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German Language  

Guide to learning German
Last Updated: Apr 20, 2015 URL: Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts

Getting Started Print Page

Online Duden Dictionaries

Datenbank-Paket Duden--contains 17 Duden dictionaries.


Tell Me More Language Learning Software

The UIUC library has licensed Auralog's award winning Tell Me More language training software. Includes English, Dutch, French, German, Italian and Spanish. To try it, use the link below.

Enter Tell Me More


German translation tools

Online Dictionaries German


YourDictionary: Germanic Languages - includes ancient languages such as Old High German, Old Low Franconian, and more!

Other Dictionaries with Additional Features das Sprachenportal - includes a vocabulary trainer and Rechtschreibung reference search function.

Duden Online - definitions of German words in German.

For Synonyms and Antonyms

Woxikon - Synonyms (no antonyms); menu has multiple interactive features.

What is the opposite of... - interface in English, but works with German words.

Verb Conjugation German Verb Conjugator

Verbix - German Verb Conjugator

Reverso - German Verb Conjugation



Google Translate

Print Dictionaries

The Literatures and Languages Library circulates print dictionaries. To find a monolingual German dictionary, search the Online Catalog using the subject heading German Language Dictionaries. To find a German/English dictionary, search the Online Catalog using the subject heading German Language Dictionaries English.





German Resources at LLL

Cover Art
Conversational German in 7 days. - Baldwin, Shirley and Sarah Boas.
Call Number: PF3121 .B35 1998 (Literatures & Languages)
Publication Date: 1998
A short course dealing with every day situations in German-speaking countries. Includes dialogues, key phrases, basic grammatical explanations and answer key.

Alles in Allem: an intermediate German course: grammar. - Briggs, Jeanine and Beate Engel-Doyle.
Call Number: PF3112 .B73 1995 (Literatures & Languages)
Publication Date: 1995
Part of a series. Intermediate German course offering a complete language program to students who have completed any first-year German course. Contains twelve independent chapters complete with examinations and examples. A wide variety of exercises aimed at assessing comprehension of grammar principles and applications thereof.

Cover Art
German for dummies. - Christensen, Paulina and Anne Fox.
Call Number: PF3121 .C47 2000 (Literatures & Languages)
Publication Date: 2000
This resource is based on the Berlitz approach and is designed for beginning-language learners of German. The main focus is on basic grammar, pronunciation, and the usage of German in everyday situations. Includes verb tables, mini dictionary, list of CD tracks, answer keys, and index. A dialogue and pronunciation audio CD is also available.

Sprechen wir Deutsch! - Corl, Kathryn A., Barbara S. Jurasek, and Richard T. Jurasek.
Call Number: PF3112 .D654 1989 (Literatures & Languages)
Publication Date: 1989
A textbook for beginning-language learners. Focuses on helping students acquire communication skills within culturally significant contexts.

Using German: a guide to contemporary usage. - Durrell, Martin.
Call Number: PF3112 .D78 2003 (Literatures & Languages)
Publication Date: 2003
For students who have basic knowledge of German and wish to extend their fluency and confidence. Incorporates important information on recent trends and changes in the German language, including the 1998 spelling reforms.

Spoken German for students and travelers. - Hiller, Renate.
Call Number: PF3121 .H66 1980
Publication Date: 1980
Basic conversational text for beginners as well as those who already have a foundation in the language. Dialogs include factual information and provide some background on German customs. Can also be utilized as a phrasebook.


Learning German Online

General Resources

BBC Languages: German - A comprehensive and lively collection of free audio and video courses for both beginners and intermediate learners. German Language - This website, maintained by's German Guide, features a variety of language lessons, commentary on traveling and teaching skills, and several interactive elements including quizzes.

German Blog: Language and Culture - Offers brief blog post introductions to German culture with interspersed vocabulary lessons. Great for beginning to intermediate students.

Germany Today: Intensive Study of German Language and Culture through MIT's opensoftware.

Radio Lingua German Materials - relaxed, short podcasts on everyday German phrases. Not currently updated, but valuable to casual learners.

Populearn German - free basic German vocabulary lessons based on repetition and staggered recall.

Additional Resources - beginner and advanced lessons, tests, links to jokes, quotes, and online penpals.

Deutsche Welle: Deutsch lernen - free e-learning with videos, podcasts, and audio courses as well as traditional texts and worksheets for print-out.

FSI Language Courses: German - Free German audio courses designed by the U.S. Foreign Service Institute. The interface is plain and perhaps uncomfortably formal, but there are plenty of exercises, lessons and many audio files.

Goethe Institute's Learn German Online for Free

Interactive learning games to improve your German skills at all levers; expert chat where you can find out interesting facts about the German language; foruem for sharing information and asking questions; and groups and partners.

Woerter Blog - Maintained by Worldblogs GmbH, this blog offers humorous posts on advanced usage topics. Great for graduate student level German learners.

Social Sites to Help Learn German

Livemocha - A language learning community designed to connect you with lessons and two-way exchanges for evaluating oral and written work at beginning to high intermediate levels. Free and fun if you enjoy online social networking.

Busuu - audio and written exercises in an online community setting. Seems best for basic vocabulary. forums - Active language forums where you can post grammar questions to have them answered by native speakers, or you can learn by reading other threads or answering others yourself. You will almost always get replies by authoritative, knowledgable posters, which you can verify by seeing their native language, number of posts and reputation.


Literatures and Languages Librarian

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Paula Carns
Contact Info
200 South Main Library
1408 W. Gregory Drive
Urbana, IL 61801
(217) 333-0076
Fax: (217) 333-2214
Send Email

German on campus

The German Conversation Group (Konversationsgruppe) meets weekly during the semester. Speakers at all language levels are welcome. Extra credit for attendance occasionally is offered by instructors of our language courses. For additional information regarding times and locations, please contact the German department.


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