BA in German Language & Literature

The major in German Language & Literature is for students who seek to become proficient in the German language and acquire an in-depth understanding of German cultural life, past and present. Each student chooses a program of study that combines a) advanced language-focus coursework with b) comparative literature and linguistics courses taught in English, and c) German literature, film, and culture courses taught primarily in German. All courses taught in German provide extensive opportunities for students to practice and further their proficiency in the full range of communication skills: listening, reading, speaking, and writing. Courses taken abroad at BU Study Abroad and Internship Programs in Dresden may also be made to count for the major.


Twelve courses with a grade of C or higher are required. Students entering with advanced standing in German must complete a minimum of six principal courses at Boston University. Students participating in the Boston University program in Germany must complete a minimum of four principal German courses in Boston; two of these four courses must be taken at the LG 300 level or above following study in Germany. Internships taken on study abroad programs may not be credited toward a major in German.

Required Courses

Unless otherwise noted, all required courses are 4 credit hours.

Four language-focus courses:

  • Two courses numbered CAS LG 302–309
  • Two courses numbered CAS LG 310–345

Five advanced courses in German literature/culture/language:

  • CAS LG 350 Introduction to German Literature
  • Four 4-credit courses numbered CAS LG 400 or higher

One additional German course:

  • Must be be numbered CAS LG 250 or higher

Two of the following courses in linguistics or comparative literature:

  • CAS LX 250 Introduction to Linguistics
  • CAS XL 100 Explorations in World Literature: Leaving Home
  • CAS XL 222* Introduction to Comparative Literature: Western Literature (in English translation)
  • CAS XL 223 Introduction to Comparative Literature: Middle Eastern Literature (in English translation)
  • CAS XL 224 Introduction to Comparative Literature: East Asian Literature (in English translation)
  • CAS XL 225 Introduction to Comparative Literature: South Asian Literature (in English translation)

*CAS CC 101 and 102 together may be substituted for CAS XL 222.

Placement Test

A placement test is required of all students whose most recent course in German was taken while in high school or at a college other than Boston University and who wish to continue their study of this language here. Information on testing dates and times is available in the department.