Why learn German?

There are many reasons to learn German. Some of the good reasons are:

  • Communication
    German is spoken by more than 120 million people in Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, parts of Belgium, Northern Italy and Eastern France.
  • Economy
    German is a key language in the European Union and in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe, which are also gaining in importance in terms of economics. German communication skills can improve your chances on the labor market.
  • Culture
    German is one of the most important cultural languages. For example, Goethe, Mozart, Beethoven, Freud, Klimt, Einstein, and countless other great artists and scholars, spoke and wrote their works in German. To date, 10% of the world book market is in German.

Learning German online:

  • Independence
    You can tailor your learning speed to your needs – whenever you have time to learn German.

Learning German – where German is spoken:

  • Effectiveness & Sustainability
    Through total immersion, you can improve your German skills intensively, effectively and sustainably. You can practice German vocabulary while shopping, get a sense of pronunciation and speech melody, and get deep insights into the culture, history and mentality of the country.

Where is German spoken?

With more than 120 million people with German as a mother tongue in 8 countries, it is hardly surprising that the actual language usage varies. Like English, German is a pluricentric language with 3 national centers of language use: Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

The linguistic situation in Switzerland differs significantly from the situation in Germany and Austria. ‘Switzerdütsch’, the language used, is also hardly understood by Germans and Austrians. The relationship between Switzerdütsch and Hochdeutsch is one of bilingualism. For this reason, the following overview does not refer to the situation of Switzerland.

Benrath Line and ‘White Sausage’ Equator

If one renounces national attribution and takes into account linguistic criteria, one can recognize two major regions of language usage in the German-speaking world: ‘Oberdeutsch’ and ‘Niederdeutsch’. These areas are separated by the Benrath line, an isogloss – a speech boundary (marked red in the following map)

Why learn German?
The red line (Benrath line) separates Niederdeutsch from Middle Germany and Oberdeutsch, the blue line (Main line) separates Mitteldeutsch from Oberdeutsch.

What is Standard German (Hochdeutsch)?

Historically and linguistically, Hochdeutsch is a mixture of Middle-German and Upper-German (for example, most Austrian dialects). It has not been developed from a single dialect, but is a product of art, created by poets, philosophers and scholars.

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