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German Beginners (Year 1) Short Course

Key information

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Covid-19 update: The learning doesn’t have to stop, join our online community. We will be delivering courses remotely until further notice. Live tutor support and virtual lessons will take place during advertised teaching hours. The classes are taught in small groups, so you’ll get lots of support from your tutor. Book now.

Learn at a moderate pace with our German Beginners short course. Starting in October, you will progress through three modules over a one-year period.

Why choose this course?

Whether learning German for travelling, working abroad or with foreign companies, this German Beginners course enables students to communicate confidently on a basic level in everyday situations, socialise and not feel out of place when visiting the country.

This German Beginners short course is an introduction to the German language and way of life for the purpose of practical communication. Challenging but rewarding, the course is perfectly suited to those looking to develop a basic command of German.

The course consists of one evening class a week, for a total of 30 weeks; spread across three modules, which is ideal for those with various commitments or working full-time.

All of our language short courses are taught by qualified native speakers and delivered at City, University of London’s main campus, in the heart of the capital.

Course overview

This Beginners short course in German will teach you essential speaking, listening, reading and writing skills as well as a solid understanding of the structure of the language.

You will learn greetings, how to introduce yourself and others, spell out words and use numbers, say where you come from and where you live, learn how to give details about yourself and many more different things which are listed below.

Is it the right level for me?

If you have no prior knowledge of German you must start with Module One, which takes place in October term.

If you have some basic knowledge of German and you are already familiar with the content of Module One you may choose to enrol on Module Two or Module Three. See the Eligibility section below for more details.

If you are a complete beginner but you have missed October enrolment for the German Beginners course you can join our German Beginners Fast Track course in January or the German Beginners Summer Intensive course in April/May.

Please make sure you have the correct level by using our online guidelines.

  • “ I studied the language at school, and the course has enabled me to develop this limited understanding in a variety of ways. I am particularly impressed by the tutor’s clarity of explanation and friendly classroom manner. ”

    Christopher Bailey

    Former student

What will I learn?

What will I learn?

Module 1

Topics covered

  • Introductions;
  • yourself;
  • the alphabet and sounds;
  • numbers 1-100;
  • languages and countries;
  • jobs and professions;
  • room interior;
  • hobbies.;

Grammatical structures

  • Including questions, answers and statements;
  • Formal and informal structures (DU/SIE);
  • Present tense of regular and irregular verbs as well as the verbs "to have" (haben) and "to be" (sein);
  • Negative sentences/ negation of nouns (nicht/kein);
  • Gender, articles and plural of nouns;
  • Some personal pronouns, possessive articles, accusative case.

Learning objectives

  • Greeting people;
  • Introducing yourself and others;
  • Spell out words and use numbers;
  • Saying where you come from and where you live;
  • Giving details about yourself;
  • Expressing feelings;
  • Describing objects;
  • Talking about your profession and family relationships;
  • Talking about hobbies.

Chapter 1-4 of the Willkommen course book will be covered.

Module 2

Topics covered

  • Food and drink;
  • Shopping and prices;
  • Telling the time;
  • Days of the week;
  • Daily routine;
  • Means of transport;
  • Going out;
  • Travelling in the city.

Grammatical structures

  • Measurement nouns;
  • Some comparative (gern/lieber);
  • Word order;
  • Separable verbs;
  • Modal verbs, prepositions with accusative and dative case.

Learning objectives

  • Ordering food and drink;
  • Expressing likes and dislikes;
  • Asking and giving prices when shopping;
  • Booking a hotel room;
  • Talking about your daily routine;
  • Talking about duties at work/ home;
  • Making arrangements to meet;
  • Saying what you can do in your town;

Chapter 5-7 of the Willkommen course book will be covered.

Module 3

Topics covered

  • Recent and past events;
  • housing, town vs. countryside;
  • colours and clothes;
  • celebrations and gifts.

Grammatical structures

  • Perfect tense (regular and irregular), perfect tense with “sein” + “haben”;
  • more prepositions with case;
  • comparative and superlative;
  • adjective endings;
  • dative and accusative case in a sentence/ direct and indirect object.

Learning objectives

  • Describing what happened at the weekend;
  • Talking about recent events;
  • Talking about the more distant past;
  • Describing your house and your area;
  • Saying where things are/ giving directions;
  • Describing people, places and events;
  • Making comparisons;
  • Expressing opinions and discussing pros and cons.

Chapter 8-10 of the Willkommen course book will be covered.



Prerequisite knowledge

Modules are taught at progressive levels, if you have no prior knowledge you must start at Module One in the autumn (October).

If you wish to join Module Two of the German short course (in January), you must have completed Module One or be familiar with the content taught in Module One, specified in the What will I learn? section.

If you wish to enrol on Module Three of the short course (in April/May), you must have completed both Module One and Module Two or be familiar with the content taught in these two modules, found in the What will I learn? section.

Please check your level by using our online guidelines before enrolling.

English requirements

You will need to respond to instructions and read course documents in English.

Teaching & assessment

Teaching & assessment

The emphasis in this course is on listening and speaking. The lessons focus on language that is required in authentic situations.

Classroom activities will include:

  • role-playing
  • classroom discussion
  • pair and group work
  • work on pronunciation and intonation
  • grammar in context.

Listening to audio clips and watching videos are an important element in our lessons. More comprehensive grammar exercises and reading texts are generally set as homework.

Your progress will be assessed on an on-going basis through homework and performance in class. You will receive verbal feedback from your lecturer when appropriate and written feedback with your homework. All evaluation will take place in a relaxed and informal setting.

Recommended reading

Recommended reading

Willkommen, Coursebook,

by Heiner Schenke and Paul Coggle

Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton; 2 edition (27 April 2012)

ISBN-10: 1444165151

ISBN-13: 978-1444165159

Students are advised to purchase their own copy of the book, from the internet or from most major bookshops.

Tutor information

  • Boris Born

    Boris Born has an MA in German and Philosophical Studies (Berlin, 1988). He has been teaching German in various institutions in London such as London Metropolitan University (formerly the University of North London), in language schools, and at City, University of London since 1998.

Next steps

This German Lower Intermediate Short Evening Course is a fantastic follow-on course for anyone that has studied German before and looking to take their knowledge further.…