Language Courses

German Language and Reading Courses

For further information on the department's German language program, please see the section Language Study. If you have additional questions, please contact the Director of the Language Program, Maeve Hooper.

 

Brigitte Riesebrodt, “Schriftbild, Circle” (2002). Courtesy of the artist.
Brigitte Riesebrodt, “Schriftbild, Circle” (2002). Courtesy of the artist.

German Language: First-Year Sequence

Elementary German for Beginners I, II, III
GRMN 10100-10200-10300

PQ for GRMN 10200: placement or consent of language coordinator. PQ for 10300: 10200 or 10201 or placement or consent of language coordinator. No auditors permitted. Must be taken for quality grades.
The goal of this sequence is to develop proficiency in reading, writing, listening, and speaking for use in everyday communication. Knowledge and awareness of the different cultures of the German speaking countries is also a goal. Please note that if you have any prior knowledge of German, you cannot enroll in GRMN 10100. You are encouraged to enroll in GRMN 10201 instead, and/or to take the language placement exam to determine the most appropriate course.
Autumn, Winter, Spring

Elementary German
GRMN 10201

PQ: Placement or consent of language coordinator. No auditors permitted. Must be taken for a quality grade. 
This is an accelerated version of the GRMN 10100-10200 sequence for students with limited prior knowledge of the language. 
Autumn, Winter

Intensive German
GRMN 12001-12002-12003

This intensive, three-quarter sequence brings students to high-intermediate levels in all four skills: reading, writing, speaking, and listening so that students can enter third-year level courses in German. Learners who are starting German late in their College careers or who wish to move forward swiftly will gain skills corresponding to two full years of study. NOTE: Each course is 200 units and corresponds in workload to taking two courses.
Autumn, Winter, Spring

Intensive Introductory German
GRMN 10003 and 10006
Introductory German is a 6-week course designed for students wishing to develop intermediate proficiency in reading, writing, listening and speaking for use in everyday communication. Students will work with authentic materials as well as gain familiarity with the different cultures of the German-speaking countries. The course meets Monday through Friday for three hours per day, with additional 90-minute practice sessions twice per week in the afternoon. The GRMN 10003-10006 sequence is the equivalent of the 10100-10200-10300 sequence offered during the regular academic year at the University of Chicago.
For more information and to register, please visit the Summer Language Institute website.
Summer

German Language: Second Year Sequence

Deutsche Märchen: German through Fairy Tales
GRMN 20100

PQ: GRMN 10300 or placement. No auditors permitted. Must be taken for a quality grade. 
This course is a comprehensive look at German fairy tales, including structure and role in German nineteenth-century literature, adaptation as children's books in German and English, and film interpretations. This course also includes a review and expansion of German grammar.
Autumn, Winter, Spring

(replacing all sections of GRMN 20200: Deutsch-Amerikanische Themen)
Grünes Deutschland
GRMN 20201

Over the past three decades Germany has become a global leader in environmentalism and sustainability practices. This course develops students’ proficiency in all four skills (speaking, listening, reading, writing) and reviews basic grammar while exploring various aspects of “Green Germany,” from recycling and transportation to renewable energies (die Energiewende) to the history of the green movement. We investigate environmental practices and attitudes in German-speaking countries while comparing them with those in the US and other countries. In doing so, we consider whether environmental practices in German-speaking countries represent positive and feasible models for other countries. Students work with authentic and current materials (articles, websites, videos) and pursue a variety of independent projects (research, creative), including a final project on how to make the university campus more sustainable.  Prerequisite(s): GRMN 20100 or placement examDeutsch-Amerikanische Themen
GRMN 20200
PQ: GRMN 20100 or placement. No auditors permitted. Must be taken for a quality grade. 
Autumn, Winter, Spring

Kurzprosa aus dem 20. Jahrhundert/Film im 20. Jahrhundert
GRMN 20300

PQ: GRMN 20200 or placement. No auditors permitted. Must be taken for a quality grade. 
This course is a study of descriptive and narrative prose through short fiction and other texts, as well as media from the twentieth century.We focus on grammatical issues designed to push toward more cohesive and idiomatic use of languages. 
Autumn, Winter, Spring

German Language: Third Year Sequence

These courses must not be taken in sequence, three are required for the major.
These courses serve as preparation for seminar-style classes. Students work with a variety of texts and learn to present and participate in instructor- and student-led discussions of relevant issues and topics. Students also write short essays and longer research papers. Work in grammar, structure, and vocabulary moves students toward more idiomatic use of German. 

Fokus: Erzählen
GRMN 21103

PQ: GRMN 20300 or placement. No auditors permitted. 
This course develops advanced German skills through the study of narratives of various authors from different periods. 
Autumn

Arbeitskulturen: Trends in the German-Speaking Working World
GRMN 21803

PQ: GRMN 20300 or placement. No auditors permitted

This advanced language course will cover the economic and political bases of the European Union, an overview of the German-speaking world's largest industries, the contemporary emphasis on sustainable business practices, as well as the on-going process of Brexit. In addition to examining prominent leaders such as Angela Merkel and Ursula von der Leyen, we will review the prominent controversies such as genetically modified food and deforestation. Brexit brings key questions, such as the value of the common currency, immigration mobility within the Bloc and Germany's role as economic and political leader of the group into focus. We will practice skills such as effective digital correspondence, presenting one’s professional biography and opinion as well as interviewing strategies. Students may tailor major assignments to their specific field or industry of interest with the aim of securing a summer internship or developing an in-situ research project. Students will also choose the assigned reading or viewing for the final week of class in consultation with fellow students. All reading and discussion in German.
Autumn

Fokus: Film
GRMN 21503

PQ: GRMN 20300 or placement. No auditors permitted. 
This course develops advanced German skill through the study of films of various authors/directors from different eras.
Winter

Fokus: Drama
GRMN 21603

PQ: GRMN 20300 or placement. No auditors permitted.
This course develops advanced German skill through the study of dramas of various authors/directors from different eras.
Winter

Fokus: Gedichte
GRMN 21303 

PQ: GRMN 20300 or placement. No auditors permitted.
This course develops advanced German skills through the study of poetry of various authors from different periods.
Spring

Fokus: Philosophie
GRMN 21403
This course develops advanced German skills through the study of philosophical texts of various authors from different periods.
Spring

Fokus: Medien
GRMN 21703

PQ: GRMN 20300 or placement. No auditors permitted.
This course develops advanced German skills through the study of media from different periods.
Spring

German Language: Reading Courses

Reading German for Undergraduate Students.
GRMN 13100

Prior knowledge of German not required. No auditors permitted. This course does not prepare students for the competency exam. Must be taken for a quality grade. 
This course prepares students to read a variety of German texts. By the end of the quarter, students should have a fundamental knowledge of German grammar and a basic vocabulary. While the course does not teach conversational German, the basic elements of pronunciation are taught so that students can understand a limited amount of spoken German. 
Spring

Reading German for Research Purposes Prerequisite Course
GRMN 13333

This course is designed for students without prior experience or training in German who wish to take GRMN 33333, Reading German for Research Purposes. The prerequisite for GRMN 33333 is either one year of German language instruction (GRMN 10100-10200-10300) or successful completion of GRMN 13333. In this course, students learn the basics of German grammar and syntax, some basic German vocabulary, and they also begin to learn some of the reading strategies they will need to be successful in GRMN 33333.
Spring

Reading German For Research Purposes
GRMN 33333

Reading German for Research Purposes prepares students to read and do research using scholarly texts in German. Students will build on their fundamental knowledge of German grammar and the most common vocabulary terms used in scholarly writing, while developing reading comprehension skills and working intensively with academic texts in their areas of research specialty. Students who perform well in GRMN 33333/23333 will be able to comprehend difficult scholarly texts and begin using them in their own research. The course also includes practice of skills necessary to pass the Academic Reading Comprehension Assessment (ARCA) in German, administered by the Office for Language Assessment (OLA).

Note: This course may fulfill the graduate language requirement in some departments. Also offered through the Summer Language Institute.

PQ for 33333: While there is currently no strict prerequisite for GRMN 33333, one year of introductory German or the equivalent is highly recommended.

PQ for 23333: One year of introductory German or the equivalent.


Check the time schedules for quarterly offerings. Also offered through the Summer Language Institute

Reading German For Research Purposes
GRMN 33333
This course prepares students to read and do research in German. Students will gain a fundamental knowledge of German grammar and a basic vocabulary while developing reading comprehension skills and working intensively with scholarly texts in their areas of academic speciality. This course is offered twice each summer. Students should only enroll in one section. NOTE: This course may fulfill the graduate language requirement in some departments. If you are interested in this course specifically to prepare for a German exam at a school other than the University of Chicago, please contact summerlanguages@uchicago.edu to inquire whether this course will meet your needs. GRMN 33300 is not open to students in the Summer Programs for High School Students.
For more information and to register, please visit the Summer Language Institute website.
Summer