German Studies

Goals for the German Studies major and minor are threefold:

  • German Studies majors and minors should acquire an understanding of the discipline of German Studies and its conceptual frameworks. They should know how the discipline is positioned in the United States, meaning how it works and what its major organizations and publications are.
  • German Studies majors should attain at minimum the language proficiency level defined by the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Language (ACTFL) as Advanced Mid. German Studies minors should attain at least the ACTFL proficiency level of Advanced Low. Graduating major and minors should develop a fluency and a critical vocabulary to be able to converse, read, and write about German culture and cultural texts in a scholarly way.
  • German Studies majors and minors should be familiar with the scope of German cultural history and the major and minor traditions within German-speaking regions in the modern period.

German Studies majors are further required to participate in the CAPSTONE experience, GER 400: Senior Seminar, in which they demonstrate and integrate learned skills in a senior thesis and a public presentation of the thesis.

For students completing their degree May 2015 and later

German 202 or equivalent proficiency is considered a prerequisite to all higher-numbered German courses, unless specified otherwise.

Major Requirements:
A major consists of a minimum of eleven courses beyond the elementary language level, including:

  • 201: Intermediate German (if relevant)
  • 202: Intermediate German (if relevant)
  • 240: Introduction to German Studies: Methods and Theories
  • 301: Advanced German
  • 302: Advanced German
  • A minimum of three 300-level courses taught in German above the 302 level
  • 400: Senior Seminar
  • No more than two courses taught in English, selected from the following list of courses:   
    • First-Year Seminars taught by members of the German Department
    • 120: German Literature in Translation
    • 225: Yiddish Literature in Translation
    • 250: Fairy Tales from Grimms to Disney
    • 260: Media Violence/Violence in the Media
    • 270: Transnational Writing and Film: Gender, Race, and Ethnicity in the New European Context
    • 280: European Cinema
    • 351: The German-Jewish Experience
    • HIST-218: Modern Germany
    • MUS_CLAS-109: W.A. Mozart: The Man and His Music
    • PHIL-208: Kant and the 19th Century
    • PHIL-366: Great Philosophers – Nietzsche

Majors must spend at least one semester studying in an approved program in a German-speaking country. Majors may count no more than two courses per semester abroad toward the major, or four courses for a year abroad. All majors are required to take at least two German courses in their senior year.

Majors who, by the end of the junior year, have not demonstrated a satisfactory level of competency in reading, writing, speaking, and listening comprehension of German, as determined by the department's staff, will be assigned additional work as necessary and appropriate to the attainment of such competency by the end of the senior year.

Minor Requirements:

A minor consists of a minimum of six courses, including:

  • 201: Intermediate German (if relevant)
  • 202: Intermediate German (if relevant)
  • 301: Advanced German
  • 302: Advanced German
  • Any 300-level course taught in German above the 302 level.

Students who place into 201 will be permitted to take no more than one course in English that counts toward the minor. Students who place into 301 will be permitted to take two courses in English that count toward the minor. These courses are listed above under the German Major and include GER-240.

Minors are strongly encouraged, but not required, to study abroad in a German-speaking country. Minors may count up to two courses taken abroad for minor credit.