Our reviewers evaluate products and services based on unbiased research. Top Consumer Reviews may earn money when you click on a link. Learn more about our process.
Did you know that German is the second-most spoken language in Europe? Or that around 95 million people worldwide speak German as their primary language and that it is an official language in six countries? Perhaps you have German roots in your family and want to get in touch with your heritage by learning German?
If you study sciences, you may know that German is the most commonly used scientific language. Learning German can provide you with an insight into the German people's way of life and also broaden your horizons. Whatever your personal reason for wanting to learn German, the next step is to find your best way to study the language.
Tuesday, January 25th
Have you wanted to learn German phrases so that you can actually communicate with others? Have you wanted to write or speak and know for sure that you'll be understood? What about having a real native speaker of German evaluate your speaking and writing to know if they understand you, and can tell you if that's what they really say in Germany? Busuu is an excellent, communicative way to learn German. You can even tell Busuu how much time you have per day or week to study German, and they will let you know how long it will take to meet your goal. This service earns our highest recommendation among online providers of German lessons.
Are you ready for a German-lesson program that is just a little different? Memrise may look like other online programs, but it is fun while using higher-order thinking skills to help you learn and retain German and feel comfortable in a conversational setting. It's the fun that brings you in, and the creative learning technique that keeps you coming for more.
Have you ever dabbled in online language courses and learned material, but nothing that might help you actually have a conversation? Babbel starts out conversationally, offers lessons from beginning to advanced levels, uses innovative speech-recognition technology, and uses a teaching method that English speakers feel comfortable with. Babbel. It's a very good program, only lacking in lessons and practice at the advanced levels.
Italki is a unique program where you have one-on-one lessons from a live instructor. You choose your own instructor based on their profile, experience, fee, and reviews, then sign up for classes online. You can take one class or several; you can keep the same instructor, change after a while, or mix it up with different instructors to get different accents and teaching styles. There's no other way to get German lessons that can deliver conversational fluency quite like italki, earning this platform one of our strongest recommendations.
Rosetta Stone is often the first program that appears in our minds when we think of language courses. We think of the first-rate reputation, coupled with the bulky set of audio CDs and the exorbitant price tag. It's now time to update and upgrade your perception of Rosetta Stone. Rosetta Stone maintains its high reputation, is now online (no bulky CD package), there's a three-day trial period, and you can choose which subscription plan, and thus, which price tag you are willing to pay. It has become one of our preferred platforms for taking German lessons.
Ouino German (pronounced "We Know German" - clever!) has a unique approach to learning German. Rather than following a regimented order of lessons, the student can choose their order, if they want, maybe because certain vocabulary themes are more appealing at the time. Or, you can follow Ouino's suggested order of lessons. There are many lessons to choose from. The practice exercises are plenty, but repetitive. You can apply what you learn by reading stories or watching videos related to your topic of study, and earn prizes for your efforts. Ouino is still worth a look, and see if the repetition of exercises bothers you or not.
Rocket Languages has a streamlined format: they offer exercises in listening, speaking, reading, and writing, and add culture. There is plenty of audio to help you understand native German speakers, and they have a speech-recognition system to help you know if you'd be understood in German. I t can even help you correct your pronunciation.
Mondly makes learning German fun with its interactive and motivating game-like lessons. The lifetime access membership is nominal and offers full access to German; plus, if you're motivated while learning German, there are 40 more languages available to you. The monthly subscription may be challenging to cancel, if you choose that route. That said, Mondly is still more technologically advanced than many of its competitors, keeping the student motivated to keep learning more.
Have you dabbled in online language classes and found them impersonal? Are you tired of learning via games, and would you just like a real person teaching you for a change? Try Fluenz! In Fluenz, a real person teaches you via video. They know how English speakers process language, and base their German lessons on that processing, making it relatable and easy to learn.
Do you want to learn German but need a little structure, like you had when you attended live classes in the past? Do you wish you had a live person teach you so that you could ask questions? If you would like to learn German in a small-class setting, on Zoom, with a live instructor, Lingoda is what you are looking for. But, students looking for any other type of instruction format - app-based games and exercises, comprehensive lessons with a one-time cost, and so on - will need to choose a different platform for their German lessons.
GermanPod101 is a refreshing way to learn German. The lessons have quite a bit of vocabulary, and there's a video lesson portion that even adds humor. You can take the lessons in the suggested order, or you can bounce each day to a topic that suits your fancy. GermanPod101 is great for beginners, but is short on material for the intermediate or advanced German learner. Once you become more advanced and want to continue to build your conversational skills, you might find yourself more comfortable in one of our other highly suggested online German lesson programs. Still, we think GermanPod101 is a great way to begin to learn German and will keep you motivated to jump to the next lesson.
So much of our life now is digital, so it's natural to consider learning German online. There are many programs to learn languages: live, one-to-one tutoring; a real person teaching you through recorded video lessons; video-game-like lessons and practice; recording your voice and getting computer-generated specific feedback; getting feedback on written work by real people; or playing games and letting the time fly by while earning prizes and getting on a leaderboard. With so many different methods of learning and practice, we can help you narrow down what is best for you and your learning style.
The first thing to consider is how much German you may know. Have you had German classes in high school and want to brush up and continue to proficiency? Or is Gesundheit! when someone sneezes the extent of your German? If you are a beginner, choosing an online program will be easier, as most focus at least on the beginning German student. If you already know some German, some programs offer a placement test and others have you look at their curriculum and you select your own placement. If you are pretty advanced or your goal is to get there, only a few online German programs can help you get to advanced proficiency, while others fall short past the beginning German level.
How would you like to learn German? Would you like live one-on-one lessons with a tutor or in a small-class setting? Would you like to learn from a person, but via video so you can pause or review? Would you like to learn interactively with a computer program where you match phrases you heard with images, then record your voice speaking, and then have game-like practice exercises with awards and a leaderboard with a little healthy competition? It's all out there, and you get to decide which is for you!
Once you know your current level of German and how you might want to learn it, there are a few more aspects to consider:
TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed, evaluated, rated, and recommended the best choices for learning German online or via an app. We're sure that with the information we have for you, you'll be able to make your best decision for learning German and becoming more proficient and fluent in this common and popular language!
Select any 2 German Lessons to compare them head to head
Tribune Content ...
Rick Steves’ Europe: Lessons from a schoolmaster on the Rhine
When cruising down the romantic Rhine River in Germany, I always stop in my favorite town along that fabled river: Bacharach. This pleasant half-timbered village with vine-covered hillsides was once ...
Mon, 17 Jan 2022