German-speaking countries enjoy a long tradition at the cultural and political core of Europe. During the last two hundred years their importance has steadily increased, and with the recent developments in Eastern Europe their influence seems certain to expand even more.
The importance of the German language has grown correspondingly: it is the second foreign language after English in the countries of central and Eastern Europe, and its use is spreading within the European Community. Learning German opens the door to many fields of intellectual, technical and politico-economic endeavor. German scholars have been leaders in philosophy, the sciences, history, archaeology, sociology and political science. German literature is equally distinguished: writers like Goethe, Kafka, Rilke, Brecht, Mann, Wolf, Grass, Jelinek, Özdamar, etc., have dealt with the widest possible range of human problems and concerns, and have been recognized worldwide.
The Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures offers courses on literature from the Middle Ages to the present, so that the student may acquire an overview of this significant element of German life and culture. We offer language courses from beginning and intermediate to advanced levels, with practice in reading, writing, comprehending and speaking German, as well as stylistics, linguistics, and the specialized vocabulary and concepts of business. Language and literature instruction is integrated as far as possible, with the aim of teaching students advanced critical literacy in German. The department offers a minor in Yiddish, with instruction offered from beginning and intermediate to advanced levels. German combines well with other modern languages and literatures, and double-majors are encouraged. Students in a variety of programs, such as Cinema Studies, European Studies, Literary Studies, Drama, Music and others, will benefit from courses in German language, literature and culture.The Department supports opportunities for students to study and work in Germany, by encouraging participation in programs established by the German government, by Canadian universities, and by our own Arts and Science Faculty's Study Elsewhere Program. One of these is the exchange program under which Toronto students can spend the academic year at the Humboldt University in Berlin.
A knowledge of German is a virtual necessity for specialists in many disciplines; it is also very useful in certain career areas (e.g., the foreign service, interpretation and translation, librarianship, business and commerce, music, tourism, and of course teaching). The successful completion of a four-year program, including seven approved courses in German, may entitle the student to enter the M.A. or Ph.D. program in the Graduate Division of the Department.
Students entering with some previous knowledge of German are required to contact the department to write an initial assessment test (placement test) and will then be advised to take courses at the appropriate level. Please check the department's web site at www.german.utoronto.ca for more information.
Information on studies in German Language and/or Literature can be obtained from the Associate Chair for Undergraduate Studies at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Enquiries: Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures
Address: 50 St. Joseph Street, Odette Hall #322