My impression of timed practice
I did timed practice several times, and found it to be not helpful at all, because it only goes part way through the exercises, penalizes any contemplation which is helpful for learning, and focuses entirely on speed. I used to type quite a bit so it is easy for me to go through very quickly, but taking my time is much more helpful for my learning.
What I wonder is how long each exercise takes to complete, and how much my accuracy has improved. My longest exercise ever was 75 questions, and there were several others over 50, but I don't know how long they took. My reviews average 21 now, and most of them are less.
Here are two ideas that I think would be helpful for timed practice.
- Show the time and accuracy at the end of each exercise;
- Show the previous time and accuracy during subsequent reviews.
These would show our improvements and give us more motivation for progressions.
I don't know how you end up with 75 questions or even 50.
In timed exercises I get up to 20 questions and my again is to answer all those 20 questions correctly without running out of time. I actually helps improve mental agility which you need for real time conversations. I do love it. If I do not get 19 or 20 in timed exercise, I will run the timed exercise again and again until I get it right. That sometimes means a lot of exercise sessions.
Now it does not give opportunity of reflection on each wrong answer or allow you to go through the discussion to see if there were other accepted answers etc. But it allows at the end to see which ones you have answered correctly and which ones not. As an enhancement, I suggested to Duolingo to link from these responses (at the end of test) to the discussion forum thread for those question and allow alternate suggestions or errors reported at the end. In other words, what we do after each question in non-timed mode could be done at the end if Duolingo does a little bit of programming on their part.
The untimed 75 questions were due to not knowing the vocabulary ahead of time, and missing the same ones over and over. That was too much, so I changed to reviewing new words before starting each lesson, and writing a flash card for each question that was missed.
If I do not get 19 or 20 in timed exercise, I will run the timed exercise again and again until I get it right. That sometimes means a lot of exercise sessions.
That's a good idea. How long does it take you to complete 20 questions?
Ah, OK. I guess I have better vocabulary than you. In non-timed mode I rarely go over 20. For me, non timed mode normally gives 17 questions and mostly finish in 17 or 18.
For timed mode getting a clean 20 is not always easy. Today I think I did it in 15 mins but sometimes it takes a lot more effort.
I just started in March, so I'm sure your vocabulary is much better. The average for my last 12 reviews has been 21 questions, and I've gotten 17 for some that were over 50 the first time. It helps to have seen them before. :-)
How do you get 15 minutes for timed mode??? It always timed me out in less than a minute. As soon as I stopped to think of a question, it timed out.
15 mins is for multiple tries I needed to do before getting 20 :) I am actually not sure how long it took today. It felt like 15 mins, could me more or less.
For starting in march you have progressed fast. I took it slower initially and completed my tree basically on the phone and over a longer time. I also use other resources (such as podcasts, books, apps, twitter feeds, subscription to Facebook pages etc.)
Re: How many times...
As I said, to get to 20 over timed, I have to repeat variable times. Sometimes say 5 tries will do (Happy). Sometimes, 25. A few times you will get tired or run out of time you can afford to allocate and it will not be possible to do. (Unhappy)
I did an untimed review 5 times, with only the 3rd one perfect, and the lowest time 3:31.
Then I tried timed practice again and it timed me out at 5 out of 8, all careless mistakes, but this was encouraging so I tried it again. This time I only missed 1, and finished in 3:32 (by my timer). The interesting thing is there were 52 seconds left over, which is quite encouraging.
Thanks to your help, I now see this can be done and am going to include it from now on. :-)
Well, that is pretty good. If you do not get stuck early on you can build enough time so you do not rush later on. Believe me it is a good exercise. It helps speaking...
I think one of the things Timed practice drives home which normal practice does not, is verbal comprehension at full speed. If you use the slow speech button once or twice it will be a very short practice session. So you need to develop that skill of listening to all of the words in a sentence and comprehending them.
I'm not particularly good at it yet, but I see the merit.
I do however really wish they had a Time spent on DuoLingo function somewhere on the website. The only metric we get is XP earned and that can vary widely from day to day. I get to declare DuoLingo on my training logs at work.
Using slow speech does not slow me down. The key is that as soon as the voice sounds garbled or too fast, then click the slow speed immediately, don't wait, and type right along with the voice. As long as you get the first few words, you can usually remember the rest of it.
Otherwise, click it again while you're typing the first part, and listen again for the last part.
In the last two weeks, I've transitioned to doing all timed practices for reviews, which is helping a lot.
I'm doing 5 reviews of each of the skills, which results in a percentage of 100, giving me a record and motivation for improvements, as well as flash cards to review. If not enough reviews are completed,
I might do more until there are 10 or 15 cards for review, but only count the first 5 attempts for points.
fin - - pts - - best - - time - - cards - - skill
3 - - - 64 - - - 40 - - - 1:09 - - - future perfect
2 - - - 49 - - - 20 - - - 1:40 - - - conditional
5 - - - 85 - - - 20 - - - 1:36 - - - adject2
4 - - - 72 - - - 19 - - - 1:15 - - - abs ob1
5 - - - 93 - - - 20 - - - 1:23 - - - numbers
3 - - - 76 - - - 18 - - - 0:47 - - - politics
4 - - - 79 - - - 18 - - - 0:56 - - - 15 - - - abs ob3
5 - - - 89 - - - 20 - - - 1:04 - - - 06 - - - communication
4 - - - 78 - - - 19 - - - 0:53 - - - 11 - - - medical
3 - - - 61 - - - 18 - - - 0:38 - - - 09 - - - cond perf
5 - - - 95 - - - 20 - - - 2:02 - - - 03 - - - household
4 - - - 77 - - - 18 - - - 0:56 - - - 19 - - - nature
5 - - - 93 - - - 40 - - - 1:31 - - - 06 - - - adject1
3 - - - 62 - - - 18 - - - 1:01 - - - 11 - - - past imp
5 - - - 97 - - - 60 - - - 1:47 - - - 02 - - - sizes
Explanation: reviews completed out of 5, total points out of 5, highest score, most time left over, flash cards, and skill name. It helps greatly to use a userscript for reviewing, and then use the F5 key to repeat.
Here is an explanation of using timed practice from the wiki.