[Course Forum] French 1-7 by Memrise

Hi @wlwee,

You are right! This has now been corrected. If you log out and in again from your profile you will see the change.

Thanks a lot!
Fanny

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Hi @lurajaneand @Sonnenkrieger,

Thank you for spotting this. This has been corrected and you can see the change once you log out and in from your profile :slight_smile:

Fanny

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I love the first grammar lesson in iOS app! But I wish it had audio when I select the right answer. This is because when I read the words I’m pronouncing them with my English bias, which makes me say them wrong and reinforces incorrect pronunciation.

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It’s impossible to hear the locals in French 2 unless you turn the volume way up, and then all the other sound effects are very loud. Any fix coming on this?

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In French level 2, my 10 years old daughter was seeing translations written as “Fuck-yeah!” or something very similar using the F word.

In addition to all the other France-only slang words taught in Memrise which are NOT part of the normal French language (I’m native French and I don’t even know these expressions), Memrise seems more like a bad joke than a serious way to learn the French language.

From a paying customer… please refrain from teaching slang and offensive words to kids (or anyone) as if this was normal. Bastardised expressions and ‘englicised’ terms should not be part of basic French courses, irrespective if people in France use them. French is not only spoken in France!
What’s next, teaching kids to say "putain ! "? You should know better.

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Hi @patrickbouvryca

Thank you for taking the time to write to us. Our app is designed towards our main audience and learners, which are young adults and adults. Our goal is to teach everyday, spoken language based on usage rather than academic language. We therefore have included some common swear words and expressions, but have stayed away from purely offensive language. We understand that certain things may offend some and not others and have included an “ignore/skip” option so you can remove the items you are not comfortable or happy with.
It is true that the French courses are based on how the language is spoken and used in France currently, and we would love to create courses of French from other territories too in the future, as French languages spoken around the world are rich and unique and deserve their own courses too. Could you tell us which France-only slang words and anglicised terms you are referring to? We would be happy to review them as we want our courses to be as natural and real-worldly as possible.

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Hi @fanny_sta,

The idea to create French courses based on regional habits and expressions is great. However it would be better to first have a basic French course which remains neutral and focusses on teaching how to communicate in French with ‘general’ terms. This would exclude many expressions currently included in the Memrise basic French course which are only understood and spoken in France.

There are thousands of regional words and expressions which could be part of side courses, but why choose some over others (or any) for the basic Memrise French courses? This seems arbitrary and works against a valid teaching of a language’s fundamentals. The site axl.cefan.ulaval.ca is a very good reference to identify regional variations of words and expressions.

Could you tell us which France-only slang words and anglicised terms you are referring to?

I don’t use the app (my 3 children do), I only help them. So my examples from the app are limited, but in general, words such as “shopping, baskets, ferry, pressing, parking, chewing-gum, camping car, scooter, week-end, pipeline, le foot, des baskets/tennis, un jean, des boots, sneakers, un T-shirt, un short, un pull, un sweat, etc.” are NOT French words even if they are used in France. See francaisavecpierre.com or the link above for more examples.

Memrise is a good app, and I’ve got my money on it versus Duolingo (HelloChinese is better for Chinese). However, insisting on teaching words which are not understood nor used internationally hurts the app’s reputation as a serious tool for kids and adults to learn a language with such a variety of expressions internationally (and even within France). Much better care should be brought to the standard courses, and a cleaning of local words/expressions should quickly be made.

Good luck!

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@JeanLucDelhaye and in general

  • viens-tu ? is indeed rather formal, but used by the well educated.
  • est-ce que tu viens ? is rather used by the poorly educated.
  • tu viens ? is correct (and usual) french language.

poorly educated”. Seems like an ad hominem argument (i.e. not an argument).

I would argue that asking a question in a non-question format such as “tu viens?”, leaving only the verbal intonation to determine if it’s a question or a statement is poor usage of the language. Yes, it’s used in France, but so what? They also “do races” (faire des courses) when going shopping or “faire du shopping” which is even worse.

I remember Memrise marking as a mistake questions such as “viens-tu?”, which is a correct ‘question-form’ sentence. Adding “est-ce que” in front of a ‘statement-form’ sentence also creates a question.

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Well educated or poorly educated refer to social categories. The fact that such categories include individual persons doesn’t make such reference an ad hominem argument at all.
Unless, of course one’s political views are that no one should be allowed to speak of social categories ; that’s pure nonsense, and intellectual terrorism.
Moreover, denying different education levels equals to denying the very notion of language levels, in which case any contribution to this discussion is useless.

Verbal intonation is a very part of the french language as well as many other ones. What is poor usage of language is ignoring verbal intonation.
The fact that adding “est-ce que” in front of a ‘statement-form’ sentence also creates a question has nothing to do with tthe fact that doing so, if certainly correct, is nonetheless not well educated.

“it’s used in France, but so what?”… Sorry to tell you: France is the country where people natively speak french, and have been doing so for quite a few centuries. Seems to me that the way the French speak french is somehow relevant to appreciate what is correct language (not the Belgian, nor the Canadian).

Arguing that Memrise marking as a mistake questions such as “viens-tu?” is nonsense: Memrise is not a reference for French language (nor for any other).

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@JeanLucDelhaye

Jean Luc et al.

Summarising your arguments: 1) France is the place that matters, 2) education (according to France standards) is what matters, and 3) the rest is “nonsense”. Great objective and measurable points - got it. If you’re well ‘educated’, you’ll understand that the next response to this kind of condescension is insult. So why do it?

Belittling people (although a common sport in France) is still a crappy behaviour, in any culture. Education varies in many countries and assuming that ‘your’ education is the right one is plain arrogance and simple minded. It’d be nice if arguments could be limited to using measurable facts and logic, but “you didn’t go to my school, therefore you’re wrong” doesn’t magically make intonation an integral part of the French language (this is not Chinese or Thai) and therefore the validity of question-form sentences remains.

We seem to both agree that there’s nothing wrong with any of the question forms or even using intonation in the statement-form, other than the subjective condescending remark of “poorly educated”.
I therefore reiterate that Memrise should not represent the limited lexicon (geographically) of regional words and expressions in their main base courses, and question-form sentences should be valid answers. Creating regional courses for various dialects in France, Switzerland, Belgium, Quebec, Haiti, etc. could be interesting, but only if done separately.

Cheers.

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Votre prose est un parfait exemple de malhonnêteté intellectuelle, à moins que vous ne sachiez pas lire. Je n’ai nullement tenu les propos que vous me prêtez.

Yes, France is the place that matters when discussing what is correct French language. Claiming that the French language spoken in France is just a dialect of French is beyond nonsense.

Denying that intonation is an integral part of the French language, at least as regards indicating a question, is, at best, plain ignorance.

Not recognising that there are different language levels indicates that you should consider borrowing a decent dictionary of French language ; or, if I may suggest, Le Bon Usage de Maurice Grevisse.

Dès lors, plutôt que vous prétentieusement vous aventurer à jouer les donneurs de leçons de français, langue que vous ne maîtrisez visiblement pas, mais qui est ma langue maternelle, vous seriez mieux inspiré d’en apprendre autre chose que des rudiments, ou votre propre dialecte local.

Sur ce, au vu de votre évidente supériorité intellectuelle, je vous lirai dorénavant d’un derrière distrait.

Vous paraissez avoir besoin de soins.

Comprenez-vous? :slight_smile:

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I came here to comment about “es-tu?” vs “tu es?” etc, and I see that there’s some vehement discussion going on already. I am not a native French speaker, but went through French immersion in Canada. I believe I was always taught the “es-tu?” form by my teachers (who were all French Canadian, whether Quebequois or Acadien)

Regardless of correctness, I believe that it should be taught the “grammatically correct” way, but that any widely accepted colloquial form should also be accepted as correct. Even if the “grammatically correct” version isn’t the one being taught, it should at least be accepted as a correct answer. It’s very frustrating to keep getting questions wrong even though you are technically answering in a more correct form.

I don’t have particularly strong feelings about grammatical correctness, but if I’m already doing something in “most correct” way I don’t want to feel like I’m training myself out of that by using Memrise to practice :confused:

tl;dr: they should always have the “es-tu?” interrogative form included as a correct answer, even if it isn’t what’s taught.

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I fully agree with you: alternate forms should always be accepted as correct answers.

My point was to comment on the “gramatically correct” issue. es-tu…?, tu es…? (with proper intonation) and est-ce que tu es… are all grammatically correct forms.

The difference is in language level, just as BS is not at the same level as nonsense. Es-tu prêt? is rather formal, and seldom used in spoken french ; Tu es prêt ? is “mid-level” language ; est-ce que tu es prêt? is rather poor language from rather poorly educated citizens. IMHO, es-tu prêt? is the form that should be taught.

I’m very sorry for the vehement discussion. The problem was that “patrickbouvryca” came in with what looks like a politically stricly egalitarist point of view, whereby he denies that there are different language levels, corresponding to different levels of “academic” education. Moreover, that person, while initially wrongly assuming and blaming me for using what he calls an ad hominem argument, proceeds with a very ad hominem argument against myself. Such an attitude is very far from being relevant when discussing linguistic issues. That is basic trolling - or, to be very clear, that’s pure, well… BS. :slight_smile:

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In French 3, I cannot get through the first Chatbot (it asks a question but then only has punctuation marks available as answers) and Grammerbot will not accept the correct answer for je ne suis pas.

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Furthermore, both grammer bots and chatbots repeat the same 2-3 lessons.

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Just putting this out there: I found this vocab term a little sexist! It felt like they were talking about women being crazy and there was no equivalent “Il est bazarre”.

Also—really enjoying the app! This is a very small complaint, and your support site directed me here :slight_smile:

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It could be talking about an inanimate feminine object.

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There are several mistakes in French 2 in time definition. For example quinze heures and others. Please recheck the time definitions of all phrases. 6.26 is not 26 minutes past 7

*edit word choice / phrasing

(Apologies for responding to such an old comment it just seems you didn’t get much of a response at the time)

Without trying to dispute your point or anything I would just like to point out that “elle est bizarre” isn’t the only place where there is only one gendered example and it doesn’t seem to prefer male or female, I think it’s just to not force repetition just on gender, hope it helps !

(Attatched is a screenshot of some of the phrases in reference)

Best of luck learning / Bonne chance apprentissage :smile:

image

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Hi, I noticed someone bringing this up before but did not get any responses so I’d like to ask again. The volume of the native speakers’ videos is wayyy too low, which makes it a hard time for users to adjust the volume back and forth. Please fix it if possible.