Is German Easy To Learn – Learning German seems difficult. Rumors of complex grammatical structures, super long words and millions of different articles don’t help either. So if you’re thinking of learning German, it’s worth asking how difficult or easy it is to learn? Let’s take a look at these rumors and see if they are as scary as they sound. It turns out that learning German can be easier than you think.
Every language is unique. And these unique features can make them easier or harder than others. Let’s examine all the aspects that make learning German difficult for English speakers, how to overcome these difficulties and why it is actually an easy language to learn. Below are 5 reasons why German is considered difficult and 5 reasons why it is actually much easier than other languages.
Is German Easy To Learn
The level of language difficulty depends on how close it is to the student’s mother tongue. If your native language is English, you’re in luck. German is closely related to English. Both German and English are part of the West Germanic language family. So this is actually one of the biggest reasons why learning German is easy for English speakers.
Is German Easy To Learn For English Speakers?
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The easier the language is to learn, the faster you will reach fluency. So if we look at how long it takes to learn a language, we can judge how easily it happens. While we can’t really give you an exact answer, we can give you some estimates on this. Remember that you can always make your studies faster and easier with the right motivation, strategy and language learning method. So take the following figures with a grain of salt.
The US Foreign Service Institute came up with a ranking of languages in terms of difficulty and based on that estimated the time it takes to learn them. German is a Category II language (out of five categories), the only language in this category. They say you need 30 weeks or 750 hours of study to master the German language. So, compared to other languages, German is not difficult at all. And you can learn it quickly and easily with the right methods.
There are aspects of the German language that are more difficult to master. But the fact that there are only 5 is really great. This means that if you overcome these 5 hurdles, you can easily reach the German stream. So we also show you how to reverse these pitfalls and still have a fun learning experience.
German Made Easy
When you come face to face with a word like “viertausendeinhundertsiebenunddreißig” (4137), it is a terrifying sight. It is the linguistic equivalent of Frankenstein’s monster. This is because German uses “compound words”. It combines different words together to express a new idea, often leading to oddly long words. No hyphens or spaces.
Let’s take for example the German word for refrigerator: “Der Kuhlschrenk”. “kühl” means cold, “schrank” is a cupboard. A refrigerator is a cold cabinet. So you put the two together to describe a new idea.
The key is to build your vocabulary. Once you are familiar with a large number of words, dealing with these compound words and their meanings will become easier. But be careful. Learning a language is not about how many words you know. It’s all about knowing the right words. German natives use only part of their vocabulary for most conversations. So you don’t need to cram unnecessary German words.
English speakers have the luxury of not having a gender. But the German does. German has three genders, which makes it more difficult to master. This is why the Foreign Service Institute considered it more difficult than French, which has only two genders.
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German has masculine (Der), feminine (Die) and neuter (Das) genders. While some species are self-explanatory (Der Mann – The Man), others are less logical (Das Madchen). And these articles are before changing the gender depending on the cases. So German gender grammar doesn’t do you any favors either.
You can always associate genders and articles with words. And training your brain to remember them isn’t a bad way either. But if you’re a bit lazy like me, you can use this one trick that no language learning website will ever tell you: Germans don’t actually care. Most Germans don’t mind if you mix “der” with “die”. Sometimes local people also confuse between the species. So don’t worry about which article to use when you speak. (Disclaimer: Do not attempt this if you are learning German for school or an exam. Your examiner will probably be very upset if you use the wrong article)
German sentence structure is more liberal than English. English is an explicit SVO (Subject-Verb-Object) language. Meanwhile, German is often SVO, but sometimes it becomes SOV. Especially if there is a connection. Let’s look at some examples to make it clear:
“Mary” is the subject, “eat” is the verb, and “an apple” is the object. In German, similar parts of a sentence follow each other. Because it is a simple sentence. But let’s look at a more complex sentence with a compound:
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“I” (ich) is the subject, “can” (can) or “have” (have) are the verbs, “cinema” (Kino) and “penge” (Geld) are the objects, and “if” (wenn) ) ) is a conjunction. As you can see, the object comes before the verb in both these sentences. This is because German sentence structure is more flexible. But if you do it the other way, it will look weird.
This is the part of German grammar that you need to use. When you analyze the sentence, it seems complicated. But that’s how everyday Germans speak. The only rule you need to remember about sentence structure is CSOV (conjunction-subject-object-verb). If there is a conjunction, the structure of the sentence will definitely change. You will soon find the rhythm and logic of this language naturally.
German uses two forms of the word “you”. When addressing colleagues, professionals and strangers, it is appropriate to use the formal “Sie”. It is also used by younger people to address older people. “You” is more informal and is used to address friends and colleagues in most situations.
Recently, however, the growing influence of casual business culture has begun to create a shift away from the formal “sie” in favor of “you.” If ever in doubt, stick with “sie”.
Easiest Languages To Learn
A false cognate is a word with the same or similar spelling in the target language as your native language. An example of this would be “gift” in German. Many English speakers would think that giving someone a “gift” in German would be a pleasant thing, but they would be wrong. “Give” means gift in German.
There are many such examples. And because German and English are so similar, it can be frustrating to think you know a word only to find out you’re wrong. But they’re often shockingly different from what you think they’ll be, so you’ll learn quickly from mistakes.
There are many reasons why learning German is easy. These are the most common reasons why German fluency is an attainable goal. Remember that even the best aspects of a language can be improved with the right language learning methods.
As mentioned earlier, German is very close to English. So you’ll actually see a lot of cognates, words that look or sound alike and have the same meaning. This means that you can improve your vocabulary quickly without much effort. Here are some common words that are related in German and English:
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You may think that the German alphabet is too new or complicated. With letters like “ä”, “ö”, “ü” and “ß”, it looks menacing. But the German and English alphabets are almost identical. All 26 letters of the English alphabet exist in German, and there are only 4 extra letters. So learning the alphabet will be a piece of cake.
People often exaggerate the harsh pronunciation of German. The “ch” and “r” sounds make it sound like very aggressive language. But of course that is not true. German is as sweet as any other language. And with enough pronunciation practice, you’ll be fluent anyway.
What makes German pronunciation easier are the clear rules. While English has many irregularities, German is more straightforward. Once you learn all the rules, you can apply them to the entire language. German also does not have silent letters like French. Which makes reading German even easier.
But it’s fun to exaggerate how difficult German pronunciation is. Watch this video for some laughs:
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German is a very popular language. A lot of course
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