When comparing Rosetta Stone vs Duolingo, the Slant community recommends Duolingo for most people. In the question“What are the best sites for learning foreign languages?” Duolingo is ranked 2nd while Rosetta Stone is ranked 20th. The most important reason people chose Duolingo is:
Progress is measured gaming-like by gaining XP, leveling up and knowing how many words are learnt. Also, lessons have a limited amount of lives, which you must preserve to pass the lesson. They use other creative gamification techniques to keep you motivated such as making wagers and improving your position on the leaderboard.
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Speech recognition technology
Instead of teaching word recognition, Rosetta Stone uses speech recognition technology to make sure that students are learning to pronounce the words correctly.
Pro Provides immersive learning without uncomfortable experiences
While trying to cary a conversation in a foreign language can be an effective way to learn, sometimes it causes a lot of stress. Rosetta Stone takes this concept and applies it to a stress free environment.
Pro Real human contact
At the end of each lesson, students are able to review live with real teachers.
Pro Games with other students
When learning another language, a learner from that language can be invited to play a game for mutual learning purposes. Unfortunately, Rosetta Stone hasn't spread very much to countries outside of the US, so this game system isn't very developed yet.
Pro Motivates through creative gamification
Progress is measured gaming-like by gaining XP, leveling up and knowing how many words are learnt. Also, lessons have a limited amount of lives, which you must preserve to pass the lesson.
They use other creative gamification techniques to keep you motivated such as making wagers and improving your position on the leaderboard.
Pro Generous free plan
Duolingo is completely free to use, with no features limited to upgraded accounts. If you want to go ad-free, the cost is $12.99/month.
Pro Frequently adding new languages
You can check out the courses page to see what languages are "hatching" (being developed) and what languages are in beta.
Pro Engaging learning method
Each lesson uses a variety of different learning methods to keep it interesting and fun.
The lessons are short so you aren't forced to focus for long periods of time.
Pro Has a mobile app
Duolingo is exceptionally thorough when it comes to teaching the nuances of language. It has plenty of audio material, articles to translate, and a cooperative development made by users.
Con Makes no use of native language
While Rosetta Stone tries to emulate "learning by immersion," many people find the inability to find direct translations of words to be an unnecessary an ineffective part of the program.
Con Uses the same course for learners of different nationalities
For a user learning English, the course will be the same whether they are Chinese, Russian, Italian, etc.. While this is a good way for the company to remain efficient, many cultural differences are overlooked.
Con Inconvenient meeting times for teachers
For users in the US, it can be easy to find a teacher to work with. In any other country, it can be extremely difficult to find an available teacher because of the differences in timezones.
Con Mobile app is less beneficial because it's too easy
Some of the games available on the mobile app are different from that on the desktop version, and are oversimplified/make it very easy to guess.
Con Little production of target language
Duolingo focuses heavily on reading comprehension and translation into one's own language rather than encouraging production of text/speech in the target language.
Con Available languages are predominately European
Duolingo teaches 23 languages from English at the moment: Latin American Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Dutch, Swedish, Irish, Turkish, Danish, Russian, Norwegian, Esperanto, Ukrainian, Polish, Welsh, Greek, Romanian, Hungarian, Hebrew, Swahili, Vietnamese and Japanese (the last currently only on the app). Popular non-European languages such as Mandarin and Arabic are not currently available (although Korean and Indonesian are in development).
Con The health system on the IOS app disrupts learning
5 mistakes and you're out, unless you pay, wait several hours, or use a special review that currently doesn't let you choose what to review. Especially terrible if you're learning multiple or more difficult languages.
Con The hype in the community creates false ideas about what level Duolingo gets you to
Duolingo is a good tool for a beginner, and a good supplement to other resources. But it cannot get you from zero to understanding natives, tv, and books; and their "do the reverse tree and just speak" is usually not the correct answer to "what should I do after finishing the tree".