Learn German

Anyone who has ever learned a second or third language before knows that it can be a hugely rewarding experience.

Though anyone who’s ever learned German knows that it can also be a hugely frustrating experience. Unlike French, Spanish or Italian, when native English speakers try to tackle German they are confronted with a number of unique problems:

  • Like the Germans love for stringing words together without spaces. It is not unusual for German words to consist of 4 to 6 seperate words being forcely shoved together. Words such as Rechtsschutzversicherungsgesellschaften, which is the legal protection for insurance companies, Unabhängigkeitserklärung (declaration of independence), Freundschaftsbezeigungen (Friendship demonstrations) or Waffenstillstandsunterhandlungen (this one you can find out yourself) often come into German tripping up anyone who is trying to stumble their way through the language. Mark Twain called those “alphabetic processions” curiosities in his essay “The Awful German Language”. The Austrians invented with the Donaudampfschifffahrtsgesellschaft (the Danube Steam Shipping Company) one of the longest curiosities.
  • German seems to reverse any sentence construction in putting for example mostly verbs to the end which makes majesticely long sentences difficult to understand.
  • Additionally verbs (“Zeitwörter”) are far too often splitted up in two, putting half of it at the beginning of an existing chapter and the other half at the end of it – not confusing enough?
  • Well, then you should take a look and memorize the German articles “der, die, das” and all their different appearances depending which one of the 4 German cases (Nominative, Dative, Genitive, Accusative) needs to be used. Every noun in german has a gender and therefore requires one of those 3 articles, and there is no sense or system in the distribution. A plant is female, its leves are neuter and its stem is male. You should think that there would be the same system with trees, grass or any other related terms, but there isn’t! A tree is male, its buds are female, its leaves are neuter; horses are sexless, dogs are male, cats are female. The only rule or system someone might identify is that there is none!

FeelsLIkeHome Tip: Get yourself a translating app and dictionary for your cell for the first couple of months. Take notes of each single word, sentence you looked up and try to memorize those.

  •  Don’t get me wrong, there are many rules. After all German has 4 cases and 6 tenses which require tons of rules. But German is also full of exceptions!
  • Those learning German also have to deal with a slew of unknown sounds, genders and complicated grammar where you have to wait until the end of the sentence to find out what in the world you are actually talking about.

Take a German Class

Since German tends to be more complex and confusing than many other languages, or at least many of the languages that native English speakers often try and tackle; it is one of the languages where studying on your own might not be a great idea. Of course the best step to learning any language is to immerse yourself in the language and move to a different country but of course that is not a feasible option for many people. Even if you could pack up and move to Vienna, with the amount of non-Germans, international students and expats, the decent level of well english speaking locals in Vienna the joke is that one is more likely to learn English in Vienna than German.

Be Pro-active and Learn German

If you are going to try and learn German on your own, it is worth your time and money to try and find a class for a while at least. If you live near a community college usually you can find a German class that is pretty good and doesn’t cost an unreasonable amount of money. You can also find German classes through your university – chek out our article in this step.

You seriously should consider to apply and successfully finish 2 courses – in order for you to reach German level A2 – as a starter. This can be helpful at least while getting a grasp on the beginnings of the German language. It is better to be a little bit slower in the beginning and take time to learn all of the rules in German before you move on and start learning on your own. There are a lot of rules in German and as Mark Twain pointed out, ”as soon as you think you have understood a rule, you find that there are in fact more exceptions to the rule than instances of it, many of which have to be memorized on their own.”

FeelsLikeHome Tip: Feels Like Home is cooperating with several language schools. Contact us for more information, check out our discount section or book a class directly below.

Anyone who has ever learned a second or third language before knows that it can be a hugely rewarding experience.

Though anyone who’s ever learned German knows that it can also be a hugely frustrating experience. Unlike French, Spanish or Italian, when native English speakers try to tackle German they are confronted with a number of unique problems:

  • like the Germans love for stringing words together without spaces. It is not unusual for German words to consist of 4 to 6 seperate words being forcely shoved together. Words such as Rechtsschutzversicherungsgesellschaften, which is the legal protection for insurance companies, Unabhängigkeitserklärung (declaration of independence), Freundschaftsbezeigungen (Friendship demonstrations) or Waffenstillstandsunterhandlungen (this one you can find out yourself) often come into German tripping up anyone who is trying to stumble their way through the language. Mark Twain called those “alphabetic processions” curiosities in his essay “The Awful German Language”. The Austrians invented with the Donaudampfschifffahrtsgesellschaft (the Danube Steam Shipping Company) one of the longest curiosities.
  • German seems to reverse any sentence construction in putting for example mostly verbs to the end which makes majesticely long sentences difficult to understand.
  • Additionally verbs (“Zeitwörter”) are far too often splitted up in two, putting half of it at the beginning of an existing chapter and the other half at the end of it – not confusing enough?
  • Well, then you should take a look and memorize the German articles “der, die, das” and all their different appearances depending which one of the 4 German cases (Nominative, Dative, Genitive, Accusative) needs to be used. Every noun in german has a gender and therefore requires one of those 3 articles, and there is no sense or system in the distribution. A plant is female, its leves are neuter and its stem is male. You should think that there would be the same system with trees, grass or any other related terms, but there isn’t! A tree is male, its buds are female, its leaves are neuter; horses are sexless, dogs are male, cats are female. The only rule or system someone might identify is that there is none!

FeelsLikeHome Tip: Get yourself a translating app and dictionary for your cell for the first couple of months. Take notes of each single word, sentence you looked up and try to memorize those. 

  • Don’t get me wrong, there are many rules. After all German has 4 cases and 6 tenses which require tons of rules. But German is also full of exceptions!
  • Those learning German also have to deal with a slew of unknown sounds, genders and complicated grammar where you have to wait until the end of the sentence to find out what in the world you are actually talking about.

Take a German Class

Since German tends to be more complex and confusing than many other languages, or at least many of the languages that native English speakers often try and tackle; it is one of the languages where studying on your own might not be a great idea. Of course the best step to learning any language is to immerse yourself in the language and move to a different country but of course that is not a feasible option for many people. Even if you could pack up and move to Vienna, with the amount of non-Germans, international students and expats, the decent level of well english speaking locals in Vienna the joke is that one is more likely to learn English in Vienna than German.

Be Pro-active and Learn German

If you are going to try and learn German on your own, it is worth your time and money to try and find a class for a while at least. If you live near a community college usually you can find a German class that is pretty good and doesn’t cost an unreasonable amount of money. You can also find German classes through your university – chek out our article in this step.

You seriously should consider to apply and successfully finish 2 courses – in order for you to reach German level A2 – as a starter. This can be helpful at least while getting a grasp on the beginnings of the German language. It is better to be a little bit slower in the beginning and take time to learn all of the rules in German before you move on and start learning on your own. There are a lot of rules in German and as Mark Twain pointed out, ”as soon as you think you have understood a rule, you find that there are in fact more exceptions to the rule than instances of it, many of which have to be memorized on their own.”

 

FeelsLikeHome Tip: Feels Like Home is cooperating with several language schools. Contact us for more information, check out our discount section or book a class directly below.

If you have decided that you want to come to study in Vienna but your German is not perfect, don’t worry! There are plenty of German courses most Viennese universities provide. Have a look at the following courses and decide for yourself which suits you best.

German Courses of the University of Vienna

Bildergebnis für studying

For more than ninety years, the University of Vienna has been offering an extremely wide range of high-quality German courses, structured in eleven course phases (encompassing all levels from A1/1 through C2). The German Courses of the University of Vienna are a certified test center for the Austrian Language Diploma ÖSD and for the German Language Certificate.

How to Register:

  1. You have to be at minimum age of 16 years.
  2. If you have a previous knowledge of German, you are required to enroll at the office and to take a placement test. The test is offered during the enrollment period, at the latest one hour before the end of opening times (no appointment necessary).
  3. Participants who have already attended German courses at the University of Vienna do not have to take the test again.
  4. You will need a photo identification (passport, driving license, student ID…) when you enroll at the office and when taking the placement test.
  5. Pay the Course fee, which for a semester course is € 820,-.

Online registration is available for absolute beginners only.

Contacts:

Campus der Universität Wien

Hof 1, Zugang 1.16

Alser Straße 4, 1090 Vienna

Tel. +43/01/4277-24101

Fax: +43/01/4277-9241

E-mail: deutschkurse@univie.ac.at

VWU

Bildergebnis für studying

The VWU offers intensive courses for foreign applicants for a place at university to prepare them for supplementary examinations prescribed by the universities. Classes are run every day for 4 and ½ hours per day.

VWU university course that is run by the OeAD-GmbH (Austrian Agency for International Cooperation in Education and Research) – together with the following six universities of Vienna:

  • University of Vienna (UNI Wien)
  • Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration (WU)
  • Vienna University of Technology (TU)
  • Medical University Vienna (MedUni)
  • University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences, Vienna (BOKU)
  • University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna (VETMED).

How to Register:

Enroll at your university (Admission Office – Studienabteilung) at the beginning of your studies. Each semester you have to enroll again at your university for the current semester.

First-time applicants will get a payment form for the course fee from the Admission Office. Students enrolling for the continuation of their studies will receive the payment form in their courses.

Pay the course fee (this is only possible with the original payment form!). The course fee for VWU courses is € 454, -.

Then register for a course at the office of the VWU during the registration period (September and February).

Be careful!

There is only a limited number of places for students at the VWU, so the earlier you go, the better the chances are to get in.

You can attend a German language course at the VWU for a maximum of 2 semesters only.

Contacts:

Ebendorferstraße 7, 1010 Vienna

Tel. +43 1 53408-0

Fax: +43 1 53408-999

E-mail: info@oead.at

Österreichische Orient Gesellschaft

The Orient Academy, as well as VWU, offers intensive semester language courses for students only. Classes are run 5 days a week for 3 ½ hours per day.

How to Register?

First you need to go to the Academy’s website (http://www.orient-gesellschaft.at/) and book an appointment (Online Termin) for a Placement Test.

Then you go to the office on the appointed day, pay € 34, – and sign up for a test

Once you’ve done the test you are ready to register for a course

To register for the course itself, once again you need an online appointment (from the website).

Then you go to the office and you bring with you Payment Confirmation (of € 454,) with a stamp from the University; Decision letter from your University that you’ve been accepted; Student ID card; Placement Test Results

Contacts:

1010 Wien, Dominikanerbastei 6/6

Tel. +43 + 1 / 512 89 36

Fax: +43 + 1 / 512 89 36 – 17

E-Mail: office@orient-gesellschaft.at

Opening Hours: Mo, Tue, Thu, Fr, 9:00 – 12:30 a.m., Wed, 2:30 – 5:00 p.m.

Private language courses in Vienna are probably one of the best options if you have difficulties with learning languages. Why? In language courses you will definitely get better service and more attention and help from your German teacher, because classes are usually 4 to 15 people big (in comparison to German university courses in which classes can be up to 25 people).

What do you need to know about private German courses?

– Usually there is 3 hours class every day (Monday-Friday)

– You can choose time (morning/day or evening hours)

– You will learn German in small groups (6-15 people)

– Be ready to pay approximately €385-500 per month

– You will receive good service