- Global Careers
German is the language with the largest number of native speakers in the European Union. As a global industrial power and major force in the European Union, Germany plays a crucial role in international politics and global financial and economic sectors. The German program offers excellence in professional language instruction through the study of German-speaking communities/cultures, current politics, international affairs and economics, while preparing students for their international careers. All students are welcome - proficiency as well as non-proficiency students who want to learn a second/third language.
The German program offers content-based, communicative-oriented and innovative technology-enhanced language instruction. Our courses -- ranging from the beginner to the more advanced levels -- successfully prepare students for their proficiency examinations and to excel beyond the minimum proficiency level required for graduation purposes. All our courses are carefully designed to develop and refine the students’ language skills against the backdrop of German-speaking, European and global international politics and economics. Our personalized and interactive language teaching gives attention to students’ individual needs and projects. Starting with the intermediate level, we introduce topics related to European and global affairs. Special features are discussions with invited guest speakers and meetings with local and international representatives of the German-speaking world.
The German Program also advises students on how to continue studying the language during the summer break and how to obtain financial support for summer courses in Germany. In the past years, the German program in Washington DC has offered its own short-term study trip to Berlin and to Eastern Germany, sponsored by the German government’s Transatlantik Programm.
Novice German (Level 1)
Experiencing the German Language and Culture I
This beginner's course is designed for students with no previous knowledge of the German language. It introduces the daily-life language within the context of diverse German-speaking cultures. Students develop and practice their listening, speaking, reading and writing skills as related to daily-life activities and topics. Basic vocabulary and grammar structures are introduced and practiced with the aid of multi-media, such as interactive materials and educational software.
Intermediate Low German (Level 2)
Experiencing the German Language and Culture II
This course builds on the beginner’s course. Students continue to develop and refine basic vocabulary, sentence and grammar structures as used in the context of daily life. Social topics of general interest within the German-speaking communities will be gradually introduced together with professionally-relevant vocabulary. More complex grammar structures will be practiced upon with the support of interactive materials and educational software.
Intermediate Mid I German: (Level 3)
Modern German Cultures and Politics
This course engages students with professional topics relevant to German/European cultures and politics, and allows them to acquire the professional vocabulary related to social and political topics. All multi-media class materials are designed to support students’ progress in developing their oral and written expression and in expanding upon their specific professional vocabulary. There is also a contextualized review of basic grammar along with the development of intermediate-level discourse and grammar structures.
Intermediate Mid II German: (Level 4)
Introduction to International Affairs in Politics and Economics
This course, the highest level of the pre-proficiency sequence, focuses primarily on professional topics. Students explore current politics, international relations, and economic affairs as presented in the German-speaking media. Students continue to expand their professional vocabulary and are introduced to the strategies of debates and public presentations in German. All multi-media materials are designed to expand students’ oral and written expression as well as to refine their grammar and vocabulary. At the end of this course, students are eligible to take the German Proficiency Examinations.
Intermediate High, Advanced Levels of German (Level 5 and above)
Global, European and German Issues in Discussion
Post-proficiency courses aim at refining and perfecting students’ language competence up to the advanced/superior levels. These courses largely consist of language for specific purposes as defined by students’ professional fields of interest. Students are engaged in discussions and debates on political and cultural issues. Authentic materials from German-speaking media, literary texts, and students’ projects are used in class discussion. Other activities may include discussions with guest-speakers and topic-related field trips.
German can be used to meet the MA language graduation requirements of the Functional Studies Programs and of the European and Eurasian Studies Program.
In order to pass the Proficiency exam, students need to obtain the following levels:
|Intermediate High||Intermediate High||Intermediate High||Intermediate Mid|
PhD students of European and Eurasian Studies can use the German reading proficiency exam to meet their second foreign language graduation requirement.
Summer Language Study and Fellowships:
DAAD (German Academic Exchange Program)
Carl Duisberg Gesellschaft
Alexander von Humboldt Foundation
Robert Bosch Foundation
Neue Zürcher Zeitung
Westdeutscher Rundfunk (WDR)
Learn German online:
Deutsche Welle: Deutsch lernen
Goethe Institut: Deutsch lernen
Nachrichten leicht (Deutschlandfunk)
Additional Sites of Interest:
Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung
German Program Coordinator and Professorial Lecturer
Rome Building, Room 310
Friederike Dorothea Jürgens
Associate Lecturer in German