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Written by:
Martin Barrett
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How To Use Duolingo

How To Use Duolingo? Best way to use

If you hadn’t already previously heard of the Duolingo app, you’ve probably seen that bird mascot popping up on several social media platforms, especially TikTok.

Duolingo is the best app when it comes to learning online, but do you know how to use Duolingo

They really seem to have struck gold with their comedy marketing for the app, and users are certainly on the rise for it.

Duolingo is an interactive app that can help you learn a whole host of different languages, while all the while having great fun.

The app uses popular memes, group texts, movies, and music to relate to its audience as they continue on their language-learning journey.

The app is said to use education and gaming together to help its students pick up the language easily and efficiently.

And what’s even better is that the app is completely free, you can upgrade your version to be a little more user-friendly, removing ads and the like, but you can learn a new language at absolutely no extra cost.

Sound interesting? Want to learn how to get started? That’s what I’m here for. Throughout this article, we’ll go through exactly how to use the app to your best advantage.

Getting Started

So first things first, you’ll need to download the app on your smartphone. You’ll find this on both the App Store and Google Play Store, depending on whether you have an iPhone or android.

From there you’ll be able to select the language you’d like to learn. You will also pick a goal as to how long per day you’d like to spend on the app. This ranges from just 5 minutes per day to 20 minutes.

You can also choose your path, as to whether you are a beginner or if you already have some previous knowledge.

From here the learning can begin.

Lessons & Learning Features

Duolingo (see also ‘How To Reset Progress On Duolingo‘) is a great app for learning because all the lessons are geared towards being fun so it really doesn’t feel like learning at all.

While it may just feel like you’re playing games, there is actual learning science behind each and every interaction. Here are a few features to look out for that will help you along the way.


Most of the courses are made up of skills. You’ll notice colorful circles that represent the different skills that you’ll learn.

These tend to be particular topics such as Family or Travel, and within these topics, you’ll learn more about the vocabulary and grammar that should be used.


Of these skills, they will be banded into 5 different levels. Your colorful circles will have a small crown on the righthand side.

The number within the crown will represent your level, one through five. As you move up the levels the grammar and vocabulary will become increasingly challenging.

Once you complete level five the skill will turn to gold. How long does it take to learn a language on duolingo will depend on a few factors.


Within each level, there will be a certain number of lessons. With each new lesson, you’ll be given new content that you’ll unlock to further develop your skills.

How To Use Duolingo

Gamification Equals Motivation

When you start your Duolingo course (see also ‘How To Remove Course From Duolingo‘), you’ll notice that the lessons are much more like games than they are actual lessons.

You’ll even receive XP points, for completing new lessons, practicing, or attending events. This is all done with the intent of keeping you motivated to learn.

Here are some more motivational gamification features:


Each time you complete a skill level on Duolingo you’ll receive a crown. When you collect enough crowns you are able to unlock new and exciting features within the app.


Your streak will represent how many days in a row you’ve used the app. Miss a day, and you’ll lose your streak. This can incentivize you to make sure you’re logging on and learning every single day.


You can earn hearts by participating in practice lessons. This can be worthwhile because when you get exercises wrong, you’ll lose a heart.

If you want to keep on learning, you’ll have to do more practice lessons to regain your heart.

Duolingo Plus

If you really start to enjoy the app, you can opt to subscribe to Duolingo Plus (see also ‘What Is The Highest League In Duolingo?‘). This will mean the app is no longer free, but you can get several benefits from doing so:

  • No Ads – Subscription members can skip ads and enjoy uninterrupted learning
  • Unlimited Hearts – You will have the option to turn on unlimited hearts so you don’t have to do practice lessons to retry failed lessons.
  • Offline Lessons – Subscription members can download courses so they don’t need an internet connection to participate in lessons.
  • Mistake Practice – Subscription members have additional features which focus on common mistakes the user makes throughout lessons

Tips To Make The Most Out Of Your Learning

  • Make It Manageable – Set yourself small allotted amounts of learning time, and stick to them each day.
  • Set Yourself Goals – Help motivate yourself. Maybe you want to reach level 2 within one week or two? Maybe you want to hit a whole month streak without missing a day? Whatever it is, use it to push yourself to keep learning.
  • Old & New – As you advance to some of the more difficult lessons, make sure you still go back to old material here and there to keep your memory refreshed.

You can compare Duolingo with other online learning platforms to get a proper image.

Final Thoughts

Hopefully, now, you have a better understanding of what to expect once you download the app. You’ll be aware of all the features within the app, and what their purpose is.

Remember that the whole app is geared toward making learning great fun, so don’t put too much pressure on yourself, and just enjoy it.

Spend short amounts of time on the app every day, even if it’s just 5 minutes, and see how quickly your skills improve. You’ll be fluent in the language before you even know it.

So whether you want to learn Spanish, German, Russian, or any other language, I wish you the best – happy learning!

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