If you’re already fluent in your native language and decide to embark on a journey to fluency in another, you might face a series of questions:
Why are verb endings important in Spanish?
Those letters make what sound in Chinese?
There are letters in Chinese?
How do I use the muscles in my mouth to produce that French sound?
There are muscles in my mouth?
… list goes on …
Wouldn’t it be useful to have a bilingual friend who could explain the things that are different, in a way you could effortlessly understand?
We’d like to be that friend. Hi!
What are Tips?
We created Duolingo Tips to give our users insight into concepts that might be hard to grasp intuitively. As a companion to our curricula, Tips illuminate the grammar, phonetics, orthography, and culture behind the language you’re learning.
Tips are written by the language learning experts at Duolingo and are meant to be useful and easy to understand for a wide audience, without unnecessary jargon. They include many descriptions, example sentences, audio clips, and pronunciation guides.
Particularly beneficial: Your native language helps us predict the mistakes you’re likely to make and why, so we can make sure to teach you the right thing at the right time.
Where do I find Tips?
The following courses already have Tips, and we’re working tirelessly to add more:
- French from English
- Spanish from English
- French from English
- German from English
- Italian from English[1:1]
- Portuguese from English[1:2]
- Chinese from English
- Japanese from English[1:3]
- English from Spanish
- English from Portuguese
- English from Russian[1:4]
If you’re in one of those courses, look for the "Tips" lightbulb icon:
If you’re not in one of those courses, please stay tuned.
Tips are available on iOS, Android, and web.
While we’re expanding Tips, we’re also experimenting with new ways to make them even more useful. Here’s a sneak peak of a new feature we’re particularly excited about:
What if you didn’t even have to go through the Tips and search them yourself all the time? What if, while you’re using Duolingo, we just automatically give you the most succinct and simple explanation possible, right after you make a mistake? Wouldn’t you want to rewind time, try again, and – with your newfound knowledge – get it right?
Well, now you can.
These smarter Tips will show up seamlessly while you’re learning: when you make a mistake that ought to be corrected at that point (depending on its relative severity, frequency, and impact on communication).
They are not yet everywhere we’d like them to be (which is everywhere), but if you’re in the Spanish for English speakers course on iOS, you might just begin to see a few. Stay tuned for much more in 2019!
Web users may be familiar with a useful feature called "Tips & Notes", which is a predecessor in spirit. Tips & Notes will remain available to all courses for which Duolingo Tips are not yet available. One reason we’re excited about the new Duolingo Tips is that they were designed to work really well across all our platforms, complete with beautiful illustrations, audio recordings, and a playful twist. ↩︎