German Studies at Whitman helps students develop the critical skills to be informed global citizens through the study of German language and the literature, culture, and history of the German-speaking world from a variety of academic perspectives.

Major-Specific Areas of Knowledge

  • Students will gain an understanding of the interdisciplinary field of German Studies, including its literary, historical, philosophical, aesthetic and other perspectives.
  • Students will develop disciplinary flexibility by working within and across disciplines to explore questions related to German-speaking cultures.


  • Students will attain Advanced Mid level German proficiency according to the ACTFL Proficiency Guidelines in all main language skills, including speaking across a variety of registers, listening, reading, and writing. Students will be able to communicate across several modes, including written, oral, presentational, and analytical.
  • Students will gain advanced writing skills including project creation, management, drafting, and revision in German and English.

Critical Thinking

  • Students will be able to analyze and make sophisticated arguments about German-speaking texts and cultural products in German and English.
  • Students will gain a high degree of information literacy, learning how to find, assess, and incorporate research materials from libraries, databases, archives, etc. into their own projects.
  • Students will be able to articulate the importance of valuing linguistic and cultural diversity within the German historical and cultural context and their own cultures of origin.