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Why is Duolinguo better than other apps?


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So is Duolingo or Busuu better? Read this thread but ended up being even more confused than before, lol. I would like to start learning Russian again (learnt it at school, but barely know the basics) with an app, but there are so many!

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5 hours ago, Elfprincess said:

So is Duolingo or Busuu better? Read this thread but ended up being even more confused than before, lol. I would like to start learning Russian again (learnt it at school, but barely know the basics) with an app, but there are so many!

As I already advised multiple times before, always use multiple tools and resources and never limit yourself to only (one) app(s).
Language learning really is hard work, and that's generally getting underestimated.

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I like Duolingo because it's more fun than the other language learning apps and in some ways, it feels more complete and immersive. I don't use it as much as I used to, though, because when you start reaching the intermediate levels, the lessons get harder and there are hardly any explanations to the grammar and why you're saying what you're saying. Even perusing the forums doesn't help in most cases and that is pretty discouraging. So I'm on the market for an app that better explains things so I can understand the whys of what I'm learning.

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I think another reason Duolingo is so popular is that it is free for everyone, unlike Busuu or Mango, for example. Greater accessibility means more people will be using it.

I've been using Duolingo for my German for about a year now, and I like how it motivates you to practice every day. Plus, the Immersion option is really helpful for getting more hands-on with your language and seeing it in the way it is used outside of lessons. I don't know if other websites have a similar thing, but it definitely keeps me coming back to Duolingo.

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  • 3 weeks later...
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I guess Duolingo's interface is just simpler and more intuitive. The sentences are a little dumb but the app is just really easy to use, and the website version is way better, and you can connect your progress with LinkedIn, which is nice. But there is probably a bunch of other apps even better of course, people are just more used to Duolingo, due its popularity. 

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  • 1 month later...

I love Duolingo because it is easy to use, has a pretty intuitive interface and is easy to pick up by beginners. It helps you with repetitive vocabulary and also has tests that check up on you. Also the fact that it has a mobile app as well is something really useful, as you can practice new languages on the go as you are traveling or whenever you have a few minutes of spare time.

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I think there are many factors to it's popularity. It's nice, because it lets you learn a language for free and it's app based. You can be anywhere, and learn/practice a language as long as you have your phone with you. It's also nice, because it teaches you like a game. It's only down side it that it feels more like it's teaching you random phrases and words, then actually teaching you have to speak fluently in another language. My friend says it's good starter or warm up to learning a language, but to move on to better language programs afters a while.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I really like that news from technologies, but in language learning I rather choose traditional methods eye-to-eye with my teacher :)

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17 minutes ago, gangies said:

I really like that news from technologies, but in language learning I rather choose traditional methods eye-to-eye with my teacher :)

me too. And hey Gangies, welcome to linguaholic! Nice to have you here.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I've never used Busuu so I can't compare the two apps but I've used duolingo on a daily basis for nearly two years.

I would say that duolingo is extremely popular because the developers are constantly looking at data, seeing what affects the retention rates and tweaking the site to make it more appealing to the users. I personally enjoy it because of the gaming aspect - it never feels like I'm studying and I'm not looking at conjugation tables or memorising lists of vocabulary as I would have done at school. I would say it's less effective than a good classroom teacher but duolingo is a lot more engaging than teaching yourself from a textbook. There's audio, instant feedback on mistakes and plenty of people willing to answer your language questions.

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On 5/5/2015 at 10:18 AM, Trellum said:

I guess Duolingo it's more popular than other apps because it often feels as if you were playing a game instead of learning something.  It also helps it allows you to follow and be followed by other people... so you can compete to see who gets the most XP each week or month.  I mean, it can be very fun if you make bets to see who gets the most XP ;) I bet a lot people do that. I know I would if I knew someone close to me learning dutch.

I will agree with this, it is set up like a game and the user interface is easy to use.  I know it shouldn´t matter, but many similar sites just look so blocky and cold.. duolingo is fun and inviting.  The other part that I really like is that they have done a good amount of time adding ´alternative answers´..  for someone who is already 50% in spanish, it bugs me on some sites where you give a correct answer, but not their correct answer.  In duolingo I do not have to worry if I use a synonym or leave out the yo in yo tengo.

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  • 1 month later...

I don't think Duolingo is necessarily the best, but it's definitely helpful, at least for me. I feel like some aspects of the language learning are a bit all over the place, especially with "smaller" languages such as Welsh.

I like Duolingo though because it's more fun, almost like a game. I think it's aimed a lot at children and students studying language so that teachers can encourage students to revise language in their own time, but it's also great for the rest of us too.

Other than that, the app is VERY easy to use, especially for beginners who have no previous knowledge of a language. It's also quite quick too and covers all bases.

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 17/03/2016 at 8:25 AM, rawdinosaur said:

I've never used Busuu so I can't compare the two apps but I've used duolingo on a daily basis for nearly two years.

I would say that duolingo is extremely popular because the developers are constantly looking at data, seeing what affects the retention rates and tweaking the site to make it more appealing to the users. I personally enjoy it because of the gaming aspect - it never feels like I'm studying and I'm not looking at conjugation tables or memorising lists of vocabulary as I would have done at school. I would say it's less effective than a good classroom teacher but duolingo is a lot more engaging than teaching yourself from a textbook. There's audio, instant feedback on mistakes and plenty of people willing to answer your language questions.

This. But I'll expand a little bit: I think spaced repetition is also the key, when you keep seeing the same thing over and over again, after a while it gets absorbed very easily. You not only don't feel like you're learning (very important) but it's also very effective.

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On 10/29/2015 at 9:10 AM, Blaveloper said:

If there's something Duolingo lacks, it's the ability to admit the mistakes they make.
I'm a native Dutch speaker and I did their Dutch course to report errors and help them improve the course.
I only started and I reported loads of mistakes already, but only 1 of those were taken seriously.

"Jullie geven hun de hoed" obviously means "you guys give their the hat", not "you guys gave them a hat".
I know every native speaker will go like "WTF?!" when they read "jullie geven hun de hoed" because it's grammatically wrong.
And yet they told me I was wrong and THEY are right. WTF?!

And even some sentences I answered correctly were counted as incorrect.
I reported them all, but none of which were ever taken seriously.

So that's how I lost my motivation to use Duolingo forever.
I wouldn't even recommend it even if the moderators were dictating me to do so!

Unfortunately, I found this to be true as well. I was learning French and to practice I began saying little phrases to my Haitian Creole speaking friend. He has a solid grasp on French as well or at least enough to raise an eyebrow at some phrases I was saying. He said it was close but not quite right. Of course, I figured he just didn't know French as well as creole until the one phrase I did recognize was just inaccurate. I stopped using the app after that for fear that I would waste my time learning a lot of correct vocabulary with so-so (if not awful) grammar. 

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There are many reasons why I love Duolingo! It is super easy to use and it's a lot of fun. If I'm bored or while i'm on the bus I just go ahead and use it to study my languages. It's not the best at explaining grammar and the like, but it's a good way for me to practice if I don't have much time to actually sit down with a textbook or something. I think it's a great app to start out with and a good supplement to other language learning activities.

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It's free; it's got an active community that are always willing to help (moderators aren't paid so there's more incentive to actually be passionate about helping people); the course is well setup and your feedback actually goes through to make things easier. The only thing I don't like about it recently is the new EU law that does not permit duolingo to use articles for immersion and free translational services for the newer languages (which is what the site was set up for in the first place.).

 

Overall I'd definitely recommend it and as a user of both Babbel and Duolingo, I definitely like Duolingo more.

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As I have already mentioned in another thread, I had experienced some obstacles while learning via Duolingo. Firstly, sometimes the speaking exercises aren't acknowledged, even if you pronounce the sentence exactly like they did. Sometimes it works, sometimes not. This "gamble" made me skip these exercises whenever they appeared. Secondly, the sentences are random. Sometimes, Duolingo repeats a sentence I know and doesn't repeat the one I am struggling with. I know it's a random selection, but I really don't want to write the same thing seven times. On computer, it's alright, but when you're using Duolingo on tablet, it's really annoying. Thirdly, I agree about the translations. They're badly done. The only language which I could probably vouch for is English. And finally, Duolingo makes you repeat a lot of lessons you know. It's silly, but when I pass a lesson, I want it to remain the shiny golden colour. This doesn't happen. 

This is probably why I stopped using it. I think I used Duolingo for some fourteen days. I'd been on Livemocha for almost two years. That tells a lot, I believe.

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I like to use Duolinguo more as a practice or review tool. I rather learn using an alternate program or website, like Livemocha and Rosetta Stone. Then, during downtime I can easily use the app as reinforcement in a fun way. Duolinguo makes it fun but I certainly wouldn't rely on it as the only means of learning unless I had a last minute trip and needed some words and phrases to get by with for a few days.

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11 hours ago, FujikoMine said:

I like to use Duolinguo more as a practice or review tool. I rather learn using an alternate program or website, like Livemocha and Rosetta Stone. Then, during downtime I can easily use the app as reinforcement in a fun way. Duolinguo makes it fun but I certainly wouldn't rely on it as the only means of learning unless I had a last minute trip and needed some words and phrases to get by with for a few days.

This is true. I feel the same way. The app can reinforce, but it should be the primary way of learning. 

However, if I simply wanted to learn a few words or phrases, I wouldn't bother with an app, I'd make a vocabulary list (a table in either Word or Excel with four columns, word, translation, synonym, description) and learn it that way. This is how I usually prepare for my vocabulary exams and it works. People usually say that they forget the things they learn for the exam, but I still remember about 70% of my vocabulary list (which was eleven pages long last time) whereas I only remember a few things I'd learnt about via Duolingo, so I must admit it wasn't very efficient - at least I didn't find it much useful.

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I've only ever used to Duolingo, I enjoy it, but sometimes it is difficult to understand why some of my answers are wrong. But they did add a button that you can click on after you have answered the question and it opens up to a blog where you can ask questions and other learners will answer them. I've found it very useful.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 5/5/2015 at 7:03 AM, Filipe said:

This has been bugging me for some time now. I don't understand the popularity of Duolinguo. I used to learn with Busuu and I don't really understand how it happened that Duolinguo has taken over the market... Is it customer care? Better experience? More colors? :-) Can anyone explain?

 

Thanks

I've used Duolingo, and it's a great app for learning the basics!  Although I personally found that the method used in Duolingo is better for learning vocabulary, not grammar.  But, I can't speak for anyone else.

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