Taught course

German Studies

Birkbeck, University of London · School of Creative Arts, Culture and Communication

Entry requirements

Normally a second-class honours degree in a subject other than German or modern languages.

Language skills in German equivalent to A-level plus two years (also equivalent to a pass in German 5).

Applications are reviewed on their individual merits and your professional qualifications and/or relevant work experience will be taken into consideration positively. We actively support and encourage applications from mature learners.

Months of entry


Course content

Our Graduate Diploma in German Studies is ideal if you are keen to study the German language, literature and culture at postgraduate level. This course gives you the opportunity to gain a critical appreciation of the literature and film, culture and history of Germany and German-speaking countries and become a proficient German speaker. You can also choose option modules from a diverse and challenging syllabus.

This course is especially aimed at those who would like to take a Master's degree in German, or a degree with a focus on German studies, but need to advance their written German to the right level and develop their research and study skills. For example, you may have taken a break from studying and wish to refamiliarise yourself with the field, or you may have a degree in a different subject. You may also be a teacher wanting to refresh and deepen your knowledge, but are not ready to pursue a full MA just yet.

This is an undergraduate-level qualification that will prepare you for postgraduate study or simply allow you to pursue a personal or intellectual ambition. Graduate Diplomas typically take one to two years to complete and are made up of four to six modules at final-year undergraduate degree level (worth 120 credits in total).

  • Ideal if you wish to undertake Master's-level study in German, but you require further training at undergraduate level before commencing postgraduate study.
  • You will be taught by specialists from a centre of teaching and research excellence that prides itself on research-led teaching in French, German, Italian, Japanese and Spanish, making it an outstanding multidisciplinary team.
  • You could be studying in a building that was once home to Virginia Woolf and frequented by members of the Bloomsbury Group. The building houses our own creative hub which includes the Peltz Gallery, the Gordon Square Cinema and a theatre and performance space.
  • We are also close to a number of cultural centres and research libraries relevant to German Studies at advanced levels, such as Senate House Library, the German Historical Institute, the British Library and the Goethe Institute.
Careers and employability

Graduates can pursue career paths in international organisations or businesses, translating and teaching, research and journalism. Possible professions include:

  • translator
  • teacher
  • researcher
  • journalist
  • diplomatic services operational officer
  • interpreter.

We offer a comprehensive careers service - Careers and Enterprise - your career partner during your time at Birkbeck and beyond. At every stage of your career journey, we empower you to take ownership of your future, helping you to make the connection between your experience, education and future ambitions.

Information for international students

If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests.

If you don't meet the minimum IELTS requirement, we offer pre-sessional English courses and foundation programmes to help you improve your English language skills and get your place at Birkbeck.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • GradDip
    part time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Student Advice Service
+44 (0)20 3907 0700