How many here have achieved fluency?
I just got this and so far it seems pretty good. Already I've learned 20 words or so and a few phases (although I'm sure I'm pronouncing them horribly). However I was wondering how many people here have achieved fluency. As in, if you went to a place speaking the language you learning, could you get by perfectly fine? Just wondering how many here have achieved fluency so far, and how long it took.
On a good day and after a lot of recent listening, speaking, and reading, I'd say I have a low level of fluency in Spanish. When I'm tired and haven't done a lot of Spanish recently, I'd say I'm about a B2.
You won't achieve fluency with Duolingo alone; you'll reach A2/B1. What Duo WILL do is give you a fantastic foundation of about 1500 words and a basic knowledge of the verb tenses, so that you are ready to improve on your own by reading, watching TV/movies, listening to the radio, and speaking with others online.
you bet! I can communicate just fine with my spanish speaking friends, although I am not yet fluent. Although duolingo is not the only source you should use to learn Spanish, it is the best (in my opinion) for PRACTICING using your grammar, pronunciation and etc. Buena suerte!
I cover a primary school (year 3/4) on day a week. There happens to be a visiting student teacher from Spain in this class on day I cover. My Spanish is as good as her English. Duo lingo has been a brilliant review of the spanish I covered in high school.
I read a study yesterday that said it takes 10 000 hours to become an expert at something. It was a publication for human resources, not available to the public, or else I'd link it here.
Anyhow, apparently there are ways to cut that down to 5000 hours.... so I guess it depends on your definition of fluency, and how close to "expert" you think it is? (I know it by SME or subject matter expert)
My definition of fluency would be if you were forced to spend a week to a month in an area speaking said language and could easily talk to everyone and understand all the signs, tv, etc.
Well, that's not really fluency to be honest. I can do that now, because "talking to everybody easily" when everyone has a similar relationship to you is actually really simple, comparatively. For example, I went to school in Mexico and could after a time understand classes and talk about them in Spanish, and I could talk about basic things and order food in Spanish. Then I told my Mexican girlfriend's parents that the intent of our relationship was marriage. I'd never talked about things like character, my future plans, and, you know, marriage.
Actually that's a bad example because that conversation went really well (they said yes!). But if I had to ask someone to repair my car or fix a leak in a drain pipe, I'd be up the creek. When I started developing deeper relationships with people who didn't speak my language, I found just how rudimentary my Spanish was. I was blessed to have a good friend who was patient enough to sit with me for almost an hour over several occasions to talk and let me stumble around and help me. Here's what I learned about basic fluency (what you describe):
1: If you want to sound fluid (not fluent), get really good with conjugations. Practice them every day, even if they seem useless sometimes. I knew all the vocabulary to talk about certain topics, but I would get to a verb and stop for ten seconds fumbling over which conjugation to use. Once I could conjugate better (I'm still learning) talking got a lot easier.
2: Practice every day, and be intentional. Plan ahead what you're going to do and set mini goals. If you want to be able to have a conversation with a chef, study food and kitchen related things, then go practice with the chef. If I stayed longer I might have studied mechanics and then tried to practice at a repair shop.
3: Surround yourself with people who will build you up and keep you accountable. In my case, I had translators everywhere. I wasn't forced to learn the language. But I had a roommate who didn't speak English, and a few friends who didn't. So I made it a point to talk to them. Some weren't patient, and so I stopped trying with them until I got better.
3.5: Be confident (people help confidence if they're the right people): I wasted (not really, but it could have been better) three months just studying (using Duo/etc) and not speaking. Big mistake. Going back to point 2, if I had made it a point to apply everything I was learning in a real world setting, I would have done a lot better. I know because that's what I do now.
TL;DR: If that's the level you want, practice conjugations, be intentional with your real-world practice, surround yourself with support, and be confident.
I'm about an A2 now. So if I was dropped in the middle of Spain, I'd be fine. But you shouldn't expect to reach fluency with Duolingo. Duolingo will give you a strong foundation of the language and a lot of vocabulary, but you will still need to learn a lot more to become fluent.
By my Spanish teacher's standards, I'm fluent. Fluency in my eyes is being able to communicate with anyone about simple things, like the weather, food, family, politics, etc. I'm fairly advanced, but that's only because I learn languages so easily. Keep practicing and you'll achieve it! :D
I became fluent in french BUT it was after I moved to Quebec. However, Duolingo gave me a solid base to improve upon and I became fluent a lot faster than a lot of the newcomers that came here around the same time. At best, you will leave Duolingo as a A2/B1, I recommend sharedtalk.com to work on talking with native speakers.