German GCSE

German GCSE

From exploring themes of identity and culture, to language skills related to future aspirations, study and work – this course offers all the skills you need to communicate effectively in German.

Why St Mary's

Learn the German language with the support and inspiration of teachers who are passionate about this subject. You will learn in our newly refurbished suite of language classrooms, with access to the latest German resources including engaging online ActiveLearn tasks.

You will develop the language skills to thrive in a variety of situations in German-speaking countries, from travel and school, to discussing career aspirations and international issues. This GCSE course focuses on listening, speaking, reading and writing skills, alongside German grammar, all delivered in a fun, interactive way through five engaging topics.

Our enriched learning opportunities can include:

  • Language week activities and challenges
  • Collaborative digital tasks and competitions
  • Regular lunchtime teacher surgeries to support progress
  • Access to Additional Learning Booklets for explanation and practice
  • One-to-one support with our German Language Assistant

Course overview

The syllabus content is organised around five themes:

  • My personal world
  • Lifestyle and wellbeing
  • My neighbourhood
  • Media and technology
  • Studying and my future
  • Travel and tourism

All students take the following four examinations:

  • Paper 1 Speaking in German
  • Paper 2 Listening and understanding in German
  • Paper 3 Reading and understanding in German
  • Paper 4 Writing in German


All students take the following four examinations, each worth 25% of the final grade:

  • Paper 1 Speaking: Students are assessed on their ability to communicate and interact effectively through speaking German. The assessment covers three core tasks: a read aloud task, role play, and a picture-based task with conversation.
  • Paper 2 Listening: Students are assessed on their understanding of spoken German, and their ability to transcribe spoken German into written German. Foundation Tier assessment is 45 minutes and Higher Tier assessment is 60 minutes.
  • Paper 3 Reading: Students are assessed on their understanding of written German across a range of different text types, including advertisements, emails, letters, articles and literary texts. Foundation Tier assessment is 45 minutes. Higher Tier assessment is 1 hour.
  • Paper 4 Writing: Students produce various responses of varying lengths to express facts, opinions and ideas in German. Foundation Tier assessment is 1 hour and 10 minutes. Higher Tier assessment is 1 hour and 20 minutes.

The listening, reading and writing skills are assessed at the end of Year 11 as external examinations. The speaking skills are assessed in the Summer Term of Year 11. There is no controlled assessment in this subject.

At a glance
  • Four examinations (worth 25% each of the total grade)
  • Engaging topics
  • ActiveLearn digital activities
  • Teacher surgeries to support progress
You will enjoy this course if you ...
  • Enjoy language studies
  • Are interested in other cultures
  • Plan to travel or work abroad
  • Have good attention to detail

What our teachers say...

"Teaching German has allowed me to live and travel in three different countries; with my language skills I have met some fascinating people from all around the world and I made many life-long friends."

On a personal level, studying German at IGCSE or A Level will increase your job opportunities and creates opportunities to enjoy a cultured and varied lifestyle. It also boosts your level of self-confidence and is incredibly rewarding.

On a more general level, the study of languages establishes deep connections and cross-cultural interactions resulting in a better understanding between groups, businesses and countries. Learning a foreign language helps promote cooperation between different countries, building a future of peace and collaboration.

Germany is one of the world’s biggest industrial countries with world-famous products. German language skills open up a world of higher education and professional possibilities.

For aspiring scientists, it is interesting to note that not all scientific journals and publications are translated into English. German is the second most common language used in scientific publications, therefore it it a useful skill to have for those working at research level.

Other industries require employees to with German languages skills, including tourism, entertainment, banking, manufacturing, engineering and commerce.

Our results

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Beyond St Mary's

Our Senior School students go on to pursue exciting futures.

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