Learning vocabulary

I wonder how it should be possible to learn up to 200 LingQ’s per day. Is there any difference between normal vocabulary learning and LingQ learning? And how do you decide which status you assign to each LingQ? Up to now the space repetition system of Anki seems to me to be more comfortable and more effective than the integrated flash card system of LingQ. Thank you for your advices.

For me, especially in Chinese, learning more than 200 LingQs per day seems very unrealistic. I learn maybe 5 per day.

Hello Hajo,
First question: who is learning up to 200 words a day?
Second question: what is this “space repetition system of Anki”?

Well, you can find some films and articles where Steve Kaufmann claims to learn up to 200 LingQ per day (his goal to learn korean from September 1st on). Google for “Anki” and you will find the link to this freeware program.

THe most of lingqers don’t learn up to 200 words a day, they simply make as many lingqs as possible- that’s why they can make evern more lingqs, maybe 400 or 500…
And they believe that by repetition the same words from other texts they can rememmber the main words.

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I don’t think Steve learns 200 words per day. He maybe makes 200 lingqs in a single day but that isn’t “learning” them. From what I gather, Steve doesn’t like to deliberately learn vocabulary or phrases, he simply exposes himself enough to them that they stick eventually without the need to ram them into his brain by cramming.

I’m hoping this works as I’m following the same path, only time will tell. All I know is I’d give up after day 1 if I used a large part of my study time memorising words and phrases, especially 200 lol.

Fwiw I have tried Anki a couple of times but of all the words I remember long term, very few (if any) have stuck for me this way. I’d say 99.9 % of the words I know have come from exposure to content, from reading and listening. I have pieces of conversations from podcasts that are still in my brain from a year ago.

I think Anki and such programs could be very useful for cramming for an approaching test but if you want a language to become a part of you, to have it in your long term memory, then I feel like listening and reading, allowing your brain to accept words when it’s ready is the way to go.

I’ve often wondered about people saying how they’ve forgotten most of a language after x number of months/years without using it, I wonder if those are the people who cram learned it using flash cards as the main part of their study. I only say this because I’ve taken a few breaks for many months at a time and I find it’s always right there again after only a day or 2 of going back to it. I’m thinking this is because of the way I’ve “acquired” words over forcing them in, which for me only seems to last for a short period of time until they’ve all deserted me.


Thanks for your answer. Let assume that we learn the vocabulary by exposure. Then I still wonder how you use the section “Vocabulary” on this webside and how you fix the status of each word?. Does it make sense to go through flashcards if you learn vocabulary by exposure?

I did this as a beginner. Now as an advanced learner, I simply fix the status if I meet the word in another text, and feel that I know it. If I’m not sure I don’t change the status.

I have to learn 200 each day because I forget 199.

The words I learn are mostly words that I didn’t need to LingQ. We learn most words incidentally in my experience. I don’t convert that many LingQ to known, a much smaller number than my total known words, in all my languages.

I agree from my own experience that reading, hearing and repeating is the best way to incidentally learn new words. For now I decided just to learn the important words with the flashcard system (two to four star words, you can sort them :slight_smile: great feature on the vocabulary page) . For the less important words (one star) I will only check their status.

I realize that you might be joking now, but just in case, I find that reducing my work load to a comfortable level makes me more effective. I learn ten new words a day in Anki. Five for Russian, five for Serbian, and these past few days I’ve had a success rate of more than 90%.

Yes, sorry, that was a lame attempt at humor. These days, I’m no longer making any real effort to learn words. If I come across a new word, or a phrase, that seems useful to me, I’ll play with it in my head a bit and try to work it into a conversation with my language partner, but that’s about it.

The vocabulary section is for reviewing your vocabulary. You can sort them by Creation Date in order to see your most recent ones. You can rely on a SRS algorithm to select which ones to review. You can select Phrases only. If you have created Tags you can search for your Tag list and just review them. You can choose different ways of reviewing them, Flashcards, Cloze Lists, Dictation, Multiple Choice. In the 4.0 you can review your saved LingQs in the lesson with a random choice of these ways of reviewing. I kind of enjoy this.
Like Vera I change the status of LingQs when I meet them in a text and feel I know them better, or completely. I don’t spend a lot of time with Flashcards. I save so many saved LingQs, I would end up spending too much time on Flashcards, and I prefer to spend my learning time reading and listening or speaking. Even saving only a few LingQs a day, the spaced repetition systems like Anki get you to spend more and more time with lists of words and not with living interesting texts. I also doubt that in the long run this kind of learning is more effective than randomly meeting these words and phrases.
I like the random vocab review in 4.0. I also enjoy reviewing phrases, rather than words. This way you are reviewing, on a random sample basis, some of the key structures of the language.

Thank you for your detailed answer. The problem is that the vocabulary section offers such a lot of options so that a newbie like me doesn’t know how to efficiently use it. Your book doesn’t tell these details. Additionally in the meantime I think that the use of the vocabulary section depends on the language level. A beginner should use it differently from an advanced learner. So the question for me is not which options are available but how to use it in the most efficient way (if there is any). From the answers above I got some valuable hints but nevertheless the topic is still not 100% clear to me.
Sure, I could make my own experiences but wouldn’t it be a waste of time so as many others have already run through this process?

It depends on your preference.
Somebody doesn’t like to learn words at all, he hastily makes lingqs and in a hurry goes ahead.
I like learning words because the words are the necessary btricks, with them we can build our own language castles and palaces.
But I like learning words not after a dictionary, I like learning words in the context, I enjoy it observing how the words make the word combinations, phrases and sentences.
It’s a very interestinfg part of language learning for me.
From these options in the Vocabulary section I use most of all multiple choice, adding some my own examples t5o the most important words.
I never change the status of lingqs, it doesn’t matter for me.
I never calculate my words - it doesn’t matter for me as well.
Like a sportman is fond of sports, I am just fond of the language study.