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Undergraduate Catalog 2015-2016

Germanic Studies (GERM)

College of Arts and Humanities
3215 Jiménez Hall, 301-405-4025
Professors: P. Beicken (Distinguished Scholar Teacher), E. Frederiksen (Distinguished Scholar Teacher), A. Moyer, R. Oster
Associate Professors: H. Baer, G. Strauch
Assistant Professors: J. Koser
Professors Emeriti: O. Best, G. Jones, G. Pfister, R. Walker

The Major

The 36-credit BA in Germanic Studies is centered on the study of the German language and the literatures and cultures of Germanic peoples. Students who complete the requirements for the major can expect to be able to speak, read, write, and understand German at a level that would allow them to communicate with native speakers. Additionally, students will be able to recognize and interpret the diverse cultural perspectives and products of the German-speaking world, and be culturally sensitive members of society.

Placement in Courses


Requirements for the Major

Prerequisite: 8 credits: GERM103 and GERM203 or equivalent

Course Requirements: 36 credits

A. Core Language Sequence: 9 credits


German Grammar Review (prereq GERM203 or Foreign Language Placement Testing)


Conversation/Composition I: Germany and its People (prereq GERM204)


Conversation/Composition II: Current Topics in German Society (prereq GERM301)

B. Area Requirements: 27 credits
A minimum of 2 upper level courses in each of three areas: language, literature, and culture.

Language Courses: 6 credits upper level minimum


Advanced Conversation: Germany within Europe (prereq GERM302)


Advanced Composition: German Culture & Social Issues (prereq GERM302)


Practicum in Translation I (prereq GERM204)


Practicum in Translation II (prereq GERM315)


Selected Topics in Germanic Language Studies (prereq GERM203)


Selected Topics in German Language Study (prereq GERM302)


Variation in Contemporary German Language (prereq GERM302 or by permission)


Selected Topics in Germanic Philology

Literature Courses: 6 credits upper level minimum


Survey of German Studies (prereq GERM301)


Highlights of German Literature I (prereq GERM301)


Highlights of German Literature II (prereq GERM301)


Literature of the Middle Ages (prereq: one course from the GERM320 series)


From the Reformation through the Baroque (prereq: one course from the GERM320 series)


Classicism (prereq: one course from the GERM320 series)


Romanticism and Biedermeier (prereq: one course from the GERM320 series)


From Enlightenment to Storm and Stress (prereq: one course from the GERM320 series)


Naturalism and its Countercurrents (prereq: one course from the GERM320 series)


Expressionism to 1945 (prereq: one course from the GERM320 series)


From 1945 to the Present (prereq: one course from the GERM320 series)


The Usual Suspects: Criminals in German Literature and Film (prereq: one course from the GERM320 series)


Selected Topics in German Literature (prereq: one course from the GERM320 series)

Culture Courses: 6 credits upper level minimum
Courses marked with * are taught in English; no prerequisite unless specified.


German-American Cultural Contrasts


Women in German Literature & Society


Germanic Mythology


Viking Culture and Civilization


German Film and Literature


Ancient Celtic Culture and Civilization


Selected Topics in the Cultures of the Germanic Speaking Countries


Special Topics in Germanic Studies


Scandinavian Civilization


German Civilization I


German Civilization II


Topics in Germanic Culture


Selected Topics in Germanic Studies (dept permission)


Selected Topics in Germanic Studies (dept permission)


The Icelandic Family Saga


Old Norse


Selected Topics in Area Studies (prereq GERM302)

Students must earn a grade of "C-" or higher in each course applied toward a major or minor in the School of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures. Additionally, an overall GPA of 2.0 in a major or minor is required for graduation.

Language of Instruction
No more than 9 credits of the 36 total required may be satisfied by courses taught in English. With the approval of the Germanic Studies advisor, up to 6 credits of these courses may be taken outside the department.

Study Abroad
For information on study abroad programs see the program advisor and/or the Education Abroad website www.international.umd.edu/studyabroad .

Internships (GERM386) are also encouraged (no more than 3 credits may be applied to the major). GERM386 may not replace the required 6 credits of upper-level courses in any of the three categories. For more information see www.sllc.umd.edu/undergrad/internships.php .

Requirements for the Minor

Germanic Studies

School of Languages, Literatures and Cultures (SLLC)


This minor will provide students with an in-depth understanding of German Language and Literature as a source of Culture. Building on these essentials, students can concentrate on Language, Literature or Culture, or a combination of these fields. This will be accomplished by taking 5 courses beyond GERM 203 or its equivalent. Students will determine, in close consultation with the German undergraduate advisor, how to constitute their own concentration.

Minor Requirements:

15 credits - 5 courses beyond GERM203 or its equivalent     

  • Courses taught in German beyond 203 or its equivalent
  • 3 of these 5 courses (9 hours) must be upper division level: one language, one literature, and one culture
  • Prerequisites: GERM103 and 203 are required, or their equivalents as determined through departmental advising
  • All courses must be passed with a grade of "C-" or higher.
  • An overall GPA of 2.0 in the minor is required for graduation.

To make an appointment to explore or declare a minor, go to

Undergraduate Research Experiences

The School of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures has implemented an Annual SLLC Undergraduate Research Forum which allows its outstanding Juniors and/or Seniors to display their research projects. The Forum takes place in late April in the Language House (St. Mary's).


Annual Language Career and Internship Fair

Each fall semester, SLLC organizes a Language Career and Internship Fair in conjunction with the UMD Career Center. For more information see the SLLC website www.sllc.umd.edu/ .

Co-op Programs

Language Partner Program (LPP)

The Language Partner Program is a joint venture between the School of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures, the Office of International Services, and Education Abroad. International students and SLLC majors are assigned in pairs to meet weekly on a one-on-one basis outside the classroom to work in an informal yet structured way on the listening, speaking, and cultural acquisition skills of SLLC majors. SLLC students in good academic standing (3.0 GPA) and at the intermediate to advanced level sign up for a 1cr SLLC309 - Language Partner Program.

Student Societies and Professional Organizations

Individual SLLC departments hold annual induction ceremonies for students who are eligible for honor society membership. 

Scholarships and Financial Assistance

The Office of Student Financial Aid (OSFA) administers all types of federal, state, and institutional financial assistance programs, and, in cooperation with other university offices, participates in the awarding of scholarships to deserving students. For information, visit:  www.financialaid.umd.edu .

Awards and Recognition

The UG Committee organizes an annual awards ceremony to celebrate SLLC students who have earned SLLC, campus and/or national scholarships, and academic achievement awards. The awards ceremony takes place in conjunction with the annual SLLC UG Research Forum.

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