Britain has overtaken France to become Germany’s biggest global trade partner…, solidifying the emergence of a "special relationship" between Europe’s two like-minded northern powers.
Daily Telegraph, January 2013

Why choose German?

The value of speaking German

A study, led by James Foreman-Peck of Cardiff Business School, has estimated that lack of foreign-language proficiency in Britain costs the economy £48 billion ($80 billion), or 3.5% of GDP.

The Economist showed the value of speaking German in a work context.

German has a long tradition of success at Eltham College and it can be combined with any subject.

The Course

We follow the AQA languages A level course. In the Lower Sixth, you will learn a range of topics about which you will already have considerable knowledge and opinions (the internet, television, sport, family, celebrity, healthy living, advertising). You will discuss these subjects and write essays about them. In the Upper Sixth, things get more serious as we consider racism, politics, the environment, violence, immigration and scientific development. You will also study the novel Der Vorleser by Bernhard Schlink and the film Good-bye Lenin! by Wolfgang Becker. The former deals with the burden of the Second World War; the latter looks at the fall of the Berlin Wall and the disappearance of East Germany from an unexpectedly comic, yet poignant and personal perspective.

A level German will enable you to look at these topics in a foreign language and you will leave with a skill which may just define where you live, the career you choose, the books you read, the music you listen to, the films you see and so much more.

At the very least, you will have studied a subject which can be combined with many University courses.


A period of time spent abroad is an integral part of Sixth Form German. Pupils in the Lower Sixth spend a week on the Exchange to the Bertolt Brecht Schule in Nuremberg, which culminates in a weekend spent in Berlin. In 2014, our visits will include the DokuZentrum and the Courthouse of the Nuremberg War Trials, the CineCitta picture palace and the Udo Lindenberg musical Hinterm Horizont in Berlin.

In recent years the Upper Sixth have returned to Nuremberg for a second, consecutive exchange visit and they will do so again in 2014.

In 2015, a return trip to the Austrian Capital Vienna is planned.

The Teaching

Four lessons per teacher, with an additional lesson in preparation for the speaking exam.


We take advantage of our proximity to london and take students to see many films and West End plays.

The department has an extensive collection of recent German DVDs. As well as the weighty, historical favourites, we have more light-hearted fare such as Kokowäah 1 and 2.

An Introduction to Literature module is taught after the AS exam.

Extra classes are taught in preparation for University Entrance.

What happens next?

Many recent leavers have gone on to study a combined Degree course which involves German. Many have gone on to study or work in Germany. To name a few: Tom read German at Oxford, travelled across Europe by train with Michael Portillo, wrote the questions for Pointless and is now creating new programmes for ITV. Louisa worked with Naomi Campbell and was a runner on Splash. She has recently been filming a hard-hitting documentary on the streets of Glasgow. Stephen read Natural Sciences at Cambridge and has been living in Berlin since last Autumn. Joe spent a year working in Frankfurt and has now moved into real estate.


German is taught by: