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The German Major and Minor

The requirement for the B.A in German is 30 credits (excluding GER 101 and 102). The requirement for a minor is 18 credits, 12 of which must be at the 200-level or above.

If you have no prior knowledge of German, your first course is German 101. If you have taken German before and are not sure at what level to begin your study, contact Dr. Norbert Hedderich, German Section Chair (, 401-874-4710).

Typically students take the following sequence of courses for the German major/minor:

  • GER 101: Beginning German I, and GER 102: Beginning German II
  • GER 103: Intermediate German I, and GER 104: Intermediate German II. The optional 1-credit conversation courses GER 105 and GER 106 are recommended at this level.
  • GER 205: Conversation and composition I, and GER 206: Conversation and composition II. The optional 1-credit conversation courses GER 201 and GER 202 are recommended at this level.
  • GER 305 or GER 306: Advanced Conversation/ Composition
  • GER 327: Introduction to German Studies and Literature, GER 328: Introduction to German Cultural History and Literature.
  • After completion of one course at the 300 level, students are eligible to take 400 level courses: GER 485, GER 486: Special Studies (topics change every semester), GER 408: The German Language Past and Present, GER 421: Business German.

At any point during their undergraduate studies, students can accelerate their path to proficiency in German (and to meeting the graduation requirements) by taking summer courses in the Deutsche Sommerschule am Atlantik.

Outcome Statements for German Majors

The German Section offers both traditional and interdisciplinary contexts for studying the language, literature and culture of Germany, Austria and Switzerland to enable graduating students to compete in the global economy of the 21st century with proficiency in all four modalities – speaking, listening, reading and writing. As study abroad and overseas professional experiences are key pathways to achieving such communicative and cultural competency in both an academic and professional setting, the German section emphasizes integrated linguistic and cultural instruction with significant task-and content-based components. While specific expectations on the evidence of student learning outcomes will vary from student to student and by co-disciplines, the German section seeks to regularly gather and report concrete evidence on what students can do based on their study, along with supplemental information relating to their performance after graduation. A. Language Proficiency

  1. Speaking
    1. Students are able to handle most uncomplicated communicative tasks and social situations.
    2. Students can initiate, sustain and close a general conversation.
    3. Students show evidence of connected discourse.
    4. Students can generally be understood even by persons not accustomed to dealing with speakers at this level.
    5. Students are able to deal appropriately with basic socio-linguistic aspects of German, such as the use of the formal vs. informal address.
    6. Students are able to support opinions and talk about hypothetical situations.
  2. Listening
    1. Students can sustain understanding over longer stretches of connected discourse on a number of topics.
    2. Students show an ability to understand the gist of complex speech on an unfamiliar topic, such as a television documentary or a lecture on a cultural topic.
  3. Reading
    1. Students are able to read and demonstrate good comprehension of texts in areas of the students’ interest or professional field.
    2. Students are able to comprehend the main idea and some detailed aspects of linguistically complex texts on unfamiliar topics.
  4. Writing
    1. Students can write about a variety of topics in detail, but with limited accuracy.
    2. Students are able to meet most practical writing needs, including simple letters, description and narration.
    3. Students produce paragraph-length discourse using appropriate sentence connectors.
B. Cultural Competence
  1. Students have a basic knowledge of Germany’s geography – including economic geography – within the context of its European neighbors.
  2. Students are aware of important historic periods, events and personages of German history.
  3. Students are able to identify major contributions of the German-speaking countries to the arts and culture as well as science and technology.
  4. Students can identify several important individuals who contributed to German culture (high and low), such as writers, painters, composers, filmmakers, etc.
  5. Students have a basic understanding of Germany’s economic, political and educational systems.
  6. Students will have the cross-cultural awareness enabling them to function in professional and social German settings.
  7. Students are aware of important aspects of contemporary German society and the political system.
C. Practical and Professional Skills
  1. Students will be able to distill, simplify and relay discipline-specific materials in written and spoken form in a clear and effective manner.
  2. Students will be able to demonstrate collaborative problem-solving abilities through task-based language activities.
  3. Students will be able to give comprehensible and reasonably accurate discipline-specific presentations.
  4. Students will have familiarity with professional etiquette and awareness of appropriate registers for professional interactions.

Curriculum Map for German Majors

German OHE Program Assessment Form (2009-2010)

German OHE Program Assessment Form (2007-2008)