The mascot shown above is an owl named Duo. Duo represents Duolingo an app for learning new languages. Beginner’s level is free to users. To access Duolingo+, the advanced version, there is a fee for $84 annually. The app is available on desktops and smartphones.
Duolingo offers a 30+ languages including German, Spanish, French, Latin and even languages derived from TV shows: Star Trek’s Klingon and Game of Thrones’ High Valyarin.
Accessing Duolingo you first choose a language. You are then asked why you want to learn the language. You then choose how many minutes each day for studying .Then you start with the basics.
When learning a new language, daily repetition is the key. There are plenty of vocabulary and grammar exercises repeated many times. The format is like playing a game which makes learning fun. For each skill achieved, you earn lingots which is Duolingo’s virtual currency. You can take the lingots to a virtual store where quizzes and stories may be purchased. There is also an online community forum where you find answers to your questions.
Duolingo is a great app for finding out, for free, which language you want to learn. You have some many to choose from. However, you will not become fluent in the language. Your level will be only advanced beginner. You can then graduate to Duolingo+ or another online platform like Rosetta Stone.
To access Duolingo in the Mechanics’ Institute Library online catalog, go first to “Books and More.” Then click on” Research” which reveals” Articles and Online Resources.” Click on that and then “ Databases” and you will find Duolingo.
Photo courtesy of The Gender Spectrum Collection