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Department ofModern Languages and Literatures


Herzlich willkommen!  Drawing from the Humanities tradition at SCU, our program focuses on developing students’ proficiency in German as well as enhancing their understanding of the cultures of German-speaking countries. We include cultural facets from performing and visual arts, literature, mass media, science, sports, and lifestyles, into our classes and introduce students to cultural icons including Beethoven, Mozart, Tokio Hotel, Einstein, Humboldt, Richter, Hundertwasser, Max Planck, Siemens, among many others. Throughout our standards-based classes, students develop intercultural communication as well as critical thinking skills to explore and establish bridges to other disciplines, among them Business and STEM fields.

Why Learn German?

Why not!  After all, with so many similarities with English - think Hand/Hand, schwimmen/to swim, Ring/ring, just to name a few - when learning another Germanic language English speakers already have a head start. Knowing German also offers the benefit of being a gateway to the largest economy in Europe and the third strongest in the world. Study German along with your Business major to open up that opportunity. Moreover, German connects you with the largest number of native speakers in the European Union and, by extension, to one of the world’s ten most commonly spoken languages. Knowledge of German opens up a cornucopia of opportunities such as: working for a German company abroad or in Silicon Valley, traveling in and learning about German-speaking countries, or enjoying the literature, music, art and philosophy in their native language. Learning German can broaden your cultural horizons.

Still need more convincing? Consider these facts and figures (source: ACTFL)

  • Knowledge of German gives you an average annual salary boost of 4% in the US and even more in Europe.
  • About 3,500 German majority-owned business operations are present in the US
  • German companies such as Adidas, BASF, Bayer, Bosch, Lufthansa, SAP, Siemens, T-Mobile or Volkswagen employ over 640,000 workers in the US.
  • German businesses accounted for 10.5% of the 6.1 million insourced jobs in the US in 2013.
  • Almost half of the jobs created by German companies are in manufacturing.
  • Most surveyed companies in the US would choose someone with German literacy over an equally qualified candidate.

Don’t wait!  Tell your friends about German, invite them to films from renowned directors like Fatih Akin (Gegen die Wand) or TV shows such as Babylon Berlin or The Man in the High Castle and then, sign up for German!

What German classes can I take at SCU?

Elementary German  (GERM 1 Fall, GERM 2 Winter, GERM 3 Spring)

Intermediate German (GERM 21 Fall, GERM 22 Spring)

Advanced German (GERM 100 Spring)

The German Studies program is currently undergoing significant program and curricular changes.  Planning is underway to create a certificate program to be offered in 2024-25 that includes courses such as German Conversation (GERM 106), German Film (GERM 113) and Business German (GERM 108)

Undergraduate Bulletin

Where Can I Study Abroad?

Interested in studying in Austria, Germany or Switzerland? Good news! In cooperation with IES Abroad (Institute for the International Education of Students) Santa Clara University offers students of German access to programs based in Berlin, Freiburg, Geneva, Munich and Vienna. Whether you are interested in Global Health and Development, International Studies and Multilateral Diplomacy, European Society and Culture, the European Union or you’re just determined to further your passion for German language and its cultures, studying abroad can pave the way to becoming a global citizen.

Community Partners and Engagement Opportunities

German Studies maintains partnerships with two community organizations: the South Bay Deutscher Schulverein (SBDS), a German Language Saturday School, and the Germania Verein, the German-American Club of San Jose.  Both are an easy 15-minute drive from SCU and have hosted our students either as paid teaching assistants (SBDS) or course participants (Germania Verein). Starting fall 2019, our students will be able to get involved at SBDS in a variety of roles: as volunteers or paid teaching assistants.

German Academic Advising

German Studies Faculty

Advisor for German at All levels:
Josef Hellebrandt

Student Resources

Goethe Institut
Musik in Deutschland

Peter Fox
Die offizielle Homepage

Die Prinzen
Offizielle Webseite

Die Band

Goethe Institut
Film in Deutschland 




Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung

Süddeutsche Zeitung

Spiegel Online Nachrichten

TV and Radio

Deutsche Welle

ARD Mediathek

ZDF Mediathek


Deutsches Radio im Ausland

Official Website

Goethe Institut SF

German American School Association of Northern California

Goethe Institut

Deutschland & DE Magazin Deutschland

German Academic Exchange Service - Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst

German Studies Association

American Association of Teachers of German

American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages

The Tom Stutzman Scholarship

The Tom Stutzman scholarship program is dedicated to promoting German Studies at Santa Clara University. It provides qualified current and incoming undergraduate students the opportunity to enroll in intermediate and advanced German classes and receive financial support. The program supports up to 10 scholarships per year with a monetary award of up to $5,000 each for tuition. Depending on placement level, selected students may apply for continued support through advanced German. Applications are accepted in January, April and October.

Applicants must be enrolled as a full-time student at SCU completing German 3 or entering SCU with a placement recommendation for intermediate German. New students enrolled in German 21 in fall quarter become eligible for the award upon registering for German 22 (offered in winter quarter); similarly, those who register for Advanced German 100 in spring quarter will also qualify for the scholarship. German native speakers may not apply.

Selection Criteria
A committee comprised by German Studies and department faculty will review applications and select scholarships recipients based on students' academic merit and involvement in promoting German on campus and/or in the community. For consideration, students must apply for the award by the posted deadline, and courses must be taken for a letter grade.

Application Process:
Applicants must complete the Tom Stutzman Scholarship application and submit it electronically by April 21, 2023. Submission deadlines for the fall and winter cycles of 2023-24 will be October 13 and January 26. Each application should contain the following information:

  1. Student name,
  2. SCU ID number
  3. SCU email address
  4. Expected term and year of graduation
  5. German placement recommendation (where applicable)
  6. German classes taken at SCU and elsewhere (including grade information)
  7. Activities outside the classroom with a focus on German language and culture (for example, involvement in the German club, tutoring, assisting with cultural events on and off campus, etc)
  8. Statement of interest (max. 400 words).

Notifications will be sent out via SCU email one week after the application deadline. Successful applicants will receive the scholarship award following the add/drop period of the respective quarter they start or continue with German at SCU.

Brittany Peters

Traveling around the beautiful village of Monschau, Germany, and Brittany captured this beautiful foggy day and classic architecture.