Apr 15, 2024  
2012-2013 CU Denver Catalog 
2012-2013 CU Denver Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Applied German Language Skills Undergraduate Certificate

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Programs

Certificate Description

The undergraduate certificate in applied German language skills is designed for students of any discipline who wish to acquire and demonstrate to potential employers that they possess a fluid working knowledge of the German language and understanding of the cultures in which German is spoken. The completion of the requirements for this certificate can also serve as a means for nondegree-seeking professionals to develop a working competency in the German language and culture for use in such areas as international business, education, genealogy, transatlantic travel, academic research, translation and many other fields.


All currently enrolled students at CU Denver (undergraduate or graduate) in good standing (including nondegree-seeking students) are eligible for admission into the program. Any student who already possesses an undergraduate degree is also qualified for admission into the program, but must apply to the university as a nondegree-seeking student. Students working toward a baccalaureate degree who are currently enrolled in a college-level institution other than UC Denver are also eligible for certification.

Course Requirements

Twenty-four (24) semester hours of course work with CU Denver faculty (15 of which must be upper division), distributed as follows:

German Language Skills (15 credit hours): Students must complete a minimum of 15 semester credit hours of upper-division German language skills courses. These courses are defined as those areas of study in which grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation and/or communicative abilities in German are the primary focus of instruction. Up to six credit hours of upper-division German skills courses may be applied as transfer credit from outside, college-level institutions. Alternately, students may apply up to nine credit hours of officially recognized study abroad credit toward this requirement. 

German Culture (9 credit hours): Students must complete a minimum of nine semester credit hours of German culture courses where the primary focus of instruction addresses any facet of Austrian, German and/or Swiss culture. These courses may be completed at any level (lower or upper division as well as graduate) and in any combination of disciplines, provided that the student supplies evidence that a significant portion of each course is devoted to Austrian, German and/or Swiss culture. This includes but is not limited to history, philosophy, political science, literature (in German or in translation) and other German cultural topics. Up to three credit hours of culture courses may be applied as transfer credit from outside, college-level institutions. Alternately, students may apply up to six credit hours of officially recognized, documented university-level course work (or the equivalent) in a German-speaking country.

Proficiency Exam: Successful completion of an internationally recognized German language proficiency exam. At any point prior to the awarding of the certificate, students must submit documentation that they have passed an internationally recognized German language skills examination. Such proficiency exams (some of which are administered locally in Denver and Boulder) include but are not limited to the TestDaF (Test Deutsch als Fremdsprache), Zertifikat Deutsch (ZD), Zertifikat Deutsch für den Beruf (ZDfB) or Prüfung Wirtschaftsdeutsch (PWD). Students must receive approval from German faculty at CU Denver to ensure that their exam scores are valid and applicable toward certification.

Students must obtain approval from CU Denver German faculty for all of the above and maintain a minimum 3.0 GPA in all course work applied to the certificate. 

Transfer Credit

A significant portion of the certificate program is based on language proficiency. Consequently, students who have developed language skills through course work at institutions outside of CU Denver, including study abroad, may apply a limited number of previously earned semester hours toward the program. Please make an appointment with an advisor in the department to discuss details. All transfer credits must be approved by CU Denver German faculty.

Application of Course Work

The course work applied toward certification is meant as a proficiency requirement and not as a total semester hour amount. As a result, students who are working toward a degree may apply course work in German certification as credit toward other programs such as a minor, general education requirements or their major. Students are encouraged to inform their major advisor that they are working toward certification in German for help in coordinating their overall academic curriculum.

Further Information

Students are encouraged to hold a personal conference with a departmental advisor before applying to the certificate program. Phone 303-556-4893 for contact information.


Return to the Department of Modern Languages 


Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Programs