German Course Offerings Fall 2019 and Spring 2020

Fall 2019

GERM 302 – Modern Germany through Film, Dr. Gabriele Dillmann, Denison University

Aug 29 – Dec 19, 2019

  • Days and Time: Tu/Th, 10:00 am – 11:20 am 
  • Pre-req.: Equivalence to four semesters of German or by instructor’s approval. 
  • Credits: 4hrs.


In this course we will explore modern Germany through film since the 1970’s. We will look at Germany as a culture increasingly shaped by multiculturalism starting with the plight of the “guest workers” (Fassbinder’s Ali: Angst essen Seele auf/Fear Eats the Soul) and ending with the disturbing reality of far-right attacks against ethnic minorities (Fatih Akin’s Aus dem Nichts/Into the Fade). We will also explore left-wing terrorism in the 70’s (Die verlorene Ehre der Katarina Blum/The Lost Honor of Katarina Blum) and contrast that with the autonomous scene in the 80’s and the rise of Neonazism (Was tun, wenn’s brennt?/What to do in case of fire? and Die Welle/The Wave. The fall of the wall, the German Wende, will lead us to an exploration of Stasi practices in the former East Germany (Das Leben der Anderen/The Lives of Others) and a discussion of “Ostalgia” (nostalgia for East Germany) via the film Goodbye, Lenin!.

Students will be asked to rent or purchase some of the films that we view in the course on for a small fee as part of the course materials. Some of the films are also available for free on Kanopy with new films constantly being added. There will be no additional costs for textbooks or other materials.

While these films are available with English subtitles, all discussions and written responses will be in German with a continued focus on the refinement of German language skills. A strong emphasis will be on developing students’ speaking proficiency in German.

All students will meet via the video-conferencing platform Zoom and the course will include students of German across our GLCA partner institutions.

Spring 2020 

SLP German 364: German Language: Yesterday and Today, Dr. Lee Forester, Hope College

Jan 6 – May 1, 2020 


This course is split into two main parts. First it serves as an introduction to the sounds of German. Students will learn basic phonetic and phonological theory as applied to German pronunciation. A contrastive analysis of German and English will help students understand the main challenges for English speakers. We will work systematically on improving pronunciation and accent.

The second half of the course is an introduction to the history and development of the German language from runes (tribal times) to the present. Topics covered include the relationship of German to English and other European languages, changes in the German language, modern German dialects and a quick introduction to two other Germanic languages: Dutch and Swedish.

Students will come away from the course with a deeper understanding of the sound system of German, more accurate pronunciation, and an appreciation for dialect nuance and the rich history of the German language.

Suggested prerequisite: German 202 (4th semester) or equivalent.

SLP German 302: German for Business Culture, Dr. Gabriele Dillmann, Denison University

Video-Compilation from German Business Course Spring 2018 

Jan 20 – May 12, 2020

  • T/Th 10:00 am – 11:20 am
  • Pre-req.: Equivalence to four semesters of German or by instructor’s approval.
  • Credits: 4hrs.
  • Academic Calendar for Denison
  • Spring Break 16 – 20 March (for all SLP German students!)

Course Description and Objectives

German is a key language in the European Union and the new economies of Central and Eastern Europe. German is spoken by more than 120 million people in Austria, Germany, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Switzerland and in parts of Belgium, Northern Italy and Eastern France. German-based companies and businesses can be found across the globe, whereas many international companies call Germany their home. In this global market, to be able to speak German is essential for those who wish to build a career in a German-speaking country or with a German-based company in their home country. It is increasingly important for today’s students to understand and appreciate the intrinsic connection between language study, cultural understanding, global citizenship, and good business practices in a globalized economy. 

This course introduces students to the language and culture of business German. Topics we will cover include Germany’s federal states, Germany in the EU, multicultural Germany, Germany’s social system, industry and money economy, high tech, environment, taxes, and consumer power. Students will build their vocabulary with a special focus on terms and phrases useful in the workplace, in talking about statistics , in discussing current affairs and in presenting the “pros and cons” of an issue. Students will also hone their writing and speaking skills in the process of learning practical skills such as writing job applications and business correspondence, practice phone and email etiquette, and learn to read and interpret bureaucratic German. 

Furthermore, in today’s global business market it is essential for successful employees to have the ability to work virtually as well as collaborate effectively in team-based projects. Due to the virtually interactive nature of this course, students will learn and practice enhanced digital communication and collaboration skills for the professional local and global business environment. 

A unique feature of this course is that students will have the opportunity to connect with German business leaders in Germany and German-based companies in the US.  Students will engage with German speakers from different business backgrounds in real-life scenarios via video-conferencing during several of the class sessions. 

For registration information and enrollment form, please see click here.

For student Q&A, please click here