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Use of Vosotros

My friend and I were recently discussing the Spanish course and realized that the "vosotros" form of verbs was largely ignored by Duolingo. Although the course is focused more on Latin American Spanish (which is completely fine), I believe that learning the usage of the vosotros is critical to translating documents because if a learner were to come across a text from Spain, some conjugations would seem foreign to them and reduce the accuracy of the translations.

July 12, 2013



This goes to what I've said before, really - it would be nice (as a feature down the road) to have 'branches' off the main tree for forms only used in some regions that are still correct in a grammar sense.

Maybe when user-defined content is possible. :)


Agreed. I learned Spanish in Spain a while back and am using this as a refresher, but I keep running into problems. For instance, 'ordenador' is the word I know for computer, but I get gigged on it.

But what there is is still nice. No complaints, just wishes.


I like this because I really do not want to have to learn vosotros. I tried learning it when taking spanish but since I don't ever use it, it doesn't stick in my head.


Are there any other major differences?


Not really. For you plural Spaniards use vosotros (informal) and ustedes (formal), while Latinos only use ustedes (both formal and informal). Note that "vosotros" has its own conjugations in all moods and tenses, and also its own system of pronouns. So you need to learn quite some things to correctly use it. Because Spaniards also use "ustedes", you can use that and they'll understand.

As mentioned above, in the south of South America, and certain regions of Central America, people use "vos" instead of "tú". "vos" has its own verb conjugation for present indicative and imperative (both pretty similar to the "vosotros" conjugation), but the rest its conjugations are the same as for "tú".

Apart from that there isn't much difference. There is a of course clearly recognizable difference in accent and some difference in vocabulary, but my experience is that all Spanish speakers will understand both Peninsular and American Spanish, with exception of some really regional terms. The things you learn here at duolingo you can use in every Spanish-speaking country, they'll understand you.


So what would happen if a Latin American person went to Spain with his/her family and was addressed using vosotros conjugations. Would they be able to understand perfectly?


Yes. They themselves wouldn't use the vosotros form, but they generally know it exists (from books, TV).

I once asked a Dominican friend of mine about it. She said: "we never use that, and if I had to talk like that, I would have to think really hard".


There are some vocabulary differences between Latin American Spanish and Spain Spanish (ie computadora = ordenador, carro = coche, jugo = zumo, etc.). However, they aren't too major and, to my knowledge, using conjugations for vosotros is the only major grammatical difference between the two.


In Argentina, people use "vos" instead "tu or usted", and that changes the verbs conjugation. For example: "Tu tienes" is "vos tenés" ,"tu persigues" is "vos perseguís" and the accent is annoying sometimes xD


Is Latin American vs. Spain Spanish comparable to American English vs. British English? As in, different accents, some different pronunciation, and a few different words for things, but able to be easily understood by someone who speaks the opposite?


Yes. Those two situations are very comparable.


I think it is probably very important for people to learn as much grammar as possible of a language and how to properly communicate. Maybe they could have vosotros as an optional lesson book on the spanish map so that people who are interested may complete it on their own ;)


Maybe something you could "buy" with lingots. Those two categories have been the same forever...


Come on Duolingo. Isn't it about time you added this form of the verb. For me it's like only learning 3/4 of the verbs. Here in Spain it is used a lot more than ustedes.


4 years later and no change, and Duolingo keeps asking me to upgrade!!!


Yes, I think there should be at least one (optional?) skill for "vosotros".


Shouldn't this be in the Spanish section of Discussion?


Why on earth is Duolingo so bad with this issue? It is not a minor problem for language use but it a minor for for Duolingo. It's really lazy of Duo. This needs to be fixed.


That is one of the reasons I gave up on Duolingo.

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