Whether you want to learn a language for an upcoming business trip or just for fun, there are plenty of language learning apps, such as Duolingo.
While Duolingo only gives rough time estimates for their online language courses, you may want to know exactly how long it takes to learn a language fluently.
We take a closer look at language learning and how long does it take to learn a language on duolingo.
How Long Does It Take To Learn A Language With Duolingo?
Learning a language on Duolingo can take anywhere from between a few hours to 40 hours active learning time.
You can see that this is a vast range because there are a number of different factors that influence how fast you can learn a language on Duolingo and any other learning app.
Some Languages Take Longer
It’s important to understand that each language has its own complexities, and this means that some languages take longer to learn than others.
You will find that languages that are more similar to English, such many European languages, allows you to complete your lessons much faster.
In comparison, languages with complex writing systems or tonal languages, such as Japanese, Chinese and Mandarin, take much longer to learn.
Your Own Learning Speed
Everyone has their own individual learning speed. Some people can complete a Duolingo lesson in two minutes, while others take four minutes.
The learning speed is individual to you, and it will have an impact on how quickly you get through your language lessons.
Active Learning Time Only
When you consider only the time that you are actively learning a language, then you can master your new lingo in up to 40 hours.
However, in reality, your language learning time will be much longer as you are probably going to take breaks and go about your day between lessons.
For example, if you spend 15 minutes a day practicing a language with Duolingo and your language course material covers roughly 400 hours, then you will need around 1600 days to finish the language.
If you spend half an hour learning a language, then you can expect to complete the Duolingo course in half this time.
This means that the more time you spend on learning, the faster you will master the language.
Structure Of A Duolingo Language Course
Before we find out more about long many minutes and hours it takes to complete a language course on Duolingo, let’s take a look at how Duolingo lessons are structured.
On Duolingo, each language is called a “tree”. You can learn different languages or “trees” at the same time.
Each language tree is divided into so-called checkpoints, and each checkpoint is sectioned into 5 to 20 modules.
Each of those modules is made up of levels which have an individual number of lessons. Each lesson has around 12 questions.
Each checkpoint has 5-20 modules (French has 155 modules), and each of those modules has LEVELS, with a different number of Lessons.
Each lesson has ~12 questions per level.
When you check on your Duolingo app, you can see your languages at the top, and the modules in circles with an icon in the middle underneath.
Now that we know more about the different terms in the Duolingo app, let’s take a closer look at the learning times for lessons.
How Many Minutes Does One Duolingo Lesson Take To Complete?
In order to find out how long it takes to finish one language with Duolingo, you need to understand how much time it takes to finish a single lesson.
This depends on your own learning speed, the language you are learning and how much time you spend actively learning.
We checked a couple of different languages at a medium learning speed and found that a language lesson in Duolingo takes roughly 2 minutes to complete.
This is going at a medium speed where you repeat all the sentences aloud and don’t rush through the lesson.
After all, your goal isn’t to get through a lesson as fast as possible but to learn.
How Long Does It Take To Complete One Module On Duolingo?
If you know that each lesson takes around 2 minutes, then multiply this with the number of lessons in a module of your language.
For example, If you have 75 lessons per module, then you will need around 2.5 hours to complete one language module on Duolingo.
How Many Minutes A Day Does It Take To Lean A Duolingo Language In 6 Months?
You set yourself a goal that you want to learn a new language in half a year, so how many minutes do you need to practice getting through all the course material?
Depending on your chosen language, it can take around 130 minutes per day to learn a language within 180 days.
This is 2 hours and 10 minutes of active learning.
This assumes that your language covers around 400 hours of learning material.
How Many Minutes A Day Do You Need To Learn To Finish A Language In 1 Year?
If you want to learn a Duolingo language in a year, you simply need to double the time for the half year plan.
This means that you will need to spend at least 60 minutes per day on the Duolingo app to master your language sufficiently.
This is the basic, active learning time, just working through the lessons and modules of your chosen language.
How Long Does It Take To Master A Language In Duolingo When You Practice 15 Minutes A Day?
If you don’t want to set yourself a long term learning goal but you prefer to practice 15 minutes per day, then you will need around 1600 days to learn your language.
This is over four years!
This assumes that the course material covers 400 hours of learning.
That’s a long time to learn a language but if you aren’t in a hurry and you prefer to learn at your own pace, then that’s a great way to keep up with regular language practice.
You can also choose to just do 10 minutes every day which would take you over 2000 days (6.5 years) to learn a language on Duolingo.
However, if you double your daily learning time to 20 minutes a day, then you can complete a language within 1200 days (3.3 years).
Can You Get Fluent In A Language With Duolingo?
40 hours of active learning time might seem a lot for learning a language but it isn’t enough to master a language fluently.
As a rule of thumb, many European languages require at least 600 hours of practice time to achieve proficiency.
This can go up even further with more complex languages, such as Arabic and Chinese which would take over 2000 hours for full fluency.
In comparison, Duolingo only provides around 12 hours active learning time for these complicated languages.
However, it is likely to take even longer as Arabic and Chinese lessons are often longer.
So, if Duolingo doesn’t get you to write and speak a fluent language, is it really worth it?
We think learning apps are a great start to familiarize yourself with a language.
However, you will need to practice regularly and be persistent with your learning.
Top Tips To Get The Most Out Of Duolingo
Whether you want to learn a language within a few months or you just want to learn more efficiently, here are some tips on how to get the best out of your Duolingo language learning.
Set A Timer
It’s easier to learn something new when you integrate it into your daily routine, so set yourself a time and always try to learn at the same time of day.
This may be not for everyone but you can add your friends to the Duolingo app.
Learning together can be a great way to challenge yourself, and often competitiveness spurs us on.
Remind Yourself Why You’re Learning
You may want to learn a language because you plan to travel to a different country or you need to know a language to communicate with business partners.
Whatever your motivation for learning a language, it’s a good idea to remind yourself of it regularly.
Keep your goal in mind, and you’ll get there over time.
Get The Ad-Free Premium Version
The free Duolingo app version is great to get started. However, it regularly displays apps that waste valuable learning time.
If you want to have more active learning time rather than starting at the screen waiting for an ad to load, then Duolingo Premium is a good option.
Practice With Other Tools
You don’t have to stick to Duolingo to learn a language. Try to get some exercise books or practice writing in a notebook.
This can be especially useful for languages with a different alphabet, such as Arabic.
It can take up to 40 hours or more to learn a language on Duolingo. The more time you spend learning a language, the faster you can master your new lingo.