German 291/RCLang291 Intensive 2nd-Year German

Instructors: Karein Goertz & Erica Paslick     Class meets: MTThF 10-11 and 1- 2 


German 291/RC Lang 291 (Intensive second-year German) is open to RC and non-RC students who have finished German 102, 103, or 191 or the equivalent (e.g., placement into second-year German). This course covers the entire second year of German in one semester. It meets twice daily MTThF, using a semi-immersion approach and proficiency-oriented instruction. Students have access to daily co-curricular activities (German lunch tables and coffee hours, films, etc.) to reinforce learning that occurs in the classroom.


The goals of this course include review and expansion of the grammar and vocabulary presented in First Year German and further development of student's reading, writing, and speaking skills. Classroom instruction includes discussions, impromptu speaking exercises, numerous writing assignments, and listening and reading exercises. Reading materials include autobiographical writings from the 20th & 21st Centuries, short prose, poetry, magazine and newspaper articles, and web-based assignments.  A key objective of the program is to give students competence and the confidence to engage in use of the language for meaningful purposes.  This course is excellent preparation for study abroad and/or for a German major or minor.


About the Program. . . The UM RC German Program is one of the oldest proficiency-based programs in the country, with proficiency standards dating back to 1967.  It was cited in the Newsweek Kaplan College Resource Guide 2007 as "one of the reasons the Residential College truly stands out."  An all-German, semi-immersion approach makes the program particularly successful. Students have the advantage of being in small classes (usually 10-15 students), where each student gets individual attention. The rotation of instructors exposes students to different accents and teaching styles. The program's small size allows instructors to tailor assignments to individual needs and interests, and to prepare students for life in a global community. RC students have a unique advantage of learning in a small program within the RC's living-learning community, and having, at the same time, all of the benefits of an excellent large university which hosts numerous conferences and lectures and offers one of the finest libraries in the world to prepare students as scholars and put their learning in a real context. RC German students are encouraged to participate in and attend performances by the RC's own German theatre company (RC Deutsches Theater) which has staged multi-media productions in German at the U-M and at schools around Michigan since 1985.


The RC German Program has offered and supported travel opportunities to learn about the Arts in Germany for the past several years. Many RC students have been able to receive some funding through the RC for study trips related to RC German course work, thanks to the Brown fund. A new theatre/humanities course in Winter 2009 and Winter 2010 on "Cultures in Dialogue:Crossing External and Internal Borders" will explore German identity issues with a focus on Germany's past, and on Muslims and Jews in Germany today. For more information about the RC German Program, RC Deutsches Theater and RC German travel to Berlin and Munich to study German Arts and Culture, contact RC German Director, Janet Hegman Shier or visit the program web site at


RC German was cited in the Newsweek Kaplan College Resource Guide 2007 as " of the reasons the Residential College truly stands out."  Find out for yourself, why!