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Module LZG-2040:
Gegenwartssprache I

Module Facts

Run by School of Languages, Literatures, Linguistics and Media

40 Credits or 20 ECTS Credits

Semester 1 & 2

Organiser: Dr Sarah Pogoda

Overall aims and purpose

  1. To consolidate and expand on students' knowledge of German grammar and vocabulary.
  2. To develop translation skills into and out of the target language, and skills in manipulation of written German.
  3. To develop oral and aural skills.
  4. To familiarise students with lexis relevant to their forthcoming residence abroad, and other sociocultural contexts.

Students on this module will be working towards achieving B2/C1 on the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR)

Course content

This module deepens students' command of the written language through translation, text and essay work. Emphasis will be placed on a secure grasp of structures and sensitivity to register. Oral proficiency will be fostered through discussions of contemporary issues in the German-speaking world with students' presentations on various topics. In order to prepare students for their year abroad, key topics will be covered including aspects of business German, the press and media, university life in Germany and Austria, and general 'Landeskunde'. Students will also be required to read and review two short novels in order to expand their vocabulary and improve their grasp of grammatical structures.

Assessment Criteria


40-49%: A limited knowledge of vocabulary and grammar and a limited ability to translate and paraphrase the prescribed range of texts. Basic oral and aural competence.


50-69%: A good knowledge of vocabulary and grammar and a good ability to translate and manipulate a variety of textual material. Good oral and aural competence.


70+%: An excellent knowledge of vocabulary and grammar and an excellent ability to translate and otherwise manipulate texts, with a firm understanding of register. Excellent oral and aural competence.

Learning outcomes

  1. Demonstrate an increased proficiency in translation, essay-writing, text and aural comprehension and oral skills.

  2. Demonstrate greater grammatical accuracy, more advanced vocabulary and an appreciation of register and nuance.

  3. Display greater confidence in the presentation of oral reports (Referat) and general discussion.

Assessment Methods

Type Name Description Weight
CLASS TEST Klausur (trans German to English)

In-class translation from German to English.

COURSEWORK Grammar Homework

Take-home set of grammar exercises.

CLASS TEST Klausur (trans English to German)

In-class translation test, from English to German.

AURAL Aural Comprehension Test

In-class listening comprehension test.

COURSEWORK Short Free-Writing Assignment (essay OR review)

Take-home free writing assignment in German.

ORAL Oral Examination

Oral examination, comprising presentation, questions and discussion of self-study portfolio.

EXAM Written Exam (2 hours)

Written examination, comprising a German-English translation and a set of grammar exercises.


Teaching and Learning Strategy


1 hour x grammar per week for 11 weeks per semester 1 hour x writing skills per week for 11 weeks per semester 1 hour x conversation skills per week for 11 weeks per semester

Private study 334

Transferable skills

  • Literacy - Proficiency in reading and writing through a variety of media
  • Self-Management - Able to work unsupervised in an efficient, punctual and structured manner. To examine the outcomes of tasks and events, and judge levels of quality and importance
  • Exploring - Able to investigate, research and consider alternatives
  • Information retrieval - Able to access different and multiple sources of information
  • Inter-personal - Able to question, actively listen, examine given answers and interact sensitevely with others
  • Critical analysis & Problem Solving - Able to deconstruct and analyse problems or complex situations. To find solutions to problems through analyses and exploration of all possibilities using appropriate methods, rescources and creativity.
  • Presentation - Able to clearly present information and explanations to an audience. Through the written or oral mode of communication accurately and concisely.
  • Teamwork - Able to constructively cooperate with others on a common task, and/or be part of a day-to-day working team
  • Argument - Able to put forward, debate and justify an opinion or a course of action, with an individual or in a wider group setting
  • Self-awareness & Reflectivity - Having an awareness of your own strengths, weaknesses, aims and objectives. Able to regularly review, evaluate and reflect upon the performance of yourself and others

Subject specific skills

  • Develop aural comprehension skills in the target language, supported by a wide range of appropriate materials in different media. (Benchmark statement 5.3, 5.4)
  • The ability to use the target language creatively and precisely in more substantial written assignments in the target language. (Benchmark statement 5.14)
  • The ability to translate more substantial passages into and out of the target language. (Benchmark statement 5.3, 5.4)
  • Engaging with, interpreting and critically evaluating short and longer contemporary texts (short stories, films, novels) in the target language (Benchmark statement 5. 8, and 5.9)
  • Enhanced oral communication and presentation skills (including delivery and argument development, discussion and defence) in the target language through individual and/or group discussions. (Benchmark statement 5.3, 5.4)
  • The ability to use the target language creatively and precisely in oral assignments, showing ease with a wider range of topics and registers in formal and informal situations. (Benchmark statement 5.3, 5.4)
  • Further develop aural comprehension skills in the target language, supported by a wide range of appropriate materials in different media. (Benchmark statement 5.3, 5.4)
  • The ability to read, understand and summarise more complex written texts in the target language. (Benchmark statement 5.3, 5.4)


Pre- and Co-requisite Modules

Courses including this module

Compulsory in courses: