German is among the ten most spoken languages in the world. Hence many people try to learn German as an essential tool for communication. But how long does it take to learn German?
What will I learn?
- 1 How Long Does It Take To Learn German?
- 2 How Difficult Is The German Language To Learn?
- 3 Relation Of German Language To English
- 4 5 Steps To Help In Learning German Language
- 4.1 1. Learn The Alphabet:
- 4.2 2. Memorizing The Vocabulary:
- 4.3 3. Learning The Sentence Structure:
- 4.4 4. Knowing The Basic Grammar Rules:
- 4.5 5. Practicing The Language:
- 5 6 Major Factors That Contribute To Your Language Learning Process
- 5.1 1. Your Exposure To The German Language:
- 5.2 2. Relation Of German Language To Your Native Language:
- 5.3 3. What Level Of Fluency Do You Desire To Reach:
- 5.4 4. How Much Time You Are Dedicating To The Learning Process:
- 5.5 5. What Learning Method Are You Using:
- 5.6 6. What Is Your Learning Speed And Ability:
- 6 Final Thoughts:
This article will provide useful tips and factors that contribute to the learning process of the German language. So continue reading!
How Long Does It Take To Learn German?
That is a question that many people ask when considering taking up the language.
The answer depends on several factors, such as how much time you can commit to learning German, your current language knowledge, and how quickly you pick up new concepts.
Generally speaking, it could take anywhere from 3-6 months for an absolute beginner to get up to a basic level of conversational German.
It takes up to a year or more for someone wanting to become fluent.
The best way to learn the language is to do it regularly over an extended period.
You can also speed up your learning by taking advantage of online courses, finding native tutors, or attending in-person classes.
Doing as much as possible to immerse yourself in the language is an important part of learning German.
No matter how long it takes you to learn German, you should take pride in your achievements and enjoy the process.
Don’t be afraid to make mistakes—the more you make, the more you learn. With enough practice and dedication, you can be well on your way to fluency in German!
How Difficult Is The German Language To Learn?
The difficulty of learning German depends on your language background. If you already have a solid understanding of English.
For example, you may find that some aspects of German are relatively easy to master.
With the right resources and dedication, most people can develop basic conversational abilities in less than six months.
However, it typically takes two or more years to become proficient in the language.
The difficulty of learning increases when you move beyond basic conversational abilities and start tackling more complex aspects of German, such as grammar and higher-level vocabulary.
It is also beneficial to understand the culture behind the language so that it can take a lot longer to fully master all aspects of German than it does to become conversational in the language.
To get an idea of how long it takes to learn German, consider that it generally takes 600 class hours for a student to reach an intermediate level of proficiency.
However, this number can vary depending on your learning style and the resources you use.
For instance, some learners might find that it takes them less time to become proficient in German, while others might need more.
Relation Of German Language To English
It’sIt’s important to note that German shares many similarities with English because they are both West Germanic languages.
That means some words in the two languages are very similar, making it easier to learn German if you already know English.
Many words in the two languages are derived from Latin, sharing similar roots and patterns.
For example, “kinder” is a direct relative of the English word “children,” and both have the same meaning.
English and German share common roots and have many cognates, words that share the same origin. A good example is the word ”mother”, which sounds and looks different (‘Mutter’ in German).
Because of these similarities between German and English, it is relatively easy for English speakers to learn German.
5 Steps To Help In Learning German Language
The best approach to learning German is to start with the essentials and work your way up gradually.
First, improve your pronunciation, build a solid vocabulary base, and master basic grammar rules.
Once you grasp the basics well, spend more time practicing your conversational skills and expanding your vocabulary.
The easiest way to do this is by reading books or watching movies with German subtitles.
In addition, many online resources and apps can help you learn the language. You can also practice conversing with native German speakers to test your comprehension.
Let us look at five steps to help us understand the process in detail:
1. Learn The Alphabet:
The first step is learning the German alphabet. That is crucial as it forms the foundation for understanding the language.
The German alphabet is the same 26 letters as in English.
So, if you are familiar with the English alphabet, you can easily learn the German one.
2. Memorizing The Vocabulary:
Once you’ve learned some basic grammar and vocab, it’s time to start memorizing the words.
Unfortunately, that is where many people get stuck, as it can be difficult to remember so many new words.
A great way to do this is by using flashcards or other tools to review what you’ve learned.
3. Learning The Sentence Structure:
The next step is to learn sentence structure and how to use it in practice.
That means understanding when to use certain words, phrases, and sentences.
Learning the sentence structure can be difficult, but with enough practice, you should eventually start speaking like a native German speaker.
4. Knowing The Basic Grammar Rules:
Once you have mastered the sentence structure, learning some basic grammar rules is time.
These will help you understand how the language works and give insight into what makes up a correct German sentence.
That can take some time, but with enough practice and patience, you should be able to understand these concepts quickly.
5. Practicing The Language:
The final step in learning German is to practice the language.
You can do this by watching German films and TV shows, listening to music, reading books, conversing with native speakers, or joining a language exchange group.
Practicing your German daily will help you improve your skills quickly and become fluent in no time.
6 Major Factors That Contribute To Your Language Learning Process
A lot of factors contribute to an individual’s learning process.
For example, how much time and effort you put into the language, your aptitude for languages, and the resources available will all play a role in your progress.
That being said, with enough dedication and practice, anyone can learn German in no time.
Let us look at six major factors that contribute the most to our learning of the German language.
1. Your Exposure To The German Language:
How often you are exposed to the language plays a major role in determining how quickly you can learn it.
If you practice every day, either through speaking with native speakers or using online tools and courses, then your progress will be much faster.
Movies and media also help to improve your listening comprehension.
Listening comprehension is essential to learning, as it helps you understand the spoken language. So, exposure to language is an essential aspect of learning.
2. Relation Of German Language To Your Native Language:
The relation of the German language to your native language can also affect how quickly you learn.
If the two languages are closely related, it will be easier for you to pick up on certain aspects of the new language faster.
For example, if you’re a native English speaker, then learning German is considered easier because of the similarities between the two languages.
So, it would take less time to learn than someone who speaks a language with very little relation to German.
3. What Level Of Fluency Do You Desire To Reach:
Another factor determining how long it takes to learn German is your desired level of fluency.
For example, suppose you only wish to understand the basics, e.g., ordering food in a restaurant, engaging in brief conversations, and reading some signs.
In that case, it will take significantly less time than if you want to become proficient enough to pass a university entrance exam or get a job that requires German fluency.
So, knowing what fluency level you want before starting the learning process is helpful.
4. How Much Time You Are Dedicating To The Learning Process:
The amount of time you have for studying and learning German also matters.
If you have more free time to devote to language learning, it will take less time to learn German than if you are busy with other commitments.
But, of course, you also need to factor in the time you are willing to dedicate; if you’re only able to study German for a few hours per week, it may take longer than if you devote more of your free time.
5. What Learning Method Are You Using:
The learning method you choose can also make a huge difference in how long it takes to learn German.
For example, if you’re going with traditional language classes or online courses, your progress will likely depend on the speed of the course and the time allotted for each lesson.
On the other hand, if you opt for independent study techniques like flashcards, immersion, or language exchanges, you can determine your learning pace.
6. What Is Your Learning Speed And Ability:
It’sIt’s also important to note that everyone learns differently, so your learning speed and ability can affect how quickly you learn German.
For example, some people may pick up the language faster than others and be able to memorize vocabulary and phrases more quickly.
On the other hand, others might find that it takes more time for them to remember the material. In any case, it’s important to be patient and not get discouraged.
Ultimately, the answer to the question, how long does it take to learn German? That depends on you and your learning style.
How much time and effort you put into it can determine how quickly you learn German.
You can determine your learning pace if you commit to studying regularly with study techniques like flashcards, immersion, or language exchanges.
That doesn’tdoesn’t mean that you have to learn German in a certain amount of time, but it does mean that with dedication and hard work, you can make significant strides in your language-learning journey.
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How long does it realistically take to learn German? ›
German is rated as a category 2 language and considered to be similar to English. The FSI estimates that German takes approximately 30 weeks, or 750 classroom hours to learn. This study was conducted on a group of language students who spent 25 hours per week in class, and three hours daily on individual practice.How can I learn German Tips fast? ›
- Know Your Goal - And Plan How to Get There. ...
- Study Daily. ...
- Prioritize Key Words. ...
- Start Talking from the Beginning. ...
- Study Vocabulary Daily. ...
- Use Free Apps and Tools. ...
- Develop Activities That Target Your Learning Styles and Schedules. ...
- Treat Mistakes Like Free Lessons.
As you can see, rapid learning is undoubtedly doable even if you want to learn German from scratch to a B2 level in 5 months or faster. I have done it with dozens of students using the outlined strategy, and results are always great.Can you learn German in 3 months? ›
For those new to languages, it may sound like a daunting task to become fluent in any language in 3 months, let alone such a complicated language as German. Nonetheless, Adriana can tell you from experience that it's definitely possible!Can I learn A1 German in 1 month? ›
German is a difficult language! Within a month, you should be able to get a hang of most of the basics, such as haben and sein and using the Perfekt tense, enough to where you'll be able to navigate your daily life with relative ease.How hard is German to learn? ›
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.What is the first step to learn German? ›
- Master the alphabet. ...
- Learn easy/important words. ...
- Basic grammar: study nouns, verbs and adjectives. ...
- Learn how sentences are constructed. ...
- Talk to German speakers regularly. ...
- Try watching some German movies or listening to German music. ...
- Learning German online.
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.How many hours a day 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!Why is German so hard to learn? ›
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.
How many hours is A1 German? ›
These first two German language levels are very elementary, and they're the bare minimum needed for communication. Reaching the A1 level (from a point of no previous knowledge of a particular language) has been estimated to take between 60 – 80 hours of instruction by both Deutsche Welle and Alliance Française.Is B2 in 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.Is German easier than Spanish? ›
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.How to speak German fluently? ›
- Listen in. Every good conversation starts with good listening. ...
- Learn the genders. German has three genders, so it's important to learn nouns along with their gender. ...
- Hack your memory. ...
- Turn up the volume. ...
- Record yourself. ...
- Create a personal phrasebook. ...
- Speak up.
Not only will watching shows to learn German break up the monotony of studying vocab and drilling grammar, but you'll learn German the way people actually speak it — slang included. You'll also get a valuable insight into modern German culture, which is something the textbooks probably don't teach you!Is B1 German hard? ›
The B1 level is the third level in the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) for Languages. It is certainly a step beyond the A1 & A2 exams. Passing the B1 level German exam means that you are on the intermediate level of your journey.How long does it take to go from A1 to B2 German? ›
|Assess your current level & test your German online!||Super Intensive course (30 lessons/week)|
|B2||upper intermediate||6 weeks*|
As of September 2022, Duolingo's German course has a total of 6 units, broken down into a total of 137 skills. That means there are 685 crown levels in Duolingo's German course (or 822 if you include the legendary levels). At one point, the German course had a whopping 9 units.What is the hardest part of learning German? ›
Because there are few pronunciation rules
Unlike English, for instance, where every word is pronounced in its own way or French, where to rules are so severe and dictations are done even in the most progressed course levels.
GERMAN. This is one of the most important and future-proof foreign languages from a European perspective. Although it is an official language only in 6 countries: Germany, Austria, Belgium, Switzerland, Luxembourg and Liechtenstein, the first of these countries has the most powerful economy in Europe.
Can I learn German by myself? ›
Not everyone has the time, money or confidence to take German language classes, or take a trip to Germany. But don't be disheartened: that doesn't mean you can't start somewhere. Taking a free online German language course on an app like Busuu is a great way to get started and take your studies wherever you go.Is German easiest 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.
|Guten Morgen goot-en mor-gen Good Morning||Guten Tag goot-en tahk Hello/Good Day|
|Bitte bih-tuh Please||Danke (schön / sehr) dahn-kuh shurn/zair Thank you|
|Es tut mir leid. ehs toot meer lite I'm sorry||Entschuldigen Sie ehnt-shool-dih-gun zee Excuse me|
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.How many hours is B2 German? ›
It takes about 450 to 600 hours to learn the German B2 level. With B2, speakers can converse fluently with native speakers without speaking slowly or using simple words.Can I learn B2 German in 6 months? ›
But slowly I learned to recognize the context and to guess the meaning of unknown words. Now this is no longer a problem for me and I have made it from A1 to B2 in just six months. I learned and worked a lot for that. Before I never thought that I could learn German so quickly.How many words in A2 German? ›
The Goethe Institut says you need about 1,300 words for A2 as against about 2,400 words for B1.What is the easiest language to learn? ›
- Norwegian. This may come as a surprise, but we have ranked Norwegian as the easiest language to learn for English speakers. ...
- Swedish. ...
- Spanish. ...
- Dutch. ...
- Portuguese. ...
- Indonesian. ...
- Italian. ...
A better tactic is to learn 3-6 new German words every day and invest time in understanding them very well. This way, you can learn almost 2000 words a year - 5 words per day x 365 days = 1800+ new words. Think about it. Within 2 years, you will know enough words to communicate freely in any context.Is Duolingo good for learning 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!)
Is it easier to learn Spanish or 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 you become fluent in German in 3 years? ›
Absolutely not. Even if you stay in a German speaking country and you do a Super-intensiv course - 20 hours a week (Thats what you mean. Intensiv courses are 8–10 hrs a week), it is impossible to reach even level A2 from scratch, forget C2.How long does it take to get A1 in German? ›
German has different levels from A1 to C2. Basic A1 to A2 – Attending an Intensive course takes A1 in around 60 hours and A2 in 120 hours. Intermediate B1 to B2 – German level B1 takes 200 hours and B2 takes approximately 300 hours to become fluent.Can I learn German in 4 months? ›
It is not possible to learn the whole German language in 4 months. You can learn the basics of it but it is not possible to learn the entire language in 4 months. It takes years to master any language. I have been learning German for 9 years and I also have a degree in German studies.Do I speak to quickly in German? ›
“Sie sprechen zu schnell”What level of German is considered fluent? ›
C2 (Upper Advanced/Fluent)
Your mastery at the C2 level lets you produce and understand highly complex 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 hard is C2 German? ›
The C2 level exam: Think “very hard” & multiply that by a thousand. The Common European Framework of References for Languages level C2 is one of the hardest possible examinations you can do in any language.Can I learn German B2 in 6 months? ›
Can I Complete B2 German in 6 Months? On average, you would need 7-9 months to reach the B2 level and get a good rating, but with enough determination it is possible to complete it for 6 months as well if you simply immerse yourself in the language.