LingQ totally confuses me

jimthibault ca Canada

I just about gave up but asking one last time would not hurt.

I log in, usually Android .... listen to a narrated story, news item which I usually understand and I tells me sometimes after at least 30 minutes I need to do something for my daily requirement of "lingQ?" BUT WHAT !!!! I often can not spare more time. What exactly does you educational system want from me and how do I meet the daily requirement ? Pet peeve you want me to do this by something like 7 EST...... ? before 7PM I am working. WHY CAN THE GOALS NOT EXPIRE AT MIDNIGHT ???? I am sick of trying to figure out how to use this program and figuring out why I can not meet the requirements.

May 02 at 13:37
  • Administrator
    zoran rs Serbia

    Sounds like you don't have correct time zone selected on your Profile. Can you check if you have correct Time Zone selected on the Profile Settings page?

    May 02 at 14:19
    • JulieS au Australia

      Zoran, I can easily change Timezone on the web version (Settings > Profile), but where on earth do users find it on the iPad app or android phone apps?!

      Only items listed under Settings I can find for these are for lessons and activities, downloading playlist, interface language and clearing cache...

      May 04 at 03:09
  • Administrator
    mark ca Canada

    Sorry for the confusion! We need to help new users get started better!

    LingQ is actually quite simple:

    1) Open an interesting lesson from your Lesson Feed. There is no set order. Choose something that looks interesting. Set your level to a range of levels so you see a variety of content. You can try different lessons until you find something you like. Don't look for a set order, there isn't one and it's unnecessary. Spend a lot of time on the LingQ Mini Stories since they emphasize the most common patterns. Then, look for other lessons that you are interested in. If your content is interest driven, it will be more motivating and effective.

    2) Read the lesson, clicking on any unknown words.

    * If you understand the lesson audio and there are no words in it that you don't understand, you are probably on a lesson that is too easy for you. Adjust your level to find more difficult lessons.

    3) Create hints for these words by checking other popular hints or checking the attached dictionaries

    4) Add the audio to your Playlist and listen many times

    5) When you have time, re-read the lesson and click on your yellow words (LingQs) to review.

    6) Gradually increase the status of your LingQs. It is this process of seeing the words you are learning in context and in multiple different contexts that will be most effective at driving comprehension growth, and vocabulary growth. Don't worry too much about specific "learning" type activities. It is the listening and reading that is mostly all you need. Your brain will learn if you feed it! ;-)

    7) Move on to new lessons regularly.

    Other features:

    1) Review LingQs using review tools and our SRS system

    2) Import lessons from the web or Youtube using our browser extensions

    3) Import ebooks, podcasts, or songs using our import feature

    4) Submit your writing for correction

    5) Practice speaking in a live conversation with a tutor

    6) Participate in the community through challenges, forum and rankings.

    Hope this helps! Let me know if you have any other questions. Make sure to check out the helpful videos on the LingQ Academy page to get you started.

    May 02 at 17:32
    • coastie43 au Australia

      This is the most helpful comment I have seen so far. I really understand jimthibault's frustration.

      May 14 at 02:18
    • Simranjeet fr France

      HI Mark,

      thanks for your clear post could you help me with:

      2) Import lessons from the web or Youtube using our browser extensions

      3) Import ebooks, podcasts, or songs using our import feature

      4) Submit your writing for correction

      6) Gradually increase the status of your LingQs. It is this process of seeing the words you are learning in context and in multiple different contexts that will be most effective at driving comprehension growth, and vocabulary growth.

      How could I import ebook? Where could i find any by the way? On the web ? I still don't manage to use lingQ properly and I almost feel to give up ...But I am going to keep up one more month..

      How can I increase the status of my lingQ for example ??? I make double amount lingQ dailies but then???

      May 14 at 18:26
      • Administrator
        mark ca Canada

        @Simranjeet -

        2) You will find links to our browser extensions in the sidebar of the Lessons page. Click on the logo of the browser you are using. Install the extension and then it should show in your browser's bookmarks toolbar. Then, find a website in your target language, open an article page and click the extension to import it automatically.

        3) Learn more about importing here:

        4) Go to the Community tab << Writing Exchange. Post your writing for others to correct and correct the writing of others.

        6) The Status bar is shown at the bottom of all your yellow LingQs. It shows the numbers 1 to 4, a check mark and the ignore symbol. You should manually update the status of your LingQs as you see them. You can hover on the different statuses to see what they are. Basically 1 is New and the check mark is Known.

        You find ebooks anywhere they are sold. You will have to search the web for ebooks in your target language. Then follow the import guide and the article about importing ebooks. Good luck!

        May 14 at 23:22
  • aronald us United States

    Or just forget what lingq (or anyone/anything else) is telling to do, and do what you want. If you’re not seeing enough progress then increase your exposure. There’s no one magic formula because we are all different. Good luck!

    May 02 at 20:00
    • angiemc us United States

      Definitely. LingQ can be a great tool. Those of us that are a bit more laid back and don't mind creating our own path can reach a fantastic level in our target language.

      May 03 at 22:18
  • JulieS au Australia

    Your daily LingQ “requirement” is simply to make 13 LingQs per day, and this can be done in less than 5 or 10 minutes. When you click on an “unknown” blue word in a text and select a hint, the word changes to yellow and you’ve made a LingQ!

    May 04 at 02:44
    • ericb100 us United States

      My impression from the original post is that this is exactly what he was talking about. "Requirement" being in quotes is key. It is NOT a requirement. You can do 100 lingq's a day, you can do 0 for the day. 0 for the week, etc. "Goal" would be a better word as it doesn't imply that it's necessary to create a certain number of lingq's a day, it's only a motivational number.

      May 14 at 20:34
  • tocayo us United States

    My timezone was set incorrectly at the beginning, and I had the same problem.

    An unlikely cause is that you've downloaded a lesson, completed your LingQs, and then in the meantime lost connection to WiFi without realizing it and gone to bed or whatever. This has happened to me. Just make sure that your device is re-connected to the internet before midnight in whatever timezone it's set to so that it can update your stats before closing time.

    It's actually really cool that you can download a lesson and then work on it without continuous access to WiFi – good for car trips.

    May 09 at 18:12
    • Administrator
      mark ca Canada

      Keep in mind that you do need to go the Settings on the web to see and adjust your time zone.

      May 09 at 19:27
  • Estruch us United States

    I was similarly frustrated the first time I tried LingQ. I actually cancelled my subscription and moved on to other methods. Then I came back to it later when I had more experience and more confidence in my own learning ability and now I absolutely love it. It is my primary source for studying.

    The key is, you have to realize that LingQ is not an "educational system" as you referred to it. At least, not in the sense that there is set order of things to study in a organized, progressive manner. There is no "right" way to use LingQ. It is more of a means of exposing yourself to massive amounts of material in your target language. It is primarily an "input based" approach to language learning in which you gradually "acquire" the new language rather than formally "learn" the language through progressive lessons.

    Think of it this way. There are basically four skills: Reading, Listening, Speaking, and Writing. Only you really know where your strengths and weakness are. If you feel like your reading comprehension needs work, then focus on reading activities. If you feel like your listening skills need work, focus on listing activities. If you feel like your writing skills need work, write in the forum and get corrections to help you improve. If you feel like your speaking needs work, connect with a tutor and practice having conversations. Or practice all 4 as your time, needs, and schedule permits. The flashcards are just one possible tool to use for reviewing material. Although frankly, I never use them. I just review my lingQs by re-reading and re-listening to material in LingQ. I have kind of gathered that this is the preferred method amongst most of the users here (including the founder.)

    I think this is why LingQ is so hard for people who are new to the system. We are all so used to having language lessons spoon fed to us in a one size fits all series of structured lessons. LingQ does not do that. It requires you to take some control of your language learning. For those who prefer being guided, that may appear to be a weakness at first. Once you have gained some confidence in your ability to do so, you will likely find that is one of its greatest strengths.

    May 14 at 00:14
  • ericb100 us United States

    Hi Jim. There is no "requirement". I often don't make any Lingq's in a day. Go your own pace. It's not a race. Have fun and enjoy the journey.

    May 14 at 20:45
  • ericb100 us United States

    By the way...if you are completely confused with Lingq...maybe the videos on this page will help: I'm not sure why that url isn't somewhere off the main page (or maybe it is and I can't find it). It would be helpful for people that are new to using the site.

    May 14 at 20:52
    • Simranjeet fr France


      May 14 at 21:12
    • dgc1970 ca Canada

      This should be the first thing newcomers see.

      May 15 at 21:37
  • TraceyG us United States

    LingQ sets a "goal" of 13 LingQs per day as a daily target for every subscriber, regardless of their level. How much time you spend listening and/or reading is not figured in this pre-set "goal." So whether you read/listen for 15 minutes or 2 hours, if you haven't made at least 13 LingQs (that is, made 13 words yellow by clicking on them), then the program will prompt you that you are short of your (in fact LingQ's) 13 word goal. The time to do this is not your local time zone but I think is figured in the time zone of Vancouver (where the program is administered).

    Personally, I don't think that the number of LingQs has anything to do with how much you learn or not each day. For example, you could spend a lot of time listening and reviewing former LingQs or grammar and had a very productive day BUT the LingQ program will not know that. Or, you can LingQ an entire paragraph of words and understand nothing yet LingQ will note that you have met (if not exceeded) your (in fact its) 13 word goal.

    Of course you can ignore the whole counting of LingQs. Who cares whether you made 13 Lingqs or 100?

    The number of LingQs does not indicate what you LEARNED. It merely counts the words you don't know and highlighted in yellow.

    Making LingQs is a means to encourage you to engage with the material but there are many ways to do this and I recommend that you do what is best for YOUR OWN learning. Several months ago I posted a forum entry in which I described my experience during a one month challenge in which my target was LISTENING for two hours/day to the language; I completely ignored how many LingQs I made. I found the intensive/active listening that I did of mostly comprehensible material far more productive to my language learning than focusing on the number of words I highlighted in yellow and I have actively changed my learning strategy ever since, focusing on how much time I spend LISTENING. But even that's not carved in stone because sometimes I focus on mastering some tricky grammar or lexical issue (e.g., how and when to use similar words) which is not reflected in any LingQ statistic. So what? I have progressed, doing something that I needed to do and feel good about it. The goal is genuine language learning, not statistics.

    So again, it's up to YOU to do do what helps you learn most efficiently and enjoyably. Some people like keeping track of unknown words. If that makes you happy and fuels motivation, then do so. If not,

    do what IS productive FOR YOU. Use the LingQ resources in a way that helps YOU.

    May 14 at 21:35
    • Administrator
      mark ca Canada

      @TraceyG - If your day is not correctly set, you should go into your account settings and make sure to choose the correct time zone. Yes, the daily goal is to encourage users to be active. We have recently introduced different levels of intensity for the daily goal to our signup flow. We will be adding a setting soon for existing members to adjust their goals. We have chosen LingQs because we needed something easy to track and understand. Yes, there are plenty of ways to be active without creating LingQs but, for now, we use this as our measurement.

      For those members like yourself who are more motivated, these external motivating factors are less important. But, they are helpful for many others in terms of keeping users going. We know that if we can keep people going, they will succeed.

      May 16 at 17:08
      • TraceyG us United States

        Mark, thanks for the info.

        May 17 at 22:33
    • Simranjeet fr France

      Thank you for sharing!!! That was really helpful!!! When you say listening, you mean you record lessons in your playlist then you listen to them?

      thank you in advance!!!

      May 17 at 15:50
      • Administrator
        mark ca Canada

        You can listen to the lessons on the lesson screen or you can add them to your Playlist and listen to them there. Of course, in the Playlist, you can listen to multiple lessons. Same if you listen to the whole course on the web or on iOS. Coming soon to Android.

        May 17 at 22:23
        • Simranjeet fr France

          Thank you I saw we can download poscast..I would love to have some but any idea how to do that on my phone? thank you!!

          May 18 at 07:02
          • Administrator
            mark ca Canada

            Just add them to your Playlist and they will download to your phone and you can play them offline. Make sure to wait until they have downloaded fully. Likewise, if you open a lesson, its audio will be downloaded.

            May 19 at 05:31
  • PGK tw Taiwan

    I live in Taiwan, and my daily task is to make 13 LingQs in each language I'm learning.

    They always expire at midnight, local time.

    I wonder, are you using a VPN, which changes your time, or does LingQ consider all Canada one time zone?

    May 16 at 16:07
    • Administrator
      ericrobertz ca Canada

      LingQ does not consider all of Canada under one time zone.

      May 17 at 23:31