The Catholic University of America

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Major in German Studies

The Major in German Studies offers an interdisciplinary approach to the study of the German-speaking world. It is designed to provide students with a solid background in the cultural history of Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Students combine language, culture and practical skills courses in the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures with a practical immersion experience in a German-speaking country. Students are encouraged to supplement their studies with courses dealing with the German-speaking world in areas such as Anthropology, Art, Drama, History, Media Studies, Philosophy, Politics, Psychology, Sociology, and Theology and Religious Studies.

Required Courses (7 courses / 21 credits)


GER 203 Advanced German I: German Through Film
GER 204 Advanced German II: German Through Literature

(Note: 203 and 204 can be taken out of sequence; students placing out of 204 add 2 elective courses)


GER 300  Thinking Critically: Literature, Film, and Media in the German-Speaking World
GER 301  Society and Culture in the German-Speaking World 

(Note: 300 and 301 can be taken out of sequence)


GER 401/402/495  One practical skills course: German for Business, Translation, Internship 
GER 488  Research Seminar I (Course can be repeated with different topic)
GER 489 Research Seminar II: Senior Essay


Electives (5 courses / 15 credits)

− Courses at the 300 level and higher taught in the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures or transferred from study abroad.
− Up to two of these courses may be 200-level courses taught in English at the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures, transfer courses, or other courses taught in other disciplines. These courses must be pre-approved by the advisor.

Education Abroad

− German Studies Majors are required to spend a semester studying abroad in a German-speaking country.
− All credits earned abroad are eligible for transfer if the student is enrolled in affiliated programs. GER 300 and GER 489 must be taken at CUA.
− Under special circumstances may students petition that the study abroad requirement be waived. In these cases the department will consider summer abroad programs, approved cultural immersion experiences, or internships instead.

Free Electives and Distribution Courses

- German Studies Majors are strongly advised to complete the course work for the Certificate in European Studies.
- Students are also strongly encouraged to add minors or a second major in related disciplines, such as Art, Drama, History, International Business, Media Studies, Philosophy, or Politics.


Minor in German Studies 

The prerequisite to select a minor in German is successful completion of German 104 or proof of proficiency at the equivalent level. The German minor is comprised of a total of 6 courses: GER 203 and 204 plus an additional 4 courses at the 200-400 level. No more than 2 courses taught in English count toward the minor. In consultation with the academic adviser, study abroad courses may be counted toward the minor.



Additional Information about the German Program can be found here:

Note: All entering students and transfer students with one year of college German or several years of language study in high school are required to take a placement examination on-line on the departmental WEB site. The resulting placement will be valid up to one semester after the date of the examination.