Learning Goals for the German Major

The German Department provides its students with a thorough training in German language and culture, enabling them to interact freely and easily with German native speakers in all areas of linguistic competency. Students will acquire a fundamental understanding of the major cultural, social, and historical forces that have shaped German society, including significant developments in German literature, as well as the basic skills required for cultural and intercultural analysis.

Students in the German Department will:

  • Be able to communicate effectively in German both orally and in writing.
  • Demonstrate understanding of spoken German.
  • Use close reading and critical thinking skills to analyze German texts and materials.
  • Write documents of sufficient consistent and reasonable clarity to be readily intelligible to an educated outside reader.
  • Successfully complete courses within the regular academic curriculum at institutions of higher learning in Germany
  • Develop cross- and inter-cultural sensitivity that will enable them to function in a German-speaking cultural environment
  • Understand major historical and social developments that have shaped Germany, Austria and Switzerland and their place in today's globalized context

All courses in the department, be they entry-level or advanced, subscribe to an integrated model in which students develop all of these skills progressively, and our German-only approach allows students to achieve communicative proficiency as early as in their first year.


Department of German

Freeman International Center
203 Freeman Way
Middlebury College
Middlebury, VT 05753