Duolingo vs. Rosetta Stone
I like Duolingo much better than Rosetta Stone.I tells me what I've done wrong.
I also like Duolingo much better than Rosetta Stone.
Duolingo teaches me a language basically the same way I learn English (my first language) in school.
Duolingo's coins and streak achievement are a great incentive that keep me coming back every day, even when I don't feel like studying.
Duolingo has a great community.
Duolingo doesn't cost five hundred dollars. (Neither did Rosetta Stone when I used it for school many years ago)
I could think of lots of other good points about Duolingo. It's probably the best language course I have used to date and I have used a lot of them.
I wrote a lengthy post related to it on my blog recently.
It's a long read so the short story is that I like both products a lot. After finishing the Spanish tree, I can say that, although excellent, DuoLingo...is not quite enough. Because DuoLingo basically abuses cognates, there's a lot of very common vocabulary that you won't encounter. Similarly, the grammar skills at the very end of the tree are anemic. The subjunctive in particular has only four lessons total for arguably the hardest Spanish skill to learn for an English speaker. These gaps are why it's a good idea to use two different sources so that they can reinforce each other and cover each other's gaps, which is why I'll be using DuoLingo and Rosetta Stone simultaneously in tandem in my future studies.
I use both as well, although I have to say that DuoLingo is a lot more fun and motivating! Your comment on cognates is interesting as I thought it was just me that felt DuoLingo used a lot and I mean a lot of cognates. Perhaps because it is a bit easier to remember cognates giving students a somewhat inflated sense of success? You are correct in that a lot of very common and, I might add, essential vocabulary is missing.
I haven't reached the subjunctive in the Spanish tree but I am quite familiar with how it's used. It's a bear to learn which is why entire books are written on the subjunctive.
Native speakers vs a computer generated voice, for me, is one of the main strengths of RS. Both programs have their strengths and weaknesses which, as you suggested, makes for a good learning tandem. Duo is a relatively new language learning application backed by an unsurpassed team of developers and language experts who are very open to the user community's suggestions. RS not so much. Perhaps the worst customer service I have encountered. Let's just say....they are pretty set in their ways! The sense of community is non-existent in the Rosetta Stone world. I much prefer to hang here at Duo!
I have always been of the firm belief that you cannot learn a language fluently from one single course no matter how good it is. Perhaps, one day a course will prove me wrong. We will see. But I have used just about every language course out there and there is not a single one that I would have used alone without supplementing material from somewhere else.
I don't have Rosetta Stone (anymore) but I use Memrise, LiveMocha, Spanish Television, Spanish radio, Spanish podcasts, Spanish newspapers, and pretty much whatever I can get my hands on for practice.
On my language resource blog http://www.destinyslanguagelearningcorner.blogspot.com there are quite a few courses that are reviewed and I have used all of them.
I like Duolingo much better than Rosetta Stone. Duolingo teaches me a language basically the same way I learn English (my first language) in school. Duolingo's coins and streaks are a great incentive that keep me coming back every day, even when I don't feel like studying. Versus Rosetta Stone is colorless, boring, and harder to understand, making it extremely less exciting and motivating. On top of all of this Rosetta Stone costs our school lots of money, hundreds of dollars, versus duolingo is free. Therefore making duolingo not only a student favorite, but a teacher and administrator favorite. Therefore I prefer duolingo over Rosetta Stone anyday. It’s a win win.