Faculty of Modern LanguagesGerman Studies: Literature – Knowledge – Language – Master

Students in the German Studies degree programme will focus on German language and literature from their inception through the current day, examining their social and cultural relationships as well as their theoretical bases.

Facts & Formalities

DegreeMaster of Arts, Double Degree
Type of programmeConsecutive
Start of programmeWinter and summer semester
Standard period of study4 semesters
Language(s) of instructionGerman
Fees and contributions151.05 € / Semester
Application procedureConsecutive master’s programmes with access restriction
Application deadlinesInformation about deadlines can be obtained after you have put together a degree program.
Part-time optionYes
May be studied as a minor subjectYes
International degree programYes

Course Content

The Master’s degree programme in German Studies: Literature – Knowledge – Language at Heidelberg University provides students with advanced knowledge in the areas of German linguistics, modern German literature, and medieval and early modern language and literature. The Master’s degree programme, with its traditional and exceptional access to a well-networked research environment, provides an interdisciplinary and international perspective on issues of key importance within German Studies research.  

In the “German Linguistics” specialisation, the focus of the degree programme is on practical research surrounding the complex topic of “spoken knowledge”. In the “Modern German Literature” specialisation, particular attention is paid to a continuum in literary history that stretches from Humanism through the Enlightenment, the Classic and Romantic periods, the realism of the nineteenth century, the avant-garde movement of the early twentieth century, up to the current day. The paradigms of modern German literary history will be taught within their social-historical context. Intertextual relationships, interdisciplinary and comparative aspects, historical dimensions of knowledge, and poetological traditions will be covered in advanced modules.  

In the “Medieval and Early Modern Language and Literature” specialisation, the focus will be on the entire history of linguistics and literature from the eighth to the eighteenth century.  

The objective of the degree programme is to guide students, on the basis of representative examples, through an academically-grounded examination of the German language and literature of the pre-modern and early modern periods. During the course of the degree programme, students will be given the opportunity to pursue a specialisation in the medieval or early modern periods. 

It is possible to choose a minor in combination with this Master programme. For further information please refer to the Examination Rules and Regulations.

Course Structure

The degree programme consists of: 

  • a major in German Studies: Literature – Knowledge – Language (comprising courses in one of the three specialisations, divided into an introductory module, a specialisation module, an examination and research module, the final examinations module, and the Master's thesis)  
  • a minor subject (comprising one compact module)  

For the major in German Studies, the minor subject may be selected from any other subject area that offers Master’s-degree-level courses (see course catalogue). The selection of subjects from other German-Studies-related disciplines is encouraged. 

The knowledge of two modern languages apart from German at level B1 is mandatory for the admission. One of these modern languages can be replaced by the knowledge of Latin (at least four years latin classes at school or the completed course "Lateinkenntnisse für GermanistInnen").
In case of the application for the international variant with a double degree, French language skills at level B2 or higher and English language skills at level B1 or higher are necessary.