Hi all, I'm relatively new to this so was just wondering if there is a way to check what level of fluency I'm at. In the past I think you would told if you were 5% fluent or more. Hope this makes sense and appreciate any insight.
It stopped telling people, as it was a fictional number!
Duolingo courses vary by language from taster to beginner - at the end of one of the most comprehensive Duolingo courses, the very best you could achieve is equivalent to A1/A2 in the CEFR* scheme - i.e. not even intermediate. Indeed, even that does require additional work on writing, speaking and listening using other resources - Duolingo covers the content for those levels in terms of vocabulary and grammar, but is very poor at giving sufficient experience in using what you have learned comprehensively.
The council of Europe (who define and own the CEFR assessment model) define fluency of an A1/A2 user as:
A2: Fluency: Can make him/herself understood in very short utterances, even though pauses, false starts and reformulation are very evident.
A2: Interaction: Can answer questions and respond to simple statements. Can indicate when he/she is following but is rarely able to understand enough to keep conversation going of his/her own accord.
A1: Fluency: Can manage very short, isolated, mainly pre-packaged utterances, with much pausing to search for expressions, to articulate less familiar words, and to repair communication.
A1: Interaction: Can ask and answer questions about personal details. Can interact in a simple way but communication is totally dependent on repetition, rephrasing and repair.
When you look at how Duo teaches, it is unsurprising that it cannot get you past the repetition of stock phrases and up to a level where you can start to converse freely and build your own sentences .
The fluency meter went away about a year and a half ago. It is probably for the best. I remember once seeing that I was "68% fluent" in Portuguese, but when I watched Brazilian shows on Netflix I know that I could not understand two-thirds of the dialogue. Probably not even 20% of it. It was an interesting gimmick, but I think it might have been misleading people. Think about it: if you completed the French course and had all all your little eggs golden (pre-"crowns"), you would have been "100% fluent" in French by duolingo standards. Do you think you were ready to host a prime-time variety program on French television? You can learn everything duolingo teaches and not be prepared for that. More importantly, fluency is like pregnancy: You're either fluent or you're not. You can't be a little bit fluent. You can be proficient. They probably should have called it a proficiency meter. But even then it would have probably been misleading for many users.
DL's old "fluency" level was complete rubbish. Even when you complete the whole of the course you will be nowhere near fluent. In fact if you consider speaking as a measure of fluency, there is no real practice in DL.
If you want to see how far through the course you are you can see on Duome - https://duome.eu/Sandra196965/progress - here you see you have 50 of a total of 792 crowns.
Incidentally, it is best not to take each skill to level 5 in a short time. Try this - https://blog.duolingo.com/whats-the-best-way-to-learn-with-duolingo/
I remember something like that a while ago!
Duolingo won't get anyone to true fluency, but it is a good start. I believe that the French course will probably get you anywhere from a high A1 to a low B1 fluency on the CEFR scale, depending on how effectively you use it. To maximise your learning, I would suggest using the hovering method if you aren't already.
There are plenty of free online tests for French fluency that you could search for if you're interested in knowing your current level. Bon apprentissage !