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German beginner.

I'm here simply because I want to learn German. It isn't taught in my high school so Duolingo seemed to me like a good place to learn. But I've been reading up and it seems this isn't the best German resource. On the other hand, many of the people who have said that have prior experience with this language, where as I don't. So my question is, what do you think? Should I continue here to get the basics or start somewhere else?

April 12, 2014



I think Duolingo is a good place to start learning German. Duolingo doesn't teach grammar explicitly, however, there are many useful people floating about who answer questions, some of whom are native speakers. Reading the comments for the sentences is extremely beneficial and if you still have questions ask away. At first the sentences seem a bit odd but as you progress the questions become more practical. I recommend starting here and then supplementing your learning with other sites later on. Good luck, learning a language is extremely rewarding.


Hey, I've been learning German on here for a short while now, I started about 6 months ago but stopped and recently have come back to it. I have a friend that is getting private lessons in German, him and I are now able to converse basically with one another because I'm using this site!! It's a great way to learn the different words but you will have to use other sources to learn everything fully and properly!

I also have a fluent German speaking friend that sits with me on our lunch whilst I practice and he doesn't say anything bad about it!!

Considering it's free, it is definitely worth using!!


My opinion is, continue with Duolingo, but use other resources in addition, depending on what you want to achieve (e.g., do you want to be able to converse, or is reading enough, or maybe you're more interested in conversation than in reading, is your interest academic, etc.).


Duolingo is really good resource. For example I now learn German from English, despite the fact that my English is not very good. I'm native Ukrainian/Russian.


Hm, although I only know you from one sentence, your English seems pretty good, and if you can use it to study German, you must know it well enough ;)

However if you speak Russian and want to learn German... is this course not easier? https://www.duolingo.com/comment/2368368

Just curious, is all. If you are learning German from English just to be hardcore, then I lift my hat to you :)


I haven't had any experience with german and its pretty ok here. It takes a bit to learn the basics at first but once you can remember the words its easy. I find it hard to remember all of the genders for the nouns, but strengthen skills helps a lot.


I can only talk about Duolingo in general, sine i only do the spanish tree. I think Duolingo is a very good learning resource for some reasons. First, it offers a huge amount of brute force learning and repeating words, declensions and grammatical structures, which is essential in learning a language. The ratio between repeating and new information is well balanced and also the ratio between translating to english and from english in the new language. Second: problem based learning. The grammatical theory falls a bit short. It only offers you the basic ideas before throwing you into the practical work. This can be seen as a disadvantage, but i think it is not. If you encounter problems you can't solve with the basic grammatical theory, you can look up your problem ( i would buy a used learners grammar or find a good grammar on the web). If that doesn't solve your problem, ask the community. There are many committed natives who are willing to help you, and some people here in the german branch have an impressive grammar knowledge. For me, problem based learning works much better than trying to learn all theory beforehand. Just make sure that you really understand the reasons when you solve a problem.

Additional resources: What you should use along with duolingo is a german grammar (can the english word grammar be used for "a book about grammar" like in german?), a dictionary (dict.cc to look up words quickly; wiktionary for detailed information, declensions..) and some printed declension and conjugation tables (wiktionary is a good source).


You will need more than Duolingo alone. It is not suitable on its own for learning German, though I do believe it is the best single resource available for doing so. It takes the least and gives the most relative to others in my experience, but do pay attention to what is lacking and where you struggle. You will need to supplement certain areas that Duolingo does not cover well.


Tylerthehun is right, Duolingo has its uses, but it is not the only resource you should be using. I have German lessons, I used to use Livemocha, I have a grammar book, listen to the news in German, watch German movies and talk to my German speaking friend in German, The Goethe Institute also has good online audio and video. An easy version of the news is Nachtrichten Leicht http://www.nachrichtenleicht.de/ This has the text, images and also audio. I use Duolingo to revise grammar and vocabulary.


I think Duolingo is a great supplement to all the other resources that are out there. It's good for reinforcing grammar and practicing writing. Memrise is great for vocab. Youtube is great for listening. italki is great for speaking. None of these things on their own will make you fluent though. You need to find a system that works for you and a way to integrate all of these things into your daily life and of course you need to find the time! :)


Duolingo will give you the basics and I think it's quite a good place to learn them.

It will, however, mostly teach you to read German, but it won't teach you to converse in German and will teach you to listen in a rather limited way. If you never learned German before then you should find some other place to learn about the reasoning behind the grammar, because Duolingo won't really explain it. Also, when you learn new word pay attention to der die das, otherwise it will get tricky later. For remembering words another site, Memrise, is quite good. There is even a Duolingo course available on Memrise.


I started off with a series called "Genau!" and "Ganz Genau!" back at school. They were really good to start on, and if you can buy the textbook and workbook of at least "Genau!", I highly recommend that as a starter.

Apart from that, I've found duolingo to be a half-decent starter, but you might need to supplement your knowledge about grammatical issues elsewhere, as they don't seem to explain a lot of the grammar here.


Thanks for all your help, guys!


Continue !!!! This is a good tool.


I am doing Duo Lingo German and have etched Future 4 and it has suddenly switched to Italian. What do I do?


Why has my German suddenly turned into Italian. I am on Future 4 German and it has all changed to Italian


i am going to settle in Germany after a few months so need to now German


I don't understand why are my german lessons and the whole finished Italian tree closed if I get the lessons every day and I should like to follow learning and practice Itallian language. a9Ye3

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