UCL Centre for Languages & International Education (CLIE)


German Level Proficiency

Prerequisite for entry

Successful completion of German level 5+ at UCL Centre for Languages & International Education or post-A Level training; an extended stay in a German speaking country actively using the language

Term duration

10 x 2-hour classes.


40 hours in total.

Aims and objectives

The course is designed for very advanced level students requiring the language for vocational and professional purposes. The course comprises knowledge and understanding  both of the structure of the German language and of its use in professional environments. It covers cultural and professional contexts, negotiating and interacting, reading specialist texts note-taking and debates as well as other related topics. These areas will be related to the students’ individual needs.
The course will enhance knowledge and use of complex structures (a variety of styles and registers from a range of authentic material).


  • expressing specialised opinions, critical topic-related comments
  • debating, commenting, negotiating
  • suggesting, accepting, refusing
  • describing, defining, explaining
  • composing written pieces of information for different purposes
  • conducting presentations on a variety of specialist topics
  • summarising complex information from English to German (and vice versa)

Course content

Main topics/themes to be covered (selection from the following):

  • university system/professional qualifications
  • employment in business and industry
  • job applications and interviews
  • seminal papers and presentations
  • group debates
  • overview of the political and administrative structure of German speaking countries
  • demographic developments, gender roles and family life
  • the European Union and global affairs
  • current affairs: German political, socio-economic and cultural developments
  • arts (music, literature, film, art, cultural heritage)



  • reading for gist (skimming), scanning for specific information
  • in depth analysis of complex topics in major newspapers/magazines and specialised publications


  • short essays
  • analysis and review of articles
  • summaries
  • critical comments


  • radio, TV, audio and video recordings, feature films
  • directed listening for specific tasks
  • presentations, summaries


  • formal and informal discussions, debates, round table
  • presentations
  • role-play

Linguistic structures

Discourse strategies:

  • analysing/comparing texts from various sources (different text types, styles and registers)
  • recognising and applying different linguistic registers in writing and in speaking
  • preparing oral contributions for different audiences
  • spoken versus written communication

Main aspects of these strategies:

  • structuring (logical structures)
  • linking devices (lexical, grammatical)
  • stylistic levels and their usage
  • specialist vocabulary

Application of complex grammatical features and registers

Learning resources

There is no textbook for this course.

Material for this course may be drawn from:

  • Authentic written material from various sources such as Die Zeit, Die Wirtschaftswoche etc.
  • Authentic audio and audio-visual material
  • German films
  • Variety of internet sources
  • In addition there is a wide range of language learning materials for self-study in the Self-Access Centre.