Head of Modern Languages: Mrs H Parker
Being able to converse in a foreign language is a valuable asset; it opens up international study and work opportunities, signals a well-educated person and makes life, including holidays, very enjoyable too. The A Level course aims to develop high level practical language skills as well as knowledge and understanding of German culture. Studying a language also fosters a range of transferable skills such as communication skills, critical thinking, resourcefulness and creativity, as well as linguistic, cultural and cognitive flexibility.
At A Level, students will improve their language skills, develop their understanding of life in Germany, and study at least one book and either a second book or a film. They will also complete an independent research project for which they will choose an aspect of Germany or German culture which interests them. By the end of the A Level course, students will be able to have a conversation and write about a range of topics.
Examination board: AQA
– Themes relating to German society and culture, including social and political topics and intellectual and artistic culture
– Either two set texts or one book and one film, enabling students to give an analytical appreciation of the plot, themes and characters as well as technical or stylistic features
– Advanced language skills, enabling them to respond to authentic written and spoken texts, translate and communicate their views in speaking and writing
– Independent research project relating to Germany or German-speaking countries
The final examinations will include listening and reading comprehensions, translation into and out of German, essays in German about the book(s) and film studied and a speaking test.
We look for opportunities to take students to exhibitions, plays and films to broaden their knowledge of German culture. Competitions and debates with other schools make the languages come to life to an even greater extent. We also encourage students to find out about other possibilities, such as translation and poetry competitions, and events at the Goethe Institut. Film Club in school also provides a chance to see foreign films. Students are encouraged to arrange visits to Germany and are given details of work experience possibilities.
University and beyond
A number of our students go on to study a language at university, either on its own or in combination with another language or a different subject. Combinations can include a language and business, a language and history, a language and law and many more. Language degree courses also vary widely from traditional courses involving serious study of literature to courses which are more language-based. The evidence is that employers value graduates with language skills, and employment rates among recent languages graduates are high. German is particularly sought after by employers: Germany has the highest number of native speakers of all languages in Europe and, as Germany is Britain’s number one trading partner in Europe, speakers of English and German are in high demand by firms. The number of German specialists in the UK is declining, so proficiency in German will make you stand out.