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How Many Months Will It Take to Learn the German Language?

Learning German takes a lot of time and effort. The timeline for reaching German fluency varies from person to person and depends on certain factors, such as prior knowledge, amount of practice, and language immersion–but generally, it will take the average English speaker about thirty weeks or seven months to learn German.

Average Time to Learn German

How long does it take to learn German fluently? According to the US Foreign Service Institute, it should take about thirty weeks or 750 classroom hours–which amounts to about seven months of consistent study and practice–to be proficient in German. But that amount of time often differs, and your level of fluency will also be based on the level of German you’re at.

What are the levels of learning the German language? Here’s a quick summary:

  • A1 (Beginner): Seventy to eighty hours
  • A2 (Elementary): 150 to 180 hours
  • B1 (Intermediate): 300 to 360 hours
  • B2 (Upper Intermediate): 530 to 620 hours
  • C1 (Advanced): 600 to 750 hours
  • C2 (Highly Competent or Near Native): 750 or more hours

How to Learn German Quickly

You can learn German in a variety of ways, from taking traditional classes to learning via free resources like YouTube videos or podcasts. However, becoming fluent in the language quickly takes a bit more intentional and rigorous immersion in the language. Here are the most effective ways to learn German:

Enroll in a Comprehensive Program

While you can definitely still learn German in a more informal setting, enrolling in a comprehensive program ensures that your lessons are structured and progressive, tackling all the necessary elements at each level before moving on to the next. Taking this type of course doesn’t necessarily require you to go to a traditional classroom setting; plenty of providers, like German Academy Zurich, offer curricula that you can partake in online and at your own pace.

Hire a Private Tutor

Taking lessons from a private tutor is one of the most productive ways to learn German. A one-on-one class allows you to zero in on your studies and learn in a way that’s most conducive to you; it also lets you converse with someone, allowing you to practice your speaking and listening skills. Moreover, private tutors can customize lesson courses to suit your preferences and needs, making your course even more valuable.

Use Mixed Modes of Learning

Just because you’ve chosen a main mode of learning German doesn’t mean that you can’t explore other ways, too! Mixing up your methods gives you more opportunities to pick up new nuances, vocabulary, or expressions–and with more options, you get to stimulate your brain even more, prepping it to absorb more lessons.

Converse with German Speakers

Conversing with people in the language is a good way to sharpen your German skills. If you’re already in a German-speaking community, reach out to your peers and neighbors and have conversations with them. If this is inaccessible to you, you may explore language exchange programs that can connect you with teachers who can help you practice or students who want to learn your language, as well.

Immerse in the Language

Language immersion is the best way to learn German quickly. This entails surrounding yourself with the language, which should be easy if you’re already settled in a German-speaking community. Otherwise, you can create a mini Germany or Switzerland where you are–consume German content (shows, audio, books, news, etc.), learn about German or Swiss culture, research local sites, etc.

Learn the German Language at German Academy Zurich

German Academy Zurich can help you with your language-learning journey through an efficient mix of comprehensive lessons, private classes, German activities, and language immersion. Explore the different German courses at German Academy Zurich today!

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