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Study the language with the greatest number of native speakers in Europe, a language which has a global business reach. Spend a year abroad studying, working or teaching in a German-speaking country, consolidating your language skills.
Combine the study of German with investigations into the nature of language itself. You'll be taught the language component of the course in German, so you'll become confident using German as a means of communication, and for critical thinking. You'll gain an understanding of German culture and society which will underpin your abilities as a high-level communicator.
Your communication skills will be complemented by studying linguistics. This will enable you to understand and interpret language, and to learn the science behind how we communicate. You’ll engage with the study of language on a conceptual level as well as the detailed level of linguistic data. Our department is one of the highest-ranked centres for research in linguistics in the UK, and the strength and diversity of our research is reflected in our teaching.
The course has flexibility in terms of how much German and linguistics content you study over the four years. Your knowledge and understanding of how a language works, and how we communicate, will give you a solid foundation for many careers.
You can take the German part of this programme ab initio (from scratch, or with a qualification below A level).
We have the second highest proportion of world-leading linguistics research in the UK (REF 2014).
I'd thoroughly recommend studying German ab initio because it's very different to learning a language at school - you acquire language skills and grammar through studying the culture and history of Germany (and Austria), rather than through repetitive exercises. The teaching is brilliant! The tutors provide the guidance you need and their enthusiasm for teaching their language is passed on.Sarah, BA French and German with a year abroad
We're proud to announce that we've been shortlisted for two prestigious University of the Year awards.
During your degree, you'll study modules in German and linguistics and may have the option to study elective modules from another department.
Your language modules will explore the society and culture of German-speaking societies and you'll be taught almost exclusively in German. These modules will help you to develop the cultural and linguistic knowledge you'll need to become a high-level communicator in the language.
Your linguistics modules will help you understand the nature of language itself: how it is structured, how it has evolved, and how we use and understand it within our society. These modules will enable you to think critically and approach your studies from an analytical point of view.
In your second and final years, you can tailor your degree to your interests. In the final year, you can choose from a range of advanced German modules designed to consolidate your critical skills through in-depth research and analysis. You'll also become proficient in all aspects of managing small-scale linguistic analysis projects, from identifying the research questions, to communicating the findings. Many final-year linguistics modules offer you the opportunity to focus on German language as the topic of research.
If you have studied German to A level: you'll take two German modules and four linguistics modules.
If you are taking German ab initio (from scratch): you'll take three German modules and three linguistics modules.
You'll take two core modules in German. These modules focus on developing your fluency, accuracy and communication expertise
Ab initio German
If you are taking German ab initio, you'll take three German modules and three linguistics modules.
You'll take three or four linguistics modules depending on your background in German.
In addition to the above you will also need to complete our online Academic Integrity module.
This module covers some of the essential skills and knowledge which will help you to study independently and produce work of a high academic standard which is vital for success at York.
This module will:
You'll study six modules overall: two German modules, two linguistics modules, and two more from a range of options.
You'll study one compulsory language module in German.
You will choose one more module in German from the following options:
Your studies will focus on issues of culture and society in the German-speaking world. You will develop skills in critical analysis of sources and communicate your findings using German in different registers. You'll tackle questions such as:
You'll study one core linguistics module.
You'll study one module of either:
You'll study two further modules in languages or linguistics. These can include one Languages For All module or an elective module offered by another department.
We can offer you unparalleled coverage of the field, with modules taught by world-leading academics in areas including syntax, phonetics and phonology, semantics, sociolinguistics and morphology.
You'll go to a German-speaking country. We assist you in setting up overseas university study, teaching or work placements, and offer guidance on all aspects of the year. See our current year abroad pages for more information.
You'll complete two assignments while on your year abroad. These are assessed on a pass/fail basis and do not contribute to your final degree grade.
You'll study six modules overall: at least two German modules, up to four linguistics modules and up to two electives from another department.
Your final year core module in German is designed to consolidate your critical skills through in-depth research and analysis. By this stage in your degree, you'll be able to demonstrate oral and written fluency, as well as accurate language use in its social and cultural contexts. You will write a research essay of around 3000 words.
Language core module
Language option modules
Most linguistics modules require you to have taken certain modules in your first and second year. The list below demonstrates some of the modules that are running this year:
Our modules may change to reflect the latest academic thinking and expertise of our staff.
Our course structures are changing in September 2023. Find out more about how this course may be affected.
Every course at York has been designed to provide clear and ambitious learning outcomes. These learning outcomes give you an understanding of what you will be able to do at the end of the course. We develop each course by designing modules that grow your abilities towards the learning outcomes and help you to explain what you can offer to employers. Find out more about our approach to teaching and learning.
The fees and funding figures below are for 2022/23 entry. If you take a placement year - for example a year abroad or a year in industry - you'll pay a reduced rate of fees for that year
|UK (home)||International and EU|
UK (home) or international fees? The level of fee that you will be asked to pay depends on whether you're classed as a UK (home) or international student. Check your fee status
For more information about tuition fees, any reduced fees for study abroad and work placement years, scholarships, tuition fee loans, maintenance loans and living costs see undergraduate fees and funding.
Set texts are available from the Library or online, but you may wish to buy your own copy for some modules. These typically cost between £10 and £30. For ab-initio languages you may need to buy books with a total cost of £50 to £60. Second hand books are often available more cheaply.
|Textbooks||Optional additional expense||£50|
We'll confirm more funding opportunities for students joining us in 2022/23 throughout the year.
Find out more about funding specific to Languages and Linguistics.
You can use our living costs guide to help plan your budget. It covers additional costs that are not included in your tuition fee such as expenses for accommodation and study materials.
You’ll study and learn with academics who are active researchers, experts in their field and have a passion for their subjects. Our approach to teaching will provide you with the knowledge, opportunities, and support you need to grow and succeed in a global workplace. Find out more about our approach to teaching and learning.
In your first year we offer you extra study support in several ways. Our Peer Assisted Learning programme gives you the opportunity to work with other students. You can also add an optional contact hour with one of our staff each week and receive additional support with easing into university life.
Our focus at York is on effective communication in German. That is why:
Core linguistics modules are taught through lectures (some with over 100 students), accompanied by sessions in smaller groups (15–20 students). With more advanced linguistics modules, you'll typically have more interactive classroom activities, such as group presentations or practical sessions, in addition to lectures. In final-year linguistics modules, most teaching is in smaller groups. Depending on the module, your work may focus on library-based study using primary research papers, lab-based analysis of linguistic corpora, or lectures and seminars in one the advanced areas of specialism of our staff.
In first and second year of the degree, you will typically spend 11 hours per teaching week in the classroom (including both languages and linguistics), or 12 hours per week if you are taking ab initio German. Contact hours in the final year will vary depending on individual module choices.
In addition to your classroom time, you should expect to devote at least 30 additional hours a week to independent study. This will include completing exercises, reading and digesting assigned papers, researching projects, writing and revising coursework, and preparing for assessments. Twice a year, in the middle of Autumn and Spring Terms, we have a reading week, which is devoted to independent study. You will receive guidance on your goals for each reading week.
In your first year, you can expect:
|Lectures||3-4 hours per week|
|Seminars||8-9 hours per week|
|Workshops||4 hours per week|
These figures are based on an average student in an average week. Your contact hours will vary throughout the year due to your module choices, non-compulsory classes, exam periods and changes to scheduled activities. Our course structures are changing in September 2023. Find out more about how this course may be affected.
Outside your timetabled hours, you'll study independently. This may include preparation for classes, follow-up work, wider reading, practice completion of assessment tasks, or revision.
In the UK, full-time students are expected to spend 1,200 hours a year learning. That's about 40 hours of classes and independent study each week during term time. Everyone learns at a different rate, so the number of hours you spend on independent study will be different to other students on your course.
All of our modules have Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) websites where all crucial materials—reading lists, handouts, discussion boards—are always accessible. Most first-year modules provide additional self-study practice exercises on the VLE.
We have our own departmental e-Lab for the teaching and study time of our students. Here you will have access to a variety of resources, including specialist linguistics software and online language-learning materials. Several undergraduate modules are taught in this laboratory and you'll receive training in using these resources.
You will be based in the Department of Language and Linguistic Science on Campus West. Your contact hours will be on Campus West.
Our beautiful green campus offers a student-friendly setting in which to live and study, within easy reach of the action in the city centre. It's easy to get around campus - everything is within walking or pedalling distance, or you can always use the fast and frequent bus service.
You'll be assessed in a variety of ways, including essays, projects, written, oral and listening exams. Assessments include formative work which will help you practice or develop skills, but will not count towards your final degree mark.
Instructors provide you with feedback in a variety of forms, for example: written feedback on work that you have handed in, in-class discussion of common problems on an assignment, model answers, one-on-one discussion of research projects, or online responses to questions posted on the module discussion board.
Your year abroad is assessed. You must satisfactorily complete certain criteria in order to graduate with a degree that has 'with a year abroad' in the title. You must complete two assessments in the target language which will be submitted to York during the year. You must fulfil your year abroad obligations (for example attending courses and completing all the local assessments if you're at university, or carrying out your teaching duties if you're on a teaching assistantship).
However, your marks on the year abroad assessments do not contribute towards your overall degree mark.
We can make reasonable adjustments to assessment procedures for students with disabilities. However, if you have dyslexia please note that it is not possible to make adjustments in the marking of work written in a closed language exam (German). This is because accurate spelling is one of the assessment objectives for language exams. Closed exams make up only a proportion of the assessment types used for languages. There are other assessment types such as coursework and oral presentations which are also used. As a student with dyslexia you could apply for extra time in closed exams, if this would be of assistance. See the University's disability support pages for further details.
In our French, German, Italian and Spanish programmes, we emphasise oral and written fluency, as well as accurate language use in its social and cultural context. All our core language modules are taught in your target languages, in small groups. We teach a range of content modules, with topics on current issues, media, film, social trends and politics, and with an introduction to translation in the final year. Our focus is on your competence in the culture and language, providing you with the means to function in the language at a professional level.
Effective communication, critical thinking and project management skills are central to most careers. The study of language and linguistics at York equips you with these skills and others, which translate readily into any work context. Read more about employability skills.
Our graduates have an excellent record of pursuing fulfilling paths after graduation. Learn more about graduate career destinations.
Apart from your knowledge of linguistics, you will leave with the confidence and skills that come from successfully completing a demanding course and participating fully in university life.
There are specialist careers that lead directly from your degree, after additional postgraduate training, including: clinical linguistics (speech and language therapy), forensic linguistics (forensic speech science), teaching (primary and secondary), teaching English as a foreign language, academic research and higher/further education.
|Access to Higher Education Diploma||Obtain Access to HE Diploma with 36 credits at Distinction and 9 credits at Merit or higher|
|BTEC National Extended Diploma||DDD|
|Cambridge Pre-U||D3, D3, M2|
|European Baccalaureate||80% overall average|
|International Baccalaureate||35 points|
|International foundation programme||Foundation Certificate from our International Pathway College or an appropriate alternative.|
|Other international qualifications||Equivalent qualifications from your country|
You can take the language part of this programme ab initio (from scratch, or with a qualification at AS Level or below), or you can study on a route designed for those who have an A level in this language.
Our language programmes are designed to develop fluency. For this reason we do not normally offer places to native or near-native speakers who wish to study their own language.
Meeting the following additional criteria may qualify you for an alternative offer.
|Widening participation||If you successfully complete one of the following programmes, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to three A level grades (or equivalent) below our typical offer: Next Step York, Realising Opportunities. More about widening participation.|
|Contextual offers||If you have experience of local authority care or live in an area with low progression to university, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to two A level grades (or equivalent) below our typical offer. More about contextual offers.|
|EPQ||If you achieve C or higher at EPQ, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to one A level grade (or equivalent) below our typical offer.|
|Core Maths||If you achieve B or higher in Core Maths, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to one A level grade (or equivalent) below our typical offer.|
|MOOCs||If you successfully complete our online course Accents, attitudes and identity, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to one A level grade (or equivalent) below our typical offer. More about MOOCs.|
If English isn't your first language you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. We accept the following qualifications:
|IELTS (Academic and Indicator)||6.5, with a minimum of 6.0 in each component|
|C1 Advanced and C2 Proficiency||176, with a minimum of 169 in each component|
|Duolingo||110 overall, with a minimum of 100 in each component|
|GCSE/IGCSE/O level English Language (as a first or second language)||Grade C|
|LanguageCert International ESOL SELT||B2 Communicator High Pass with a minimum score of 33/50 in each component|
|PTE Academic||61, with a minimum of 55 in each component|
|TOEFL||87 overall, with a minimum of 21 in each component|
|Trinity ISE III||Merit in all components|
For more information see our undergraduate English language requirements.
You may be eligible for one of our pre-sessional English language courses. These courses will provide you with the level of English needed to meet the conditions of your offer.
The length of course you need to take depends on your current English language test scores and how much you need to improve to reach our English language requirements.
After you've accepted your offer to study at York, we'll confirm which pre-sessional course you should apply to via You@York.
Get in touch if you have any questions
You can study German on a variety of other courses:
You can study linguistics on other degree courses, too:
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