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German Studies

Degree Options: Major. Minor
Locations: Rose Hill, Lincoln Center
Visit the Modern Languages and Literatures Department

It’s the language of European politics, international business, scientific literature, and cutting-edge art. Learn to speak German at Fordham.

Stock photo of Cologne - LGSelf-directed? Ambitious? A lover of German books, films, and culture? If you want to blaze your own path to fluency in German language and culture, the German area studies major at Fordham might be right for you.

It’s a highly individualized, interdisciplinary course of study based in the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures. With the help of a faculty advisor, you’ll craft a rigorous course of study that fits your passions and ambitions. Most of your classes will be in German. You’ll build a work portfolio. You’ll become fluent in German. And in the spring semester of your senior year, you’ll make a final presentation demonstrating your mastery.

We draw on a long Jesuit tradition of scholarship on and respect for the world's diverse languages and cultures—and virtually all of them are in New York City. From cultural events to people on the streets, New York City is your classroom for learning German.

You’ll learn more than German studies here. You’ll also study philosophy, theology, economics, mathematics, ethics, science, and the performing arts through Fordham’s common core curriculum, the centerpiece of our liberal arts education.

We want you to excel in your field—and as a human being.

Program Highlights

As a German area studies major, you take 10 required courses and electives. It’s an individualized, interdisciplinary major, so tailor a track to fit your interests.

All literature courses are taught in German, and you will be required to speak in German in class discussions and oral presentations.

We have two Language Learning Centers for solo studying or collaboration with classmates:

  • Language Learning Center at Rose Hill: a state-of-the-art, multi-use, interactive digital language laboratory with 54 self-contained computer stations equipped with the most up-to-date audio, recording, and film viewing technology.
  • Olga M. Ficarra/Francis J. Morison Language Laboratory at Lincoln Center: a multi-use, interactive, computer-based facility with 25 student work stations equipped with CD, audio, video, and DVD capabilities.

We offer free tutoring in German every week on both campuses.

The journal Kiez kieken: Observations of Berlin publishes students' final research project of the course Berlin Tales: A Cultural History of Germany's Kiez and Metropolis, taught by Prof. Maria Ebner.

Study Abroad

We highly encourage you to spend a summer, semester, or year studying in a German-speaking country such as Germany, Austria, or Switzerland.

Find many other ways to immerse yourself in German language and culture through Fordham’s International and Study Abroad Program. Choose from a wide range of courses taught in German.

Join the Deutscher Studenen Klub to find like-minded students interested in the business, social, and cultural concerns of German-speaking nations.

Alpha Mu Gamma, the national collegiate foreign language honor society society, has an active chapter at Fordham (Gamma Beta). Every May it initiates outstanding students of German, French, Italian, Russian, and Spanish.

Sample Courses

Introduction to German I and II
Intermediate German
Business German
German Language and Literature
Approaches to Literature
Courtly Epic and Lyric
German Through the Senses
German Literature Since 1945

Life After Fordham

You’ll graduate with advanced proficiency in speaking and writing in German—as well as an extensive literary and cultural preparation—that will open doors to many careers. Wherever German is spoken, there may be a role for you.

Our graduates earn advanced degrees in graduate programs in:

  • Foreign Languages and Literature
  • Comparative Literature
  • International Affairs

They attend professional schools in:

  • Law
  • Journalism 
  • Social Work

They work in as many fields as there are people speaking German, including:

  • Finance
  • Publishing
  • Nonprofit

Our career services tap Fordham’s ties with more than 2,600 companies. We offer:

  • Postgraduation career search
  • Resume development, Interviewing practice
  • Networking skill development
  • Hands-on case-study sessions with industry executives
  • Field-specific advising/coaching

You also get access to our powerful (and Fordham-loyal) network of alumni, who want to see you succeed as they have.

Learn More About the German Studies Degree