Learning a new foreign language has some obvious advantages, but why should you choose German? This particular language can be an excellent choice for variety reasons (economical, cultural, political and even person) and some of them are listed in the article bellow.
1. Large Number of Speakers in Europe.
In terms of numbers, German doesn’t have as many speakers as languages like Chinese or English. However it is very significant language in Europe where it is the second most spoken and also a language with the most native speakers. A total number of speakers is close to 230 million (101 native and 128 million second language), which makes German the 10-th most spoken language in the world. Due to a large number of speakers in EU, German is quite commonly considered as Lingua Franca in Eastern and Central Europe. It has an official language status in eight different countries including Germany, Luxemburg, Switzerland, Austria, Liechtenstein and a few others. So if you are planning to study, live, work or travel in Europe, German should definitely be in your list of foreign languages to learn.
2. There are a lot of Similarities with English.
The other reason to learn German is that it is relatively easy to learn. Some of the most commonly heard stereotypes about German is that it has very long words, grammar is very complicated and difficult to learn and etc. All this is more or less true; however there are quite a lot of aspects that make learning this foreign language an easy task too.
German is part of Indo European language family and it belongs to West Germanic Branch. There are a total of three languages in this branch – German, English as well as Dutch. German is considered to be the closest to Dutch (~75% of vocabulary is similar), while English is considered to be not as close (~40% of vocabulary). Since quite a lot of words in both German and English have the same Germanic roots it is quite easy to learn new vocabulary. In most cases English speakers can easily guess the meaning of German words.
Also as you might know German doesn’t have specific alphabet (like Arabic, Hindi, Chinese and etc.) so you will be able to read and write in this foreign language without too much trouble. Of course there are a few additional letters in the alphabet like ß and letters with umlauts, but it won’t take too long to learn.
3. More Business and Job Opportunities.
Since Germany is the 4-rth largest economy in the world (1-st in EU), learning this foreign language can be very beneficial for business purposes. Not only that, but Germany is among top countries when it comes to imports and exports. Based on 2015 statistics, Germany imported goods worth of 1050 million USD (third in the world after USA and China). The same year exports of this country accounted for 1329 million USD, which made it the 3-rd largest exporter in the world. Some of the most commonly exported goods are pharmaceuticals, machinery, industrial equipment and etc. Due to the fact that businesses in Germany are highly dependent on exports, knowledge of foreign languages is very important in the job market too. As it was mentioned earlier German is spoken in other countries that have large economies too, which makes this language even more important when doing business or seeking for a job.
It is also worthwhile to mention that quite a lot of German companies (Bosch, BMW, Siemens, Bayer and etc.) create a large number of jobs in US. Also USA companies do the same in Germany. Close business relationships between these countries create more job opportunities for people who study German. It is quite obvious that knowing this foreign language can be a great advantage when seeking for job in German based company over the candidates who doesn’t.
4. Tourism and Traveling.
If you work in an area that is closely related to tourism, most likely you have encountered travelers who speak German. As it was mentioned earlier Germany (and other countries speaking this language) has one of the strongest economies in the world so it is quite normal that people in these countries tend to travel a lot. So learning German can be very beneficial for people those job is associated with tourists. It is always a great advantage to communicate with tourists in their native language and ensure that their visit is pleasant.
Learning German can be also advantageous for people who like to travel for themselves. Since German is one of the most widely understood languages in Europe, knowing this language can be very helpful when traveling in this continent. You would be able to communicate with local people more efficiently, learn more about their traditions & customs, find friends and etc.
5. Access to Rich Culture Heritage.
Throughout the years quite a lot of achievements in literature, science, music and etc. were conceived by Germans. Some of the best classical music from Bach, Mozart and Beethoven was created by people who speaks this language. When it comes to science probably one of the most well-known German scientists is Einstein who among many achievements created the General Theory of Relativity. You are probably also familiar with books from Herman Hesse, Goethe, The Brothers Grimm and etc. Nowadays book market in German is considered to be the third largest in the world. So by learning German you would be able to read plenty of literature in its original language.
6. Ability to study Abroad.
Germany, Austria and Switzerland are attractive and favorable places to study for most students. These countries offer high quality education and quite a lot of universities in these countries have high rankings in the world. Many students choose to study in Germany because this country is one of the leaders in technology industries and science. Also it is worthwhile to mention that Germany makes subsidies available for students who study abroad, which makes it even more favorable destination for studying. So if you want to study in Germany, Switzerland, Austria or other German speaking country learning this foreign language becomes almost essential.