Indiana University Bloomington

Germanic Studies

Indiana University

College of Arts and Sciences

Degree Information

The Master of Arts Degree

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Description of the M.A. Degree

The Master of Arts degree in German offers a humanistic basis for a wide range of careers. More specifically, it lays the foundation for doctoral study in the Department of Germanic Studies. Both goals are served by the same curriculum.

The M.A. curriculum encompasses the study of linguistics, literature, and culture in a wider sense. Within this framework it permits concentration on any one of these three areas. Students may choose either the highly flexible Master of Arts in Germanic Studies, which is readily adaptable to individual interests; or the more focused and structured Master of Arts in Modern German Culture.

Admission requirements:

  • 25 semester hours or the equivalent beyond first-year German.
  • Students from Germany: must complete the Zwischenprüfung and one full year of Hauptstudium to be eligible to enter the M.A. program. Students with a B.A. from a German institution must demonstrate four years of study at the university level.
  • Candidates with no previous knowledge of pre nineteenth-century German literature will be advised to include G403 (Deutsche Literatur: Mittelalter bis Romantik) in their program.

*Students planning to work towards the German at Indiana are advised to select courses that will count towards the core requirements in German or to start on a Ph.D. outside minor.

Master of Arts in Germanic Studies

This M.A. degree option accommodates a wide variety of interests, ranging from formal and historical linguistics, to medieval studies (with links to Indiana's Institute of Medieval Studies), to modern literature. It prepares students for advanced study, but also serves as a self-contained M.A. program for students pursuing other academic or career goals, including secondary or community college training.

The requirements for this degree include:

(+) Credits: 30 hours (minimum required hours in German = 21)
(+) Courses:

    Literature(one German course numbered 500 or above):      3
    Linguistics (one from G532, G548, G551, G558, and G640):  3
    One colloquium (G625)or seminar (G825, G835):             3/4
    Twelve additional hours in Germanic Studies:              12
    Eight to nine additional hours:*                          8/9

    *up to nine of which may be taken in related areas such as history,
     political science, and folklore, and all of which may be taken in

(+) Language: reading proficiency in an additional foreign language,
    preferably French.

Please note: Students must also complete the M.A. project, a limited scholarly investigation.

Master of Arts in Modern German Culture

Please check out the Institute of German Studies for a general description of this M.A. degree option and the Max Kade Fellowship program.

The requirements for this degree include:

Credits: 30 hours (minimum required hours in German = 21)
Courses: A total of 30 credit hours of which at least 21 one must be and all 30 
may be in German. Up to 9 credit hours may be taken in other relevant programs 
and departments (history, comparative literature, etc.).

*up to nine of which may be taken in related areas such as history,
political science, and folklore, and all of which may be taken in German.

Language: reading proficiency in an additional foreign language,
preferably French.

Please note: Students must also pass the M.A. project, a limited scholarly investigation. <

Master's Project

Both the Master of Arts in Germanic Studies and the Master of Arts in Modern German Culture require successful completion of a Master's Project, which is intended to give students experience in carrying out a limited scholarly investigation to the fullest of their potential. The project is normally submitted after three of four semesters of study, but may be submitted as early as the first year. It entails appropriate revision and oral defense of a research paper of 20 to 30 pages originally written for a graduate course in Germanic Studies. The paper should demonstrate command of expository English or German; competence in the use of bibliographic and research tools; ability to conceive and develop a scholarly project; and effective critical and analytical thinking. It is recommended that students consult with appropriate faculty members regarding selection and revision of the project paper. A three-person faculty committee evaluates each project and conducts an oral defense that examines the candidate's ability to present concisely the main argument(s) of the project; place the project in larger scholarly contexts; discuss sources and scholarly literature used; and respond effectively to committee members' questions and comments. Students have the option of enrolling in German G850, Master's Project, for one credit, so that the project's completion is reflected on their permanent academic record and transcripts.

Description of the M.A.T. Program

This degree is designed for students who plan a career in secondary school teaching. With the exception of international students, all candidates must possess a teacher's certificate by the time the degree is conferred.

Program Requirements

Admission: A bachelor's degree, with 20 hours of course work (or the equivalent) beyond first-year German.

Credits: At least 36 hours, of which at least 20 must be in German. (The department cannot recommend acceptance of credit towards the M.A.T. degree for courses in Germanic Studies numbered below 400 or for courses in other departments or schools numbered below 300.)

Course Work in German:

G500 and G540                                             6 hrs.
Linguistics: (two from G548, G551, G558)                  6
Literature or Culture: (two courses in German,
     one of which may be at the 400-level)                6
Additional course work to fulfill credit requirement      2

Other Course Work: The remaining course work will vary considerably, depending on the student's certification status upon entry into the program. A faculty member in the School of Education's Department of Language Education will advise candidates about course selection and program construction in relation to career prospects for teachers.

Candidates who enter with a teaching certificate have the most latitude in the selection of their remaining courses. In consultation with their faculty adviser they may enroll in additional German courses, appropriate education courses, and/or courses that develop a teaching minor, which is strongly recommended. Such students may also wish to consider the advantages of the M.A. versus the M.A.T. program at the time of application.

Candidates who enter without a teaching certificate must dedicate as much course work in education as necessary to fulfill Indiana teacher certification requirements.

Candidates with a bachelor's degree from an institution outside Indiana must send their credentials (transcripts) to the Teacher Training and Licensing Commission (State House, Indianapolis, IN 46204) for evaluation before their programs can be planned. Students must devote that portion (if any) of their course work not required in German or in education for teacher certification to additional work in German or education or to a teaching minor, which is strongly recommended.

German Proficiency Requirement: Candidates must demonstrate proficiency in depth in German before completion of the degree through a brief examination with the language coordinator in the Department of Germanic Studies.

Language: Reading proficiency in an additional foreign language is not required.

Examination: None is required.*

*Please note that students completing the M.A.T. but wishing to enter the doctoral program in German must also complete the M.A. project. Additional course work in German may also be required.

General Requirements for all Ph.D. majors and concentrations:

(+) Professional courses:        (+) Seminars (two required at IU):
     G500       3 hrs.                G825 or G835        4 hrs.
     G503       3                     G825 or G835        4
               ---                                       ---     
                6                                         8

(+) Dissertation:   up to 20 hrs.

(+) Outside minor:  minimum of 12 hrs.

(+) TOTAL HOURS:    90

(+) Reading proficiency in French. A substitution may be permitted;
    such a substitution should serve the candidate's major research

(+) Teaching. At least one year's service as an associate instructor.

For detailed information on general degree requirements, please consult the University Graduate School web site.

Ph.D. with Major in Germanic Linguistics and Philology

 Linguistic and Philology Majors:

Linguistics Courses                      Literature Courses
------------------                       -------------------
Any four from the following:             G571                  3          
G532, G540, G548, G551, G558             Any other literature 
G632, G635, G638, G639, G640,            course numbered
G601 Intro to Old English,               500 or above          3
G655 Hist. of Engl. Lang.  12-14                              ---

For more information, please see the Ph.D. Preliminary Examination for “Germanic Linguistics and Philology”

Ph.D. in Medieval and Early Modern German Literature and Culture

This major is intended as one in medieval literature and culture, and the languages involved are regarded as tools rather than as ends in themselves. The inderdepartmental outside minor must be taken in medieval culture. The 30-32 hours of required course work in German literature should include sufficient sutdy of modern literature to prepare the candidate to teach college courses in this area on the second- and third-year level.

Literature Courses (30-32 credits)                    
  • G571 (German Lit. I) 3
  • G573 (German Lit. I) 3
  • G636 (Old Icelandic Literature; prerequisite G635) 3
  • G625 (with medieval topic) 3
  • G825 (with medieval topic) 3
  • Required courses in Medieval Studies M500 Introduction to Medieval Studies -or- M502 Colloquium in Medieval Studies -or- M600 Medieval Manuscripts Required courses in Renaissance Studies R501 The Culture of the Renaissance -or- R502 Topics in Renaissance Civilization (4) ------- 30-32 Linguistic Courses (6-9 credits) --------------------

  • G638 (Old High German) 3
  • G640 (Middle High German) 3
  • One of the following is recommended: G532 (History of Germ. Language) -or- G635 (Old Icelandic) -or- G639 (Old Saxon) (3) -or- G601 (Old English) (3) -or- G602 (Middle English) (3) ---- 6-9 Minor: Medieval Culture (18 to 22 hrs) Required courses: F501 Medieval French Literature I 3 -or- L505 Medieval Latin 4 Additional hours in medieval culture 15-19 ------ 18-22

    Ph.D. in Literature and Culture

    Literature courses                 Linguistics courses
    ------------------                 ----------------------
    Any 3 from:                        Any one from G548, G551, or G558  3
    G571        3                      Any other Ling course                     
    G573        3                                        500 or above    3    
    G575        3                                                       ---
    G577        3                                                        6

    Ph.D. Minor in Germanic Studies

    Doctoral students from other departments desiring to minor in Germanic studies will choose one of the following:

  • 1. German: 12 credit hours, including at least two courses numbered 500 or higher.
  • 2. Netherlandic: N402, N403, N404, and N508 or N509.
  • 3. Yiddish: Requirements include 12 credits, consisting of GER Y502, GER Y503, GER Y504, 3 remaining credits to be chosen from GER Y505, GER Y506, GER Y815, and other courses focusing on nonlanguage Yiddish Topics.
  • For further information concerning the graduate program in Germanic Studies, see the Guide to Graduate Study, issued annually by the department.

    Ph.D. Minor in German Studies

    The Ph.D. minor in German studies is available to doctoral students in all departments except Germanic Studies; 15 credit hours of course work are required. Consult the director of the Institute of German Studies for information regarding courses acceptable for the minor.

    Outside Minors for the Ph.D.

    All Ph.D. program options in Germanic Studies require the completion of an outside minor. The outside minor is selected in consultation with the graduate director or faculty adviser. Requirements for the outside minor are set by the outside minor department or program (i.e., not by Germanic Studies).

    Please note: Dutch may be selected by Ph.D. students in Germanic Studies as an outside minor.

    Some Ph.D. candidates in Germanic Studies complete the minor entirely outside the department, for example in:

    Detailed information about minors offered by other departments and programs can be found in the bulletin of the University Graduate School. Detailed below are sample minor programs:

    1. Dutch: 12 hours, consisting of N402, N403, N404, and N450.
    2. Yiddish: 12 credits, consisting of Y502, Y503, Y504, and Y505 or Y506.
    3. Communication and Culture with a Concentration in Film Studies: A minimum of 15 credit hours in eligible courses in the Department of Communication and Culture. Eligible courses include some joint- and cross-listed courses in other departments. A minimum grade of 3.0 (B) is required in each course.
    4. Comparative Literature: 4 courses in Comparative Literature, including C501; fluent reading knowledge of at least one foreign language.
    5. Cultural Studies: 16 hours in courses approved for the Cultural Studies Program, including C601 and either C701 or C790. The other course must be approved by the program director. Satisfactory performance on the qualifying examinations in the student's major department is also required.
    6. English and Germanic Philology: 4 courses, to include English G601 (Introduction to Old English) and at least 1 of the other older Germanic languages, i.e., German G632, G635, G638, G639, and G640. The remaining courses may be chosen from English G602 (Middle English), G655 (History of the English Language), L710 (Beowulf), L711 (Old English Literature), German G532, G625 with appropriate topic, and any of the remaining older Germanic languages listed.
      • Also offered is an Area Certificate in English and Germanic Philology, requiring 4 courses in addition to the 4 required for the minor. These may include any of the courses listed above, as well as courses in other department that are relevant to the history and prehistory of the Germanic languages, and to early Germanic literature and culture.
    7. Film Studies: at least 12 hours, from two or more departments, with a minimum grade of B. Course selection is made in consultation with the chair of the Film Studies Committee, after approval by the student's major department.
    8. Linguistics: 12 hours in linguistics or related courses, with a grade point average of 3.0 (B) or better. The specific program for satisfying this requirement should be developed in consultation with the linguistics outside minor advisor.
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