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Assimil German without Toil (1965)

I would like to supplement my Duolingo studies. I have a copy of Assimil German without Toil (1965), including audio. However, I am concerned that the language might be antiquated. I certainly do not want to invest a lot of time if that is the case. Has anyone previously used the program? Thank in advance for any information. -Chris Phillips

May 10, 2017



The pronunciation may be weird, as for all Assimil courses, I worked with. Why not use a newer, more actual learning program? I would suggest you germanpod101.com. It´s worth to try out, I think. I have learned Japanese with japanesepod101.com Japanese and it was really exciting!


Thanks for your thoughts. I have used the pod101 programs before and did not like them. Mainly, I thought the parts of texts discussed were too short and prefer Assimil programs.


Ok, honestly, as a German, I didn't used germanpod101.com ;-) But japanesepod101.com is the oldest of these language podcast series and there are many good lessons also for advanced learners. Sad to hear, that this not the case for the germanpod101 site.

In my beginning I also worked through the Japanese course from Assimil many years ago and it was funny too, but if I now hear the japanese audio from Assimil, I have to laugh because it has nothing to do with the real pronunciation and spoken Japanese language. Just for fun I listened to the Assimil audios for "German with ease" and for me they were boring and they also had nothing to do with the naturally spoken German language. So the learning system may be nice (like Duolingo), but for Audio I would rather suggest to use other ressources.

Another but more pricey possibility could be Pimsleur. I also worked through the Japanese course there and was impressed. This program worked good for me and the pronunciation there is much better than Assimil. If you have the money, it may be worth a try.

Have a look here:


The advantage of this method is also his disadvantage: It is only an audio course. You learn by hearing and you can exercise everywhere, where you can start a mp3 file or a CD. So you can learn on the way, on a walk, in your car, on your bike, at home and everywhere you want. But you should not be worrying about speaking loudly in the new language indeed, as in this program you have to repeat and speak loudly ;-) This is very effective, if you really follow the method (like assimil), but you do not really learn to read or to write, although they provide some advices how to write, read and pronounce special letters.

Here you can try a free lesson:


During the course, you will not only learn vocabs, sentences, phrases and grammar, you will learn to speak. The course throws you into guided dialogues and you have to answer from your given knowledge (the solution will be told afterwards by the teacher). Sometimes the situations were so funny, that I had to laugh :)


Thanks. Your comments are very helpful. I should take a listen to the English Assimil program to see how funny it sounds. I know the Spanish pronunciation was weird. However, I was able to live with it. I also used Pimsleur for Spanish and found it very good, but with a limited vocabulary. Additionally, I hated that there was no text. I previously used Pimsleur for German, but quit for some reason. I will have to start again since I can get it for free from my library.


Yes, the vocabulary of the Pimsler programs is limited, this is also my experience. I wished there were additional courses for every language. And the lack of written exercises and material is a disadvantage, especially for Japanese. But on the other hand I lost with Pimsleur my sheepishness to open my mouth and speak the foreign language loudly ;-) And because the speakers speak more naturally as in the Assimil lessons, I became more fluent in speaking Japanese (in addition to other speaking exercises). Now, while I am writing about I am thinking about perhaps buying the Pimsleur Polish course...i´ll try the free lessons first to see, if I want to work with it :-)


The best thing about Pimsleur is the repetition after which you really learn what you are trying to learn. Duoloingo among other programs cannot compare on this front

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