German Undergraduate Program

German majors and concentrators acquire proficiency in examining literary, philosophical, and historical texts in the original, as well as critical understanding of German culture and society. Particular attention is given to German-speaking traditions within larger European and global contexts. Courses taught in translation build on Columbia's Core Curriculum, thereby allowing students to enroll in upper-level seminars before completing the language requirement. First- and second-year courses in the German language program emphasize spoken and written communication, and provide a basic introduction to German culture.

Gain substantial intellectual benefits: You will learn a language spoken by more than 180 million people worldwide, and become able to study major works of Western literature, philosophy, and politics in the original language. Just think of key authors like Kafka, Brecht, Kant, Marx, Nietzsche, and Freud!

Profit from excellent academic mentoring: You will study in a department that cares about you. Classes are small yet lively and allow for close individual mentoring of students by our faculty.

Advance your career prospects: A B.A. in German is among the top ten majors for entering the current competitive job market and offers you better employment chances than a degree in many other fields. By studying German, you will acquire qualifications for a variety of different career paths, ranging from graduate studies in the humanities, social sciences, engineering, or law, to a career in international business or politics.

Increase your global competence: You will develop a critical awareness of both “things foreign” and your own native culture. This will help you to build skills for intercultural communication, which have become a key asset in a globalized world and in the global marketplace.

Introduction to Columbia University's Department of Germanic Languages - German Language Program