Are you an expat living in Germany who wants to learn German online fast and easy? Do you want to communicate better with the locals, advance your career prospects, and immerse yourself in German culture? If so, you’re in luck!
In today’s interconnected world, maintaining a strong language-learning journey is crucial for expats in Germany. With the increasing globalization and mobility, being able to communicate in multiple languages, including German, opens up new opportunities both personally and professionally.
Fortunately, the emergence of innovative language learning platforms and media has transformed the way we plan our studies and assess our language skills. These resources offer convenience, accessibility, and interactive learning experiences that make the process of learning German more engaging and effective than ever before.
In this ultimate guide, we’ll show you how to use the best language-learning apps for expats in Germany. These apps will help you master the German language in no time with their innovative features, interactive lessons, and fun exercises.
By using these language learning apps, you’ll be able to:
- Learn German at your own pace and convenience
- Practice your listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills
- Expand your vocabulary and grammar knowledge
- Track your progress and get feedback
- Connect with native speakers and other learners
- And much more!
Ready to start your language learning journey? Let’s dive in!
Practicing with Native Speakers to learn German
This could be through language exchange programs, conversation meetups, or online language learning platforms. Speaking with native speakers helps improve pronunciation, fluency, and cultural understanding. Let’s look at some of these below,
Language Exchange Programs to Learn German
Tandem: Tandem is a language exchange app that connects language learners worldwide. You can find language partners based on your interests and language goals, and engage in language exchange through text, voice, or video chat.
HelloTalk: HelloTalk is a language learning app that allows you to connect with native speakers of your target language. You can chat, make voice or video calls, and even join language learning communities to practise your language skills.
ConversationExchange: ConversationExchange is an online platform that helps you find language partners for conversation practice. You can search for language partners based on your location, interests, and desired language exchange format (in-person, video chat, etc.).
Conversation Meetups to learn German
Meetup: Meetup is a platform where you can find local groups and communities based on your interests, including language exchange or conversation meetups. Search for language-related meetups in your area and join events where you can practise your language skills with fellow learners and native speakers.
Internations: Internations is a global community for expatriates and international-minded individuals. They often organise language exchange events and social gatherings where you can meet people from various language backgrounds and practise your target language.
Online Language Learning Platforms
italki: italki is an online language learning platform that connects you with language tutors and teachers. You can book one-on-one language lessons, practice conversation, and receive personalised feedback and guidance from qualified instructors.
Lingoda: Lingoda offers online language classes taught by native-speaking teachers. You can choose from various course levels and topics, participate in live group classes, and engage in speaking practice with other students.
Verbling: Verbling provides live online language lessons with qualified teachers. You can book individual lessons, participate in group classes, and improve your speaking skills through real-time interaction with instructors and other learners.
Use Language Learning Apps like Duolingo, Babbel, or Memrise, which offer interactive lessons, vocabulary drills, and quizzes to learn German
Each of these platforms has its own strengths and features, catering to different learning preferences. Duolingo is known for its gamified approach and accessibility, making it suitable for beginners or casual learners.
Here’s an explanation of Duolingo, Babbel, and Memrise, the three popular language learning platforms:
Duolingo: Duolingo is a free language learning app and website that provides gamified lessons in multiple languages, including German. It offers interactive exercises, vocabulary practice, and grammar drills in a variety of formats, such as matching, translation, and listening comprehension.
Duolingo’s bite-sized lessons focus on building vocabulary and developing basic language skills through repetition and reinforcement. The platform tracks your progress and rewards you with virtual currency and achievements as you complete lessons.
Babbel: Babbel is a subscription-based language learning app and website that offers interactive lessons in various languages, including German. It provides structured courses that cover different language levels and topics, focusing on practical vocabulary, grammar, and conversation skills.
Babbel’s lessons include interactive exercises, dialogues, and pronunciation practice. The platform also features speech recognition technology to help improve your pronunciation. Babbel offers a more comprehensive and structured approach to language learning compared to Duolingo.
Memrise: Memrise is a language learning platform that offers user-generated flashcards and interactive lessons for multiple languages, including German. It emphasizes vocabulary acquisition through spaced repetition and mnemonic techniques.
Memrise’s courses feature audio recordings by native speakers, interactive exercises, and multimedia content to aid learning. The platform also encourages community participation, allowing users to create and share their own language courses.
Deutsche Welle, Lingoda, or FluentU for a wide range of language learning materials
These online resources offer a wide range of materials and tools to support to learn German:
Deutsche Welle: Deutsche Welle is a renowned German international broadcaster that provides a wealth of language learning materials for German learners. Their online platform offers a dedicated section called “Deutsch lernen” (Learn German) that includes interactive courses, grammar explanations, vocabulary exercises, audio and video lessons, and news articles specifically designed for language learners.
Deutsche Welle’s resources cater to different proficiency levels and cover various topics, allowing learners to practise reading, listening, and comprehension skills while staying updated on current affairs.
Lingoda: Lingoda is an online language school that offers structured German language courses taught by qualified teachers. Their courses cover different proficiency levels, from beginner to advanced, and focus on various aspects of language learning, including grammar, vocabulary, reading, writing, and speaking.
Lingoda’s classes are conducted live through video conferencing, allowing learners to interact with teachers and classmates in real-time. The platform provides a supportive and immersive learning environment, with small group classes or private lessons available at flexible scheduling options.
FluentU: FluentU is an innovative language learning platform that utilises authentic videos to help learners improve their German skills. FluentU offers a vast library of engaging videos, including movie trailers, music videos, news clips, and more, all accompanied by interactive subtitles and language learning tools.
Learners can watch videos, click on words or phrases for definitions, example sentences, and pronunciation, and access quizzes and exercises to reinforce learning. FluentU provides an immersive and entertaining approach to language learning, enabling learners to improve their listening comprehension, vocabulary, and cultural understanding.
Surround yourself with German media such as movies, TV shows, podcasts, music, and books
This exposure to authentic German content enhances listening comprehension, vocabulary acquisition, and cultural understanding. Consider using subtitles or transcripts to aid comprehension.
Good Bye, Lenin! (2003): A comedy-drama film set in East Germany during the fall of the Berlin Wall.
Das Leben der Anderen (The Lives of Others) (2006): A gripping drama that explores surveillance and the power of art in East Berlin.
Der Untergang (Downfall) (2004): A historical drama depicting the final days of Adolf Hitler’s regime in Berlin.
Dark (2017-2020): A mind-bending sci-fi thriller that delves into time travel and a small German town’s secrets.
Tatort (1970-present): A long-running crime series featuring different investigative teams across various German cities.
Babylon Berlin (2017-present): A period crime drama set in 1920s Berlin, showcasing the political and social climate of the time.
Slow German: A podcast that covers various topics at a slower pace, aimed at learners of the German language.
Deutschlandfunk Nova: A podcast that discusses current affairs, culture, and trends in Germany.
Gemischtes Hack: A comedy podcast hosted by a father-daughter duo, offering humorous conversations on various topics.
Nena: A German singer known for hits like “99 Luftballons” and “Leuchtturm.”
Kraftwerk: An influential electronic music band whose music combines synth-pop and futuristic themes.
Die Toten Hosen:A punk rock band that has been active since the 1980s, with songs like “Hier kommt Alex” and “Tage wie diese.”
Establish a regular study schedule and dedicate specific times each day or week for learning German.
Now that you know the right tools, what’s left is to get into a routine study schedule. There are several websites and platforms that can help you achieve to learn German. Here are a few examples:
Trello: Trello is a project management tool that allows you to create boards, lists, and cards to organise your tasks. You can create a dedicated board for your German language learning and set up a schedule by creating lists for different study topics or activities and assigning specific cards to each day or week.
Google Calendar: Google Calendar is a widely used online calendar tool. You can create dedicated events or recurring reminders for your German study sessions, set specific times, and even receive notifications to help you stick to your schedule.
Evernote: Evernote is a note-taking and organisation platform. You can create dedicated notebooks for your German studies and use reminders and tags to prioritise and schedule your learning activities. You can also set up recurring tasks or use the reminder feature to stay on track.
Habitica: Habitica is a habit-building and productivity app that gamifies your tasks and goals. You can create habits, dailies, and to-dos related to your German language learning and set specific due dates and frequency for each task. As you complete your tasks, you earn rewards and level up in the app.
StudyStack: StudyStack offers a range of study tools, including flashcards and quizzes. You can create a study schedule by setting up a study plan on the platform, scheduling specific study sessions, and tracking your progress as you go.
Don’t forget that consistency is the key to making progress in your German language learning journey. By setting achievable goals for each study session, you can stay motivated and maintain a sense of accomplishment. Whether it’s dedicating a specific amount of time to vocabulary practice, focusing on mastering a particular grammar concept, or completing a set number of exercises, breaking down your learning into manageable tasks will help you build momentum and see tangible results.
Remember, small steps taken consistently over time can lead to significant proficiency in German. Stay committed, track your progress, and celebrate every milestone along the way.
Compile and share lists of essential German words and phrases for everyday situations, including greetings, ordering food, asking for directions, and shopping
Utilise Flashcards: Flashcards are a powerful tool for memorising vocabulary and practising grammar. Create your own flashcards or use digital flashcard apps like Anki or Quizlet. Anki and Quizlet are popular digital flashcard platforms that can greatly enhance your language learning experience. Here’s an explanation of each:
Anki: Anki is a powerful and customizable flashcard software that uses spaced repetition. It allows you to create your own flashcards or download pre-made decks created by other users. With spaced repetition, Anki optimises the timing of flashcard reviews based on your performance, ensuring that you review difficult cards more frequently while gradually spacing out repetitions for easier cards.
Quizlet: Quizlet is an online platform that provides an extensive collection of user-generated flashcards and study sets covering a wide range of subjects, including languages. Users can create their own flashcards or explore and study from existing sets created by others. Quizlet offers different study modes, such as flashcards, matching games, quizzes, and more, which make learning interactive and engaging.
Ultimately, the choice between Anki and Quizlet depends on your personal preference and learning style. Explore both platforms and determine which one aligns better with your language learning needs.
In the end, setting realistic goals is essential for a successful language-learning journey. By setting achievable objectives, such as mastering a specific number of vocabulary words per week, completing a level of a language course, or even engaging in an entire conversation in the target language, you not only stay motivated but also have a tangible way to track your progress.
Celebrate each milestone along the way and use them as stepping stones to reach even greater heights. Remember, language learning is a marathon, not a sprint, and by setting realistic goals, you can ensure a steady and rewarding path to fluency. So go ahead, set those goals, work hard, and watch as your language skills blossom and flourish. Good luck on your language-learning journey!
Thank you for taking the time to read our article. We hope you found it helpful in your language-learning journey. If you’re interested in exploring more about Germany or expat life in Germany, we invite you to check out our other informative articles on these topics.
We value your experiences and would love to hear your feedback and insights about using the resources mentioned in this article. Please feel free to share your thoughts and experiences in the comments section below.
Your contributions will not only help us improve our content but also provide valuable information and perspectives to fellow language learners.