Course Overview

This programme is designed for you if you love to read and discuss inspiring literary texts and if you want to deepen your understanding of German culture—from the age of enlightenment to the present day. It gives you the opportunity to further improve your fluency in German, introduces you to relevant literary theories and methods of interpretation, and offers a range of modules exploring exemplary German texts by analysing them in their historical and cultural contexts.

Scholarships available
Find out about our Postgraduate Scholarships here.

Applications and Selections

Applications are made online via the NUI Galway Postgraduate Applications System

Who Teaches this Course

  • Deirdre Byrnes, PhD
  • Tina-Karen Pusse, DPhil
  • Áine Ryan, MA
  • Prof. Hans-Walter Schmidt-Hannisa, DPhil
  • Michael Shields, MA

Requirements and Assessment

Students have to take a total of six modules (10 ECTS each), which are assessed by exam or take-home essay. Five modules are obligatory and one is optional. They also have to write a dissertation of circa 15,000 words (30 ECTS) on a topic chosen in consultation with a supervisor.

Key Facts

Entry Requirements

Second Class Honours NQAI Level 8 degree or equivalent, with Second Class Honours Grade 2 or equivalent in German.


Additional Requirements

Duration

1 year, full-time | 2 years, part-time

Next start date

September 2020

A Level Grades ()

Average intake

15

Closing Date

You are advised to apply early, which may result in an early offer; see the offer round dates

NFQ level

Mode of study

Taught

ECTS weighting

90

Award

CAO

Course code

1MAG1 (full-time) | 1MAG2 (part-time)

Course Outline

The course programme includes modules on German language and literature, as well as a module on methods of research and interpretation.

CORE MODULES

Advanced Language Skills 1 and 2:
This year-long module allows students to further develop their language skills to level C2 of the European Framwork or Reference. Classes taught cover all relevant skills-reading, writing, listening and speaking. Students will extend their command of grammar and vocabulary, and their sensitivity to stylistic variation, nuance and register.

Modern German Literature 1 and 2:
Students will discuss exemplary literary texts from various genres and literary epochs between the 18th and 21st centuries. Special attention will be given to historical and cultural contexts and to intertextual relationships. Students will apply various methods of interpretation. The selection of texts will vary from year to year.

Interpreting Literature—Theories and Methods:
Students will be introduced to relevant literary theories, such as New Historicism, Ecocriticism, Postcolonialism and deconstruction. They will learn to reflect critically on methods of interpretation and their application. 

Modules for the full time course

Modules for the part time course

Curriculum Information

Curriculum information relates to the current academic year (in most cases).
Course and module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Glossary of Terms

Credits
You must earn a defined number of credits (aka ECTS) to complete each year of your course. You do this by taking all of its required modules as well as the correct number of optional modules to obtain that year's total number of credits.
Module
An examinable portion of a subject or course, for which you attend lectures and/or tutorials and carry out assignments. E.g. Algebra and Calculus could be modules within the subject Mathematics. Each module has a unique module code eg. MA140.
Optional
A module you may choose to study.
Required
A module that you must study if you choose this course (or subject).
Semester
Most courses have 2 semesters (aka terms) per year.

Year 1 (90 Credits)

Required GR512: Modern German Literature I


Semester 1 | Credits: 10

Assessments
  • Continuous Assessment (100%)
Module Director
Lecturers / Tutors
The above information outlines module GR512: "Modern German Literature I" and is valid from 2014 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Required GR562: Advanced Language Skills I (German)


Semester 1 | Credits: 10

Assessments
  • Department-based Assessment (100%)
Module Director
Lecturers / Tutors
The above information outlines module GR562: "Advanced Language Skills I (German)" and is valid from 2014 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Required GR506: Minor Thesis


15 months long | Credits: 30

Assessments
  • Research (100%)
Module Director
Lecturers / Tutors
The above information outlines module GR506: "Minor Thesis" and is valid from 2018 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Required GR513: Modern German Literature II


Semester 2 | Credits: 10

Assessments
  • Continuous Assessment (100%)
Module Director
Lecturers / Tutors
The above information outlines module GR513: "Modern German Literature II" and is valid from 2014 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Required GR563: Advanced Language Skills 2 (German)


Semester 2 | Credits: 10

Assessments
  • Department-based Assessment (100%)
Module Director
Lecturers / Tutors
The above information outlines module GR563: "Advanced Language Skills 2 (German)" and is valid from 2014 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Optional MIC504: The Art of Reading


Semester 1 | Credits: 10

Assessments
  • Written Assessment (100%)
Module Director
Lecturers / Tutors
The above information outlines module MIC504: "The Art of Reading" and is valid from 2014 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Optional SH505: Translation Studies I


Semester 1 | Credits: 15

Assessments
  • Department-based Assessment (100%)
Module Director
Lecturers / Tutors
The above information outlines module SH505: "Translation Studies I" and is valid from 2014 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Optional GR521: Interpreting Literature: Theories & Methods


Semester 1 | Credits: 10

Assessments
  • Continuous Assessment (100%)
Module Director
Lecturers / Tutors
The above information outlines module GR521: "Interpreting Literature: Theories & Methods" and is valid from 2014 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Optional MIC6101: Worlds of Fantasy: Literature, Film, Computer Games


Semester 1 | Credits: 10

Fantasy novels and films are currently extremely popular. Like dreams, they invent imaginary worlds that may have a lot in common with the “real” world, or may strongly differ from it. Nowadays artistic computer games do the very same. The alternative worlds presented by these media serve quite different purposes: They may simply be offers to escape from the troubles in the “real” world, or they may have a dystopian character that serves to criticise social or political problems. Like dreams, fantasy fiction often invites psychological interpretations. The module gives an introduction to the theory of fantasy fiction and analyses a number of exemplary fantasy novels and films with different cultural backgrounds. In particular it explores how dreams are represented and what structural role they play in fantasy fiction. The module will also analyse selected computer games and discuss the specific aesthetical potential of this interactive medium.
(Language of instruction: English)

Learning Outcomes
  1. Critique selected fantasy texts, films and computer games
  2. Demonstrate knowledge of theories of fantasy fiction
  3. Explain and discuss specific aesthetical features of fantasy literature and film
  4. Analyse the difference between traditional and interactive media with regard to fantasy fiction
Assessments
  • Continuous Assessment (100%)
Module Director
Lecturers / Tutors
Reading List
  1. "The Fantastic: A Structural Approach to a Literary Genre." by Tzvetan Todorov
  2. "Fantastic Literature: A Critical Reader" by David Sandner (ed.)
  3. "Selected short stories" by Jorge Luis Borges
  4. "Last World" by Christoph Ransmayr
  5. "Kafka on the Shore" by Haruki Murakami
The above information outlines module MIC6101: "Worlds of Fantasy: Literature, Film, Computer Games" and is valid from 2016 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Optional GR6100: Language & Intercultural Communication


Semester 1 | Credits: 10

We live in a world of diversity and inter-relatedness. In this course we explore how we communicate in a professional and personal realm underscored by both difference and similarity. We examine how culture effects how we perceive the world and influences our behaviour. We look at different theoretical concepts which underlie how we communicate and specific cultural contexts which embody practices, values and traditions. The aim is to gain a deeper insight into other cultures whilst at the same time be able to think critically about our own culture, thus becoming more competent intercultural communicators. In this course we use media like video and podcasts, in addition to reading widely from academic sources. Student discussion and participation are actively encouraged for each class.
(Language of instruction: English)

Learning Outcomes
  1. Demonstrate an understanding of cultural concepts as tools for examining cultural behaviors
  2. Recognise the importance of engaging in critical examination of elements of your own culture
  3. Demonstrate a knowledge of the diversity and uniqueness pertaining to cultures
  4. Consider commonality pertaining to cultures and improve intercultural competence
  5. Complete a substantial piece of academic writing on an element of intercultural communication
  6. Present research on a particular element of intercultural communication, i.e. intercultural communication in a specific context
  7. Conduct a case study, based on literary analysis, of a particular cultural phenomenon
Assessments
  • Department-based Assessment (100%)
Module Director
Lecturers / Tutors
Reading List
  1. "• Introducing Language and Intercultural Communication. Available as an e-book via college library" by Jane Jackson
    Publisher: Routledge
  2. "• Intercultural Competence: Interpersonal Communication Across Cultures" by Myron W. Lustig and Jolene Koester
    Publisher: Pearson
  3. "• Communication between cultures" by Larry A. Samovar Richard E Porter; Edwin R McDaniel
    Publisher: International Edition, Belmont, Calif. Wadsworth; London: Cengage Learning distributor
The above information outlines module GR6100: "Language & Intercultural Communication" and is valid from 2019 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Optional MIC6100: Resisting through Culture: Conflicts in Europe and Beyond


Semester 2 | Credits: 10

This module explores the transformative power of culture in times of conflict. The first part focuses on the literature that emerged in the latter half of the twentieth century following the post-war division of Europe. Works by authors such as Peter Schneider, Ivan Klíma, Václav Havel and Herta Müller form the focus of analysis. Situating these texts within their socio-political contexts of division and conflict, the module explores how literature and culture can be harnessed to facilitate and express resistance within and against totalitarian systems. The second part of the module addresses more recent conflicts and their literary representation; it shifts the focus to the conflict zones in the Islamic world and analyses texts about strategies of resistance against extremist movements such as the Taliban.
(Language of instruction: English)

Learning Outcomes
  1. Critique selected texts by Peter Schneider, Ivan Klíma, Václav Havel and Herta Müller
  2. Describe the socio-political contexts in which these texts were composed
  3. Analyse how literature and culture can be used to express resistance within and against totalitarian political systems
  4. Describe and explain selected texts addressing conflicts in the Islamic world
  5. Deliver a presentation based on a close reading of extracts from conflict literature
Assessments
  • Continuous Assessment (100%)
Module Director
Lecturers / Tutors
Reading List
  1. "The Wall Jumper" by Peter Schneider
  2. "The Spirit of Prague and Other Essays" by Ivan Klíma
  3. "The Land of Green Plums" by Herta Mueller
  4. "Open Letters: Selected Writings, 1965-1990" by Václav Havel
  5. "I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban" by Malala Yousafzai
The above information outlines module MIC6100: "Resisting through Culture: Conflicts in Europe and Beyond" and is valid from 2018 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Optional MIC501: Contemporary Literary Genres


Semester 2 | Credits: 10

Assessments
  • Continuous Assessment (100%)
Module Director
Lecturers / Tutors
The above information outlines module MIC501: "Contemporary Literary Genres" and is valid from 2014 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Why Choose This Course?

Career Opportunities

German postgraduate students acquire a flexible skills base in dealing with creative and communicative, and analytical, organisational and research, tasks, and they move on to a corresponding range of career opportunities after graduation. They have developed careers in, for example, marketing, media and arts administration, as well as following more language-related career areas such as teaching, translation, publishing, international marketing and communications. Many MA graduates have continued their studies at PhD level.

Who’s Suited to This Course

Learning Outcomes

 

Work Placement

Study Abroad

Related Student Organisations

Course Fees

Fees: EU

€6,600 p.a. FT; €3,355 p.a. PT 2020/21

Fees: Tuition

€6,376 p.a. FT; €3,187 p.a. PT 2020/21

Fees: Student levy

€224 p.a. FT; €168 p.a. PT 2020/21

Fees: Non EU

€15,550 p.a. 2020/21

Please note:  The fee payable by EU students is listed under "Fees: EU".  This field is the sum of the student levy + tuition.  Fees are payable each year and are subject to change year-on year.

Postgraduate students in receipt of a SUSI grant—please note an F4 grant is where SUSI will pay €2,000 towards your full-time tuition.  You will be liable for the remainder of the total fee.  An F5 grant is where SUSI will pay full-time TUITION up to a maximum of €6,270.  SUSI will not cover the student levy of €224.

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Downloads

  • Postgraduate Taught Prospectus 2020

    Postgraduate Taught Prospectus 2020 PDF (21 MB)