Bachelor of Arts in World Languages and Cultures, Concentration in German Studies
Format: Online or in person on the Statesboro Campus
Credit Hours: 124
German — the language of Goethe, Einstein, Mozart, Beethoven and Porsche. Spoken by about 130 million people worldwide as their mother language. The native tongue of the biggest economy in the European Union.
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Why Learn German at Georgia Southern?
- Career: Speaking German improves your choices and desirability on the job market. German companies abroad, foreign companies in Germany, and companies with close business ties to Germany all seek to recruit employees with German skills. Germany is a top 3 exporter in the world, and Germans travel abroad extensively, thus creating a substantial global travel and leisure market.
- Sciences: German is a highly important language for science because it gives you access to an enormous body of scientific material in the language. Germany is among the top nations in the research and development of high-tech products such as vehicles, medicaments, and electrical control equipment.
- Culture: A knowledge of German broadens your intellectual horizon. Germany is among the most influential countries in the world culturally, with a deep history forging world literature, art, music, philosophy, and bratwurst.
- Politics: Germany is a leader in global politics as a key ally to the United States, primary member of the United Nations, NATO, the European Union, the World Trade Organization, International Monetary Fund, and more.
- Heritage: Millions of Americans claim German ancestry. By learning German, many people forge a strong bond with their heritage.
What Can You Do With a Major in German?
German language and culture proficiency strengthens your marketability. Getting a solid foundation in German is much easier to accomplish during college than on the job, and employers value workers with existing language skills, especially when they do not have to allow for time and expense for training.
German speakers are in high demand. If you have achieved fluency or professional working proficiency in German, you will have a leg up in the job market for many different positions such as:
- Broadcast media manager
- Contract or corporate consultant
- Copy Editor
- Crypto Language Analyst
- Development program officer
- FBI/NSA/CIA agent
- Foreign service officer
- Government relations specialist
- Human intelligence collector
- Human rights representative
- Immigration and customs work
- Intelligence analyst or officer
- International banking
- International marketing
- International relations manager
- Lawyer or legal assistant
- Linguist/Language analyst
- Military translator or interpreter
- Museum management
- National Security Analyst
- Political risk analyst
- Public relations
- Social media manager
- Travel and tourism careers
- Web development
Degree: B.S. in International Trade, Minor in German; Currently an M.S. in Business Analytics Candidate at UT – Dallas
Career: Data & Reporting Analyst at Briggs Equipment
After graduating in May of 2017, I began an internship at Briggs Equipment’s Atlanta office for the summer and was relocated to our corporate office in Dallas, Texas, shortly thereafter. Although I am an IT (Information Technology, not International Trade) professional, I must give some credit to my knowledge of the German language and the Foreign Language Department’s German Language faculty for the successes I have had as an employee at Briggs. Interestingly, I have found that the approaches taught by my German professors can be applied to working with programming/query languages I use for retrieving and analyzing data. Ultimately, knowing the syntax and being a continuous learner are key. I am also fortunate to travel and work with our domestic and international locations. These opportunities frequently allow me the chance to step out of my comfort zone, which is something that I realized through learning a foreign language is a great opportunity for personal and professional growth.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics indicates job growth for interpreters and translators will be much faster than average through 2029. – bls.gov
Germany is the biggest economy within the European Union and the fourth largest worldwide. – fluentu.com
Nine out of ten U.S. employers report a reliance on U.S.-based employees with language skills other than English. – businesswire.com
German Language Curriculum
The mission of the faculty is to teach German language and culture as expressed in the heritage of Germany, Austria, and Switzerland. Though German might have a reputation as a difficult language to acquire, it is no more demanding to learn than other languages.
German professors strive to constantly improve their teaching, and keep courses challenging and stimulating. As much as possible, all classes are taught in German, beginning with the first course. Numerous small classes also allow for extensive student participation and enable the continuous reinforcement of the five language competencies of listening, speaking, reading, writing, and culture.
Foundation German Courses
- Elementary German I
An introduction to the German language and the culture of the German-speaking world. Beginning of a survey of basic German grammar and the development of the four language skills of listening, speaking, reading, and writing German. Some aspects of everyday life in the German-speaking world will also be introduced.
- Elementary German II
The second part of an introduction to the German language and the culture of the German-speaking world. Completion of a survey of basic German grammar and further development of the four language skills of listening, speaking, reading, and writing German. Some aspects of everyday life in the German-speaking world will also be introduced.
- Intermediate German I
Building upon communication skills (understanding, speaking, reading, and writing German), and cultural understanding, developed at the elementary level.
- Intermediate German II
Continued focus on communication skills and cultural understanding.
Additional German Courses
- German Literature in Translation
A study of certain major German authors and some of their best works read in translation. Also includes a study of the authors of these works and the literary periods in which they were written.
- Conversation & Phonetics
Vocabulary building and extensive practice of conversational skills in German through conversational settings. Contrastive analysis of the German and English sound systems and extensive oral practice to refine pronunciation.
- German Grammar Review
Intensive review with extensive practice of German grammar, including advanced aspects.
- Writing in German
Grammar review, basic instruction in stylistics, and extensive practice in writing, both short compositions and longer items.
- Listening Skills in German
Presentation and discussion of select songs, radio plays, films, and similar texts and formats. Can be repeated for credit with different content.
- German Language & Society
Presentation and discussion of various aspects of the German-speaking countries, including history, politics, business, and the arts.
- Readings in German Literature
Presentation and discussion of German texts from all periods.
- German Culture & Civilization
Presentation and discussion of topics, issues, and events relevant to understanding the German-speaking countries.
- Internship in German
Internship in one or more German-speaking countries.
Already know some German? View the Language Course Placement Guide.
- Bachelor of Arts in World Languages and Cultures, Concentration in German Studies – 24 credit hours
- Minor in German – 15 credit hours
- Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies, Concentration in German – 15 credit hours
- Bachelor of Science in International Trade, German as Language Component – 18 credit hours
- Bachelor of Arts in International Studies, German Minor – 15 credit hours
- German Proficiency Area of Distinction for the European Union Studies Certificate – 6 credit hours
- The certificate in European Union Studies is operated under the supervision of the European Council of the University System of Georgia. The program is open to all institutions and students of the University System as well as to professionals with an undergraduate degree.
Minor in German
Having a minor in German will allow you to communicate intra-, inter- and trans-culturally. You’ll be able to adapt to different environments, be more sensitive to diversity and think more critically.
Learn German in a Study Abroad Experience
Traveling abroad to Germany will enhance your language skills and broaden your cultural horizon.
Germany is a Western European country with a landscape of forests, rivers, mountain ranges and North Sea beaches. It has over 2 millennia of history. Berlin, its capital, is home to art and nightlife scenes, the Brandenburg Gate and many sites relating to WWII. Munich is known for its Oktoberfest and beer halls, including the 16th-century Hofbräuhaus. Frankfurt, with its skyscrapers, houses the European Central Bank.
Bamberg is located in northern Bavaria, Germany, where the Regnitz and Main rivers meet. Its old town preserves structures from the 11th to 19th centuries including the muraled Altes Rathaus (town hall). The Romanesque Bamberg Cathedral, begun in the 11th century, features 4 towers and numerous stone carvings.
The Sprachinstitut TREFFPUNKT, Georgia Southern’s partner language school, is a renowned language institute located in the center of Bamberg. Qualified instructors and an open and friendly atmosphere ensure swift progress in your command of the German language.
TREFFPUNKT offers a learning experience that goes beyond the classroom. Every day you will be offered the opportunity to practice the knowledge gained in the classroom through personal encounters with residents of Bamberg and a variety of extracurricular activities.
Possible Study Abroad Excursions
- Guided tours of Bamberg
- Showings of recent German films
- Lectures on political, historic and cultural affairs
- Meetings in pubs
- Visits to museums and companies
- Outdoor activities
- Bamberg Garden
Study Abroad Curriculum
- Six credit hours of lower or upper division courses
- A series of assignments, both oral and in writing
- As part of your immersion experience, each morning, Monday-Friday, in small groups, you will spend four hours practicing your language skills with native speakers who are trained in teaching their language to foreigners.
Other Study Abroad Experiences
A stay abroad in any German-speaking country to enhance the student’s language skills and to broaden his/her cultural horizon is strongly recommended. There are many different programs (the Center for International Studies has comprehensive information). Consult the fliers posted on the Bulletin Board outside the Main Office and/or members of the section; all faculty will gladly help you make an informed choice, get set up, etc. Most programs are or can be approved to receive credit.
- View all study abroad options >
- The University System of Georgia (European Council) offers a program in Berlin.
German Language Clubs and Events
The German Club offers opportunities to socialize and practice speaking German outside the classroom. Members participate in a wide range of events such as Stammtisch/Kaffeeklatsch, games, karaoke, kegeln (bowling), poetry readings, watching movies and/or TV shows, and enjoying German food. A schedule of planned events will be posted each semester.
For more information (especially if you wish to become involved!), contact Dr. Andrea Eder, the German Club advisor.
- Active engagement in German Club is one of the criteria for the Foreign Language Award in German.
Stammtisch or Kaffeeklatsch
Both events are regular get-togethers, open to students and faculty, to facilitate speaking German. Anyone who would like to practice their German is invited. During the semester, it is usually held bi-weekly in the early evening at a location close to campus. Contact us for details.
German Club messages, news from Germany etc. are on display on the Bulletin Board located near the departmental library (1303 Forest Drive).
Delta Phi Alpha
- have completed one or at least are currently enrolled in an upper-division German class (3000 level or above);
- have had good grades in German (a GPA of 3.0 in German is recommended) or demonstrate significant ability in German;
- show a continuing interest in the German language and culture;
- are generally active and willing to participate in future Delta Phi Alpha and German Club activities (which is open to all students interested in German).
A small one-time fee (paid to the national office) is good for lifetime membership. New members are inducted each Spring Semester and receive a certificate suitable for framing. To find out more about the eligibility requirements, how to become a member, or to sign up see the Delta Phi Alpha advisor, Dr. Catherine Johnson (2088 Interdisciplinary Academic Building), by the end of February if possible (this will allow for enough time to submit membership requests to the national office and receive the certificates back before the initiation ceremony).
Foreign Language Award in German
Every academic year, a deserving student may receive the annual Foreign Language Award in German. The criteria are:
- An A (90 percent or better) average in German courses.
- Engagement in German Club.
- Membership in the German Honors Society.
- A demonstrated willingness to speak German even outside the classroom.
Other aspects worth knowing include:
- During most semesters, several students from German-speaking countries are on campus. Often, they attend our German Club events or the campus-wide international lunch hour, and participate in other activities. We try to keep in contact with them.
- The German faculty hold regular informal meetings; students are invited to make suggestions or requests for consideration to any member at any time.
German Language Faculty
The German section is comprised of two full-time professors and a third member, Dr. Jolyon Hughes, who currently serves as Assistant Dean in the College of Arts and Humanities. Beyond their duties in the classroom and within the section, all faculty are active and involved in a wide and changing variety of university, college, and department-level committees as well as many other professional scholarship and service activities. Faculty offices are located in the Interdisciplinary Academic Building.
Have Any Questions? Please Contact Us!
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Last updated: 3/30/2022