Undergraduate study - 2021 entry

MA German and Portuguese

UCAS code: RR25

Duration: 4 years

Delivery: Full-time

School: Literatures, Languages and Cultures

College: Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences

Study abroad

Introducing MA German and Portuguese

With a long history of cultural achievement, migration and diaspora, German and Portuguese are your gateway to a great many countries and cultures in Europe, Latin America and Africa.

Studying this joint programme will provide you with intense training in both the written and spoken aspects of each language, as well as introducing you to an extraordinary range of literature, film and theatre from around the globe.

Another attractive characteristic of this programme is its flexibility. This means that in Years 1 and 2, you will choose option courses drawn from a broad list of disciplines in addition to your core subjects.

Uniquely in Scotland, studying at Edinburgh enables you to take a full year abroad as part of your four-year undergraduate programme, either studying, teaching or working. You'll therefore spend Year 3 in two countries, one in which German is spoken, and one in which Portuguese is spoken.

Year 1

If you haven't studied German before, you will take German 1A, an intensive language course. If your entry qualification for German is a Scottish Higher, A level, or equivalent, you will be admitted to German 1B, which covers language as well as literature and culture from 1770 to the present day.

You will study Portuguese 1, which caters for both beginners and more advanced students. As well as language learning, this course will introduce you to Portuguese-speaking literature through a selection of short stories from Mozambique, Angola, Brazil and Portugal.

You will also choose from a wide range of option courses offered by the University of Edinburgh.

Year 2

In Year 2 you will build on the spoken and written language skills you developed in Year 1. You will study the cultures and the societies of the Portuguese-speaking world, through literature, film and the arts. You will also study German literature and culture, choosing at least two courses from a suite of options. These are likely to include:

  • Researching Disability in German Literature & Society
  • Sexualities on the German Screen (title to be confirmed)
  • Culture, Modernity and the City in the Weimar Republic
  • Reading Antisemitism in Modern German Literature
  • The Contemporary Short Story in German
  • Migration in German-Language Discourse

As in Year 1, you will also choose other courses from a wide range offered by the University, including a great selection in European languages and cultures.

Year 3

You will spend Year 3 abroad, dividing your 30 weeks between German and Portuguese, and spending at least eight weeks in a country relevant to each language, either studying or completing a work/teaching placement.

During your year abroad, we will aim to ensure your experience is as beneficial as possible to your final year, as well as to your wider language learning, cultural awareness and skills development.

For example, you will take e-learning courses which will count as part of your Year 3 mark and prepare you for your Year 4 language courses.

Year 4

In Year 4 you will choose courses on topics such as film and literature, history, politics or language. You will also complete a dissertation or a long essay in either German or Portuguese.

Programme structure

Find out more about the compulsory and optional courses in this degree programme.

To give you an idea of what you will study on this programme, we publish the latest available information. However, please note this may not be for your year of entry, but for a different academic year.

Programme structure (2019/20)

Our facilities

Teaching takes place in and around the University of Edinburgh's Central Area in a world-leading festival city bursting with cinemas, theatres, galleries, libraries and collections, including outstanding German holdings in the National Library of Scotland.

We contribute actively to the local cultural scene, and you will be able to attend film screenings, performances and talks organised by members of staff for the wider public.

The University itself has excellent computing and audiovisual resources, support services and social spaces, including many in the School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures. Our Portuguese Language Centre is supported by Instituto Camões.

Our online magazine for European languages, Babble, is the place to publish your creative writing in both German and Portuguese.

Study abroad

You will spend Year 3 abroad, dividing your 30 weeks between German and Portuguese, and spending at least eight weeks in a country relevant to each language. This is your chance to immerse yourself in German-language and Lusophone culture, and to develop your broader life experience and skills towards life after university.

What are my options for going abroad?

How will I learn?

Courses are taught through a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials and computer-assisted learning. You will often work in independent learning groups with the guidance of experienced staff, and will have the opportunity to discuss the latest research of world-leading scholars.

Language teaching involves developing professional speaking and writing skills, as well as an introduction to professional translation techniques.

How will I be assessed?

You will be assessed by a combination of class participation and coursework - including presentations, podcasts and posters - as well as exams, including oral exams.

Programme details

Find out more about this programme's aims, what you will learn, how you will be assessed and what skills and knowledge you will develop.

To give you an idea of what to expect from this programme, we publish the latest available information. However, please note this may not be for your year of entry, but for a different academic year.

Programme details (2019/20)

More people speak German as their native language than any other in Europe, while Portuguese is the sixth most widely spoken language in the world. This combination of languages is your gateway to a great many countries and cultures, extending beyond Europe to Latin America and parts of Africa.

In Year 1, you will do a project in which you interview a German native speaker working in Edinburgh or Glasgow, giving you the opportunity to practise professional communication, find out about the value of languages in the workplace and gain some insights into possible career options.

Some of our graduates choose career paths in translation, interpreting, teaching or business, both at home and abroad. Others go on to work within the public or third sector, including for international charities or institutions of the European Union (both German and Portuguese are official working languages of the EU), or move into the creative industries, tourism and travel.

Employers increasingly value the excellent communication skills that come with language learning, the intercultural and critical awareness provided by international experiences, and imaginative thinking. Careers where these skills are particularly useful include marketing, law, and politics and policy work.

There are also opportunities to continue studying at postgraduate level, with Year 4 in particular developing the research skills you will need if you choose this path.

Standard entry requirement

The standard entry requirement is:

  • SQA Highers: AAAA-AAAB. BBB must be achieved in one year of S4-S6.
  • A Levels: AAA - ABB.
  • IB: 43 points with 776 at HL - 37 points with 666 at HL.

Minimum entry requirement

The minimum entry requirement for widening access applicants is:

  • SQA Highers: ABBB by end of S6. BBB must be achieved in one year of S4-S6.
  • A Levels: ABB.
  • IB: 34 points with 655 at HL.

More information for widening access applicants

Required subjects

The grades used to meet our entry requirements must include:

  • SQA: Highers: German at B. National 5s: English at C.
  • A Levels: German or Portuguese at B. GCSEs: English at C or 4.
  • IB: HL: German or Portuguese at 5. SL: English at 5.

Additional requirements

Language requirement

For degrees that have a subject requirement of a language other than English, students may not use their own native language to meet this requirement. In these instances, English or an alternative language other than native will be acceptable.

Find out more about entry requirements

International applicants

We welcome applications from students studying a wide range of international qualifications.

Entry requirements by country

Mature applicants

We welcome applications from mature students and accept a range of qualifications.

Mature applicant qualifications

You must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies, regardless of your nationality or country of residence.

SQA, GCSE and IB

For SQA, GCSE and IB students, unless a higher level is specified in the stated entry requirements, a pass is required in English at the following grades or higher:

  • SQA National 5 at C
  • SQA Standard Grade at 3
  • SQA Intermediate 1 at A
  • SQA Intermediate 2 at C
  • GCSE/IGSCE at C or 4
  • Level 2 Certificate Grade C
  • IB Standard Level at 5 (English ab initio is not accepted for entry)

English language tests

We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified:

  • IELTS Academic module overall 6.5 with 5.5 in each component.
  • TOEFL-iBT 92 or above with 20 in each section. We do not accept TOEFL MyBest Score to meet our English language requirements.
  • Cambridge English: Advanced or Proficiency overall 176 with 162 in each component.
  • Trinity ISE: ISE II with a distinction in all four componens.

We also accept a wider range of international qualifications and tests.

English language qualifications must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the degree you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, or Trinity ISE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

English language requirements

This information is part of a government initiative to enhance the material that higher education institutions provide about their degree programmes.

It is one of many sources of information which will enable you to make an informed decision on what and where to study.

Please note that some programmes do not have Discover Uni data available.

Tuition Fees

Tuition fees for MA German and Portuguese

Additional costs

For your compulsory residence abroad in Year 3, we give you a wide range of options. Your costs will depend on where you decide to go, and how you spend your time.

Universities outside the EU may charge you a fee for courses but we will reimburse you for this, provided the course has been approved. You will be informed about the cost implications as you plan your year abroad, during Year 2.

Funding

For more information on how much it will cost to study with us and the financial support available see our fees and funding information.

Fees and funding