Join more than 120 million German speakers as you study the most widely spoken language in the European Union and the second most used language in the sciences worldwide.
Total Credit Hours: 18
German Minor Requirements (12 Hours)
Electives (6 Hours)
Why Study German?
German and English share the same parent language. They share many similar features, and speakers of one often find it easy to learn the other. German is among the ten most commonly spoken languages in the world. It is a language of science, invention, and innovation. More than 100 Nobel prizes have been awarded to professionals, researchers, and authors. Many great philosophers, writers, artists, scientists, and composers spoke German as their native language. Being able to read their publications in the original language in which they were written can give you an advantage while pursuing research.
Having a working knowledge of German will give you a competive edge in many fields, including the sciences, engineering, banking, medicine, technology, philosophy, and publication.
At Virginia Tech, you will improve your German language skills while you study current issues, classical and contemporary literature, art, and culture of the German-speaking countries. Courses include Culture of the German-Speaking Countries and Topics in German Cinema.
Beyond the Classroom
Join our German Culture Club, which organizes a variety of activities.
We also host a monthly Kaffeeklatsch, where you can enjoy cookies and German conversation.
Students who excel academically in their German studies are invited to become members of Delta Phi Alpha, the National German Honor Society.
Participate in Teach for Jamie, an after-school language and culture program for elementary school students. You'll serve with us in memory of Jamie Bishop, a former German instructor at Virginia Tech.
As you complete undergraduate research, you'll have opportunities to publish your work in peer-reviewed journals, including Philologia, and to submit your work for presentation at conferences.
Jamie Bishop Memorial Scholarship
The scholarship provides support for students majoring or minoring in German who plan to study, intern, or conduct research in a German-speaking country. Apply by December 1 or April 1.
This fund was created to honor the memory of Professor Jamie Bishop, who, as a German instructor, held “the conviction that learning a foreign language and culture is not just a joy, but is fundamental to our civilization.” If you have questions, contact Dr. Esther Bauer.
Virginia Tech in Germany
Experience German culture and civilization with a 3-week active adventure through Germany and Austria (3 credits). You will visit famous cultural sites such as Neuschwanstein Castle and the Reichstag building. Hiking, kayaking, and a multiple day bike tour are possible. The itinerary includes stops in Munich, Salzburg, Vienna, Nuremberg, Weimar, and Berlin.
You can also extend your stay and earn 3-6 credits at the Freie Universität in Berlin.
Contact: Dr. Mike Layne
Summer Internship at the Studierendenwerk Karlsruhe
The Studierendenwerk Karlsruhe offers a 6-week summer internship for an American student from Virginia Tech. Applicants should have knowledge of written and spoken German and at least one 3000-level German course by the end of the semester before the internship. Responsibilities include office duties, assistance to international students, English tutorial programs, and support to the excursion program. Interns receive free lodging, one meal each weekday, public transportation within Karlsruhe, and the opportunity to attend classes and participate in excursions. Interns are responsible for travel expenses to and from Karlsruhe, health insurance, and a visa fee.