Learn German : Essentials (2023)

How to learn German by yourself? Start with an easy and free online course!

We have adopted an objective and efficient approach to learn how to speak a language easily and quickly: we suggest you to start bymemorizing words, phrases and practical expressionsthat you can use in everyday life and that will be useful whentraveling.
Getting used to pronounce words out loud, numbers for instance, is an easy exercise that you can practice often and at anytime throughout the day.
It will help you to get used to the sounds of your chosen language and thus make it more familiar.
And once your vacation begins, in Berlin, Hamburg or in another city in which German is the official language, you will be surprised how familiar and easy to understand it will seem.
Furthermore, using a pocket dictionary is always useful, particularly during a trip. It enables you to find the translation of new words and enrich your vocabulary.

Why speak German while traveling?

This is the most spoken language in Europe

No less than 100 million people around the world master German. In addition to being Goethe’s mother tongue, it is the official language of several countries, including Switzerland, Belgium, Luxembourg, Liechtenstein and Austria, and it is also spoken in some parts of Africa and certain communities in north America. As you can see, speaking this language is firstly a way to access a diversity of cultures, but also a way to increase your business opportunities both in European and African countries and in some American communities.
The official language of the world's fourth-largest economy and the leading power in Europe is also the one of many classics of world literature such as the works of Goethe, the Grimm brothers, Thomas Mann and the winners of the Nobel Prize for Literature Heinrich Böll and Herta Müller.

A major language on the Internet

There is another reason why learning this language is useful: the Internet. We are in the digital age and domains with the ".de" extension (referring to Germany) is the most present on the web, just after the ".com" domains. Having access to such content can prove very useful when you want to expand your search capabilities or find information that is not widely known in other languages.
Germany's annual contribution to science and research is another interesting motivation. Did you know that every year one in ten books published in the world is written in this language? This country is among the leaders in research and innovation, occupying the third place in patent applications worldwide.
Germany's annual contribution to science and research is another interesting motivation. Did you know that every year one in ten books published in the world is written in this language? This country is among the leaders in research and innovation, occupying the third place in patent applications worldwide.

(Video) Learn German in 25 Minutes - ALL the Basics You Need

Make a success of your stay in Germany

Whether you are going to spend a few days with friends for a leisure trip or if you are on a business trip, nothing will be more useful to you than to be able to slip a few words in the language of your interlocutors, who will appreciate your effort and will be certainly more willing to help.

How to succeed in having good pronunciation within a week to a month?

It's easy: all the letters are pronounced
Thepronunciationof German is fairly faithful to its writing: you can rely on the texts to pronounce this language correctly. You will need to learn some rules to have a good accent (for example, to know where to place the tonic accent), but in general it will not be too difficult for you to understand, despite some subtleties on syllables like "sch" or the "-e " in the end of a word — subtleties that may make Germans laugh when they hear you, but will not prevent them from grasping the meaning of your words, neither from appreciating your efforts to learn their language.
We invite you to listen to the pronunciation of the letters by clicking on the following link: German alphabet with audio.

What are the best websites to progress quickly?

100% Autonomous Learning - Online Resources

German courses by Deutsche Welle (DW)
Level: beginner to advanced (A1 to C).
Services:Deutsche Welle (DW) is an international broadcasting service in German. You will not have anything to pay; everything is free. You will find a very rich and varied set of resources, such as vocabulary sheets with audio, videos, interactive exercises, evaluation tests and the best news in the language.
Our opinion: the quality and wealth of this 100% free website will allow you to go through all the stages of your learning without ever getting bored. This site is undoubtedly the best we can recommend you.

Deutsch lernen
Level: for people who already have the first notions.
Services: exercises and summaries related to grammar and conjugation
Services: exercises and summaries related to grammar and conjugation.
Our opinion : this site is very focused on writing and formal rules (verbs and conjugations, declinations, names and articles, adjectives, numbers, pronouns, adverbs, prepositions, conjunctions, passives...). It is not really advisable for complete beginners, but it will be very useful as soon as you have some basic grammatical knowledge. In fact, you will not find a better free resource to do exercises. And it is very pleasant to use.

Resources to go further

Online dictionary Reverso
Level: all levels.
Services: online dictionary.
Our opinion: the interest of this dictionary is not to provide only a simple translation, but also a whole "cloud" of results.

(Video) 100 Phrases Every German Beginner Must-Know

Your comments are welcome!

(Video) 10 GERMAN PHRASES Every Traveler Should Know! (Basic German)

Rhina: Omg! This is absolute gold. These resources are going to help me so much! Thank you! Do not worry :P I'm not always this excited about some vocabulary and sound samples, but right now I began my university journey! As someone who wants to study tech in Germany I recently started my language journey. Which is absolute incredible, but my books still need to be delivered so at home I kinda have no resources, except the internet, to intensify my German knowledge. So here I am! Learning from your site :) That's where my excitement comes from! THANK YOU!

Idhwen: HI!! I'm Idhwen, and I'm just starting to learn German. I found this site VERY helpful.Thank you! :D

Rohel Aijaz: Hallo! Ich bin Rohel. I'm from Pakistan and I started learning German a few months ago. I came upon this website and I really appreciate your efforts. It's too user-friendly. I'll continue using this website.

Kristie: We use this in our classroom! It would be nice if we could slow the pronunciation of the German words down...

(Video) 500 Phrases Every German Beginner Must Know

Cindy : It was so much fun learning how count, colors and so on.It was helpful that I can hear the word pronounce as often as I need to. Are there other vocabulary lessons? It was much more fun than duolingo. Thanks

Alexander: It would greatly help if an audio pronunciation of the German words could be provided. It will go a long way to help

Dasilva Lorenco: CONGRATULATIONS 4 YR JOB: I lived, worked and studied English language (Non academic curse)in Cambridge/UK and I consider yr job very didactic and v/ interesting 4 everyone to start a new language. I agree with with the concept basic of basics to start because if you dont understand the basic words and expressions WHY we start immediatly learn grammar? ....The Classic process ist very borring to start if you need the language immediatly ....and became just a frustrating time.Greating for all yr time!Im John/ Mainz/ DE

stebra90: Hi.Upon visiting your site, I thought I had found a solution, to improve my German.A voice then says "Guten Tag" -- and I am informed that this is "Hello".Even with my very mediocre and rusty German, I know that "Guten Tag" means "Good Day", and doesn't mean "Hello".I couldn't imagine a worst start.Auf Wiedersehen.Loecsen :The expressions given in each language are not literal translations from another language; they are the expressions that would normally be used in particular situations that people find themselves in when traveling. The translators, all of whom are professionals, have not always chosen the grammatically closest translation, because that would not necessarily be the one used most often when you’re there!

Jessica: Best thing ever my kids love it!

(Video) GERMAN phrases You can use for a lifetime — Listen repeatedly and learn easily

Faith Tobi: Great site, great job! i visited your website for the first time today cause i wanted to learn German language for free and i found your website very helpful. well doneFrom Nigeria.

Show comments ( + )

FAQs

How can I teach myself German? ›

The best way to learn German at home for beginners: 6 steps to get you started
  1. Set yourself a goal. ...
  2. Start off on the right foot. ...
  3. Turn learning German into a habit. ...
  4. Practise speaking German with online tutoring. ...
  5. Learn new vocab in meaningful chunks. ...
  6. Make studying German rewarding. ...
  7. Dive into German culture with TV.
27 Mar 2020

What should I learn first in German? ›

People say it's all about mastering the basics. So, if you're wondering how to learn the German language if you're a complete beginner, we recommend you start with the alphabet. The German language has 26 letters, just like English.

Is 2 years enough to learn German? ›

Language students who practice a method of complete immersion, with eight hours of practice per day, could learn German to a high level in a matter of months. Those who dedicate at least one hour per day to language learning can achieve an intermediate level within two years.

Can I learn German in 3 months? ›

You need more than 3 months to be fluent. But even with such a short time, if you adjust your strategy, you can actually learn German and get really close to being fluent. And I don't mean being able to say, 'I'm doing fine' in German as fast as a native speaker or being able to combine words you learned on Duolingo.

Can you learn German in 20 days? ›

Yes, it is possible, that is if you have dedicated many hours of German language learning without distractions. Language experts mention that learning German beginner level (or German A1 level) takes at least 75 hours to fully grasp. That takes at least 10 hours or more a day to really finish your language lessons.

What is ß called in English? ›

The German letter ß is a ligature and is also called a “scharfes s” (sharp s). But it's simpler than it sounds–it actually just means “ss”. The best thing about this letter? It sounds exactly like the “s” sound in English!

How do you say SS in German? ›

The double s (after a short vowel) and the ß (after a long vowel) are both pronounced like the -ss in the English word “pass”. How to pronounce s: When the s is at the end of a word, it is pronounced as in the English word “pass”.

How quickly can you become fluent in German? ›

So, how long do you need to learn German if you want to reach this level of fluency? According to the U.S. Foreign Service Institute (FSI), you'll need about 750 hours of study to become fluent in German. This means that if you study 12-15 hours a week, you'll be able to speak like a pro in just a year!

What is the most difficult thing in learning German? ›

Five reasons why learning German is hard…
  • Because there are few pronunciation rules. ...
  • Because nouns are recognized due to the capital letter. ...
  • Because German has rules to which one can abide to, whereas in English the grammar is more 'flexible', so to say. ...
  • Because you don't have the gerund and the duration form.
9 Feb 2021

How long does it take to learn German to C1? ›

How long does it take to learn German?
Assess your current level & test your German online!Super Intensive course (30 lessons/week)
B1intermediate6 weeks
B2upper intermediate6 weeks*
C1advanced6 weeks*
C2highly competentindividual
2 more rows

What is the hardest language to learn? ›

Across multiple sources, Mandarin Chinese is the number one language listed as the most challenging to learn. The Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center puts Mandarin in Category IV, which is the list of the most difficult languages to learn for English speakers.

Is B2 German fluent? ›

B2 is the first level that means that you can speak really fluent and understand 80% of the situations that you find yourself in repeatedly. You can prepare yourself for the exam and even see a sample of the language level here.

Can I reach German B2 in 3 months? ›

B2 also takes around 3 months if you spend around 8 hours a week. P.S.: There are some people who are good at learning languages and remembering stuff who finished it all in 3-4 months. It all depends on how easy this comes to you and how much time you're spending on it.

Is C1 German fluent? ›

The C Levels: Fluency

At C1, you will be able to use German effectively in your social, academic and professional life. You will also be able to express your thoughts eloquently and use different ways to link ideas together appropriately.

What 3rd language should I learn? ›

If you want to learn a language that is widely spoken throughout the world, you may want to opt for English, French, or Spanish, which are spoken on all continents.

Can I learn German A1 in 1 month? ›

According to the Goeth Institut and as mentioned earlier, it takes at least 2-3 months of learning German A1 on a daily basis. Although some of their courses have a weekend option or 3-day weekday lessons.

How can I master German fast? ›

Top 10 Study Tips to Learn German Faster
  1. Know Your Goal - And Plan How to Get There. ...
  2. Study Daily. ...
  3. Prioritize Key Words. ...
  4. Start Talking from the Beginning. ...
  5. Study Vocabulary Daily. ...
  6. Use Free Apps and Tools. ...
  7. Develop Activities That Target Your Learning Styles and Schedules. ...
  8. Treat Mistakes Like Free Lessons.
2 Oct 2020

How many hours is A1 in German? ›

On average, it takes the following amount of time to achieve the next language level: A1: approx. 150 hours of lessons.

How hard is B1 German? ›

The German B1 level, also known as the intermediate level, It will take you at least 80 hours per week (a total of 4 weeks) to finish your German B1. According to Goeth Institut, you'll take at least 350 and 650 45-minute units of teaching depending on what you have retained from your previous A1 to A2 level.

What is B1 level German? ›

The Goethe-Zertifikat B1 is a German exam for young people and adults. It certifies that candidates are independent users of the German language and corresponds to the third level (B1) on the six-level scale of competence laid down in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR).

What does Ü mean in German? ›

U-umlaut. A glyph, U with umlaut, appears in the German alphabet. It represents the umlauted form of u, which results in [yː] when long and [ʏ] when short. The letter is collated together with U, or as UE. In languages that have adopted German names or spellings, such as Swedish, the letter also occurs.

Can Germans say w? ›

The German letter w is generally pronounced like an English “v” . In words borrowed from other languages, the same sound is often written as a v. Note: the letter v is most often pronounced like an “f” .

What is Ö in English? ›

Ö, or ö, is a character that represents either a letter from several extended Latin alphabets, or the letter "o" modified with an umlaut or diaeresis. In many languages, the letter "ö", or the "o" modified with an umlaut, is used to denote the close- or open-mid front rounded vowels [ø] ( listen) or [œ] ( listen).

What do Germans call their girlfriend? ›

Practice and memorize these ten terms of endearment, study up on your romantic German phrases and learn a romantic song in German. You'll be wooing your new Freund (boyfriend) or Freundin (girlfriend) in no time at all.

How is the Ü pronounced? ›

The way to pronounce the Ü umlaut is by making the sound “ee” and pursing your lips as if you were whistling, almost completely shut. Your tongue must stay in the same place as when you say the sound “ee” and you should only change the shape of your mouth as if we're saying “oo”.

What is ß called in German? ›

In German orthography, the letter ß, called Eszett (IPA: [ɛsˈtsɛt] ess-TSET) or scharfes S (IPA: [ˌʃaʁfəs ˈʔɛs], lit. "sharp S"), represents the /s/ phoneme in Standard German when following long vowels or diphthongs. The name Eszett combines the names of the letters of ⟨s⟩ (Es) and ⟨z⟩ (Zett) in German.

Is A1 German enough? ›

Levels A1 and A2: These levels provide you with basic knowledge of the German language. If you have no previous knowledge, attending an A1 course is highly recommended. Levels B1 and B2: Here is where you will learn German at an advanced level.

Is German or French easier? ›

Nitty-gritty things like these can make getting started a bit of a challenge – but between the two, French will be a little easier, with (slightly) fewer endings to learn. That said, experts largely agree that the more German you learn, the easier it gets, while French gets more complicated the deeper you dive in.

How fast can I get B2 in German? ›

How much time do you need to learn German to a B2 level? A quick google search shows that The Foreign Service Institute (FSI) suggests that you need about 750 hours to get to this level. An offer of many German-language schools seems to confirm this number.

What is the longest word in German? ›

The longest word in the standard German dictionary is Kraftfahrzeug-Haftpflichtversicherung – which is the word for motor vehicle liability insurance. But at 36 letters, it's rather puny. Rechtsschutzversicherungsgesellschaften, a touch longer at 39 letters, is the language's longest non-dictionary word.

What is the top 3 hardest languages to learn? ›

Let's explore the 10 hardest languages for English speakers to learn, and the challenges they deliver:
  1. Mandarin. Mandarin is spoken by 70% of the Chinese population, and is the most spoken language in the world. ...
  2. Arabic. ...
  3. 3. Japanese. ...
  4. Hungarian. ...
  5. Korean. ...
  6. Finnish. ...
  7. Basque. ...
  8. Navajo.
16 Sept 2022

What are the 3 most hardest languages to learn? ›

Generally, if you're an English speaker with no exposure to other languages, here are some of the most challenging and difficult languages to learn: Mandarin Chinese. Arabic. Vietnamese.

How difficult is A1 German? ›

German A1 exam pattern is quite simple. As it's a language, there are 4 modules- Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking. It is 60 points exam and you have to score 36 points (60%) to pass the exam.

Can I reach B2 German in 6 months? ›

You would on an average need 7-9 months to reach at B2 level and get good rating or they call it “Noten” . The real catch is how intensive are those months. How many hours you are putting every day, how much you are speaking, reading and writing.

Can Germans have A2 without A1? ›

Yes you can. It is not necessary that one has to appear for the A1 exam first. One can appear for any of the German exam levels directly. I hope that my answer helps you.

Which is the 2 toughest language in the world? ›

2. Arabic. Arabic is the queen of poetic languages, the 6th official language of the UN and second on our list of toughest languages to learn.

What is the world's easiest language? ›

15 of the easiest languages to learn for English speakers - ranked
  • Frisian. Frisian is thought to be one of the languages most closely related to English, and therefore also the easiest for English-speakers to pick up. ...
  • Dutch. ...
  • Norwegian. ...
  • Spanish. ...
  • Portuguese. ...
  • Italian. ...
  • French. ...
  • Swedish.
24 Oct 2021

How many hours is A2 German? ›

On top of that I usually spend another 1-2 hours every day doing additional studying (either out of a workbook or online). Deutsche Welle says that A1 should be reached in 75 hours and A2 takes 150 but I've already clocked in at least 160 hours and I can't pass most of the practice A1 tests.

Is duolingo German B2? ›

Whether you're a total beginner or you're looking to brush up, Duolingo's German course is definitely one of the best options currently available. The course is now hitting the same heights as the French and Spanish courses — which Duolingo reckon can get you to a B2 level on the CEFR.

What is C1 level German? ›

Goethe-Zertifikat C1 is an examination for adults. It certifies that candidates have acquired advanced language skills and corresponds to the fifth level (C1) on the six-level scale of competence laid down in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR).

How long is B1 German valid? ›

The telc B1 certificate does not lose its validity. The certificate is therefore valid indefinitely. However, some institutions and employers require a certificate that is no more than two years old.

Does B2 German certificate expire? ›

Lifelong. This certificate does not have an expiry date. The exam has 4 modules (reading, writing, listening and speaking) which are graded from 0 to 100. to A minimum score of 60/100 is required to pass each of them.

How long does it take to go from B1 to C1 in German? ›

You need approximately 4–6 months depending on your interest to complete upto B1 level, C1 will take another 6 months to complete if you do it at a stretch. So if you take everything into count, it would take about 1 year to get C1 level of proficiency in German language.

Is B2 German hard? ›

It is not at all difficult to pursue B2 level with graduation. I finished my C2 when I was in my second year of graduation. I used to take breaks for the courses only during my exam months and did not take admission during those times.

How long does it take to reach C2 German? ›

Learners reach C2 at different rates depending on the other factors we'll discuss here, but expect nothing less than three years (and probably several more years). The Goethe Institut says you need to have studied German for at least 750 hours to get to this point.

Is 4 years enough to learn German? ›

In short, yes of course it is. I don't usually subscribe to the exact levels people talk about when they tell you how many hours to study in a specific language (because what is “study” right there?), but reaching C1 level in 4 years doesn't seem overly cumbersome at all.

Can I study German language by myself? ›

German is very closely related to English. They're in the same language family called West Germanic. The two languages share common words, sentence structures, and an extremely similar alphabet. So, since you already know English, learning German by yourself won't be hard at all.

Is German a easy language to learn? ›

Getting Great at German

German might not be as familiar to English speakers as Spanish, but it's still one of the easiest languages to learn. Like Spanish, it's also a phonetic language, which makes pronunciation easy to figure out.

Is German easy for beginners? ›

With plenty of straightforward rules, German is not actually as hard to learn as most people think. And since English and German stem from the same language family, you might actually be surprised at the things you pick up without even trying! And on top of it all, it's definitely a useful one, too.

Can I self teach myself German? ›

Because there's no question it's possible; many people have succeeded in learning German by themselves. German is slightly harder than Spanish or French, but it's still quite easy for someone who speaks English. A lot of the grammar and vocabulary will be familiar to you.

Can I learn German in 1 year? ›

Of course you can! I personally had just learned German in 9 months and passed TestDaf with B2/C1 level and I know many friends who did better than me(less time or better scores). Well, first you need a teacher, especially at the beginning level, unless you are very determined and self-disciplined.

Is Duolingo good for German? ›

Duolingo German lessons are aligned to an international standard designed to get you using German right away! In each lesson, you'll practice vocabulary, grammar, and pronunciation all together through exercises focused on reading, writing, listening, and speaking. There are also really fun (and often surprising!)

How many years will it take to learn German? ›

According to the U.S. Foreign Service Institute (FSI), you'll need about 750 hours of study to become fluent in German. This means that if you study 12-15 hours a week, you'll be able to speak like a pro in just a year!

How many months will it take to learn German? ›

It shouldn't take long to become fluent in German. Actually, after 6-8 months of studying in intense courses (about twenty hours every week) you will be able to gain proficiency of your German language to navigate your daily life. It is possible to gain professional proficiency within a mere year!

Is German harder than French? ›

Nitty-gritty things like these can make getting started a bit of a challenge – but between the two, French will be a little easier, with (slightly) fewer endings to learn. That said, experts largely agree that the more German you learn, the easier it gets, while French gets more complicated the deeper you dive in.

Is German the hardest language? ›

Is German the hardest language to learn? Maybe not, but it is certainly one of the hardest European languages. And in particular, one of the hardest languages to learn for French speakers (Spanish and Portuguese speakers, too), since it is in a different language family.

Why is German so difficult? ›

But what makes German so hard to learn? The only reason that German seems so difficult to people is that it has grammar rules that other languages don't. German is a language with relatively high “inflection,” meaning that the words in a sentence change based on their grammatical roles.

Is Spanish easier than German? ›

Overall, Spanish might be easier than German at the beginning stages, but the two tend to even out in difficulty once learners get to the more advanced stages. German has more complicated grammar rules that need to be mastered early on, but once learners get familiar with them, they find that they're pretty consistent.

Can I get a job if I learn German? ›

An important fact is that it is the second most learned foreign language in India. There are many other German Language Careers in India, one can choose to work, like proofreader, translator, content writers, and trainers and much more. This is potentially the most appealing profession openings.

Can I learn German in 6 months? ›

The average language you need to know 2,000–3,000 words to be fluent. That not including grammar and idiums. Therefore if you wish to learn 2,500 words in 6 month (180 days) you need to learn about 14 words per day.

Can I learn German in 4 months? ›

This is not possible. It's not. Native German speakers do not learn German in 4 months, and you're coming into it with considerably more of a handicap. You need to seriously adjust your expectations.

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