Since German and English share the same (Germanic) root, there are many thousands of words that are closely related, known as “cognates”, like Water and Wasser. The only additions are the umlauts ä, ö and ü, as well as ß which is a rather elegant version of s that represents the double letter. With a history of award-winning scientists from its home country, German is very important in the academic community — ranking as the second most commonly used scientific language.
One of the reasons why German has such a high standing in the science community is the fact that Germany’s universities have an excellent international reputation. The country is the fourth most popular destination for students from abroad, with more than a quarter-million foreigners enrolled in German schools. Also, the German system for higher education boasts a number of universities with a very low or non-existent tuition fee. German is not only an interesting option for academics —those in the business world should also consider brushing up on their Deutsch. Germany is the biggest economy within the European Union and the fourth largest worldwide. It's home to numerous international corporations and on the front line of new technologies.
A large number of economic global players are based in Germany, such as Siemens, Volkswagen, Adidas and Lufthansa. The country also hosts some of the biggest international trade fairs, including CeBIT, the world’s largest exhibition for information technology, as well as the IFA trade fair for consumer electronics. Meanwhile, the German capital Berlin is, after many years as a hotspot for artists and creatives, turning into a hub for innovative start-ups. As a consequence, knowing German has the potential to greatly enhance your career opportunities.
English, French and German are the three official working languages of the European Union. German is the second most-spoken language on the continent of Europe but, when it comes to native speakers, German is number one. In the English-speaking world, German is also the third most taught foreign language. In addition to that, it comes in at tenth place as one of the major languages of the world.
German websites make up a huge part of the internet. In fact, in terms of domain endings that are clearly affiliated with a particular country, Germany’s .de is the most popular top-level domain out there. This means that knowing German gives you access to an additional 15 million websites, and that's not even counting the German sites ending in .net, .org and .info.
Though Germans have a reputation for being left-brained and analytical, the German-speaking world has also produced some of the greatest literary, musical, artistic and philosophical minds in human history: authors such as Brecht, Goethe, Kafka and Mann; composers such as Bach, Beethoven, Mozart, Schubert and Wagner; and revolutionary philosophy via Hegel, Heidegger, Kant and Nietzsche. Learning German really does give you the opportunity to appreciate cultural greats.
Learning German is not as tricky for English students as for many others, and the advantages of knowing German are immense. Browse through the database of TutorExtra and find the best tutor to teach you the German language