German fachwerkhaus buildings

A Post Level 4 or equivalent module in German language and culture


Module details

  • Offered to 2nd, 3rd & 4th Years
  • Monday or Thursday 16.00-18.00 (depending on year of study)
  • Planned delivery: On campus (South Kensington)
  • 2 term module worth 7.5 ECTS
  • Available to eligible students as part of I-Explore
  • Extra Credit or Degree Credit where your department allows
Degree credit module options by departmentHow to enrol

A communicative module for students in their second year of German post A-Level or in their third-year post A/S Level or comparable standard of competency, on the language and culture of the German-speaking countries. 

This module aims to :-

  • To study scientific and technical texts
  • To study various structural and lexical registers in the language, in particular with respect to scientific and technical texts
  • To give and listen to talks on a variety of scientific and technical topics
  • To familiarise you with current changes in the German language
  • To read a variety of texts, including a literary one, with relative ease

By the end of the module, students should have reached approximately the B2/C1 standard of the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR)

To be eligible for this module you need to have done one of the following: -

  • Successfully completed German Level 4
  • Already achieved B2 or equivalent on the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR)

This module is not intended for native or near-native speakers.

Please note: This module is currently undergoing minor modifications and is therefore subject to change. 

Information blocks

Learning outcomes

Reichstag Building Berlin This module will equip you with the ability to:

  • Use sophisticated linguistic structures and vocabulary appropriate for scientific/technical writing
  • Talk about scientific and technical issues relating to your own subject area, ask and answer questions on the topic
  • Write essays and summaries in German on a variety of topics, using sophisticated linguistic structures and vocabulary
  • Summarise and discuss scientific/technical articles
  • Analyse and discuss topics arising from a variety of texts and compare various linguistic forms

Indicative core content

Black Forrest Language work will comprise essay writing on general and literary topics as well as reading and analysing scientific texts; relevant aspects of German grammar will also be discussed.

One work of modern German literature will be studied. In addition, in the second term, you will be looking at your own field of study and discussing your area of work in German. Appropriate video and audio material will be used.


  • Revision of grammatical structures as appropriate (e.g. passive)
  • Participles
  • Relative clauses
  • Subordinate clauses and prepositional phrases
  • Verb-noun phrases
  • Study of scientific/technical texts
  • Summarizing of texts
  • The language of mathematics
  • The language of science and technology
  • Stylistic variations


  • Discussion of topics arising from the texts studied (Die Physiker by Friedrich Dürrenmatt)
  • Discussion of the role of scientists in society
  • Discussion of current scientific problems
  • Ethical questions concerning scientific/technical development
  • Discussion of current issues based on articles in German language publications

Learning and teaching approach

Weekly in-class activities cover reading, writing, listening and speaking. Learning will involve pair work, group work, and individual tasks and will include critical evaluation of texts, audio and video material. A range of weekly homework tasks give you the opportunity to revise and consolidate knowledge and skills.

All pieces of coursework are marked and returned within two weeks. Detailed feedback is provided for each individual section of the coursework, giving the correct answer along with suggestions for improvement.  Generic feedback on each individual piece of coursework is also provided in class.


  • Coursework: 8-10 minute video including personal information and guided subject-specific information (15%)
  • Examination: 1-hour in-class test including a short 300-320 word essay on literature (10%)
  • Coursework: 350-400 word group poster and brief presentation around 15 mintues (20%)
  • Examination: 1-hour listening (audio approx. 6-8 minutes)/reading comprehension - approx. 200 words plus questions (20%)
  • Practical: 20-25 minute Oral Exam - including ad-hoc presentation and discussion of topic, discussion of literature and general conversation (35%)

Assessment information for students on a course with a year abroad

Key information

  • 7.5 ECTS points awarded on successful completion of the module.
  • Available to take for credit towards your degree where your department allows. Also available for extra-credit.
  • You must be prepared to attend all classes and and undertake approximately 3 hours of private study each week in addition to the assessment.

Module materials

Audio material relating to scientific issues; articles from contemporary German language press and scientific journals (e.g. Der Spiegel, FAZ, Bild der Wissenschaft) and one German literary text (see below) supplemented by video material where possible.

Core text: Bertolt Brecht Leben des Galilei (edition suhrkamp, 1991) ASIN: B00E322SMY

Further information for Year Abroad/Year in Europe Students
Further information for BSc Hons and MSc Language for Science Degrees

"Overall the module has been constructed very well. I have had an opportunity to learn very quickly."