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German AS and A Level *Fees Payable* at Benenden School *Fees Payable*

Course description

Why study German?

  • Learning a language helps us develop not only an understanding of the world around us and our place in it, but also creative thinking and communication.
  • German is among the ten most commonly spoken languages in the world. It is also a lingua franca of Central and Eastern Europe. It is the second most commonly used scientific language in the world.
  • Many of the Western world’s important works of philosophy, literature, music, art history, theology, psychology, chemistry, physics, engineering and medicine are written in German and continue to be produced in German. It is the language of Goethe, Kafka, Mozart, Bach and Beethoven. 

Course content

The course develops the four language skills and focuses on four themes: Aspects of German-speaking society; Artistic culture in the German-speaking world; Multiculturalism in German-speaking society; and Aspects of political life in German-speaking society.

Current topics include family, the digital world, youth culture, festivals/tradition, art and architecture, cultural life in Berlin past and present with a focus on immigration, integration, racism, the EU, and German re-unification and its consequences. The full course includes the study of either two literary texts by renowned authors (such as Böll, Brecht, Dürrenmatt, Frisch, Kafka or Schlink) or a text and a film (for example Goodbye, Lenin! or Sophie Scholl – Die letzten Tage)

Entry requirements

 GCSE German


Paper 1

Listening, reading and writing

Format of exam: Written exam: A Level 2h 30m, AS 1h 45m

Listening and responding to spoken passages

Questions in German to be answered with written responses in German

Reading and responding to a variety of texts

Weighting: A Level 20%  AS Level 40%


Paper 2


Format of exam: Written exam: A Level 2h, AS 1h 45m 

Two 300 word essays on set text and/or film

All questions will require a critical appreciation of the concepts and issues covered in the work and a critical and analytical response to features such as the form and the technique of presentation, as appropriate to the work studied (eg the effect of narrative voice in a prose text or camera work in a film).

Weighting: A Level 15%  AS Level 30%


Paper 3


Format of exam: Oral exam: A Level 21-23 mins, AS 12-14 mins

Discussion based on a stimulus card (5–6 minutes). The student studies the card for 5 minutes at the start of the test.

Presentation (2 minutes) and discussion (9–10 minutes) of individual research project based on one of the four main themes.

Weighting: A Level 15%  AS Level 30%

Future opportunities

Career opportunities and the next step:

Linguistic skills are highly thought of by universities and employers. Some students choose to do degree courses in languages; others choose to pursue a higher education course in another subject with a language option alongside it. Whether you are interested in continuing your studies or working at home or abroad, a language course at AS or AL is an excellent step towards achieving your goals.

Germany is the world’s second-largest exporter. The German economy is strong and ranks number one in Europe. Germany is home to numerous international corporations. Knowing the language of your German business partners improves your relations and therefore your chances for effective communication and success. Knowledge of German increases your job opportunities with German and foreign companies in your own country and abroad. Proficiency in German enhances your value to an employer with global business connections.

Further information

Enrichment opportunities:

  • Watching German films (Fritz Lang, Rainer Fassbinder, Wim Wenders, Michael Haneke) in film club
  • Studying German artists (C.D. Friedrich, Der blaue Reiter, etc.), architects (Schinkel, Bauhaus, etc.)
  • Theatre trips
  • Taster days at the University of Oxford and Cambridge
  • The Kent German Network and Oxford German Network support students with transition to university and possible internships
  • A wide range of exchange programmes exist for students between Germany and other countries  

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Benenden School *Fees Payable* directly.

Last updated date: 05 December 2016
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