!

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/sigmacharding
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Hopefully when the vocabulary section returns it will have some sort of book marking function for tricky words. Perhpas the new system will be a little bit like memrise? Seria genial!

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/richardchyan

It's never coming back. I think we should accept it now . tear

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/I.m.Geniza

I BET YOU ALL 2 lingots THAT DUOLINGO WILL COME OUT WITH THE VOCAB TAB AFTER JUNE!

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/L2TheK

Has anyone made a list of all of the words and their translations? I know someone posted a list to 4Shared, but it was only the first 10 or so sections worth I believe.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MasoMeese
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Bump

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Jesuslovesu

I hope DL releases the new vocab tab soon. For now I'm using Quizlet which is a poor substitute. Also I'd like to state for the record that I love kittens and rainbows, and super cute puppie-wuppie doggy-woggies.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CesarPitru
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1 liek = 1 rispekt <5

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Jesuslovesu

Vocab tab is back. I think they are testing it as some people have it and some people don't.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/EdithOSB

I've been using the Words tab that came back. But I'm finding some very strange "definitions" on some of the cards. Some seem like they might be unusual second (or fifth) meanings. Others just don't look right - and when I look up the French word in Reverso or another dictionary, the supposed-English translation is there. Tonight I got "apprends" and the translation was "I/you am teaching" where I expected "I/you learn"

There's no button for reporting a potential error. It's tough - I can't decide whether to try to learn these definitions or not.

All told, though, I really do like the Words tab. It's a great way to refresh a lot of vocabulary in a short time.

4 years ago
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