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Learning foreign languages with native speakers

"Language is, as it were, the outward manifestation of the spirit of peoples; their language is their spirit and their spirit their language; one cannot think of the two as identical enough."

(Wilhelm von Humboldt, 1767-1835)

What Wilhelm von Humboldt describes can be illustrated by an example from everyday life. The dictionary tells us that "pain" is the French equivalent of "bread" in German. However, what the dictionary does not convey to us is that while the German thinks of a loaf of brown or wholemeal bread when he hears the word "bread", the Frenchman most likely has crusty white bread in mind. And what seems Spanish to us Germans, seems to the Spaniard... well, how does it seem actually?

A true understanding of a language requires knowledge of the culture associated with it. For this reason, our foreign language teachers are native speakers. In addition to language competence, they can also impart cultural knowledge. Since they have learned German as a foreign language, they are sensitised to both the major and the subtle differences between the language systems. Of course, this also applies to the phonetic peculiarities of the individual languages, i.e. the authentic sounds. The current foreign language teachers at the GPB College come from England, Scotland, Australia, Spain, France, South Korea, Japan as well as the People's Republic of China.