14 Best German courses online to become a fluent speaker
Learning German offers great benefits and is an excellent way to create new career prospects or expand general knowledge. Still, people often seem to get stuck on the most basic levels and only manage to remember a few words, numbers, and common phrases.
Mastering fluency is the goal when you want to dive deep into German and experience the culture and art or access specific knowledge available in German only. This post covers 14 of the best German courses online for beginners, intermediate and advanced learners.
German Courses Online – Overview
German is a great second language to learn when you already speak English, though it has its tricky parts. The Foreign Service Institute categorizes German as a level two language (out of five levels) in terms of language learning difficulty for English speakers.
German words are almost always pronounced the way they are spelled because German is phonetically consistent, unlike a good majority of the English language. The alphabet is also similar to English so you have a head start on reading and writing.
Many words in German may look long and terrifying but this is due to the overabundance of compound words. The German word, Fledermaus, is composed of the German words meaning “flutter” and “mouse”, making the translation into the English word “bat”.
German is the official or co-official language of Germany, Austria, Belgium, Switzerland, Luxembourg, and Liechtenstein. The language is also prevalent in 42 countries, making it one of the more enticing languages to learn. Also, if you travel you will meet Germans.
As the largest economy in Europe, Germany also offers lucrative careers for those speaking German and another language. There are many online German classes available to get you started or to become fluent. Below is now a list of the best German courses online to help you choose the right program.
Best German Courses Online 2023 – Top Picks
|Rocket Languages |
|from $99/Level 1||$297||from $11.99/course||from $7.99/month|
|Free Trial. Discounts.||7-days free trial.||Up to 95% off.||Free trial. Discounts.|
|Visit Website||Visit Website||Visit Website||Visit Website|
*Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. Read the full disclosure at the end of this post.
Note: This review aims to give an overview of the best German courses online. We cannot claim comprehensiveness as there are many other online German classes available.
1. Rocket Languages German Courses
Students usually want to dive deep into any aspect of the German language and culture. However, you may wonder whether you pronounce words correctly, use correct grammar and structure, or use words in the right context. Rocket German (visit website) will focus on these aspects and helps you become a confident speaker and fluent in German.
The Rocket Languages German course features a voice recognition program to check and improve your German pronunciation. While many German courses may teach you to ask common questions to communicate effectively, Rocket German also teaches you how to communicate from both sides of the conversation.
Built-in algorithms help you with the phrases that you may have trouble with along with tips and techniques for grammar so you better understand how to form your own sentences.
Rocket German is designed for life-long learning. It gives you unlimited lifetime access and includes all future updates for content and technology improvements. Depending on your goals or level, you can choose between German 1, German 1-2, or German 1-3. This is one of the best German courses online for beginners and advanced learners.
User Reviews: 4.8 ★★★★★ | Info: Visit website. Free trial + discounts.
Pricing: Level 1 from $99 | Level 1/2 from $249.90 | Level 1/2/3 from $259.90
2. German Uncovered – StoryLearning
Olly Richards, who speaks eight languages, was sick of what he calls the parrot problem. While a great deal of language learning consists of repeating words over and over again to try to memorize them, Richards uses a system called story learning which mimics immersive and intuitive language learning. Meet German Uncovered (visit website).
Taking a page from natural learning, story learning helps you understand concepts in German and makes it easy to memorize words just like how some of us can remember lyrics from 30 years ago. This effective approach boasts high results with the feeling of comfort and relaxation instead of actual study. Learn German as children do.
German Uncovered is one of the best German courses online if you look for a more non-grammar based and structured class. Learn to listen, speak, read and write in German. There are 20 video lessons that will take you from a beginner to an intermediate level.
You get a free trial for a week and then you can pay for the whole lesson plan with a year money-back guarantee. There are more advanced German online classes for those who wish to continue using StoryLearning to improve their conversation skills even further.
Provider: StoryLearning | Level: A1-B1 CEFR. Vocab, Grammar, Pronunciation.
Price: $297 Lifetime | Trial: Yes. 7-days full access. | Rating: 4.9 ★★★★★
Info: View course page. Browse all German online courses from StoryLearning.
3. Udemy German Courses Online
Udemy (visit website) offers some of the best German courses online for beginners and intermediate learners. A plethora of teachers and content creators can be found on Udemy offering hundreds of German classes for any level, topic, focus, or goal.
Many of these German courses come in packages of videos and downloadables. Most offerings have a preview so you can see the videos before committing. They also have a curriculum of what is included in each German course. Udemy also shows ratings and reviews from past and current students which can be in the thousands.
Sandra1percent, for example, has thousands of reviews and about 80,000 students. Linguae Learning with great reviews has over 300,000 students for their online German courses. There are so many German courses to choose from that you may want to filter through the searches. You can filter by levels, price, video duration, features, and more.
There are also specialized online German classes that break into subcategories such as German pronunciation, adjectives, German sentence structures, and even common German mistakes, so you are sure to cover all bases.
German courses: 1,000+ | Rating: 4.0-4.7 ★★★★☆
Info: Browse category for all German Courses on Udemy. From $11.99. Up to 95% off.
4. Rosetta Stone German Courses
Rosetta Stone (visit website) has been a leader in language learning for quite some time and for a good reason. The iconic yellow boxes are in most major stores and it is a simple and convenient program to use. German is one of the 25 languages you can choose from.
Rosetta Stone German focuses on the alphabet with pronunciation first before getting into words and phrases. Their online German course does a great job of making sure that you completely understand the basics before moving on to the next lesson.
This is among the best German courses online for those who are just starting out and have little or no knowledge of German beforehand as opposed to advanced learners. It's also very straightforward and easy to follow, making it a great option for young learners as well.
5. Pimsleur Online German Courses
Paul Pimsleur (visit website) was a master linguist who mixed language skills with psychology in terms of organic learning to create the Pimsleur Method. Pimsleur's method dominated the market for language learning and has stayed strong and true throughout the years. It has only changed to keep up with current technology.
The biggest part of Pimsleur's method was the fact that his scientific research helped him recognize that to learn a language, one would have to trigger short-term memory and place the learning into long-term memory to remember a new word or phrase effectively.
Pimsleur offers subscription plans which include virtual flashcards, games, a pronunciation coach, and even cultural studies. The Pimsleur online German course can also be used or accessed on their mobile app, Alexa, and a driving mode for study time on a commute.
Pimsleur offers one of the best German courses online for beginners. You can use it with three other household members so they can learn German as well. Pimsleur also provides an all-access option that includes all of the 51 languages they offer.
Skillshare (visit website) offers multiple German courses online. Along them is a series run by Sandra German. With thousands of students already enrolled, the class focuses on learning German step-by-step and delivers easy-to-digest videos.
Sandra teaches German for beginners and has experience with many different ages and types of students. She provides engaging PDFs available for download. With a Skillshare membership, you can watch all of Sandra’s German classes and lessons, but also any other classes available on the platform, no matter the topic or skill.
Thus, there are many more Skillshare German courses online with a focus on grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation, culture, and communication. You can try it for free.
7. Lingoda Online German Classes
Lingoda (visit website) is a fairly new language learning program that has generated a lot of impacts. Unlike other online German courses, this one utilizes people and classroom experiences instead of a computer program. You can schedule learning with their expert native German-speaking instructors with plenty of different day and time options.
All online German classes offer downloadable lesson plans and guides for each lecture. There is a maximum of five students per German class which is ideal for personalized instruction and communication. The website features a placement test so that you can take the right classroom level for your needs.
Lingoda is among the best German courses online for intermediate and advanced learners to hone their pronunciation, grammar, and conversation skills with fluent teachers.
Languages: 4 | Review: ★★★★☆ | Info: View course page.
Pricing: $59/month (1 class/week) | $139/mo (2-3 classes/w) | $239/mo (1 class/day)
8. Preply Online German Classes + Tutors
Preply is an excellent provider for those seeking one-on-one online German classes. After learning the basics of German, you may want to sharpen those skills if you plan on going somewhere that may require constant German conversation. This ensures that each lesson is personalized for you and your skill level.
Their tutor search allows you to stay within your budget, choose the language level of the tutor, as well as when they would be available for chat. Preply is easy to use like other websites that specialize in finding the right 1:1 online German classes and tutors for you.
Preply's tutor profiles come with hourly rates, how many lessons they have provided, their current number of students, but most importantly, their reviews. Available times are also shown in your local timezone so you don’t have to worry about that pesky world clock.
Tutors: Various tutors to learn German 1 on 1. Native speakers. Multiple languages.
Review: ★★★★☆ | Pricing: From $15/hour.
Tip: Not the right language? Browse our lists of best Italian courses or Spanish courses or English courses or French classes or Portuguese classes or Mandarin classes or Japanese classes or Arab courses or Russian courses online.
9. Ouino Online German Course
Ouino is a popular language learning program and offers some of the best German courses online due to its visual learning approach and design. With aesthetically pleasing layouts, crisp pictures, highlighted words and fragments, it is ideal for visual learners.
Ounio's German course is also highly customizable because they understand that not everyone learns the same way. Instead of going through a set curriculum, you can choose what and how you want to learn German online. Thus, students can customize and personalize the program to their specific learning goals and needs.
Like many other best German courses online, they offer voice recognition to help you compare your pronunciation with native speakers. This German class also breaks down words into smaller parts making it easy to recognize patterns for future learning. This helps in learning German verb conjugation which can be a complex task sometimes.
The Ouino German course also offers thousands of sentences to practice reading, writing, listening, and speaking so you can feel confident in your new language skills.
German Courses: 450+ lessons. 1000+ exercises. All systems. No ads. Offline use.
Review: ★★★★★ | Pricing: Lifetime $95.76. Monthly access from $12.99.
10. Berlitz German Online Courses
Like Pimsleur, Berlitz was founded on a technique of natural learning. Maximilian Berlitz was a German and French teacher at a College in Rhode Island. After becoming ill and hiring a Frenchman named Joly, he quickly learned that Joly did not speak English.
Out of options, Berlitz let Joly teach and after coming back six weeks later, he had noticed a massive difference in his students. Joly and Berlitz created a faux immersion experience by exposing the students to the foreign language completely in the classroom. Maximilian Berlitz founded his own language school in 1878.
Berlitz once started making pocket dictionaries, guidebooks, and cassette tapes to learn new languages. The program offers many different options including self-study with tutors, group online German classes, in-classroom studies (in certain locations in the US), and group classroom studies. Options are available for adults, children, and even companies.
Berlitz also provides many specialized German language certifications for career and professional growth. They offer German courses for business and government-specific careers as well so you know you are comfortable stepping out into a career path that requires business level german and not just common conversational German.
Rating: 4.6 ★★★★☆ | Price: from $199 | Trial: Free online consultation.
Level: A1-C1. Various online German classes, topics, and lessons.
11. DeutschAkademie German Online
DeutschAkademie is an online German course program created by Germans for non-native speakers so it is very specific in its methods. They provide free German courses online, quizzes, resources, and downloads.
DeutschAkademie also has an online tutor platform that matches you with one of their tutors depending on what level or specialization you want to learn. These German classes are suitable for those expanding their established vocabulary and understanding of the German language because many of the instructions and details are written in German.
Rating: 4.9 ★★★★★ | Trial: Yes | Level: A1-C1
German courses: Various topics and classes. Prices: from $99-$599
12. The Goethe Institut – German Courses
The Goethe Institut is a non-profit dedicated to advancing German language learning founded by the German government. They have dedicated resources in private and public institutions as well as schools and companies to promote the German language as well as cultural learning.
The Goethe Institut runs several locations in different countries making them physically available worldwide and not just online. With multiple fluency levels, they offer different learning options that will cater to your preference. You are able to choose in-person learning (just like Pope Francis did) in any of their 150+ locations worldwide.
They also provide online tutor learning and the usual online German courses. After studying German with the Goethe Institut, you are able to take their comprehension exams for you to be able to have official certifications for education and business purposes.
These exams are measured in accordance with the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. The unique thing about the Goethe Institut is that they also offer German immersion tours and programs for young learners as well.
Rating: 4.9 ★★★★★ | Trial: Yes | Level: A1-C2
German courses: Various topics and classes. Price: from $249 / €239.
13. Lingoni German Online Courses
Lingoni is an easy-to-use online German course program that uses different formats for learning. They have hundreds of free German online classes, lessons and videos on their YouTube Channel as well with over 600,000 subscribers.
Subscribing on their website with the option of 3 months, 12 months, or a lifetime gets you full access to their classes and tools. This includes worksheets, videos, podcasts, exercises, and pronunciation practice, all in a clean-looking app.
Lingoni also measures your progress and milestones and gives you points similar to that of a game for encouragement. These points can even be added up to other German Lingoni users for fun and effective competition. They also offer hundreds of printable worksheets which can be more effective for some learners.
Rating: 4.7 ★★★★☆ | Trial: Yes | Level: A1-B2
Price: $49 for 3 months. $119 for 12 months. Lifetime for $279.
14. Additional Online German Classes and Apps
- Duolingo – Free app with in-app purchases
- Lingopie – Learning through binge-watching foreign shows
- Babbel – App with over 10 million subscriptions sold
- Drops – Visual learning app
- Yabla – App with videos for learning
- Busuu – App that has great reviews from students
- Tandem – App to connect you with other users through chatting and video calls
- FluentU German – Learn with German video classes and subtitles
- Fluent in 3 Month German – Immersive online course
- GermanPod101 – German course for listening comprehension
- italki – Online tutors for German conversational practice
- SmarterGerman – Learn German in a non-traditional style
- Loecsen – German online essons for beginners
- Language Transfer – German audio lessons
- Deutsch Uni Online – Learn Business German
- Coffee Break German – Podcasts to Learn German online
- Michel Thomas – Speaking and conversation course
How To Choose the Best German Courses Online
Many of the best German courses online we have listed above are for ambitious learners who eventually want to become fluent. If you feel you want to understand a little or learn a few words just for fun, there are also plenty of free online German courses.
If you want fluency, the best way to achieve it is by knowing how you learn. One-on-one online German courses may not be for everyone but sometimes may be the only way to achieve results. It depends on your flexibility and the amount of time you have that affects your decision on whether you want to purchase a subscription plan or a whole program.
If you have a tablet, a German language app may be best for you. Most German language teachers suggest that you try a program that includes voice recognition for pronunciation.
Sometimes those who learn different languages can’t hear the differences until it's recorded and compared. This is especially important in some languages just because some words may sound similar to others and clear pronunciation will make it easier for a native to understand what you are trying to relay.
Certainly, consider your budget. Some German courses may cost a decent amount of money while others are low-budget or even free. Clarify the goals you have. A more expensive course might help you achieve your goals faster or offers a more immersive learning experience than low-cost German classes.
Last but not least, if your goal is to learn German for career-based purposes or you need certification to study at a university or to take part in NGO projects you may want to look for programs that offer CEFR (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages), ILR (Interagency Language Roundtable) certifications, or similar language certifications.
Best German Courses Online 2023 – Review Verdict
Wrapping up our review of the best German courses online in 2023. Learning German can be a rewarding experience and may open up unexpected opportunities for new careers and also to gain new knowledge and skills. Though not the most challenging language for English speakers, it certainly has its tricky parts and requires determination and motivation.
I personally tend towards Rocket German, Rosetta Stone Pimsleur and Berlitz because they suit my learning style and goals. However, that is not what you should follow blindly. 1:1 classes such as Preply or Lingoda may speed up your learning when combined with self-paced online German courses.
All of the mentioned German classes are great options, but some of you may particularly be intrigued by the idea of immersion through stories that Story Learning offers. Such German classes may help you learn it more intuitively and if you don't need or want to understand every single grammar rule on a theoretical level.
If you aren’t quite prepared to take the plunge into fluency, a free app like Duolingo is a great place to start. You may also get some German language books to start your journey. Overall, If you think now is the time to learn a great and infamously scary-sounding language, then don't hesitate and try any of the German online classes mentioned.
Best German Courses Online 2023
- Rocket Languages German Online Courses
- German Uncovered – Story Learning
- Udemy German Courses Online
- Rosetta Stone German Online Courses
- Pimsleur Online German Courses
- Skillshare German Courses Online
- Lingoda Online German Classes
- Preply Online German Classes + Tutors
- Ouino Online German Course
- Berlitz* German Online Courses
- DeutschAkademie Learn German Online
- The Goethe Institut – Live + Online German Classes
- Lingoni German Online Courses
Schools and Universities – German Courses Online
- Goethe Institut with various locations around the world.
- GLS German Language School Berlin, Germany
- German Courses at the Humboldt-Institut
- DAS Akademie Berlin, Germany
- Academy of Languages German Classes + Exams TestDaF, TELC, TestAS, TOEFL®, TOEIC®, LCCI
German Language Levels, Exams + Certifications
- A1-A2 – Beginner-level certification
- B1-B2 – Intermediate-level certification
- C1-C2 – Proficient and Advanced-level certification
- The European Language Certificates – Telc
- Test Deutsch als Fremdsprache – Exam German as Foreign Language – TestDaF
Video German Courses Online
- The German Online Class – YouTube – View
- Learn German in 25 Minutes – YouTube – View
- Learn German Online with Anja – YouTube – View
German Learning Resources
- 1000 most common words in German – View
- Most popular phrases and expressions in German – View
- English-German dictionary – dict.cc – View
What are the best German courses online for 2023, in your opinion? Which German language classes have you taken online? What have you learned? Please let us know in the comments below, or contact us via email for questions.
Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links to some providers of German courses online. courselounge may receive a commission for purchases made through these links. It does not add any extra costs. All reviews, opinions, descriptions and comparisons expressed here are our own.