Given our faculty’s wide range of interdisciplinary interests and special fields, the graduate curriculum provides ample opportunity for you to explore the historical, critical, and theoretical aspects of literature and culture.
The German-track M.A. offers you the opportunity to do advanced work in German and, depending on your career goals, prepares you to enter a Ph.D. program in that field. Required courses include literary and cultural theory, literary periods, Germanic philology, and pedagogy. Interdisciplinary interests are encouraged, and you are expected to take several courses outside the department. Students who are also interested in Scandinavian studies and who are fluent in one Scandinavian language can apply for admission to the Ph.D. program in GSD's German and Scandinavian Studies track.
The Ph.D. track in German allows you to gain greater depth and breadth in your studies and prepares you to work as a researcher, scholar, and university or college teacher. You will take a wide range of courses in the history and culture of German literature while honing your theoretical and methodological skills and participating for a minimum of one year in the teaching assistantship program. We stress the importance of interdisciplinary studies, and many Ph.D. students choose minors in other fields such as feminist studies, cultural studies, comparative literature, and history.
Germanic medieval studies encompasses the study of several Germanic languages (German, Dutch, English, the Scandinavian group) and their literatures and cultures from late antiquity to the early modern period. The M.A. and Ph.D. tracks in Germanic medieval studies attract both specialists in Germanic languages and literatures and medievalists interested in history and medieval life and culture.
The curriculum for the M.A. in Scandinavian studies is designed to familiarize you with all periods of Scandinavian literature and language and to train you to apply a variety of critical methods to the study of the field. Students emphasize Danish, Norwegian, or Swedish language and literature while acquiring a general knowledge of the other two.
Our courses meet the needs of students who may not be interested in continuing toward a doctorate in Scandinavian languages, as well as those who wish to continue in a related Ph.D. program. Students who are also interested in German studies and who are fluent in German may apply for GSD's German & Scandinavian Studies track Ph.D.
Curricular innovation, access to instructional technologies, and the research expertise of University of Minnesota faculty working in the area of second language acquisition have made GSD a national leader in foreign language education. The M.A. in teaching offers the opportunity to undertake advanced work that combines a disciplinary focus in Germanic studies with coursework in foreign language teaching and second language acquisition. In contrast to the German track M.A., which emphasizes literature and culture, the teaching track concentrates on second language acquisition and pedagogy. In addition, the teaching M.A. is a terminal degree only; it does not lead up to a Ph.D. degree in our department.
The Teaching Track is designed to meet the needs of K-12 teachers who want to earn an M.A. or individuals who want to be language teachers in post-secondary settings (colleges, universities, community colleges).
Although the M.A. track in teaching does not lead to teacher licensure, it is possible to overlap coursework for the track with the requirements for teacher certification. Individuals seeking teaching licensure should contact the College of Education & Human Development's Department of Curriculum and Instruction.
The German and Scandinavian studies track builds on our strengths in both areas and offers a unique opportunity for you to engage in advanced comparative work involving German and Nordic studies. You will acquire expertise in both areas by focusing on literary, cultural, and historical intersections and by working together with faculty in comparative and interdisciplinary ways. The program aims for depth as well as breadth and may allow for a competitive advantage in the job market.
Students with a B.A. must complete the M.A. in German or Scandinavian studies before being admitted to the Ph.D. in German & Scandinavian studies.