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IELTS Exam Overview

Duolingo English Test Syllabus

The Duolingo test is gaining popularity of late, mainly because it is affordable, convenient and fast. It is accepted by over 3000 universities and colleges across 50 countries. This adds to the growing number of students opting for Duolingo over IELTS and TOEFL. The trick lies in the lack of a syllabus for Duolingo. There are two well-defined stages, but you need a proper study schedule to crack the test. You can learn more about the syllabus by reading further.

There are two types of questions in the Adaptive Test and Video and Writing Samples. The first section will have multiple-choice questions, and the second one will have a question that asks to describe in detail. The test assesses your ability to read, write, listen and speak English.

The Adaptive Test is graded, and the Video and Writing Section is ungraded. This does not mean that it is less important. You will get 45 minutes to complete the first section and 10 minutes to complete the second section.

Duolingo Test Pattern Highlights

What distinguishes Duolingo from other English proficiency tests is that it can be taken by students anytime, anywhere. A few highlights of the test are:

Features 

Descriptions

Mode 

Online 

Types of Questions

Objective+Descriptive

Duration 

1 Hour

Sections 

2

Time Split

Introduction & Onboarding - 5 Minutes

Graded Adaptive Test - 45 Minutes

Ungraded Section and Video Interview & Writing Sample - 10 Minutes

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Duolingo Syllabus For Adaptive Test

 

The Duolingo test has no specific syllabus; as such, it is necessary to know the exam pattern in detail before appearing for the test. The test is AI-powered; thus, the questions will appear algorithmically. The grading will be done as you move to the next question. The test should be completed within 45 minutes. You can read further if you want to know about the questions.

Graded Section

 

  • Complete a text by giving the missing letters: In these questions, a few letters will be missing in some words. You will have to fill in those blanks with suitable letters.
  • Select the right words from the options: It checks your literacy and comprehension skills. A list of words will be given, and you will have to select the correct words.
  • Select the right words by listening: Here, you have to listen to a set of words and choose the right ones from the list provided.
  • Listen and write the sentence: You must hear the sentence and type it correctly in this question.
  • Read the sentence aloud: For this question, you have to read aloud the sentence that appears on the screen.
  • Describe a photo: A picture will appear on the screen, and you must describe it in at least one sentence. You may also use more sentences if you need to describe more.
  • Speak about a photo: It is similar to the previous question in that a random picture will be shown on the screen. But here, you have to speak about it for at least 30 seconds.
  • Read a prompt and write: You will see a prompt; in the box beside it, you have to expand and write about it in at least 50 words.
  • Listen to the question & tell the answer: Here, you have to listen to the question and tell the answer aloud for at least 30 seconds.
  • Read the question & tell the answer: Here again, a prompt will be given, and you have to read it and tell the answer. It should be at least 30 seconds long.

S. No.

Types of Questions

Skills Required

Average Frequency 

1

Complete a given text by typing the missing letters

Literacy, Comprehension

6 times

2

Select the correct English words from the list

Literacy, Comprehension

6 times

3

Select the right words by listening

Comprehension, Conversation

6 times

4

Write the sentence you hear

Comprehension, Conversation

6 times

5

Speak aloud the sentence on a screen

Comprehension, Conversation

6 times

6

Describe a photo in 1 or more sentences

Production, Literacy

3 times

7

Speak about a photo

Production, Conversation

1 time

8

Read a prompt and write the expansion

Production, Literacy

1 time

9

Listen to a question & speak the answer

Production, Conversation

1 time

10

Speak the answers to the questions

Production, Conversation

2 times

Video Interview And Writing Test

Though there is no grading for this test, it is equally important. The speaking and writing samples are two forms of this test, and you will be assessed based on this. The recipient will be able to view the video and written result. Your speaking and listening skills will be evaluated here.

Ungraded Section

The Ungraded Section consists of a Speaking Sample and a Writing Sample.

  • Speaking Sample: In this section, you will have two prompts to choose from. You will have 30 seconds to choose one from the two, and you can select the one that best fits you. Once the recording begins, you have to speak for 1-3 minutes and can even talk more. You must start with an introduction and dive into the topic. Always remember never to pause and always be confident.
  • Writing Sample: You will be given two prompts and 30 seconds to choose one from the two to write on. You will be given 3-5 minutes to write. You should type the answers quickly and watch out for spelling and grammatical errors.

Duolingo English Test Setup

When you start the test, you will be introduced to a new set of rules and regulations. The 1-hour test is divided into three sections: Introduction and Onboarding, Adaptive Test, and ungraded Video and Writing Samples.

A detailed explanation of the same is given below

1. Introduction and Onboarding: It takes around five minutes to complete and checks the following
  • Check whether the laptop/desktop, camera, microphone and speaker are in good working condition.
  • You should display your valid government ID card.
  • Read through the rules and regulations.
2. Graded Adaptive Test: It takes 45 minutes to complete and includes the following
  • Analysing your English language skills through short questions.
  • The questions will be asked in random order.
  • As you proceed further, the level of difficulty increases.
3. Ungraded Video and Writing Sample: It is 10 minutes long, and you will have to answer one of the two questions. It also includes:
  • You will get 30 seconds to choose the question you want to answer.
  • You will get 1-3 minutes to answer the speaking question and 3-5 minutes to answer the writing question.
  • You can recheck your video sample before submitting it.

Graded Section And Types Of Questions

Below is a table from which you can get detailed information about the Duolingo test graded section and question types.

Question Types

Sub-Scores

Time Limit

Read and Complete

Literacy, Comprehension

3 minutes

Read and Select

Literacy, Comprehension

1 minute

Listen and Select

Comprehension and Conversation

1.5 minutes

Listen and Type

Comprehension and Conversation

1 minute

Read Aloud

Comprehension and Conversation

20 seconds

Write about the Photo

Production, Literacy

1minute

Speak about the Photo

Production, Conversation

0.5-1.5 minutes

Read and Write

Production, Literacy

5 minutes

Read and Speak

Conversation, Production

0.5-1.5 minutes

Listen and Speak

Conversation, Production

0.5-1.5 minutes

DET Ungraded Section And Types Of Questions

The Ungraded Section will have Writing and Speaking Samples. They are given below.


UNGRADED SAMPLES

TIME LIMIT

Speaking Sample

1-3 minutes + 30 seconds

Writing Sample

3-5 minutes + 30 seconds

Duolingo Desktop Application

You can attempt the Duolingo test on the Duolingo desktop application. It is assessed in the same application as well. Right from registration start, every process is done in the application only. It takes up 241 MB on Mac and 49 MB on Windows. You should follow the below steps to install it:

  • Search for the Duolingo app on your desktop/laptop.
  • Go to Duolingo’s official website.
  • Click on ‘Download for Mac/Windows’.
  • Confirm the Privacy Policy and Terms and Conditions.
  • The download will be done.
  • Click on the Duolingo zip.
  • Click on the install button.
  • Give all the information and click on Finish.
  • The app will be installed.

Frequency Of Questions Asked In The Duolingo Test


Though there is no specified syllabus for the Duolingo test, there is a specified number of questions. The frequency of questions that will be asked in the list is given below

Types of Questions

Frequency 

Read and Select

3-7 times or 6 on average

Read and Complete

3-7 times or 6 on average

Listen and Type

3-7 times or 6 on average

Listen and Select

3-7 times or 6 on average

Read Aloud

3-7 times or 6 on average

Speak About the Photo

1

Write About the Photo

3

Read and Write

1

Read and Speak

2

Listen and Speak

1

Speaking Sample

1

Writing Sample

1

Preparation For Duolingo Syllabus

Duolingo has no particular syllabus. It just checks your reading, writing, speaking and listening skills. You just have to practice it more. For instance:

  • Read magazines and newspapers that are written in standardised English.
  • Watch English movies or videos without subtitles.
  • Try talking with native English speakers.
  • Practice with the help of several free sources available on the internet.

FAQs About the Duolingo Exam Syllabus

What type of questions are asked in the Duolingo English Test 2022?

You will be asked questions about reading, writing, speaking and listening. There will be multiple-choice questions in the first section and descriptive questions in the second section.

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