Applied Language Skills-Writing in German in the Public & Professional - GE594

Location Term Level Credits (ECTS) Current Convenor 2018-19 2019-20
Canterbury Autumn
View Timetable
6 15 (7.5)


Students should have successfully completed GE507 'Learning German 4'.


Stage 3 students only



This module introduces students to the forms and varieties of modern written German through engagement with a wide variety of print and digital media. It explores the similarities and differences between different dimensions of German as it is used today, for example in the media, in teaching and in business. Students taking this module will examine the rhetorical patterns underlying all of these forms of communication, and will thereby improve their own language skills. Emphasis is placed on using a variety of resources (news media, websites, blogs) to build up a thorough awareness of the modern German language in context, and on encouraging students to work together in using up-to-date resources in producing German texts. In particular, the module aims to prepare students for their graduate life and for the uses of written German that will be expected of them on work placements, in their graduate jobs and in the German public sphere.


This module appears in:

Contact hours

One weekly two-hour seminar

Method of assessment

60% Coursework, 40% Exam

Preliminary reading

Indicative Reading List:

Aitchison, J. (1991) Language Change: Progress or Decay?, 2nd edition, Cambridge: CUP
Baumert, A. (2011) Professionell texten, 3rd edition, Munich: DTV
Crystal, D. (2001) Language and the Internet, Cambridge: CUP
Der Duden – Stilwörterbuch (2010), 9th edition, Leipzig: Verlag Bibliographisches Institut
Knorr, D., Jakobs, E.-M. (eds.) (1997) Textproduktion in elektronischen Umgebungen. Frankfurt a. M.: Peter Lang
[In particular 'Teil III', download free from:]
Lord, R. (2005) Culture Shock: Germany. A Survival Guide to Customs and Etiquette. Portland (Oregon): Graphic Arts Centre Publishing
Runkehl, J., Schlobinski, P., Siever, T. (1998) Sprache und Kommunikation im Internet. In: Muttersprache. Vierteljahresschrift für deutsche Sprache. 2. pp. 97-109.
[Download free from:]
Smith, B. (1991) German Philosophy: Language and Style. Topoi.10. pp. 155 -161. [Download free from:]

Websites for reference:

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

See the library reading list for this module (Medway)

Learning outcomes

Upon completion of this module students will be able to:

11.1 recognise and apply writing styles and communicative patterns in different professional and public contexts, e.g. in legal, academic and political registers, in the classroom, in a commercial environment and in a media/journalistic context.
11.2 deploy a range of established critical knowledge in the production of idiomatic texts
11.3 identify and critically analyse different linguistic criteria and aspects of the German language (for example register, sentence structure, tonal range) including an array of rhetorical and genre strategies necessary to produce idiomatically correct German texts.
11.4 recognise and apply linguistic & stylistic criteria of electronic/digital text production in German.
11.5 work effectively in a team to communicate information and arguments effectively.

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