The Power of Duolingo

In December, a friend of mine showed me this website called, “Duolingo,” knowing of my interest in foreign language. I created an account, and tested into both the Italian and Spanish courses, and was placed into Level 10 and 12 respectively. Looking at the skill tree, I saw that while my grammatical skills were strong, my vocabulary and idiomatic expressions in Italian were somewhat lacking. Over the following few weeks, I improved, and even went up one level. My vocabulary is now much better, and I feel more confident in my skills, although not quite enough to take the upcoming AP Italian Language and Culture Exam.

Whoever wants to learn Spanish, French, Italian, German, or Portuguese but doesn’t want to pay for full-fledged courses or doesn’t have the time, Duolingo is a great, free way to learn and practice your skills, although there’s no substitute for practicing speaking ability with a native or fluent non-native. If you’re a fluent speaker of a language not on the course list, you can join a team for that language to contribute to the building of a course through the three stages of development, and hopefully, add a new course for others to learn with.

Duolingo is an infinitely useful tool, and its user-friendly interface and interactive structure is great for learners of all ages. So, get learning!

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I'm a student studying at NYU, hoping to pursue a career in diplomatic services, and I'm obsessed with learning and teaching foreign languages. I like to practice Taekwondo, enjoy Square Enix video games, and engage in Asian-American social activism and international political activism.