Syllabus

GERMAN 202 COURSE SYLLABUS

The University of Alabama  Spring 2012
Instructor: Steve Krause             Office Hours: M 11-12 & by appt.
Office location: BB Comer 263                       Phone/Email:  348-7652;
spkrause@bama.ua.edu

Herzlich willkommen im Deutschsprachkurs German 202!

Prerequisites: German 201 or departmental approval.

Description: German 202 is the fourth course in a four-semester proficiency-based language sequence. German 201 is the prerequisite. This course, intended for intermediate students, stresses the four language skills areas: speaking, writing, listening and reading. Students complete reading, writing and listening assignments at home, which then become the basis for student-to-student interaction, small group work and role-play in class. The main text for the course is Stationen. Ein Kursbuch für die Mittelstufe (2nd Edition). Additional readings will be provided by the instructor. Both the textbook and the readings address a variety of cultural topics dealing with life in German-speaking countries.

HU (Humanities) designation: Overall, this course addresses the ability to deal with questions of values, ethics, and aesthetics as they are represented in literature and related fields within the Humanities which will be the focus. This course emphasizes the history and appreciation of the Humanities, rather than simply the ability to perform tasks at the written level.

Texts: Stationen (Prisca Augustyn and Nikolaus Euba) and the accompanying electronic QUIA workbook/Arbeitsbuch package, 2nd edition. Bring Stationen to class each day. The class covers chapters 6 through 11 in the textbook and electronic QUIA workbook. Read the “To the Student” section in the beginning of the main text (xiv-xv), if you have not already done so. Supplementary material may be provided by the instructor.

Also recommended:

(1) Cecile Zorach and Charlotte Melin (latest edition). English Grammar
for Students of German. Olivia & Hill Press.

(2) A good dictionary (Please consult your instructor for specifics).

Educational objectives: Upon successful completion of the course, students will have a reinforced understanding of German grammar and core vocabulary. Students will read, write, speak, and understand spoken German at the intermediate level (according to nationally recognized ACTFL guidelines). Students will become more proficient in maintaining communication with target language users that is not simply of a reactive nature, and they will be able to interact with texts and discourse beyond the paragraph/short utterance level.

Students will gain in-depth cultural awareness and perspectives of the German-speaking world. Intermediate level German language awareness opens up a mode of meaningful communication with others from across the globe. It allows students to better understand their own culture and language(s) through contrast and comparison with that of the target language. More broadly speaking, students gain a better understanding and respect for the phenomenon of language, a faculty which sets us apart from all other species, and thus teaches us something about what it is to be human.

LEARNING OUTCOMES:
At the end of the semester, students should be able to:

  1. Demonstrate intermediate understanding of German-speaking cultures and people.
  2. Demonstrate the ability to communicate well in German with native speakers and     classmates on the topics covered in class.
  3. Listen and understand passages and conversations in German related to chapter topics and vocabulary covered in class.
  4. Read and understand passages in German related to chapter topics and vocabulary.
  5. Write passages in German on the chapter topics and vocabulary covered in class.

GOALS:

  1. To review the German grammar and achieve higher levels of and greater consistency in grammatical accuracy.
  2. To expand vocabulary knowledge so that you will be able
    1. to talk and write about and comprehend a greater variety of topics.
    2. to talk and write about and comprehend already familiar topics with greater precision, i.e. so that you know more and more differentiated words to describe similar concepts or actions.

    You will also learn to learn and retain vocabulary most efficiently and according to your personal preferences.

  3. To learn how to write appropriate to certain genres, i.e., to select the appropriate style (e.g. relying heavily on nouns or verbs or adjectives; selecting the correct tense)and to organize a writing assignment according to certain rules (e.g. re the progression of paragraphs etc.).
  4. To develop successful reading strategies, according to different definitions of comprehension (e.g. getting the gist, being able to recount the content; analyze and  interpret the content etc.) and to practice reading at the example of a variety of text types and text topics.
  5. To improve listening abilities and strategies, through interaction in class and also through exposure to absolutely authentic and unedited native German speech, mainly in videos.
  6. To learn more about the cultures of the German speaking countries at the example of contemporary issues such as the environment, politics, historic developments etc., and at the example of literary works.
  7. To develop your speaking and listening abilities so that you will be able to converse with untrained (i.e., not used to English speakers; no professional German teachers etc.) native speakers of German on a variety of topics of general issues.

Assessment of objectives: A variety of modes of communication are used to ascertain successful progress toward the course objectives. An understanding of grammar, vocabulary, and target language cultural awareness is assessed through daily classroom participation (both oral and written), completion of written, contextualized homework, degrees of success in regular tests, occasional quizzes, and the final examination. Tests and quizzes typically employ both analytic and integrative tasks. Learners who do not indicate successful progress toward the noted educational objectives are notified at least midway through the term.

Attendance: Class attendance is important and therefore reflected in the final course grade. Students are responsible for obtaining information about work missed during absences. It is highly recommended that students exchange phone numbers in class for this purpose.

Extended absences of more than two consecutive class meetings should be reported to the instructor by phone or by leaving a written message in the instructor’s box. There are no make-ups for missed quizzes and other assignments; however, students with an excused absence are allowed to make up the missed homework. Medical or other official documentation is typically required to establish an excused absence. The instructor determines the validity of excuses.

Any absences beyond 3 will result in a lowering of the final semester grade by 2% per absence. For example, if you have a 90% for your final semester grade before absences are taken into consideration—and you have missed three total class meetings—your final semester grade would be reduced to an 88%.

Students who arrive late should be sure to inform the instructor of their attendance if role has already been taken. Please do this after class is dismissed. If the instructor deems being late or leaving early as disruptive, these instances will be considered the same as absences.

Disabilities: Students with disabilities are encouraged to contact and register with the Office of Disability Services (348-4285 or 348-3081 TTY, 133 B Martha Parham East).Once the appropriate paperwork is obtained, please see your instructor as soon as possible to arrange accommodations.

Academic Misconduct: Academic dishonesty, including but not limited to cheating, plagiarism, fabrication, and misrepresentation, is not allowed.Students committing such misconduct are reported to the Dean’s office.Consult your Academic Honor Code for details.

Classroom Decorum: The Code of Student Conduct requires that students behave in a manner that is conducive to a teaching/learning environment.Students who engage in behavior that is disruptive or obstructive to the teaching/learning environment will be subject to disciplinary sanctions outlined by the Code of Student Conduct.Disruptive/obstructive behavior is not limited to but may include the following: physical abuse, verbal abuse, threats, stalking, intimidation, harassment, hazing, possession of controlled substances and/or possession of alcoholic beverages.

UA Nondiscrimination Notice: The University of Alabama complies with applicable laws prohibiting discrimination, including Titles VI and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, Executive Order 11246, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Sections 503 and 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Vietnam Era Veterans Adjustment Assistance Act, the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, disability, or veteran status in admission or access to, or treatment of employment in, its programs and services.

Mechanics of the course:

Homework: Homework is assigned in class meetings, and will not be accepted late. They should be prepared in such a manner so that they may be easily turned in at the beginning of the next class meeting; however, the instructor may not collect homework each class meeting. Expect to spend up to 2 hours on homework outside of class for every one hour you are in class. Be prepared to orally respond about previous work in class. Please check over your returned homework. Errors may have been marked, but not corrected for you. It is your responsibility to come up with the correct answers. It is a good idea to monitor your own work after you complete it to the best of your ability. Homework counts for 15% of your final grade.

Language Resource Center: Students are responsible for going to the LRC or other appropriate computer work space to do the lab exercises in the electronic workbook. It is best to break up the work assigned into several lab visits, since cramming too much at one time is not beneficial. Other German multi-media material is loaded onto the LRC computers.

Tagebücher: Each week you will write at least one “Tagebuch” entry in German, each at least 100 words in length; topics will either be assigned ahead of time or be up to you. In addition, for each chapter in Stationen you will complete a Videoblog entry.

Tests: A test will be given upon completion of every chapter or unit, otherwise there are quizzes. Tests and quizzes cover work done in class as well as homework. Make-up exams will not be given if the instructor is not notified in advance. Any activity that may be considered to be cheating by the instructor (e.g. use of mobile phones, laptops, etc.) may result in an automatic “0” on that test. There will be two reading exams given during the semester. Additional quizzes may be given at the instructor’s discretion; they make up 10% of the final semester grade.

Final exam: This is required for the course. It is comprehensive, covering all materials in the course. It contains an oral component worth 20% of the whole exam.The oral will be given at a time TBA. The written final exam is administered during the time noted in the official University Schedule. This can be found on the myBama website.THE FINAL MUST BE TAKEN AT THE SCHEDULED TIME. Time conflicts of final exams must be discussed with the instructor by April 9, 2012.

Extra credit: Students should realize that the instructor is not required to extend any extra credit opportunities to any student.

Grade breakdown:

20% Participation and attendance
15% QUIA
15% Other Homework and projects (including Tagebücher)
20% Chapter tests and quizzes
10% Reading exams
20% Final exam

Scale: 100-93 A, 92-90 A-, 89-87 B+, and so forth.

The class routine: The instructor will speak German in class. At times you will not understand every word. Do not be distressed by this. It is normal. Simply keep listening for words that you recognize. Most of the time these words will provide you with the cues you need to understand what is going on. Gradually you will understand more and more when you make the effort to listen carefully. A good language learner is a willing guesser who accepts the uncertainty of not knowing every single word.

The activities in the classroom are mainly concerned with the acquisition of active communication skills. Students are therefore encouraged to prepare oral assignments carefully in order to be able to participate freely in discussions. In addition, it is a good idea to try out newly learned phrases on classmates or other German-speaking acquaintances. You should bear in mind that even the most conscientious learning of all grammar concepts and vocabulary, which is also important, will not suffice; meaningful practice (i.e. real communicative situations) is of major importance. Consequently, working regularly with a partner is very helpful–and can be enjoyable.

Aside from the regular written material/books you have, you are responsible for the words and phrases which the instructor uses in class. You should have a language notebook which you review on a regular basis. This will make your life simple. One of the greatest keys to acquiring a foreign language is to make it a habit. Make your language review a somewhat brief but frequent habit.

Cell phones, laptops, and similar electronic devices are not to be used during class time.

A schedule of important dates (for tests/quizzes, etc.) will be handed out separately.

Emergency preparedness statement: In the event of an emergency and courses cannot be held in their normal locations on campus or at their normal meeting times, the instructor will communicate details about the course on eLearning.For further information, please visit UA’s emergency preparedness page: http://prepare.ua.edu/

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