The course gives pupils the opportunity to find out more about German culture and language and to develop confidence building on the work we have done at KS3.
Pupils have the opportunity for individual feedback and attention, while creativity and interaction are encouraged. During the course, pupils develop confidence and spontaneity when speaking German and continue to develop cultural understanding.

Course content

GCSE German is a linear course with assessment at the end of year 11. Pupils study a range of topics across 3 themes, which should develop their understanding of German culture and language.

Theme 1: Identity and culture

  • Me, my family and friends
  • Technology in everyday life
  • Free-time activities
  • German customs and festivals

Theme 2: Local, national, international and global areas of interest

  • Home, town, neighbourhood and region
  • Social issues
  • Global issues
  • Travel and tourism

Theme 3: Current and future study and employment

  • My studies
  • Life at school/college
  • Education post-16
  • Career choices and ambitions


Listening – Paper 1 – 25% of the GCSE
45 minutes. Questions to be asked and answered in English, German or non-verbally. 20% of the marks will be for questions set in the target language.

Speaking – Paper 2 – 25% of the GCSE
10 – 12 minutes plus preparation time. The exam is made up of 3 sections:

  • role-play (2 minutes)
  • photo card stimulus (3 minutes)
  • conversation about the topics studied (5-7 minutes)

Reading – Paper 3 – 25 % of the GCSE
1 hour. Questions for the reading comprehension to be asked and answered in English, German or non-verbally.
Translation from German into English (50 words)

Writing – Paper 4 – 25% of the GCSE
1 hour 15 minutes
Higher Tier:

  • short and long writing task
  • translation from English into German


Pupils have the opportunity to:

  • take part in GDST competitions
  • watch German films
  • attend GCSE study days
  • visit Germany

Next steps

German GCSE is essential preparation for study at A Level and beyond. Germany is the UK’s number one trading partner and German speakers in the UK are becoming increasingly scarce and are highly prized by employers. Regardless of your interests, German has something to offer you and combines well with a range of subjects.


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