level by start and progress
Many students start on DL with great enthusiasm.
However, there is little information about the level at which one is located at the start of a language and there is also no indication on the progress made in that language.
The shortcuts let you take great steps in the sequence of the classes/skills, but the test in the shortcuts is not a good indidcation for the knowledge of the vocabulary and grammar.
It is also possible to obtain a test with much higher result, by external sources to use during the test.
The level is not an indication of progress: with a solid knowledge of the language can you fast go to a higher level. Alsocan you increases your level by practicing with old lessons and vocabulary, without new vocabulary or grammar learned.
It would therefore be helpful that there is a possibility provided to indicate the level at which a student a language begins. Also, during the course, he should be able to determine his level in that language again and so follow his progress.
This would also give the possibility for DL to determine the efficiency of the language modules per language, without paying an extra firm to compare with other courses.
For this, two things are needed:
- at the start of a language the student does an exam, as is now already possible for 25 lingots. The first exam would be without lingots and automatically.
- the following exams can then be carried out for 25 lingots, with an automatic comparison with the previous exam, which gives an indication for the learning cyclus.
To give the student an idea how far he is in the course and how many skilss / lessons he already carried out, he sould told the total number of skills and lessons he did and how manylessons/skills there are in the language. This allows him to have an idea how much time he needs to carry out any outstanding lessons, if he takes an average time for each lesson (of course without the refreshments of old lessons and vocabulary).
The exams should test the individual rules of grammar and the exam certificate would have to give a quote per grammatical rule.
It would also be interesting to test each individual grammatical rule, so you know where you can insert your time most useful.
Should the assessment not be done at school by a teacher? Duolingo is a supplement for learning but an assessment will require a human component. In most cases it will not be possible to replace school (though it is a great alternative for people that do not have the possibility to learn at school). You might be asking to much of a great site that was not initially aimed at students. Sure, some of your suggestions could/might be implemented but I doubt that is a priority. In the mean time your students can enjoy duo and focus on having fun learning without the thread of assessment