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Is Duolingo An Effective App For Learning A New Language, College Guide

Duolingo is a mobile app that aims to help users learn a new language. It is free to use and offers premium services to its users. Currently with over 500 million users around the globe, Duolingo helps in developing a base level of knowledge for its users, for a variety of languages that they would want to learn. It covers different areas such as reading, listening, writing, and speaking.

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But is Duolingo really effective in helping students learn and become fluent in a new language?

A Look Into Duolingo And Its Effectiveness For College Students

A recent study was conducted at the Queens College of New York to be able to determine the effectiveness of Duolingo in helping users improve their Spanish. Participants included in the study were mostly students 18 years of age and above, native speakers and without Hispanic origin. Subjects are also not advanced Spanish speakers and currently reside in the United States.

What Do The Results Say?

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Test subjects observed during the study showed an improvement in learning Spanish through the Duolingo app. The improvements were statistically significant, an indicator that suggests that Duolingo is indeed very useful in improving one’s skill in learning the Spanish language.

The numbers were based on the difference between the results of the Spanish test taken by the test subjects before using Duolingo for an hour and after using the app. 

The study also revealed that subjects with no knowledge of Spanish may require at least 26 hours to 49 hours to cover all the materials for the first college semester of Spanish lessons. The effectiveness of the app was mainly attributed to the motivation of the participants.

Subjects that intend to use the skill for traveling purposes showed more improvement compared to test subjects who are studying Spanish as a personal interest. Interestingly, Spanish beginners improved their moves more than the more advanced learners who are more familiar or have advanced knowledge in speaking Spanish.

The course of the study started in September 2012 and ended on November 9, 2012. An exit survey was also performed to be able to confirm if Duolingo was the only tool used by the test subjects for studying Spanish.

What Makes Duolingo Effective For Learning A New Language

The study performed to measure the effectiveness of Duolingo was mainly focused on the Spanish language. However, in terms of learning another language, Duolingo app is very much effective. 

Duolingo offers language lessons at different levels. Learning a new language is not an easy task. It is ideal to learn the basics, from reading to writing and gradually improve as you progress to the different levels. Similar to learning to read and write English during our early days in school, there are lessons appropriate for beginners, as well as for students who have already progressed and improved in a basic learning level. Duolingo offers levels of learning which makes it easier and more comprehensive for its users.

It includes listening lessons, uses flashcards and other tools that may help enhance learning to its users. Gradually learning a new language by starting with words, moving on to phrases and eventually creating sentences is one of the best learning techniques available in Duolingo.

Duolingo covers complex language needs through its carefully thought and devised learning levels. Each proficiency level offers different set goals of learning to its users.

This technique helps the users see and measure how far they have improved in learning. This also prevents them from the stress and pressure of mastering the language prematurely. Duolingo focuses more on how you use the language and what you do with the language rather than achieving fluency. Duolingo makes learning a new language usable – use of the right grammar, vocabulary and structure which is essential in conversing in real-life situations.

How Long Should You Use Duolingo? 

You are probably wondering how long you should use the app. There is no specific answer for this. For some, it’s easier to learn a language because they have a basic knowledge about it. For others, it might take more time.

Don’t get frustrated if you can’t learn a new language that fast. What matters most is that you are trying your best and that you practice every day.

Conclusion

Learning a new language is challenging, but it can be easy with Duolingo.

There are other ways on how you can learn a new language and be able to confidently converse and use the language in real-life situations. You can listen to videos, read magazines, talk to a native speaker and use other apps to become a better speaker and listener in a foreign language. However, Duolingo’s system is more feasible in achieving the results that you want in your need, when it comes to learning a new language, especially for college students.

Try learning a new language and see how it could open a lot of opportunities for you? Start doing it now make it your leverage as you apply for a job in the future.

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