Is German Hard to Learn?

February 13, 2017
Languages

Is German Hard to Learn?

Is German Hard to Learn?

This question is relative. There are so many factors that go into answering this question it can be difficult, arguably impossible to answer this. German is not considered the most difficult language in the world to learn for English speakers-that is reserved for Arabic, Japanese, Chinese, and Korean. In terms of pronunciation and sentence structure, German is considered fairly similar to English and therefore easier for English speakers to learn.

Everyone learns differently, however, so in the end it will be up to you to decide. There are plenty of tips, websites, programs, and books that can help you along.

Heidelberg, Germany

Reasons Why German is Easy for English Speakers: 

  • 40% of German words are similar to their English counterparts
  • Both languages have Germanic roots
  • Spelling and pronunciation rules are more structured than in English
  • German verbs follow patterns
  • MOST rules in German do not have exceptions (most...)

Reasons Why German is Hard for English Speakers:

  • Grammatical gender
  • Case
  • Two forms of past tense
  • Pronunciation (you will have some new sounds to learn)
  • Words are often combined into other words with new meanings
  • Conjugation of verbs
  • Plurals

So it may be a bit scary that the second list is longer than the first. There are concepts that are not really explored in English that are necessary in German (especially Gender and case) but once these patterns and concepts are learned, you are set.

I personally believe that German is a good go-to language for English speakers. It is hard to classify a language as hard or easy, but I think German has few barriers to learning. I am fluent in German so if you have any questions feel free to drop me a line! :) Also, German is widely used in Europe and many people set out to learn it. This means there are a lot of learning materials for German to help your studies! 

Free Methods to Learn German: 

Duolingo

Memrise

Learn German-Word Power 101 (Free on Amazon) 

Books & More

Living Language (Includes books, audio, CDs, and online learning.) 

German For Dummies-Do NOT underestimate these books! I have used these in learning German, Swedish, Math, Trig, Calculus...you name it. I am a big fan of these.

Rosetta Stone (for hardcore learners)

German in 90 Days

This post may contain affiliate links. At no extra cost to you, I may earn a small commission off of sales through my website. I use this to cover my blogging and travel expenses. All opinions are my own-as always! 

Siggi Einarson

My name is Siggi-dubbed by my American friends because of the Icelandic yogurt-I am a writer, polyglot, and aspiring expat, not a cup of yogurt (unfortunately).

My love for travelling began with a trip to Iceland and Sweden to visit my family when I was just 15 years old. I spent so long dreaming of the possibilities of life abroad but I always figured these dreams were too far reached. Flash forward almost 10 years, here I am again, both cursing and thanking this damn travel bug.

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