GCSE German

Studying German at GCSE means that students will be able to express themselves spontaneously, creatively, as well as increasingly fluently and accurately in the language, both in speaking and writing.  The intention is to give students access to a vibrant experience of the culture of Germany and the German-speaking world, and an understanding of the most up-to-date language.

Lessons aim to be interactive and challenging, encouraging as much active participation as possible.  There is a considerable amount of work on comprehension of authentic spoken and written material, and on oral practice, as well as on essay planning and translation.  A firm grammatical foundation is established to deepen the students´ knowledge about how language works, and vocabulary is fostered through our use of authentic material and literature in lessons, and also through having German traditions as a topic on the GCSE course.   

Assessments are based on past papers so that students are fully familiar with the demands of the exams before sitting them at the end of Year 11. Booster sessions in year 11 also focus on specific aspects of the exams and grammar from the AQA specification. 

The examination (AQA specification) is broken down into four papers of equal weighting, which ensures that pupils of all abilities can perform well and achieve their full potential.

Paper 1: Listening

Paper 2: Speaking

Paper 3: Reading

Paper 4: Writing


(Role Play,
Photo Card,
General Conversation)

into English)

1hr 15mins
(90 word essay,
150 word essay,
Translation into German)

The themes address (a) Identity and culture; (b) Local, national, international and global areas of interest; and (c) Current and future study and employment. Further detail can be accessed via:  http://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/languages/gcse/german-8668

During Activities Week 2, Year 10 students can participate in our long-standing exchange to Starnberg.  In addition, we invite a German theatre company to St. Olave´s to perform a play in Years 9 and 10, and all year groups have the opportunity to attend MFL Society.  In regular conversation lessons, our Native-Speaker Language Assistant provides further practice of the topics in small groups.

German can be continued at St. Olave’s in the Sixth Form to enable progression to university study, either as a Language Honours Degree or as a Joint Honours subject, in combination with disciplines ranging from Politics and Law to Mathematics, Business or Science.  Even with non-language degree courses it is becoming possible to spend a year abroad studying or working for a German, Austrian or Swiss company.