Accessibility Skip to Global Navigation Skip to Local Navigation Skip to Content Skip to Search Skip to Site Map Menu

infosheetgerman-226pxStudy Languages: make the world your place

Visit the Department website

Contact us

Why study German?

Today, there are more reasons to study German than ever before. German is the most commonly spoken language in the European Union. Germany is Europe’s largest economy, the world’s third largest exporting nation, an influential member of the European Union, and a key player at the United Nations.

German speakers have left a trace on every aspect of Western culture: music, literature, art, theatre and film, architecture and philosophy.

German at Otago

German is taught through a communicative approach, enabling students to use the language actively from day one. You will have many opportunities to improve your language skills at all levels – in class, online and in more informal learning environments. Our classes are small ad this helps us to get to know our students. We also offer a variety of extra-curricular activities, such as the German play, which has been a very popular tradition in our programme for over 60 years.

Apart from studying the German language, you can also choose papers that will give you a perspective on the social values and cultural life of Germany.

See detailed information about German papers.

Diploma in Global Cultures

The Diploma in Global Cultures (DipGlobalC) prepares students for the pressing need to develop knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary for intercultural communicative competence and responsible, global citizenship.

The DipGlobalC is a separate qualification normally completed alongside a degree programme and replaces the Diploma in Language and Culture.

Go to details about programme requirements and regulations for the DipGlobalC.

^ Top of Page

Background required

If you have studied German at school or elsewhere, you will be able to build on your knowledge and skills, and the Department will determine which paper will best suit your level of German. Otherwise, a popular programme of intensive language training is available for complete beginners.

Career opportunities

A BA with a major in German will open job opportunities in both the private and public sectors – in business, trade, consultancy, tourism, education, as well as in foreign affairs and other government agencies. Recent Otago graduates who have included German in their degree now work as consultants, marketing managers, journalists, teachers and librarians, all around the world. German Studies graduates are generalists and have many transferable skills. Your ability to analyse and communicate effectively as well as the international perspectives that you will have gained by studying German at Otago will certainly give you an edge.

Combining another degree with German as a minor or as a Diploma also increases students’ options in the job market. Increasingly, studies in law, commerce, international business and communications are enhanced when you can offer cultural experience or language skills alongside your major area of study.

Student exchange

The University of Otago offers an international exchange programme that is of particular benefit to language students. You may spend one or two semesters at one of Otago’s partner universities in Heidelberg, Tubingen and Leipzig. You pay only your New Zealand fees, and complete your qualification within the same time-frame as if you had never been away. Competitive scholarships are available to support students on exchange.