At long last, Duolingo is taking on the Chinese language, launching a course for those hoping to learn the basics of Mandarin.
The popular language learning app has said that Chinese has always been one of its most requested languages, but actually putting together a course has been an extremely tricky task. However, after launching courses for both Japanese and Korean earlier this year, it was finally time to shift to public beta testing.
Lessons are comprised of various matching and translation exercises which also focus on things like grammar and tones.
Meanwhile, the tests include two different kinds of exercises. One where you are given a Chinese sentence and are asked to translate it into English.
And another where you are given an English sentence and are asked to translate it into Chinese using a list of character options.
At this point, these exercises can be quite frustrating as they only accept a single correct answer. Presumably, the experience will become less annoying as more people join the course and offer feedback.
At the moment, more than 11,000 people have signed up for the Chinese course. Duolingo says that those who complete the course will have learned about 600 Chinese characters (enough to pass the HSK 3) and will be able to masterfully order hot pot.
If you’re interested in learning Chinese, but have been putting it off for some time, this seems like it’s worth a try. Who knows, maybe you’ll be speaking Mandarin like Mark Zuckerberg or John Cena in no time?