1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Duolingo
  4. >
  5. Mandarin Chinese


Mandarin Chinese

Will Chinese language come along sometime soon? I would wish very much to be engaged in creating the Chinese part!!!

May 3, 2013



The team is not planning to add more languages. They are going to make it possible for the learners to add languages, but this is not coming very soon as it is not yet in the works.


I think the fact it would be hard to implement and even if it was perfect it would probably take twice the hours to learn the equivalent amount of an European language, would undoubtedly lead to a lot of unhappy people, very few even completing the skill tree and even fewer people capable of translating Chinese text.


It need not, if the learning was conducted in Pinyin (presented with the characters alongside as an optional extra). For immersion, going from characters to Pinyin could be done via software (there is a finite number of characters) and the pinyin presented alongside the characters.

Actually - Mandarin is very easy compared to European languages in its grammatical structure. The characters are considered hard to learn because they are pictograms (1 syllable = 1 picture, some suggestions to sound with similar characters but nothing regular). And the spoken language is a little bit tricky because it is tonal. I think German with its tenses, cases and nouns with gender is more difficult!!


well, actually there's another great way of typing chinese characters called "wubizixing(五笔字型)",by using the simplest graphs that form thousands of others to "spell" a graph.I think this will be very powerful if one begins his learning through the acquisition of characters


and it was not quite right when you mentioned"1 syllable = 1 picture",it's one character one picture


I agree Anon. If you get a handle on the tonal qualities, Chinese isn't that complicated when you learn off the Pinyin. This is what other language sites and references do. As far as learning the symbols, I think Duolingo's method of document translation is the perfect medium for these type of languages because most of the online translators are absolutely horrible.


All these things together make it pretty hard to believe that Mandarin would be a good language for users to add by crowdsourcing. It would probably need some more serious, coordinated planning.

Learn a language in just 5 minutes a day. For free.