2020-21 Shared Language Courses

Fall 2020


ARAB 290, Levantine Colloquial Arabic: Jordanian and Palestinian

  • Instructor: Professor Sami Alkyam, Allegheny College
  • Dates: August 26 to December 7, 2020
  • Class time: MWF  9:00-9:50
  • Final Exam: Thursday, December 10  from 9:00 am – 12:00 pm
  • Credits: 4 hours
  • Prerequisites: Introductory Arabic where students learned the Arabic sounds and letters; students who wish to enroll in this course should be able to read and write in Arabic.   

Description: This is an introductory course to a specific variety of Arabic, i.e. Levantine Arabic. By focusing on the three overreaching groups of dialectical variations Jordanian, Palestinian Urban, and Palestinian/Jordanian Rural dialects, students develop listening/speaking and conversational skills in spoken Arabic at a beginning-level proficiency. Throughout the semester, students develop their speaking skills to talk about the following topics: self, family, relatives, friends, hobbies, daily activities, surroundings (home, school, city, country, etc.). Moreover, students acquire basic conversational skills in certain social occasions such as: exchanging pleasantries; asking for, offering, accepting, and rejecting things. 


German 395-01A and B, Grünes Deutschland

  • Instructor: Lee Forrester, Hope College
  • Dates:
  • Class Time: Mo / We / Fr 11:00 – 11:50
  • Credits: 2×2, offered in 2 half-semester groupings so you can take either of them for 2 credits or both for 4 credits
  • Prerequisites: 4 semesters college German or equivalent strongly recommended

Description: An overview of environmentalist ideas in the German-speaking world. We will look at “green waves” throughout history and culture using a variety of materials. We will also explore the links between environmental and other social movements as well as the interconnections between environmental concerns, technological developments, and politics. Students discuss both culture-specific aspects of Germany’s environmentalist path and transnational developments such as the influence of EU policies and how they compare to approaches in the US.


GER 301, Conversation and Composition

  • Instructor: Jacob van der Kolk, Wabash College
  • Dates: August 12 until the Tuesday before Thanksgiving
  • Class Time: Mo / We / Fr 2:15-3:05pm
  • Final Exam:
  • Prerequisites: Intermediate Level German II (GER 202) or B2/C1-level placement
  • Credits: 3

Description: This course will develop your command of the German language by teaching you how to use what you have learned in previous semesters. We will build on your reading, interpretative, writing, and speaking skills, as well as your knowledge of 20th Century German culture by reading, discussing, and writing about four German youth and young adult novels set in different historical periods. This course will help you develop reading, writing, lexical, and discursive tactics that you already use in your first language(s) and will review structures with an eye toward improving your use of those structures. In sum, this course will aim to make you a more nuanced German speaker capable of engaging in a wider variety of complex contexts and genres.

Syllabus: https://jakevanderkolk.xyz/ger_301-fs_2020-syllabus.html


German Studies 211/212 (meets jointly), Intermediate German I/II

  • Instructor: Howard Pollack-Milgate, DePauw University
  • Dates: August 31, going for 13 straight weeks until Nov. 20, then after Thanksgiving, two more weeks of instruction and a week of finals (calendar details)
  • Class Time: 211/212 will meet MWF 10:20 – 11:20
  • Prerequisites:  For 211/212, two/three semesters of German language instruction or equivalent
  • Hours:  1 DePauw course credit (meets 3 hours a week)

Description:  This course is the first/second semester of intermediate German.  We will work to improve all four language skills (listening comprehension, speaking, reading, and writing) through an intensive exploration of the theme of evil in German culture, using a variety of different materials including different types of literature and television programs.  By the end of the semester, you will be able to read authentic texts for basic understanding and improve your ability to express your thoughts in spoken and written German.  As needed, we will learn and review grammatical structures throughout the semester.  Course topic this semester:  “Dark:  die dunkle Seite (in) der deutschen Kultur.”  We will watch the Netflix series and read a variety of other historical texts discussing the dark sides of German culture.


German Studies 412, Die Weimarer Republik heute

  • Instructor: Howard Pollack-Milgate, DePauw University
  • Dates: August 31, going for 13 straight weeks until Nov. 20, then after Thanksgiving, two more weeks of instruction and a week of finals (calendar details)
  • Class time: Not fixed yet
  • Prerequisites:  A third-year level German class
  • Hours:  1 DePauw course credit (will meet once a week for 90-120 minutes)

Description:  In this course (which will be taught as an independent study), we will discuss the Netflix series “Babylon Berlin” in conjunction with literary works written during the Weimar Republic period of German History.  Focus will be on the experimental nature of the Weimar period in art, politics, issues of gender and sexuality, and mass culture, and how this period continues to speak to us today.  All readings, discussions, and assignments will be in German.


GER 202, Intermediate German

  • Instructor: Andrea Schmidt, Albion College
  • Dates: October 13 to December 2
  • Class time:  MW 9-10 A; TTR: 9-10.40 A; F 9-10.20
  • Prerequisites: Completion of German 201/Testing In/Instructor Permission
  • Credits: 1 Unit (fitting one semester into a seven-week module)

Description: Intermediate German–Students will review more complex grammar structures; engage in conversations on a variety of contemporary topics; read and analyze short texts 


GER 389, German Film-Genre, Identity, History

  • Instructor: Andrea Schmidt, Albion College
  • Dates: October 13 to December 2
  • Class time: MW 2-3; TTH; 2-3.40; F 2-3.20
  • Prerequisites: German 301/302
  • Credits: 1 Unit (fitting one semester into a seven-week module)

Description: An exploration of German language speaking films and their relation to genre and historical context.


ITAL 271, Intermediate Italian

  • Instructor: Francesca Seaman, DePauw University
  • Dates: August 31-December 16th (classes end on December 7th);
  • Class time: MWF 8-9
  • Prerequisites: First year (2 semester) of Italian
  • Credits: DePauw lists it as 1 full credit. The course meets 3 times a week for a total of 180 minutes

Description: This course connects students’ interest in Italian language and culture to their personal life experience and stimulates intercultural exchange of ideas. We will discover Italian society and culture in a creative way through interaction, while developing critical thinking and growing toward linguistic autonomy and fluency. This course values each student’s diverse and unique background and personality as fundamental components of a meaningful growth in intercultural competence and global citizenship.

A series of readings and communicative activities will lead the students to a deeper knowledge of the Italian language, a wider vocabulary, and a greater level of fluency in a variety of contexts. More specifically, students will learn how to use the conditional, the position of pronouns, the past preterit and other past tenses, relative and double pronouns, new adjectives, conjunctions, adverbs of place and prepositions, and variations of the future tense. Students will amplify their vocabulary around the subject matter of vacations, desires and ambitions, family life, multi-ethnicity, immigration, school, famous people, Italian music, work, services in a hotel or a restaurant, the experience of living in an apartment, social media, handy work in the house, things that break, jobs, the city of Venice, Italian cinema, the region of Puglia and Italian recipes.

Among other things, by the end of this course students will be able to use kindness when asking for something, to make requests, invitations and to give advice, to express desires and to speak of hypothetical situations. Students will be able to propose activities, to express commands, to tell of personal experience in volunteering, to speak about the past and to understand historical and literary texts. They will be able to tell a fairy tale, to complain for bad service, to express happiness or fatigue, to write a review, to describe people and situations, to recall and talk about the past, to understand requests for manual work or to ask for help when something is broken or does not work. Students will also be able to talk about Italian movies and cuisine, and to talk about their own taste in cinema or food.


ITAL 203, Italiano Intermedio Accellerato

  • Instructor: Ivana Di Siena, Oberlin College
  • Dates: August 31-December 16th (classes end on December 7th);
  • Class time: MWF 9-10, plus one hour of conversation once a week with an advanced student of Italian, at a time to be determined
  • Prerequisites: ITA: 102 (second semester or the equivalent)
  • Credits: 4, Full Course

Description: This is a one-semester intensive course equivalent to 2 semesters of intermediate Italian. Review of grammar and vocabulary, development of reading skills, oral skills and writing within a rich cultural context. In addition to 3 classes per week, students must attend one mandatory conversation class for one hour, time TBA.