The Catholic University of America

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Amanda Sheffer

Clinical Associate Professor, German
German Advisor

206A McMahon Hall
The Catholic University of America
Washington, DC 20064
Phone: 202-319-4074
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Ph.D.


Dr. Amanda Sheffer is a Clinical Associate Professor of German and the German Advisor in the Department of Modern Languages at Catholic University. She holds a Ph.D. from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a dissertation entitled Deranged Doctors and Panicked Patients: The Doctor-Patient Relationship in Fin de Siècle Literature. Dr. Sheffer focuses on pedagogy through the teaching of technology and German for Professional Purposes in the basic language classroom. Her current research looks at the intersection of medicine and science in modern Austrian literature as well as how using a multidisciplinary approach to 21st-century challenges enhances the intermediate and advanced learning environment. 


Dr. Sheffer is the 2017 recipient of the national American Association of Teachers of German (AATG) FL-A-CH award for contributions in research and teaching of Austria, Switzerland, Liechtenstein and South Tyrol. She currently vice-chairs the national AATG FL-A-CH committee. She also sits on the national AATG committee for German for Professional Purposes and has a webinar available on the teaching of German for Professional Purposes in the basic language classroom on the AATG's website. 

In addition, she organizes the "Goethe Book Club" at the Goethe Institut-Washington to read modern German-language works in German and translation and serves a board member of the Friends of Goethe Institut-Washington, D.C. She has organized multiple German immersion days held at Catholic University for students in the area. She has also served on the Basic Language Committee, the Alumni Committee, the Technology Committee, the Curriculum Committee, and helps maintains the department's social media.

  • Sheffer, A. "German for Specific Purposes in the Basic Language Sequence: A Case Study in Implementation during Curricular Reform" Unterrichtspraxis 50.1. 2017. Pp. 91-99.

  • Bornholdt, C. & Sheffer, A. Integrating Language and Culture Studies within a Multidisciplinary Framework of European Studies.” NECTFL Review 79. 2017. Pp. 13-34.

Recent Presentations
  • C. Arnaud, A. Sheffer, “Incorporating STEM in the Language Classroom”  MFLA, Arnold, MD, October 22, 2018.

  • Teaching Modern Austria: Culture, Literature, & Language”. Panel Organizer. NeMLA, Pittsburgh, April 14, 2018.

  • Sheffer, Amanda. "Exploring Intertextuality in Kehlmann's die Vermessug der Welt: Critiquing the Present through the Past". Austrian Studies AssociationChicago, March 18, 2017.

Research and Personal Development
Her research and development has been financially supported through the following agencies:
Max Kade Foundation
Goethe Institut
Fulbright Commission
U.S. Dept of Education (FLAS Grant, Sweden)
Swedish Institute
Courses Taught
Ger 101: Beginning German I
Ger 102: Beginning German II
Ger 103: Intermediate German I
Ger 104: Intermediate German II
Ger 199: Language / Culture Activity: Soccer
Ger 204: Advanced German II: German through Literature
Ger 220: Vienna in Literature and the Arts
Ger 230: Grimms' Fairy Tales in their European Context
Ger 300: Thinking Critically: Literature, Film and Media in the German-speaking World
Ger 401: Business German
Ger 489: Senior Research Seminar 
Ger 500: German for Reading Knowledge
Euro 201: European Culture