Accessibility statement

The Berlin Republic - LAN00007I

« Back to module search

  • Department: Language and Linguistic Science
  • Module co-ordinator: Ms. Nadine Saupe
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: I
  • Academic year of delivery: 2023-24

Module summary

“Dictatorship is dictatorship. Exploitation is exploitation. Our place is and remains clearly on the side of freedom and social progress, of the struggle for social security and the humanising of human society.”

Willy Brandt 1955

At barely over 150 years old, Germany is a very young nation. Despite this tumultuous past and the impact 2 dictatorships have had on culture and society and most importantly political structures and processes, the Berlin Republic is tasked with taking a leading role in the EU and wants to be a beacon of democracy in times when political stability seems fragile.

This module aims to further develop students' communicative skills in the language and increase their awareness of key aspects of German society and culture with a focus on some historical events and how they shaped German politics and society as it is today. In this module students will collaboratively develop a historical overview with the aim to increase their understanding of The Berlin Republic as it became what it is today. Students will investigate the problems and opportunities facing German society and politics and how regional varieties, federalism and centralism are causing a constant struggle in the creation of a German national identity.

Related modules

Pre-requisite module

German Language and Cultures: Upper intermediate OR equivalent level of German.

Available as an elective.

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching period
A Semester 2 2023-24

Module aims

This module aims to introduce students to some topics of social debate in Germany and develop students’ knowledge, skills and strategies necessary to communicate in German and to develop a plurilingual and pluricultural communicative competence at upper intermediate level. This module will further develop students’ German academic communication skills and enhance their understanding of current social debates.

The module aims to analyse key aspects of the society and culture of Germany, with a focus on political and historical topics. Students will engage, individually or in groups, in communicative activities focussing on three modes of communication:

1) reception activities (oral, audio-video and reading comprehension);

2) production activities (oral and written production);

3) interaction (oral, written and online interaction).

The medium of instruction is German. This module will lay the groundwork to more advanced study of German language and cultures in the final year.

Module learning outcomes

  • Demonstrate knowledge of some key aspects of the German speaking world

  • Develop an understanding of some historical aspects and their significance

  • Understand a variety of written and aural authentic materials

  • Present and develop information effectively in both spoken and written German

  • Achieve a good level of accuracy in the production of both written and spoken German

Module content

This module will allow students to research aspects of historical events that shaped the Berlin Republic as we know it today. In workshop style seminars students will present their findings and create an overview of the way a German nation state came to be. Seminar discussions will develop an understanding of the German political and electoral system and investigate how historical events have shaped this system. Past events and a 40 year separation into 2 different German states have left traces in society and institutions in the current Berlin Republic and this module will allow students to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of Germany today.


Task Length % of module mark
Departmental - aural assessment
Oral exam The Berlin Republic
0.33 hours 40
Essay 1500 words
N/A 60

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
Departmental - aural assessment
Oral exam The Berlin Republic
0.33 hours 40
Essay 1500 words
N/A 60

Module feedback

Group feedback in seminar discussions on oral presentations.

Group feedback in seminar discussions on written formative work.

Individual written feedback and video recordings of oral presentations.

Individual written feedback and annotations on written formative work.

Individual progress and feedback meetings twice per year.

Indicative reading

Hradil, Stefan (2013): Deutsche Verhältnisse: Eine Sozialkunde. Campus Verlag.

Vogt, Martin (1997): Deutsche Geschichte: Von den Anfängen bis zur Gegenwart. Metzler Verlag.

Lebendiges Museum Online: (18/01/2023)

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.