International language learners choose to study Ukrainian on Duolingo to express solidarity`
More and more people worldwide are learning Ukrainian as a symbol of solidarity following Russia's war, as evidenced by Duolingo's language app 2023 statistics.
This year, most of these students came from the United States, the United Kingdom, Poland, Russia, and Ukraine,
Ukrainian language learning remained stable for most of 2023, being affected by Russia's war, as users perceive learning Ukrainian as a way to show solidarity.
Globally, 37% of new Duolingo learners who are learning Ukrainian said they are doing so to communicate with people.
Duolingo calls users from Australia, Canada, and Finland the "most dedicated" learners of the Ukrainian language course based on the average time spent learning.
Meanwhile, Ukrainian users are among the top five "most dedicated learners" on Duolingo as a whole.
Users from Belarus, Japan, Hungary, Russia, and Ukraine generally had the highest average learning time among all learners.
But for the first time in eight years, Russian has fallen off the list of popular languages for learning on the Duolingo app.
Duolingo attributes this change to Russia's invasion of Ukraine:
"The change in users' interest in learning Russian is directly related to Russia's invasion of Ukraine and the subsequent increase in interest in Ukrainian. In the weeks after the invasion in February 2022, 1.3 million new users started learning Ukrainian on Duolingo."
In some countries, such as Germany and Poland, the number of people learning Ukrainian on Duolingo has increased by 1600% or more.
At the same time, in many countries, the number of people learning Russian has stopped growing or started to decline. The association of the Russian language with the aggressor country has affected its reputation in the world.
Previously, Rubryka spoke with Olha Sitkovska, a journalist from Kharkiv, who went abroad to escape the war and currently teaches Ukrainian to Ukrainians and foreigners. The article reveals tips that help to learn a language and explains why it is crucial now.