Are streaks a good measure of consistency?


Recently I (re)discovered LingQ. I think it’s a fantastic study tool, and would like to express my gratitude to all the people who make it possible.

Among other things, I appreciate the abundance of #statistics to keep track of one’s learning. One of those statistics is the #streak : the number of consecutive days you’ve been reaching your daily goal. This is supposed to be a measure of #consistency. But is it?

Imagine you take part in a 90-days challenge. You reach your goal every day for 88 days and miss the 89th. You resume on the last day, and winds up with a streak of 1 day. Is this a good indicator of your consistency throughout the challenge?

Somebody who learns every other day would have studied in total 45 days and would end the challenge with a 1 day streak - just as you did. Somebody who didn’t study for 88 days and started on the 89th, would end the challenge with a streak of 2 days - twice as well as you.

These examples are deliberately far fetched. But I’m sure most learners struggle, sooner or later, with a broken streak.

The point is the validity of an indicator. How well does a statistic measure what it is supposed to measure? Does the metric tell us what we think it does? There is no easy answer.

We also expect a good indicator to motivate us. From what I can read in the forum, broken streaks tend to upset people. It puts pressure on their shoulders, not necessarily in a good way. The longer your streak, the more you have to lose in case of a breach.

I believe it should go the other way round: if you reached your daily goal for 89 days in a 90 days period, a common sense measure of your consistency would be 89/90. This indicator decreases as you skip your daily routine, and increases as you stick to it.

There is no single answer to the problem of measurement. So, I’d like to ask: which indicator, if any, do you use the most in your study? Do you find streaks beneficial to your consistency? Which other measure would you suggest?

Thanks for the brainstorming! Happy learning!


Nothing is a perfect indicator but they are a good motivator to study a little bit every day. I’ve repaired my streak a lot though. Still, proud I have a 300+ streak in my languages.

1 Like

From time to time and on busy days, keeping up the streak is the only motivation to open LingQ and do some studying, haha. But when I do it’s also very satisfying. :slightly_smiling_face:

1 Like

Streaks are a good way to measure consistency but they have nothing to do with challenges.

As usual, there are always different people and different scenarios so you build your own. If you experience it in a negative way, don’t do it!

From “my” point of view, streaks (especially the smallest ones) are a good way to create consistency in order to build what you do as a habit. They have nothing to do with your capacity of learning a language or improving it, although that should come along as an effect of it.

Now, you need to understand what I mean as “habit” on a subconscious level and why it is important to do so IF you want to do so.

For this reason, you might want to take a look at, for example, the mini habit book, the first one only, that you find in its author website here:>
Or, there are other concepts as atomic habits, tiny habits, it doesn’t matter.

Building mini habits is a very powerful tool to transform your behaviour.


Thanks for the link to the book!

Indeed, as a newcomer, there is a lot to learn about LingQ itself and how to optimize it to suit one’s personal goals and way of life. I explored (a tiny part of) the forums today; there is a lot of great content there.

1 Like

Not to open a new thread, I’ll just share here that I don’t really like the way streaks are implemented in LingQ. There were days where I would spend lots of time reviewing the vocabulary section only to learn the next morning that I ‘missed’ a day. On the other hand - sometimes I would just listen to a 2-minute audio recording, mark it as complete and the streak would be met. This is definitely not a good measure of consistency. Not to mention ‘repairing’ a streak, which is kind of cheating.