The Department of German offers the M.A. and Ph.D. in German and, with the BMW Center for German and European Studies, the joint MAGES/Ph.D. in German.

The Graduate Program in German is ideally positioned to respond to the challenges in the profession and to the changing role of the humanities. Many program features already reflect the recommendations of the 2014 MLA report on Doctoral Study. Georgetown offers a rigorous academic program that responds to the broadening career paths of graduate students.

The Department is committed to preparing Ph.D. and M.A. students for the highest level of scholarship in research and teaching. Drawing on the broad range of expertise of the faculty at Georgetown, the graduate program provides an excellent foundation of German literature and culture from the 18th century to the present and fosters critical and interdisciplinary approaches to more specialized areas of inquiry, including: contemporary literature and culture, issues of gender and sexuality, intersections of religious and literary traditions, curriculum development, and literacy studies.

Degrees Offered

  • M.A.
  • Ph.D.
  • Ph.D./M.A. (in German and European Studies)

Application Deadlines

Spring 2021

November 1, 2020

Fall 2021

January 15, 2021 (priority; scholarship)

April 1, 2021 (final)

Application Requirements

Please be sure to review the Graduate School Admissions How to Apply page.


Please be sure to review the program’s website for additional information on program application requirements.

Application Materials required:

  • Application Form
  • Non-refundable Application Fee
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Transcripts – Applicants are required to upload to the application system copies of official transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate institutions attended. Visit our How to Apply page for additional details and FAQs.
  • Official Recommendations (3)
  • TOEFL/IELTS  (please see below)
  • Academic Writing Samples

Admission requirements include an undergraduate degree which includes knowledge in German literary, linguistic, and cultural studies is required for admission. Generally, this knowledge is gained in two courses in at least two of these fields, where cultural studies might include courses focusing on artistic, economic, historical, and political life in the German-speaking countries. Remaining prerequisites can be fulfilled at the beginning of graduate study.

Other admission requirements include prior undergraduate knowledge of German literature, language and culture studies; three letters of recommendation, official transcripts, academic writing samples in German and English, academic statement of purpose, standardized tests (see below) and an application fee.  Please contact the department directly for further information about the writing sample essays.


All applicants are required to demonstrate a level of proficiency in the English language sufficient to meet the admission requirement of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. Proficiency can be demonstrated by the receipt of a bachelor’s or advanced degree from an accredited institution of higher education in the United States or from a university where English is the primary language of instruction (please note that applicants receiving degrees at universities in U.S. territories, such as Puerto Rico, are required to submit the TOEFL or IELTS unless the primary language of instruction at the institution is English). All other applicants not holding a degree from the U.S. or from an English-language institution must achieve at least a minimum score on either the TOEFL or IELTS test. Test scores must be received by the application deadline date. Applicants should allow six to eight weeks from the test date for the reporting of scores to the institution. Applications will not be considered without TOEFL/IELTS scores.

TOEFL: A minimum score of 80 (iBT test) on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). TOEFL information:

IELTS: A minimum score of 7.0 from the International English Language Testing System. IELTS Information:

Degree Requirements


The program consists of 36 credits or 12 courses beyond the bachelor’s degree. Students select their graduate courses from the three course modules: theory, methodology, and seminars. Degree requirements include successful completion of:

  • Course work according to the above guidelines
  • Course-based oral colloquium (for students completing their studies with the MA)


Georgetown University undergraduate majors in German are encouraged to inquire, prior to their senior year, about the Accelerated Master’s program. Students enrolled in the Accelerated B.A./M.A. program in German fulfill the same requirements as students pursuing both the B.A. and the M.A. in German.


  • MAGES Humanities Core Courses (2)
  • Courses in the German Department (6) — Fundamentals of German Language Instruction is required
  • For all other degree requirements, please see the Program Administrator of the MAGES program.


The Ph.D. program usually consists of 51 credits (17 courses) beyond the Bachelor’s degree. For candidates who enter with a Master’s degree in German from another university, the program usually consists of a minimum of 33 credits (11 courses).  In rare cases, the department may adjust the number of required credits up or down – in consideration of a student’s prior coursework and overall preparation.

Among the degree requirements for the Ph.D. are successful completion of:

  • Coursework with a minimum grade of A-
  • Second foreign language requirement
  • Ph.D. Qualifying Examination
  • Completion of a Ph.D. dissertation