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The German major aims to prepare students not only for further study but also for a professional life which is enhanced through a knowledge of German language, history, and culture.
The major in German Studies is designed to give the student an active command of the German language, an insight into German literature and culture, and provide the linguistic foundation for a career that is augmented by proficiency in German, and prepare students for graduate study in the field. Students majoring in German Studies are required to complete a total of 30 credits or ten courses within the following curriculum:
- Two (GERM2201 and 2202) Composition and Conversation
- Two (GERM2210 and 2211) History of German Literature
- Six semester courses in German literature or culture
Notes for Majors with Transfer Credits
Of the 30 credits or ten semester courses, a minimum of 12 credits or four courses beyond Composition and Conversation (i.e., at least four upper-level literature or culture courses) must be taken within the German Studies Department at Boston College. Courses taken abroad in order to be counted toward the German Studies major must be conducted in German.
A prospective German major should select an initial language course, e.g., GERM1001, GERM1050, or GERM2201, according to his/her high school language preparation. The student can supplement this choice with an elective. He/she can select a course in German literature, culture, philosophy, history, art history, music, or a German course offered in English translation. In all, ten one-semester courses in German numbered 1000 and above—or 30 credits at that level—are required to complete the major.
Prior to study abroad, German majors must complete the following prerequisites: minimum language preparation of two semesters of Intermediate German (GERM1050–1051) or the equivalent. Non-majors may study abroad without intermediate level proficiency in German; since the requirements for each program differ, students should consult the Office of International Programs to learn more. Since studying German is fully consistent with majoring (or minoring) in German, nearly all courses taken abroad, provided they are conducted in German, will be accorded major (or minor) credit. However, as noted in all departmental publications, of the ten semester courses or 30 credits which constitute the major, a minimum of four courses or 12 credits beyond Composition and Conversation (i.e., at least four upper-level literature or culture courses) must be taken within the German Studies Department at Boston College.
The department prefers for students to study abroad during their junior year (either full year or semester) rather than senior year. Programs in Eichstätt, Berlin, Heidelberg, and Vienna are all recommended. Students should consult either Professor Rachel Freudenburg or Professor Michael Resler or Professor Daniel Bowles when planning to study abroad in Germany.