Enhancing learners’ professional competence via Duolingo classroom

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Coventry University Institution Wide Language Programme
(IWLP) offers beginners language learning modules to
approximately 3,000 students. Each module is taught over 11 weeks for a total of one hour and 40 minutes and two of the weeks are used for in class tests, so tutors generally agree that students need to practise their skills outside the classroom in order to pass the module. One way of doing this was to use the language learning app, Duolingo, which helps students to gradually broaden their linguistic, professional competence, and digital fluency through increased learner autonomy.
How effective this approach is, however, has never been measured.
The project ran from January to April 2018 and explored whether a
correlation exists between regular use of the app by IWLP learners
at Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) level A1 of
French, German, Italian, Portuguese, and Spanish, and achieving a
high formal coursework assessment mark. The views of both learners
and tutors of their experiences of using the software, and the tutor
tools provided by Duolingo Schools, will also be canvassed. A virtual
classroom was set up within Duolingo Schools for each participating
cohort of students and they were encouraged to use the app on a
regular basis. The tutor tools allowed the monitoring of how many
days learners were active, how many lessons they completed, how
many courses they completed, and how many points they were
awarded while using Duolingo. These statistics were compared with the overall formal assessment grades on modules and further data
was collected at the end of the project from a representative sample
of learners (182) and tutors (ten) to establish whether the software
influenced module marks.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProfessional Competencies in Language Learning and Teaching
EditorsCeclia Goria, Lea Guetta, Sandra Reisenleutner, Oranna Speicher
Number of pages11
ISBN (Print)9782490057382
Publication statusPublished - 8 Jun 2019


  • Duolingo
  • Software
  • language learning
  • IWLP
  • CEFR A1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities(all)


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