A-level german without gcse?

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meymey:)
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#1
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#1
i havent studied german at GCSE level because my school did not offer it. Now I have the chance to study a-level german and really want to.

Some people have told me that GCSE german isnt very relevant and a-level german is more broad and generally will cover basics as well.

Has anyone done this before? I so any advice would help
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redmeercat
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#2
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Honestly, it depends on the course. I know people who have taken up languages for the first time at A level, and personally, I learnt German up to A level standard within 5-6 months, so it is possible. However, it will be hard work. If you're motivated and willing to do a lot of independent work, then go for it. You could even use Italki or a tutor or even teach-yourself books over the summer to get a lot of the basics done. But it really depends on how resilient you are to getting bad grades to start with (won't necessarily be the case but might be if the class begins at A level standard) and whether the class is designed to take people from beginner to low intermediate or not. I'd do it if it were me, but you've got to think about how hard you want to work, how motivated you are and whether you have the time over the summer to get some of the basics solid
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musicalrose
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I guess it depends how much of the language you've studied before- I really wouldn't recommend starting from scratch also how passionate are you about languages- do you know any others? The skills of learning them are the same but if you've never had any experience learning a language I think you'll struggle. Languages are the hardest to get good grades at A level because so many native speakers also take the subject.
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meymey:)
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#4
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(Original post by redmeercat)
Honestly, it depends on the course. I know people who have taken up languages for the first time at A level, and personally, I learnt German up to A level standard within 5-6 months, so it is possible. However, it will be hard work. If you're motivated and willing to do a lot of independent work, then go for it. You could even use Italki or a tutor or even teach-yourself books over the summer to get a lot of the basics done. But it really depends on how resilient you are to getting bad grades to start with (won't necessarily be the case but might be if the class begins at A level standard) and whether the class is designed to take people from beginner to low intermediate or not. I'd do it if it were me, but you've got to think about how hard you want to work, how motivated you are and whether you have the time over the summer to get some of the basics solid good
I acc still need to discuss the course with my sixthform as maybe they do go over GCSE basics as I know some teachers do this.
I definitely feel very motivated right now and I think it would be a idea to go over the basics independently. Thanks for the help its much appreciated.
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meymey:)
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#5
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(Original post by musicalrose)
I guess it depends how much of the language you've studied before- I really wouldn't recommend starting from scratch also how passionate are you about languages- do you know any others? The skills of learning them are the same but if you've never had any experience learning a language I think you'll struggle. Languages are the hardest to get good grades at A level because so many native speakers also take the subject.
I havent actually studied the language before I literally only know how to say thank you and i love you which i dont think is very helpful. I am quite passionate about languages I speak one more language fluently and was in the process of learning korean. However because of my GCSEs and work pressure I stopped and now I feel more interested in learning german and I do have a german cousin who says she will help me in every way. Have u done an a-level language before?
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meymey:)
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#6
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(Original post by redmeercat)
Honestly, it depends on the course. I know people who have taken up languages for the first time at A level, and personally, I learnt German up to A level standard within 5-6 months, so it is possible. However, it will be hard work. If you're motivated and willing to do a lot of independent work, then go for it. You could even use Italki or a tutor or even teach-yourself books over the summer to get a lot of the basics done. But it really depends on how resilient you are to getting bad grades to start with (won't necessarily be the case but might be if the class begins at A level standard) and whether the class is designed to take people from beginner to low intermediate or not. I'd do it if it were me, but you've got to think about how hard you want to work, how motivated you are and whether you have the time over the summer to get some of the basics solid
Also when you learnt german yourself did you have a tutor or someone to help? Also is there any specific books you could recommend for beginners?
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Interea
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You can definitely learn up to GCSE grade 7+ standard in a language over the course of this summer, and I would recommend doing so, since most of the time A level languages are brief revision and then new stuff and a lot of new vocabulary. For new languages I tend to use Duolingo to get the basic feel for it, then get a grammar textbook and use Memrise to learn the GCSE vocab lists. Luckily German GCSE is quite a common choice, so I imagine there are a lot of resources and videos online to get you up to that level before you start the A level.

Maybe sign up for 4 A levels if you can, then if you find over the summer that you don't actually enjoy learning German you can just drop it and stick to the other three (sometimes certain languages just don't click, better to give yourself options until you find out if German works for you!)
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redmeercat
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#8
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(Original post by sos11111)
Also when you learnt german yourself did you have a tutor or someone to help? Also is there any specific books you could recommend for beginners?
I started German at university so it's not really the same, I've only ever self-taught Russian and I did A level French. We used the DAF Kompakt textbooks (expensive first hand, I got all mine secondhand) and Upgrade Your German (literally my favourite revision guide of all time) as a basis for the course, though! I really would suggest that you get a tutor if you can afford it as speaking practice and corrections are really necessary for German! You might just want to use the GCSE textbook for AQA or something and work through that... maybe the revision guide as well in order to get translation in. Duolingo and other similar apps can be a good supplement to grammar/ vocab etc, and I use HelloTalk and Tandem to practice conversation, but with those you really have to be aware of the potential dangers of talking to people online and have very clear boundaries in terms of what you will and will not mention - I never go into any detail about where I live, for example. As long as you do that, though, they can be really helpful!
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