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  • Humanities & Fine Arts

German Studies

About German Studies

As a German Studies major, you’ll learn Europe’s most widely spoken language, and an important one in the global context. You’ll experience German culture in and out of the classroom, receiving personalized attention as you take courses that build your linguistic skills, broaden your cultural knowledge, and improve your ability to think critically. You’ll complete at least eight courses in German language, literature, and culture, and complete a Senior Capstone Experience.

Students of German studies have the opportunity to participate in exchanges with our partner institutions, the Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen and Johannes Gutenberg- Universität Mainz, which offer a language immersion experience as well as some courses taught in English.

Back on campus, we encourage you to immerse yourself in all things German. You’ll be able to have conversations with a foreign language assistant and participate in conversation hours, cooking events, excursions and other cultural activities sponsored by the department, the campus German Club, and the national German honorary society, Delta Phi Alpha.


To major in German Studies, you will take at least eight courses (32 credits) at the 200, 300 and 400 levels and complete the Senior Capstone Experience (SCE). The courses chosen for the major must include:

· GRS 301 and GRS 302 (or an equivalent taken abroad)

· GRS 304 or GRS 305

· GRS 375, if studying abroad

· At least one course at the 400 level, which must be taken during the senior year on campus.

· Only for those students beginning GRS at either the 100 or 200 level, 200 level courses may count toward the major.

You are encouraged to continue to take courses in the language throughout the period up to graduation, even if you complete their required courses earlier. We encourage our majors to complete a semester of study abroad in Germany (or a summer program if pre-approved by the German faculty), and further recommend a year-long course of study.

In some cases, study abroad may be necessary in order to complete all the coursework. As part of your study abroad experience, you will complete a study abroad portfolio (GRS 375) to be turned in to the faculty advisor. Through exchanges coordinated by the Global Education Office, we offer semester-/year-long programs in Mainz and Tübingen and we can advise you on summer programs. Please consult the faculty when planning your study abroad experience to ensure that the program you choose meets the needs of your major and that you have a well-balanced course of study while abroad, including classes that complement your course of study on campus. There are opportunities for language-related internships as well. German courses taught in English (ILC courses) may also count toward the major if all written work is done in German.

 If you’re primarily interested in another field, adding a German Studies minor can broaden your understanding of that field and propel your career – a language minor goes well with every major! Students who begin a language with 101, 102, or 201 must take a total of six classes in order to obtain the minor.

Students who begin with 202 or above must take a total of five classes, at least one of which must be at the 400 level.