How many hours it takes to master German (C1 level)


Genie in German means, funnily enough, a genius. 

And while when you start learning German, you kind of wish you had a genie or that you were a genius so that you can speak fluently all of a sudden, it doesn’t work that way.

No, nothing works that way.

It takes hard work and dedication, day in and day out, to actually be good at something. This week I found out that I have spent 800+ hours learning German. That’s only the hours I spent at language schools by the way, and not the hours I slaved away learning the different articles and cases by myself. The hours spent talking to my husband, his family, the cashiers at the supermarket, yes, all in German, don’t count either. But I’m guessing I’ve clocked in a total of about 2,000 hours or more, what with reading books, listening to the radio and spouting out some sort of German to my friends at design school.

Anyway, this is just my experience in learning Deutsch. It’s different for everyone, I mean if you really are a genius or have a photographic memory, then 6 months is probably enough. But on average, it takes about 1,000 hours, and how much you actually learn in an hour.

In upcoming posts, I would like to share my Telc C1 Deutsch Hochschule exam experience, because I haven’t read any on the internet and I think it will be really helpful. I will write about the test format and the maximum points for each, as well as my experience attending an exam preparation course and where I did the exam itself.

Lastly, I just want to say to anyone who is starting something, like moving to a new country, learning a new language or starting their own business, that it’s going to be okay. A lot of things are probably uncertain and it’s going to be very hard, but hang in there. With hard work, dedication and a prayer, you can reach more than what a genie (or a genius) can ever grant you.


9 thoughts on “How many hours it takes to master German (C1 level)

  1. CrazyChineseFamily

    How much work that must be! I actually did in 2014 the Goethe C2 language Zertifikat as I wanted to do a master degree in Germany. Well even though I grew up in Germany and even did my high school degree here I still just barely passed the exam!


      1. CrazyChineseFamily

        C2 is native level speaker as far as I know / nearly native speaker. Anyhow you did an incredible job in that short time period when I think about how far i am away in other languages from that level even though I have learned them for over a decade

        Liked by 1 person

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