German A Level

(equivalent to one A Level)

A Level | AQA

You will develop your ability to speak and understand German. Moreover, you will gain an insight into aspects of society, culture, traditions and history of German-speaking countries.

The course will develop your proficiency in the areas of speaking, listening, reading and writing, raise your awareness of grammatical structures and extend your command of vocabulary and idioms. We also enable you to broaden your awareness and understanding of contemporary German-speaking societies.

Topics include

  • Different types of families
  • Music
  • The digital world
  • Cultural life
  • Art & Architecture
  • EU & Immigration
  • The German reunification 

You will learn to discuss and write about such issues in German. We will study one film in detail (for both courses) and a German novel in the second year of the A level course. These activities will help to develop your sensitivity to the use of language as well as your analytical skills.

You will be taught in a group of about 15 students and classes are conducted almost exclusively in German. Once a week you will also have a one-to-one conversation class (individually or in small groups) with the German Assistant, a German native-speaker.

We also encourage you to visit a German-speaking country during the course so that you might improve your fluency as well as gaining first-hand experience of a different culture. A four day trip to Berlin is offered at the end of the first year. In year two there is an opportunity to participate in a week of work experience.

Course details

What are the entry requirements?

A minimum of five GCSE subjects at Grade 4 or above. Normally we would like you to have a Grade 6 or higher in German or an equivalent foreign language qualification. We are always willing to consider each case individually though.

How will I be assessed?

You will be assessed in all four skill areas: reading, listening, writing and speaking.

Assessment Topic
Paper 1 Listening, Reading & Writing
Paper 2 Writing
Paper 3 Speaking (This includes a Research Project.)

As part of the college procedure, you will be given a grade for your effort and attainment at fixed intervals during the academic year.

What extra work can I do?

‘Little, but often!” is the key to language learning. German is a skill-based subject and requires as much exposure and practise outside the German lessons as possible. This could be reading German newspapers, magazines and books or watching German films and television programmes.

The internet also offers a wide range of opportunities for practising your language proficiency as well as extending your knowledge of German culture and society. On ‘Godalming Online’ (German) you will find additional reading, listing and grammar resources to guide you along.

What skills will I learn?

German will provide the opportunity to develop your skills in communication and information technology, as well as improving your study and research skills.

You will engage in a wide variety of activities in lessons, ensuring a suitable balance between the different skills. Most tasks will be shorter, such as speaking exercises, reading, comprehension or listening activities.

What is the department like?

We are a well-resourced department within the Modern Languages Department with access to laptops to assist in language learning. The staff are linguists and German native speakers. They enjoy sharing their enthusiasm for language learning and their interest in German-speaking cultures and societies with you. There are typically around 30 students of German across the two-year groups. In recent years all have been successful in passing German A level exams, many achieving high grades.

The German Department offers a study trip to Berlin as part of the 2 year A Level course. The sights and places visited allow an insight into German history and culture, broaden the students’ horizon and are closely linked to the syllabus. Study days or film events are also organised depending on what is available.

Future Careers and Progression

What are the progression routes for this qualification?

A level German can be combined effectively with a range of other A level subjects, broadening your academic base and enhancing your career prospects. With the reunification of Germany and the opening up of Eastern Europe, German has become an increasingly important language in numerous fields of commerce, industry and research. 

Many of our students continue with the study of German or another foreign language at university. In addition to purely language-based degree courses, it is becoming increasingly popular to combine a language with another subject. Most universities now provide opportunities to combine German with a further subject such as Business Studies, Law, Computing or Engineering. Most of these courses incorporate one year abroad, either at a foreign university or on a work placement and several now offer dual British and German qualifications. Knowing a language puts you in a very strong position in the job market.

Careers where you could use your skills in German include interpreting, translating, bilingual secretary, international banking, travel industry, law, teaching, employment in the institutions of the European Union or commerce and industry. It could even be the stepping-stone to something completely different: some top comedians also studied German at university!

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