Duolingo Reveals Learning Options for Non-Latin Languages

Because non-Latin alphabets are drastically different

Duolingo has revealed a small set of new learning tools designed to make it easier to familiarize yourself with non-Latin languages.

Why specifically non-Latin languages? Many Latin-based languages like English, Spanish, Italian, and others share a similar alphabet and structure. Non-Latin languages, such as Korean, Arabic, Hebrew, etc., are much different and can confuse non-native speakers. As stated during its Duocon live stream, Duolingo's goal is to make it easier and more intuitive for people to learn these more complicated alphabets.

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One of these new tools is a tab that appears for some languages, which displays a grid of characters from that alphabet. Each character in this grid has an accompanying English reading, and you can tap each entry to hear how they're pronounced.

If you're still having trouble, you can also tap the "Learn the Characters" button for tips and bite-sized lessons about a handful of characters at a time.

Tracing exercises also have been added as a way to help recognize the shapes of the individual characters in a language's alphabet. You'll be able to go over each character individually, and the chart will highlight each one you complete as you make your way through the alphabet.

Duolingo acknowledged that the grid and tracing tools have been available for Android for some time, but now they're ready for iOS.

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Character-construction tools also are being added for languages like Korean, combining letters in different patterns depending on the syllables being used. This lets you piece together individual letters, like a sort of puzzle, in order to create the correct "syllable block."

All these tools should be popping up on Android and iOS now, with a release planned for Duolingo's web version at some time in the future.

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