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The Freie Universität Berlin European Studies Program (FU-BEST) was specifically created by one of Germany’s top universities to offer North American and international students cultural and business courses focusing on Germany and its role in Europe.

What's Included?

Highlights

Pre Departure Services

Advising

@api Online System

Orientation Materials and Resources

Access to International Phone Plans

API Alumni Network

Social Networking

Scholarships

On Site Services

Airport Reception

On-Site Orientation

Excursions (overnight, day, international)

Resident Director

Tuition

Medical and Life Insurance

Social and Cultural Activities

Welcome and Farewell Group Meals

Volunteer Opportunities

Transit Pass

Tutoring

Housing (two meals per day and laundry with host family)

Re-Entry Services

Re-Entry Materials and Support

Post-Program Evaluation

Transcript

Alumni Network and Global Leadership Academy

View all opportunities and amenities

Application Requirements

  •  3.0 G.P.A.
  • Open to second-semester sophomores, juniors, and seniors
  • Open to all levels of German speakers
  • Completed API Application
  • University Approval Form
  • One letter of recommendation
  • Official transcript
  • Copy of passport
  • Entry requirements: valid passport with temporary residence permit (more information provided post-acceptance)

API students participate in several excursions per session designed to help familiarize them with areas of their host city, country, and surrounding region. The following is a listing of all excursions for API Berlin programs. All excursions are subject to change.

  • Berlin

    Semester students at FU-BEST visit four sites in and around Berlin on selected Fridays as an integral and mandatory part of the overall academic program: the Reichstag building (including a session of the German parliament) and/or the Chancellor’s Office (Bundeskanzleramt), the site of the former Nazi concentration camp at Sachsenhausen, the former prison complex in Berlin-Hohenschönhausen of East Germany’s state security police (Stasi), and the royal palace Sanssouci, as well as the 1945 allied conference site in nearby Potsdam.

    Day Trips

    Local field-trips to relevant areas of interest around Berlin comprise an integral component of many of the courses. Semester students also receive a pass for use in all museums associated with the Foundation for State Museums in Berlin (Staatliche Museen zu Berlin). Details vary per course and term.

  • Potsdam

    Potsdam is undoubtedly one of Germany’s most beautiful cities. Nestled in a charming cultural landscape dotted with palaces and historic gardens, which have been on the UNESCO’s World Cultural Heritage list since 1990, turn the capital of the Federal State of Brandenburg into a great travel destination, suiting all sorts of interests and demands.

    The Sanssouci palace was the summer residence of Frederick the Great. Georg Wenzeslaus von Knobelsdorff built it above the terraced vineyard from 1745 to 1747 following the King’s ideas and sketches. The palace is considered the major work of Rococo architecture in Germany. Paintings by Watteau, Panini and Pesne are on exhibit in the picture gallery.

  • Week-Long Excursion

    API semester students on the FU-BEST program will have the unique opportunity to visit an exciting German or another European city through the program on a week-long excursion. Possible locations may include Munich, Dresden, or Hamburg in Germany, or Budapest, Hungary, Copenhagen, Denmark, London, England, Paris or Strasbourg, France, Prague, Czech Republic, or Vienna, Austria. These week-long excursions change each term, so please check the API website and speak with your Program Manager for details on your semester of interest.
  • Dresden

    Dresden is the capital city of the state of Saxony. It is situated in a valley on the River Elbe, near the Czech border. The Dresden conurbation is part of the Saxon Triangle metropolitan area with 2.4 million inhabitants.

    Dresden has a long history as the capital and royal residence for the Electors and Kings of Saxony, who for centuries furnished the city with cultural and artistic splendor. The city was known as the Jewel Box, because of its baroque and rococo city center.

    A controversial Allied aerial bombing towards the end of World War II killed 25,000 civilians and destroyed the entire city center. The impact of the bombing and 40 years of urban development during the East German communist era have considerably changed the face of the city.

    Some restoration work has helped to reconstruct parts of the historic inner city, including the Katholische Hofkirche, the Semper Opera and the Dresdner Frauenkirche. Since German reunification in 1990, Dresden has regained importance as one of the cultural, educational, political and economic centers of Germany and Europe.

  • Leipzig

    Leipzig is the most populous city in the state of Saxony, Germany, and it is located about 160 kilometers (99 mi) southwest of Berlin. It has become known as one of the most trendy and up-and-coming cities in all of Germany – even rivaling Berlin! The historic central area of Leipzig features a renaissance style ensemble of buildings from the 16th century, including the old city hall in the marketplace. There are also several baroque period trading houses and former residences of rich merchants. The ‘it’ district, Plagwitz, is decked out in industrial chimneys and brick housing combined with rejuvenated, once derelict buildings.

  • Berlin

    Semester students at FU-BEST visit four sites in and around Berlin on selected Fridays as an integral and mandatory part of the overall academic program: the Reichstag building (including a session of the German parliament) and/or the Chancellor’s Office (Bundeskanzleramt), the site of the former Nazi concentration camp at Sachsenhausen, the former prison complex in Berlin-Hohenschönhausen of East Germany’s state security police (Stasi), and the royal palace Sanssouci, as well as the 1945 allied conference site in nearby Potsdam.

    Day Trips

    Local field-trips to relevant areas of interest around Berlin comprise an integral component of many of the courses. Semester students also receive a pass for use in all museums associated with the Foundation for State Museums in Berlin (Staatliche Museen zu Berlin). Details vary per course and term.

  • Munich

    Munich is well-known for Oktoberfest, but it has so much more to offer than those fun festivities. Students will get to see the City outside of the masses which are coming in the fall and experience the calmness and unique atmosphere of the biggest city in the south of Germany. Munich not only has many museums and castles to offer, but also many biergartens and open-air restaurants!

  • Potsdam

    Potsdam is undoubtedly one of Germany’s most beautiful cities. Nestled in a charming cultural landscape dotted with palaces and historic gardens, which have been on the UNESCO’s World Cultural Heritage list since 1990, turn the capital of the Federal State of Brandenburg into a great travel destination, suiting all sorts of interests and demands.

    The Sanssouci palace was the summer residence of Frederick the Great. Georg Wenzeslaus von Knobelsdorff built it above the terraced vineyard from 1745 to 1747 following the King’s ideas and sketches. The palace is considered the major work of Rococo architecture in Germany. Paintings by Watteau, Panini and Pesne are on exhibit in the picture gallery.

  • Week-Long Excursion

    API semester students on the FU-BEST program will have the unique opportunity to visit an exciting German or another European city through the program on a week-long excursion. Possible locations may include Munich, Dresden, or Hamburg in Germany, or Budapest, Hungary, Copenhagen, Denmark, London, England, Paris or Strasbourg, France, Prague, Czech Republic, or Vienna, Austria. These week-long excursions change each term, so please check the API website and speak with your Program Manager for details on your semester of interest.
  • Berlin

    Semester students at FU-BEST visit four sites in and around Berlin on selected Fridays as an integral and mandatory part of the overall academic program: the Reichstag building (including a session of the German parliament) and/or the Chancellor’s Office (Bundeskanzleramt), the site of the former Nazi concentration camp at Sachsenhausen, the former prison complex in Berlin-Hohenschönhausen of East Germany’s state security police (Stasi), and the royal palace Sanssouci, as well as the 1945 allied conference site in nearby Potsdam.

    Day Trips

    Local field-trips to relevant areas of interest around Berlin comprise an integral component of many of the courses. Semester students also receive a pass for use in all museums associated with the Foundation for State Museums in Berlin (Staatliche Museen zu Berlin). Details vary per course and term.

  • Munich

    Munich is well-known for Oktoberfest, but it has so much more to offer than those fun festivities. Students will get to see the City outside of the masses which are coming in the fall and experience the calmness and unique atmosphere of the biggest city in the south of Germany. Munich not only has many museums and castles to offer, but also many biergartens and open-air restaurants!

  • Potsdam

    Potsdam is undoubtedly one of Germany’s most beautiful cities. Nestled in a charming cultural landscape dotted with palaces and historic gardens, which have been on the UNESCO’s World Cultural Heritage list since 1990, turn the capital of the Federal State of Brandenburg into a great travel destination, suiting all sorts of interests and demands.

    The Sanssouci palace was the summer residence of Frederick the Great. Georg Wenzeslaus von Knobelsdorff built it above the terraced vineyard from 1745 to 1747 following the King’s ideas and sketches. The palace is considered the major work of Rococo architecture in Germany. Paintings by Watteau, Panini and Pesne are on exhibit in the picture gallery.

  • Week-Long Excursion

    API semester students on the FU-BEST program will have the unique opportunity to visit an exciting German or another European city through the program on a week-long excursion. Possible locations may include Munich, Dresden, or Hamburg in Germany, or Budapest, Hungary, Copenhagen, Denmark, London, England, Paris or Strasbourg, France, Prague, Czech Republic, or Vienna, Austria. These week-long excursions change each term, so please check the API website and speak with your Program Manager for details on your semester of interest.
  • Dresden

    Dresden is the capital city of the state of Saxony. It is situated in a valley on the River Elbe, near the Czech border. The Dresden conurbation is part of the Saxon Triangle metropolitan area with 2.4 million inhabitants.

    Dresden has a long history as the capital and royal residence for the Electors and Kings of Saxony, who for centuries furnished the city with cultural and artistic splendor. The city was known as the Jewel Box, because of its baroque and rococo city center.

    A controversial Allied aerial bombing towards the end of World War II killed 25,000 civilians and destroyed the entire city center. The impact of the bombing and 40 years of urban development during the East German communist era have considerably changed the face of the city.

    Some restoration work has helped to reconstruct parts of the historic inner city, including the Katholische Hofkirche, the Semper Opera and the Dresdner Frauenkirche. Since German reunification in 1990, Dresden has regained importance as one of the cultural, educational, political and economic centers of Germany and Europe.

  • Leipzig

    Leipzig is the most populous city in the state of Saxony, Germany, and it is located about 160 kilometers (99 mi) southwest of Berlin. It has become known as one of the most trendy and up-and-coming cities in all of Germany – even rivaling Berlin! The historic central area of Leipzig features a renaissance style ensemble of buildings from the 16th century, including the old city hall in the marketplace. There are also several baroque period trading houses and former residences of rich merchants. The ‘it’ district, Plagwitz, is decked out in industrial chimneys and brick housing combined with rejuvenated, once derelict buildings.

What You’ll Study

TOTAL CREDITS - 12-17 credits per semester

The Freie Universität Berlin European Studies Program (FU-BEST) was specifically created by one of Germany’s top universities to offer North American and international students cultural and business courses focusing on Germany and its role in Europe.

What is unique about this program is that it is primarily offered in English, and on the North American calendar (as opposed to many other German universities which operate on a different academic calendar). All students are required to take a German language course, and depending on their level they will follow a regular (3-4 credit for beginners) or intensive (6-8 for non-beginners) credit option. They then select 2-4 culture options to round out their academic schedule.

Advanced-level German speakers may wish to consider the GermanPLUS+ track. The GermanPLUS+ track consists of two German language courses and three subject courses, all taught in German.

In addition to being one of Germany’s and Europe’s top universities, the FU-BEST program meets the FORUM on Education Abroad’s standards of excellence. FU-BEST is a fantastic option for students looking to study abroad in Berlin and who want to receive high-quality instruction in their native language.

Students who are interested in studying at FU-BEST for an academic year are very welcome to do so. University protocol dictates that students should first apply only for the semester of their arrival. Arrangements to extend their stay for an additional semester will be made on-site. Students are advised to speak with their home university about whether they should be registered as an academic year student in advance or wait until their arrival on-site in Germany (and the subsequent extension of their stay) to modify their standing at the home university.

TRANSCRIPTS

API students receive their transcript from Freie Universität Berlin European Studies Program (FU-BEST) upon completion of their program.

Staff & Coordinators

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    Christopher Pepin

    Christopher Pepin will be your Resident Director and a resource for you on-site.

  • Claudio

    Claudio Schoeneberger

    Claudio will be your Resident Coordinator in Berlin and a resource for you while you are with us in Germany!

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    Gabi Perches

    Gabi Perches will be your Program Coordinator and prepare you to go abroad!

    Email - gabriela.perches@apiabroad.com

COURSE OFFERINGS

Students are required to take a German language course (either the regular or intensive track), and then may choose from a wide range of courses taught in English. Students taking the intensive German track can only take a maximum of 3 culture courses per term. There is also an option to take a GermanPLUS+ track. Students are encouraged to apply early, as courses fill up quickly. Courses are subject to change, and no course is guaranteed.

GERMAN PLUS+ TRACK

GermanPLUS+ is a package consisting of two German language courses and three subject courses, all taught in German and designed to meet the needs and interests of students with advanced German language abilities.

This track is only available to students at the advanced level and consists of a pre-set menu of classes (see below). Participants need to have German language skills on the C1 or C2 level, either through formal education or through being a (near-)native speaker. All course assignments and most of the readings will be in German. Upon successful completion, participants are awarded 20 ECTS credits.

Depending on their German level at the start of the program, students will take German C2 (Advanced) or DaF unterrichten (Teaching German as a Foreign Language) during the first half of the semester, and Wissenschaftliches Schreiben auf Deutsch (Academic Writing in German) during the second half. Language courses take place in the morning, Monday through Thursday.

CREDIT INFORMATION

The FU-BEST program, hosted at the Freie Universität Berlin, issues credit according to the American system, whereby most courses are worth 3-4 U.S. credits each.

LANGUAGE INFORMATION

Although the FU-BEST program does not have a German language prerequisite, each participant in the program is required to enroll in German on-site. Those who are (or intend to become) German language majors/minors at home and/or have any demonstrated prior knowledge of German beyond the absolute beginner level need to enroll in the double-course (“Intensive”) German language program, which involves 12 hours per week (Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. until noon) for 12 weeks. These students will normally complete 2 levels of German language training in the course of the semester. The decision regarding transfer to the next language level depends on the result of the student’s midterm exam (which thus serves as a final exam for the first part of this two-course track). Students who have completed the Advanced 1 or 2 (C1 or 2) level of German language instruction during the first semester and wish to stay on for the second semester are invited to enroll in the GermanPLUS+ program.

In addition to the double-course intensive track, the FU-BEST program also offers a single-course track of “Experiential Beginning German” for non-majors/non-minors with no prior knowledge of German only, comprising 6 hours of instruction per week (Monday and Thursday, 9 a.m. until noon) and a local field-trip featuring applied language learning every other week. Non-majors/non-minors may, however, also sign up for the double-course intensive track (Beginner level) instead, if they wish.

Each language section features a midterm exam, a final exam, quizzes, and regular homework. The language program utilizes resources and hands-on experiences available in the Berlin area, particularly in the form of course-related local field-trips.

The FU-BEST program awards workload-based ECTS (European Credit Transfer System) credits. 1 ECTS requires 30 hours of workload at Freie Universität Berlin. FU-BEST participants receive 7 ECTS (normally equivalent to 6-8 U.S. semester credits) for successful completion of the Intensive German, with the exact number of credits to be transferred left up to participants’ home institutions to decide. “Experiential Beginning German” is worth 5 ECTS (3-4 U.S. semester credits), with the exact transfer again left to the discretion of the home institution.

The teaching books, methods, and additional materials conform to the standards of the Common European Frame of Reference for Languages (CEFR) which are by and large comparable to the standards for Foreign Language Learning of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages. Communication, the acquisition, and improvement of all linguistic competences and of self-correction strategies, cultural context, and a steep progression play an essential role in our curriculum. In the Intensive German language instruction, we use Begegnungen and Erkundungen of the Schubert Verlag in Leipzig; in “Experiential Beginning German”, we use Hueber Verlag’s Menschen A1. Much in this syllabus is intended for use by German language faculty at North American colleges and universities whose students plan to participate in the FU-BEST program, in order to facilitate advising and program review.

NOTE: The distinctions between competency levels prevalent in North America do not always easily match what is common in Germany. However, using a three-step placement process, students at FU-BEST are placed into the German level which best fits their abilities and which ensures the biggest possible progress during their stay in Berlin.

Einführung in die deutsche Sprache (Experiential Beginning German)

This course is designed for the beginner student who has no prior knowledge of German and does not major/minor in German. It will enable you to get familiarized with the German lan- guage and to deal with everyday situations during your stay in Berlin. You will develop basic communicative competences in listening, speaking, reading, and writing.

Language of Instruction: German    Language Level Required: Beginner   Course Level: Upper Division  

Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

Combined 2-level Intensive German

Those who are (or intend to become) German language majors/minors at home and/or have any demonstrated prior knowledge of German beyond the absolute beginner level need to enroll in the double-course (“Intensive”) German language program, which involves 12 hours per week (Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. until noon) for 12 weeks. These students will normally complete 2 levels of German language training in the course of the semester.

Language of Instruction: German   

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 1: Contemporary Germany in European Perspective

This course provides a brief historical review, and then shifts to a consideration of such topics and issues as German/European society, the political systems (including institutions, parties, and elections), institutions, parties, and elections), welfare state features, and socio-economic welfare state features, and socioeconomic policies, with accompanying consideration of characteristics and developments in neighboring European countries.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 2: Integration, Conflict, and Security in Europe

This course surveys and examines a variety of aspects of international politics in Europe, with particular focus on the Cold War and post-Cold War eras. We will review the postwar history of international politics in Europe, followed by an in-depth study of European integration in general and the European Union in particular, the role played by security organizations (especially NATO and the Organization for Security & Cooperation in Europe), U.S. and Soviet/Russian policy toward Europe, the eruption of ethno-political conflict (especially in the Balkans), the international impact of Germany's recent reunification, and the quest for order, security, and stability in a region that is no longer divided by the Iron Curtain but in which international politics continues to be shaped and affected by East-West as well as North-South contrasts.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 3: Exploring Classical Music: Baroque to Contemporary

Within a basic cultural studies framework, this course covers the history of European Classical music paying particular attention to German speaking regions. Musical examples from different periods between the 18th and 20th centuries give a historical overview and introduce musically relevant topics. These are then addressed in their relation to their broader cultural contexts: social, political, aesthetic, etc. A focus of the course is the (reciprocal) relationships between music and the broader culture of the society in which it develops (music as a ‘product’ of a cultural situation/ music as it impacts the cultural situation in which it exists).

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 4: Perspectives on 20th – Century Art In Central Europe

["This course surveys the visual arts in Central Europe from the rise of modernism around 1900 to the present after postmodernism, with a strong focus on German art. It aims to study the individual works closely and interpret them critically by analysing\ntheir formal structure, style and technique, iconography etc.","consider the concerns of\nthe artists who created them","and place the works within their wider historical, philosophical, political, social and cultural backgrounds as well as within the\ninternational development of the visual arts in Western Europe and \u2013 in the second\nhalf of the 20th century \u2013 the US."]

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 6: The Human Condition and the Totalitarian Experience

The course focuses on the classical concept of the totalitarian state developed by Hannah Arendt and others, which takes Hitler and Stalin as the primary models for this uniquely 20th century political system. We will be covering some of the subsequent modifications in the theory of totalitarianism, insights gained from the close examination of historical changes and developments, especially in the former Soviet Empire.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 7: Berlin: History, Memory, Literature

This course will explore representations and topographies of Berlin between the first German unification and the second, focusing on the major events and conflicts that have left their mark on this urban landscape: the rise of the modern metropolis, economic depression and social unrest, the two World Wars, Nazism and the Holocaust, and the Cold War and its aftermath — in short, the most disruptive and defining events of the twentieth century.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 8: Modern German History in European Context – A Thematic Approach

the course addresses various topics in German and European 20th century history: different political ideas, systems and movements, as well as social and cultural developments. We will compare and contrast the German variety of these phenomena with other European varieties. Two major themes are the struggles between democracy and dictatorship, and capitalism and communism, which played out through the 20th century. The course will connect these essentially ideological struggles to the two World Wars and the ensuing "Cold War", to memories of trauma, to the history of everyday life, pop culture and gender, and to the experience of youth and immigrants in Germany.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 9b: Tragedy and New Beginnings in German Philosophy – From Marx and Nietzsche to Habermas

The two Philosophy courses offered by the FU-BEST program are survey courses. They address the historical reality of German philosophy in two chronological parts: In the second part (FU-BEST 9b), offered during the Spring semester, we discuss the later development of German philosophy in the nineteenth century and its historical tragedy in the twentieth century. This will include a discussion of the links between Marx and Marxism, between Nietzsche and the German political/ideological right- wing, between the ‘Vienna circle’ and the scientific revolution of the early twentieth century, as well as between German academic philosophy and Nazism.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 10: Islam and Europe: Historical and Contemporary Dimensions

This course will take a closer look at Muslims and Islam in Europe and will try to analyze and discuss the present condition of Muslims living in Europe from a socio-anthropological perspective. Here issues such as Muslim-state relations, gender, and religious practices of Muslims in Europe will be examined and accompanied by a critical analysis of certain public controversies concerning Islam.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 11: European Business Cultures: Management and Marketing in Cross-National Perspective (5 ECTS; 3 U.S. Credits)

The objectives of the course are to enhance the students’ understanding of the high variety of European business cultures and to learn about the corresponding variety of management styles. The course provides an interconnected focus on the state of the European Union, its social economies, business ethics and the standards of corporate social responsibility with corporate cultures, their marketing pressures and aspects of multicultural team development. Companies in different parts of Europe will be subject to case-study analysis.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 12: Architecture in Berlin from the 19th Century to Today

This course provides an overview of the development of public and private architecture in Berlin during the 19th, 20th, and 21st centuries. Following an introduction to architectural terms and an examination of the urban development and architectural history of the Modern era, the Neo-Classical period will be surveyed with special reference to the works of Schinkel. This will be followed by sessions on the architecture of the German Reich after 1871, which was characterized by both modern and conservative tendencies, and the manifold activities during the time of the Weimar Republic in the 1920s. The course concludes with a detailed review of the city’s contemporary and future architectural profiles.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 13: Contemporary Cinema in Germany and Europe

["The course invites students to explore and critically reflect upon the current state of\nGerman cinema in a European context. It falls into three parts: the first part will\nintroduce students to historical, cultural, and critical paradigms pertaining to the\ncurrent situation of European cinema.The three parts will\ncover the following subjects: film and authorship","art cinema vs. popular cinema","the\nconcept of national cinema","the formation of history, memory, and cultural identity in\nfilm","film production and film policy","film culture and the role of film festivals."]

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 16: Themes and Issues in Transatlantic Relations

This course surveys and analyzes the interaction between Europe and America since 1945 in the fields of politics, economics, and culture. Special emphasis will be placed on the roles of the United States, Germany, and the European Union. The first part will have a timeline approach, discussing cooperation and divergence of interests during and after the Cold War and after 9/11. During the second part, we will focus on issues of common concern for the U.S. and Europe today and on challenges, both external and internal, facing the transatlantic partnership and affecting social cohesion of the “West”.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 17: European Legal Traditions

The course seeks to provide a broad overview of European legal traditions from a social, political, economic and comparative perspectives. Starting with Roman Law, its coverage ranges from discussing the authority of law in history, literature, economics and religion, through the creation of the European legal frameworks up to the establishment of a human rights tradition in Europe and beyond. Focus is given to the wider scope of legal developments in history that have shaped the conceptualization of law in present-day Europe and beyond. The first session will be dedicated to how social aspects (i.e. geography and religion) influence European legal developments. During the second session we will deal with the fascist tendencies leading to World War Two.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 18: Environmental Politics and Policy in Europe

After a brief recap of the basics of policy-making in the EU, students will learn about the guiding principles and developments within the EU’s environmental policy. Subsequently, the course will cover the major environmental challenges we are facing currently. In the first part of the course (sessions 1-6), we will discuss the functioning of the European Union to be able to better understand the factors influencing European environmental policy and politics. The second part of the course (sessions 7-12) will be devoted to different forms of pollution, such as air, noise, water and soil pollution, as well as humanity’s impact on biodiversity loss. The last session will be devoted to discussing the challenges and the opportunities for the future of the environmental policy.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 19: Art and Dictatorship

This course provides an introduction to art and politics in the context of dictatorship, focused on the examples of Hitler's Germany, Stalin's USSR, Mussolini's Italy, and Franco's Spain. In the first part of the semester, students will gain an understanding of art in a democratic society by analyzing the art and architecture of the Weimar Republic in Germany. Official art and architecture in Germany, Italy, and the Soviet Union will then be examined, focusing on the works of Albert Speer, Giuseppe Terragni, Arno Breker, and Leni Riefenstahl. Modernist and Jewish artists were persecuted, forced into emigration or deported to concentration camps.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 20: Pop Culture – European-American Trends

In this seminar, we will consider the many facets and dimensions of pop culture, including its cultural history and the possibilities hidden within what is often assumed to be nothing more than entertainment. Some of the topics we will address are popular culture’s reflection of discourse, its capability of criticizing or affirming the status quo, and the various modes of ideology within. We will cover all relevant pop culture representations: film, television, comic books, fiction, radio, music, paintings etc. and will discuss their significance within the historical frame of reference as well as their international social impact.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 21: European Traditions in Sociology

While American sociology is best known for its strong empirical orientation (‘social research’), sociology in Europe has developed further the theoretical traditions of the classics (‘social theory’). The aim of the course will be to portray prominent European sociologists and apply their ideas to the challenges of our time.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 22: Media Politics: Structures and Case-Studies in Germany and Europe

This course introduces its participants to mass media systems and structures in Germany and Europe and provides them with the analytical tools and background knowledge to assess the ways in which the mass media and politics interact and thus shape each other. At the end of the course, students will also have the opportunity to compare European and American media politics and to ask whether there may be trends and influences across the Atlantic (one or both ways) that are shaping today’s politics and mass media on both sides.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 23: History of Modern Diplomacy

This course surveys the history of German diplomacy in the context of European diplomacy from the involvement of European diplomacy in the U.S.revolutionary war from 1776 to 1783 until today. The course will examine the continued relationship between European diplomacy and U.S. diplomacy and the influence of other players on the world scene. The course will show that it is essential to focus on the past as a basis for understanding the present and making intelligent guesses about the future. The most current issues of diplomacy in Europe and the world and their potential impact on the future, also in light of the events of the past, will be discussed in the context of press surveys (student presentations) at the beginning of each session.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 24: Europe in the Global Economy

The European Communities were conceived as a union of democratic nations shaping the economic and social model of the world. Is the permanent enlargement process that made the EU big paying off? In a changing global economy, what is Europe’s comparative advantage? “One market – one money” was what Europeans believed in. In a crisis not coming to an end the common currency is seen more and more as liability. Is an ill-designed Euro going to blow up the Eurozone? a look at Europe’s social model shall tell how free markets and social responsibility are combined for more inclusion and less income disparities within member states.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 25: Jewish Life in Central Europe

This course will introduce and discuss canonic texts by European-Jewish authors from Moses Mendelssohn to Paul Celan. It thus gives an extensive overview of German-Jewish culture since the late 18th century. Every class session starts off with a contextualization of the historic circumstances in which each text was created.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 26: Statistics for the Social Sciences – Quantitative Research Methods

This course aims to acquaint students with the basic concepts in statistics and equip them with a toolbox to conduct their own quantitative research in a social science context. The course covers key statistical concepts, descriptive and inferential statistics as well as (multiple) regression. The emphasis of the course is on understanding statistical concepts and developing the ability to apply them as well as to critically read and interpret quantitative research, and less on the mathematical details and proofs of the methods.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 27: Women’s and Gender Studies in Transatlantic Context

["This course on gender and women\u2019s studies in a\ntransatlantic context focuses on the boundary\u2014that which both divides and unites. We investigate sexed and gendered boundaries between bodies, communities, cultures, classes, races, ethnicities, religions, sexualities, and nations. Our exploration of boundaries is grouped into three units: the way sex\/gender boundaries are mapped onto the body","analyzing\nconceptualizations of citizenship as practices of drawing boundaries","the boundary between the public and the private in an investigation of gender (politics), migration and work, including sex work and domestic work. Our guiding approach is one of transnational feminism, which seeks to find solidarity between women by understanding and embracing their differences. Ultimately, our analysis of a multiplicity of subject positions and histories reveals the overall instability of the sex\/gender system."]

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 28: Film Music: Listening Outside the Frame

In this course, we will uncover an equally important, yet often overlooked, component of film: music. Over the course of the semester we will examine how music has contributed to the success and evolution of films throughout the history of the film industry in North America and Europe. Each week will focus on one genre—for example, action/adventure, horror, musicals—with detailed discussions of representative works in these genres from a variety of time periods and locations.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 30: Energizing Europe: 21st-Century Renewable and Fossil Transformations

Today, the EU is seen as a world leader in alternative energy efforts, notably Germany’s Energiewende to replace coal and nuclear with wind and solar for electricity. We begin by looking at Europe’s previous energy transitions, each the product of larger, industrial revolutions. Informed by this history, we then critically examine Germany’s Energiewende (EW) and EU energy policy. Throughout, we compare the German and EU energy reality to US policy. The course should be of interest to students of either social or natural sciences.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 32: The Reformation Heritage

This course explores the legacy of the Protestant Reformation on Germany and Europe in light of its upcoming 500th commemoration. It discusses the linkages between the intellectual and religious dynamics of the epoch of the Augustinian monk Martin Luther and those of our modern society. In doing so, it explores the basic question to what extent we can interpret modern aspects of and changes in the realms of religion, politics, economics, science, and art as a demonstrable outgrowth of the Reformation and its aftermath. The aim of this course is not to present an uncritical Reformation history with Martin Luther as some kind of comprehensive “initiator of modern times”, but to inquire into the political, societal, and religious transformation that began in the 16th century and (perhaps) still shapes our age.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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Green Business: German and European Sustainable Entrepreneurship

This course provides an introduction to recent developments in Germany and the EU with regard to a green and sustainable economy. It offers theoretical as well as practical insights based on conceptual discussions, case studies, a field trip, and group work to develop a green business case. This course begins by exploring key concepts for a green and sustainable economy in the German and European policy contexts and then looks at the development that has taken place both at the political level and in the economy in recent time. We then focus on the micro-level, i.e. the businesses themselves. The goal of the course is to provide the students with a theoretical foundation in the development of green and sustainable solutions within the economic context of Germany and Europe and to develop an understanding of how sustainable entrepreneurship is unfolding creative potential and opportunities for environmental improvements using core business activities.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division division  

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FU-BEST 34: Migration: Dynamics and Controversies in Europe and Berlin

The European Union consists of pluralist nation-states. This is official policy up to the highest levels of the EU-bureaucracy, in which “any discrimination based on any ground such as sex, race, color, ethnic or social origin, genetic features, language, religion or belief, political or any other opinion, membership of a national minority, property, birth, disability, age, or sexual orientation shall be prohibited.” In the lecturing-parts of the sessions, migration dynamics, discourses and policies in the wake of the 2015 “refugee crisis” on the European and the German level will be introduced. Then we will ground our discussions of the respective topics on content-related as well as theory-oriented texts, which provide us with alternative viewpoints.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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German C2 (Advanced 2) - GermanPlus+ Track

This course will enable you to approximate your competence in speaking and writing German as well as your vocabulary to the native-speaker level. This includes understanding connotations and idioms as well as using stylistically and situationally appropriate forms of communication.

Language of Instruction: German    Language Level Required: Advanced   Course Level: Upper Division  

Course Level: Upper Division  

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Deutsch-ALS-Fremdsprache (DAF) Unterrichten – Eine Einführung (Teaching German as a Foreign Language) - GermanPlus+ Track

This course introduces students to teaching German as a Foreign Language (“Deutsch als Fremdsprache”, DaF). Participants will be familiarized with theories of (foreign) language acquisition and linguistics and get to know tools, methods, and strategies with which to design, implement, evaluate, and optimize DaF lessons.

Language of Instruction: German    Language Level Required: Advanced   Course Level: Upper Division  

Course Level: Upper Division  

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Wissenschaftliches Schreiben Auf Deutsch (Academic Writing in German) - GermanPlus+ Track

This course offers a compact introduction to academic text production methods. Students will be familiarized with the structure and style of different academic text forms and create according texts themselves. We will prepare for these text productions through exercises dealing with, among others, creating theses and definitions and with the construction and elaboration of an argument.

Language of Instruction: German    Language Level Required: Advanced   Course Level: Upper Division  

Course Level: Upper Division  

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Theatermetropole Berlin: Gegenwart und Vergangenheit (Theater Metropolis Berlin: Past and Present) - GermanPlus+ Track

We examine classic and Director's theater productions, theater-critical receptions, political participation of theater in a multicultural society, experimental stylistic devices, taboo Breaks, persistent issues.

Language of Instruction: German    Language Level Required: Advanced   Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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Deutschland un seine Kunst – ein Nation in Bildern (Germany and Its Art – a Nation in Pictures) - GermanPlus+ Track

During the semester, we will select examples of German art, with the focus on famous national icons, analyze them more closely and include them in theirs overarching historical, philosophical, political, social and arrange cultural connections. Comparisons to international developments of visual arts in Western Europe and (in the second half of the semester) in the US. At the end of the course the participants should learn about the methods and the terminology, artworks on their formal structure, their style and the used technique and their imagery to investigate. You can do it in the further political and cultural environment of their time and conditions evaluate their production and reception. The students acquire special knowledge about German art from the last two centuries and about its double relevance as a mirror, but also as a designer of German identity within the German society.

Language of Instruction: German    Language Level Required: Advanced   Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 5   Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 31: Deutsch, Deutscher, Deutschland: Identität(en), Geschichte, Politik (German, German, Germany: Identity(ies), History, Politics) - GermanPlus+ Track

What is "German", who is "German"? Who defines that and who decides about it - Politicians, scientists, groups, each one for themselves? How does "German" feel? his "on? What makes you a "German" and who might think he / she is German than others (and why)? What is "Germany", where is "Germany"? Since when is there even a "Germany", and is it still one "Germany" or not rather several "Germany" s? And what to think actually others about "the Germans"? The course will address these questions (and more) from different angles illuminate - those of history, sociology, politics and politics Cultural studies.

Language of Instruction: German    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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Einführung in die deutsche Sprache (Experiential Beginning German)

This course is designed for the beginner student who has no prior knowledge of German and does not major/minor in German. It will enable you to get familiarized with the German lan- guage and to deal with everyday situations during your stay in Berlin. You will develop basic communicative competences in listening, speaking, reading, and writing.

Language of Instruction: German    Language Level Required: Beginner   Course Level: Upper Division  

Course Level: Upper Division  

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Combined 2-level Intensive German

Those who are (or intend to become) German language majors/minors at home and/or have any demonstrated prior knowledge of German beyond the absolute beginner level need to enroll in the double-course (“Intensive”) German language program, which involves 12 hours per week (Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. until noon) for 12 weeks. These students will normally complete 2 levels of German language training in the course of the semester.

Language of Instruction: German   

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FU-BEST 1: Contemporary Germany in European Perspective

This course provides a brief historical review, and then shifts to a consideration of such topics and issues as German/European society, the political systems (including institutions, parties, and elections), institutions, parties, and elections), welfare state features, and socio-economic welfare state features, and socioeconomic policies, with accompanying consideration of characteristics and developments in neighboring European countries.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 2: Integration, Conflict, and Security in Europe

This course surveys and examines a variety of aspects of international politics in Europe, with particular focus on the Cold War and post-Cold War eras. We will review the postwar history of international politics in Europe, followed by an in-depth study of European integration in general and the European Union in particular, the role played by security organizations (especially NATO and the Organization for Security & Cooperation in Europe), U.S. and Soviet/Russian policy toward Europe, the eruption of ethno-political conflict (especially in the Balkans), the international impact of Germany's recent reunification, and the quest for order, security, and stability in a region that is no longer divided by the Iron Curtain but in which international politics continues to be shaped and affected by East-West as well as North-South contrasts.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 3: Exploring Classical Music: Baroque to Contemporary

Within a basic cultural studies framework, this course covers the history of European Classical music paying particular attention to German speaking regions. Musical examples from different periods between the 18th and 20th centuries give a historical overview and introduce musically relevant topics. These are then addressed in their relation to their broader cultural contexts: social, political, aesthetic, etc. A focus of the course is the (reciprocal) relationships between music and the broader culture of the society in which it develops (music as a ‘product’ of a cultural situation/ music as it impacts the cultural situation in which it exists).

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 4: Perspectives on 20th – Century Art In Central Europe

["This course surveys the visual arts in Central Europe from the rise of modernism around 1900 to the present after postmodernism, with a strong focus on German art. It aims to study the individual works closely and interpret them critically by analysing\ntheir formal structure, style and technique, iconography etc.","consider the concerns of\nthe artists who created them","and place the works within their wider historical, philosophical, political, social and cultural backgrounds as well as within the\ninternational development of the visual arts in Western Europe and \u2013 in the second\nhalf of the 20th century \u2013 the US."]

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 5: German Cinema Before 1945

["The course offers an overview of the development of film in Germany from World War I through the end of the National Socialist period. While this course centers on close readings of works that belong to the canon of German film, it also includes examples of popular, experimental and documentary filmmaking. The course hopes to achieve three interrelated aims: 1) to introduce students to fundamental elements of film and film analysis","2) to foster a critical understanding of how film functions both as entertainment and as an art form","3) to explore the developments within German\nfilm in light of specific historical and cultural frameworks"]

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 6: The Human Condition and the Totalitarian Experience

The course focuses on the classical concept of the totalitarian state developed by Hannah Arendt and others, which takes Hitler and Stalin as the primary models for this uniquely 20th century political system. We will be covering some of the subsequent modifications in the theory of totalitarianism, insights gained from the close examination of historical changes and developments, especially in the former Soviet Empire.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 7: Berlin: History, Memory, Literature

This course will explore representations and topographies of Berlin between the first German unification and the second, focusing on the major events and conflicts that have left their mark on this urban landscape: the rise of the modern metropolis, economic depression and social unrest, the two World Wars, Nazism and the Holocaust, and the Cold War and its aftermath — in short, the most disruptive and defining events of the twentieth century.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 8: Modern German History in European Context – A Thematic Approach

the course addresses various topics in German and European 20th century history: different political ideas, systems and movements, as well as social and cultural developments. We will compare and contrast the German variety of these phenomena with other European varieties. Two major themes are the struggles between democracy and dictatorship, and capitalism and communism, which played out through the 20th century. The course will connect these essentially ideological struggles to the two World Wars and the ensuing "Cold War", to memories of trauma, to the history of everyday life, pop culture and gender, and to the experience of youth and immigrants in Germany.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 9a: The Promise of German Philosophy – Kant to Hegel

The two Philosophy courses offered by the FU-BEST program are survey courses. They address the historical reality of German philosophy in two chronological parts: in the first part (FU-BEST 9a), offered during the Fall semester, we follow the emergence and full deployment of German philosophy from its Kantian beginnings to Hegel’s grand but fragile synthesis (and its critique by the Young Hegelians as well as by the late Schelling), trying to understand its richness as well as its limitations.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 10: Islam and Europe: Historical and Contemporary Dimensions

This course will take a closer look at Muslims and Islam in Europe and will try to analyze and discuss the present condition of Muslims living in Europe from a socio-anthropological perspective. Here issues such as Muslim-state relations, gender, and religious practices of Muslims in Europe will be examined and accompanied by a critical analysis of certain public controversies concerning Islam.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 11: European Business Cultures: Management and Marketing in Cross-National Perspective (5 ECTS; 3 U.S. Credits)

The objectives of the course are to enhance the students’ understanding of the high variety of European business cultures and to learn about the corresponding variety of management styles. The course provides an interconnected focus on the state of the European Union, its social economies, business ethics and the standards of corporate social responsibility with corporate cultures, their marketing pressures and aspects of multicultural team development. Companies in different parts of Europe will be subject to case-study analysis.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 12: Architecture in Berlin from the 19th Century to Today

This course provides an overview of the development of public and private architecture in Berlin during the 19th, 20th, and 21st centuries. Following an introduction to architectural terms and an examination of the urban development and architectural history of the Modern era, the Neo-Classical period will be surveyed with special reference to the works of Schinkel. This will be followed by sessions on the architecture of the German Reich after 1871, which was characterized by both modern and conservative tendencies, and the manifold activities during the time of the Weimar Republic in the 1920s. The course concludes with a detailed review of the city’s contemporary and future architectural profiles.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 16: Themes and Issues in Transatlantic Relations

This course surveys and analyzes the interaction between Europe and America since 1945 in the fields of politics, economics, and culture. Special emphasis will be placed on the roles of the United States, Germany, and the European Union. The first part will have a timeline approach, discussing cooperation and divergence of interests during and after the Cold War and after 9/11. During the second part, we will focus on issues of common concern for the U.S. and Europe today and on challenges, both external and internal, facing the transatlantic partnership and affecting social cohesion of the “West”.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 17: European Legal Traditions

The course seeks to provide a broad overview of European legal traditions from a social, political, economic and comparative perspectives. Starting with Roman Law, its coverage ranges from discussing the authority of law in history, literature, economics and religion, through the creation of the European legal frameworks up to the establishment of a human rights tradition in Europe and beyond. Focus is given to the wider scope of legal developments in history that have shaped the conceptualization of law in present-day Europe and beyond. The first session will be dedicated to how social aspects (i.e. geography and religion) influence European legal developments. During the second session we will deal with the fascist tendencies leading to World War Two.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 18: Environmental Politics and Policy in Europe

After a brief recap of the basics of policy-making in the EU, students will learn about the guiding principles and developments within the EU’s environmental policy. Subsequently, the course will cover the major environmental challenges we are facing currently. In the first part of the course (sessions 1-6), we will discuss the functioning of the European Union to be able to better understand the factors influencing European environmental policy and politics. The second part of the course (sessions 7-12) will be devoted to different forms of pollution, such as air, noise, water and soil pollution, as well as humanity’s impact on biodiversity loss. The last session will be devoted to discussing the challenges and the opportunities for the future of the environmental policy.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 19: Art and Dictatorship

This course provides an introduction to art and politics in the context of dictatorship, focused on the examples of Hitler's Germany, Stalin's USSR, Mussolini's Italy, and Franco's Spain. In the first part of the semester, students will gain an understanding of art in a democratic society by analyzing the art and architecture of the Weimar Republic in Germany. Official art and architecture in Germany, Italy, and the Soviet Union will then be examined, focusing on the works of Albert Speer, Giuseppe Terragni, Arno Breker, and Leni Riefenstahl. Modernist and Jewish artists were persecuted, forced into emigration or deported to concentration camps.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 20: Pop Culture – European-American Trends

In this seminar, we will consider the many facets and dimensions of pop culture, including its cultural history and the possibilities hidden within what is often assumed to be nothing more than entertainment. Some of the topics we will address are popular culture’s reflection of discourse, its capability of criticizing or affirming the status quo, and the various modes of ideology within. We will cover all relevant pop culture representations: film, television, comic books, fiction, radio, music, paintings etc. and will discuss their significance within the historical frame of reference as well as their international social impact.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 21: European Traditions in Sociology

While American sociology is best known for its strong empirical orientation (‘social research’), sociology in Europe has developed further the theoretical traditions of the classics (‘social theory’). The aim of the course will be to portray prominent European sociologists and apply their ideas to the challenges of our time.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 22: Media Politics: Structures and Case-Studies in Germany and Europe

This course introduces its participants to mass media systems and structures in Germany and Europe and provides them with the analytical tools and background knowledge to assess the ways in which the mass media and politics interact and thus shape each other. At the end of the course, students will also have the opportunity to compare European and American media politics and to ask whether there may be trends and influences across the Atlantic (one or both ways) that are shaping today’s politics and mass media on both sides.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 23: History of Modern Diplomacy

This course surveys the history of German diplomacy in the context of European diplomacy from the involvement of European diplomacy in the U.S.revolutionary war from 1776 to 1783 until today. The course will examine the continued relationship between European diplomacy and U.S. diplomacy and the influence of other players on the world scene. The course will show that it is essential to focus on the past as a basis for understanding the present and making intelligent guesses about the future. The most current issues of diplomacy in Europe and the world and their potential impact on the future, also in light of the events of the past, will be discussed in the context of press surveys (student presentations) at the beginning of each session.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 24: Europe in the Global Economy

The European Communities were conceived as a union of democratic nations shaping the economic and social model of the world. Is the permanent enlargement process that made the EU big paying off? In a changing global economy, what is Europe’s comparative advantage? “One market – one money” was what Europeans believed in. In a crisis not coming to an end the common currency is seen more and more as liability. Is an ill-designed Euro going to blow up the Eurozone? a look at Europe’s social model shall tell how free markets and social responsibility are combined for more inclusion and less income disparities within member states.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 25: Jewish Life in Central Europe

This course will introduce and discuss canonic texts by European-Jewish authors from Moses Mendelssohn to Paul Celan. It thus gives an extensive overview of German-Jewish culture since the late 18th century. Every class session starts off with a contextualization of the historic circumstances in which each text was created.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 26: Statistics for the Social Sciences – Quantitative Research Methods

This course aims to acquaint students with the basic concepts in statistics and equip them with a toolbox to conduct their own quantitative research in a social science context. The course covers key statistical concepts, descriptive and inferential statistics as well as (multiple) regression. The emphasis of the course is on understanding statistical concepts and developing the ability to apply them as well as to critically read and interpret quantitative research, and less on the mathematical details and proofs of the methods.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 27: Women’s and Gender Studies in Transatlantic Context

["This course on gender and women\u2019s studies in a\ntransatlantic context focuses on the boundary\u2014that which both divides and unites. We investigate sexed and gendered boundaries between bodies, communities, cultures, classes, races, ethnicities, religions, sexualities, and nations. Our exploration of boundaries is grouped into three units: the way sex\/gender boundaries are mapped onto the body","analyzing\nconceptualizations of citizenship as practices of drawing boundaries","the boundary between the public and the private in an investigation of gender (politics), migration and work, including sex work and domestic work. Our guiding approach is one of transnational feminism, which seeks to find solidarity between women by understanding and embracing their differences. Ultimately, our analysis of a multiplicity of subject positions and histories reveals the overall instability of the sex\/gender system."]

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 29: Music in the Digital Age

Digitalization has significantly transformed and affected musical practices and aesthetics. New means of recording, processing, analysis and reproduction have profoundly changed the ways in which music is composed, produced, performed, disseminated and consumed. Sound synthesis and computational methods of structure generation have opened up new compositional possibilities. In this course, we will examine the development of electronic, computer music and sound art as well as more general shifts in the consumption and production of music.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 30: Energizing Europe: 21st-Century Renewable and Fossil Transformations

Today, the EU is seen as a world leader in alternative energy efforts, notably Germany’s Energiewende to replace coal and nuclear with wind and solar for electricity. We begin by looking at Europe’s previous energy transitions, each the product of larger, industrial revolutions. Informed by this history, we then critically examine Germany’s Energiewende (EW) and EU energy policy. Throughout, we compare the German and EU energy reality to US policy. The course should be of interest to students of either social or natural sciences.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

FU-BEST 32: The Reformation Heritage

This course explores the legacy of the Protestant Reformation on Germany and Europe in light of its upcoming 500th commemoration. It discusses the linkages between the intellectual and religious dynamics of the epoch of the Augustinian monk Martin Luther and those of our modern society. In doing so, it explores the basic question to what extent we can interpret modern aspects of and changes in the realms of religion, politics, economics, science, and art as a demonstrable outgrowth of the Reformation and its aftermath. The aim of this course is not to present an uncritical Reformation history with Martin Luther as some kind of comprehensive “initiator of modern times”, but to inquire into the political, societal, and religious transformation that began in the 16th century and (perhaps) still shapes our age.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

View Syllabus   

Green Business: German and European Sustainable Entrepreneurship

This course provides an introduction to recent developments in Germany and the EU with regard to a green and sustainable economy. It offers theoretical as well as practical insights based on conceptual discussions, case studies, a field trip, and group work to develop a green business case. This course begins by exploring key concepts for a green and sustainable economy in the German and European policy contexts and then looks at the development that has taken place both at the political level and in the economy in recent time. We then focus on the micro-level, i.e. the businesses themselves. The goal of the course is to provide the students with a theoretical foundation in the development of green and sustainable solutions within the economic context of Germany and Europe and to develop an understanding of how sustainable entrepreneurship is unfolding creative potential and opportunities for environmental improvements using core business activities.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division division  

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FU-BEST 34: Migration: Dynamics and Controversies in Europe and Berlin

The European Union consists of pluralist nation-states. This is official policy up to the highest levels of the EU-bureaucracy, in which “any discrimination based on any ground such as sex, race, color, ethnic or social origin, genetic features, language, religion or belief, political or any other opinion, membership of a national minority, property, birth, disability, age, or sexual orientation shall be prohibited.” In the lecturing-parts of the sessions, migration dynamics, discourses and policies in the wake of the 2015 “refugee crisis” on the European and the German level will be introduced. Then we will ground our discussions of the respective topics on content-related as well as theory-oriented texts, which provide us with alternative viewpoints.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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German C2 (Advanced 2) - GermanPlus+ Track

This course will enable you to approximate your competence in speaking and writing German as well as your vocabulary to the native-speaker level. This includes understanding connotations and idioms as well as using stylistically and situationally appropriate forms of communication.

Language of Instruction: German    Language Level Required: Advanced   Course Level: Upper Division  

Course Level: Upper Division  

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Deutsch-ALS-Fremdsprache (DAF) Unterrichten – Eine Einführung (Teaching German as a Foreign Language) - GermanPlus+ Track

This course introduces students to teaching German as a Foreign Language (“Deutsch als Fremdsprache”, DaF). Participants will be familiarized with theories of (foreign) language acquisition and linguistics and get to know tools, methods, and strategies with which to design, implement, evaluate, and optimize DaF lessons.

Language of Instruction: German    Language Level Required: Advanced   Course Level: Upper Division  

Course Level: Upper Division  

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Wissenschaftliches Schreiben Auf Deutsch (Academic Writing in German) - GermanPlus+ Track

This course offers a compact introduction to academic text production methods. Students will be familiarized with the structure and style of different academic text forms and create according texts themselves. We will prepare for these text productions through exercises dealing with, among others, creating theses and definitions and with the construction and elaboration of an argument.

Language of Instruction: German    Language Level Required: Advanced   Course Level: Upper Division  

Course Level: Upper Division  

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Theatermetropole Berlin: Gegenwart und Vergangenheit (Theater Metropolis Berlin: Past and Present) - GermanPlus+ Track

We examine classic and Director's theater productions, theater-critical receptions, political participation of theater in a multicultural society, experimental stylistic devices, taboo Breaks, persistent issues.

Language of Instruction: German    Language Level Required: Advanced   Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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Deutschland un seine Kunst – ein Nation in Bildern (Germany and Its Art – a Nation in Pictures) - GermanPlus+ Track

During the semester, we will select examples of German art, with the focus on famous national icons, analyze them more closely and include them in theirs overarching historical, philosophical, political, social and arrange cultural connections. Comparisons to international developments of visual arts in Western Europe and (in the second half of the semester) in the US. At the end of the course the participants should learn about the methods and the terminology, artworks on their formal structure, their style and the used technique and their imagery to investigate. You can do it in the further political and cultural environment of their time and conditions evaluate their production and reception. The students acquire special knowledge about German art from the last two centuries and about its double relevance as a mirror, but also as a designer of German identity within the German society.

Language of Instruction: German    Language Level Required: Advanced   Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 5   Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 31: Deutsch, Deutscher, Deutschland: Identität(en), Geschichte, Politik (German, German, Germany: Identity(ies), History, Politics) - GermanPlus+ Track

What is "German", who is "German"? Who defines that and who decides about it - Politicians, scientists, groups, each one for themselves? How does "German" feel? his "on? What makes you a "German" and who might think he / she is German than others (and why)? What is "Germany", where is "Germany"? Since when is there even a "Germany", and is it still one "Germany" or not rather several "Germany" s? And what to think actually others about "the Germans"? The course will address these questions (and more) from different angles illuminate - those of history, sociology, politics and politics Cultural studies.

Language of Instruction: German    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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Einführung in die deutsche Sprache (Experiential Beginning German)

This course is designed for the beginner student who has no prior knowledge of German and does not major/minor in German. It will enable you to get familiarized with the German lan- guage and to deal with everyday situations during your stay in Berlin. You will develop basic communicative competences in listening, speaking, reading, and writing.

Language of Instruction: German    Language Level Required: Beginner   Course Level: Upper Division  

Course Level: Upper Division  

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Combined 2-level Intensive German

Those who are (or intend to become) German language majors/minors at home and/or have any demonstrated prior knowledge of German beyond the absolute beginner level need to enroll in the double-course (“Intensive”) German language program, which involves 12 hours per week (Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. until noon) for 12 weeks. These students will normally complete 2 levels of German language training in the course of the semester.

Language of Instruction: German   

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FU-BEST 1: Contemporary Germany in European Perspective

This course provides a brief historical review, and then shifts to a consideration of such topics and issues as German/European society, the political systems (including institutions, parties, and elections), institutions, parties, and elections), welfare state features, and socio-economic welfare state features, and socioeconomic policies, with accompanying consideration of characteristics and developments in neighboring European countries.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 2: Integration, Conflict, and Security in Europe

This course surveys and examines a variety of aspects of international politics in Europe, with particular focus on the Cold War and post-Cold War eras. We will review the postwar history of international politics in Europe, followed by an in-depth study of European integration in general and the European Union in particular, the role played by security organizations (especially NATO and the Organization for Security & Cooperation in Europe), U.S. and Soviet/Russian policy toward Europe, the eruption of ethno-political conflict (especially in the Balkans), the international impact of Germany's recent reunification, and the quest for order, security, and stability in a region that is no longer divided by the Iron Curtain but in which international politics continues to be shaped and affected by East-West as well as North-South contrasts.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 3: Exploring Classical Music: Baroque to Contemporary

Within a basic cultural studies framework, this course covers the history of European Classical music paying particular attention to German speaking regions. Musical examples from different periods between the 18th and 20th centuries give a historical overview and introduce musically relevant topics. These are then addressed in their relation to their broader cultural contexts: social, political, aesthetic, etc. A focus of the course is the (reciprocal) relationships between music and the broader culture of the society in which it develops (music as a ‘product’ of a cultural situation/ music as it impacts the cultural situation in which it exists).

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 4: Perspectives on 20th – Century Art In Central Europe

["This course surveys the visual arts in Central Europe from the rise of modernism around 1900 to the present after postmodernism, with a strong focus on German art. It aims to study the individual works closely and interpret them critically by analysing\ntheir formal structure, style and technique, iconography etc.","consider the concerns of\nthe artists who created them","and place the works within their wider historical, philosophical, political, social and cultural backgrounds as well as within the\ninternational development of the visual arts in Western Europe and \u2013 in the second\nhalf of the 20th century \u2013 the US."]

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 5: German Cinema Before 1945

["The course offers an overview of the development of film in Germany from World War I through the end of the National Socialist period. While this course centers on close readings of works that belong to the canon of German film, it also includes examples of popular, experimental and documentary filmmaking. The course hopes to achieve three interrelated aims: 1) to introduce students to fundamental elements of film and film analysis","2) to foster a critical understanding of how film functions both as entertainment and as an art form","3) to explore the developments within German\nfilm in light of specific historical and cultural frameworks"]

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 6: The Human Condition and the Totalitarian Experience

The course focuses on the classical concept of the totalitarian state developed by Hannah Arendt and others, which takes Hitler and Stalin as the primary models for this uniquely 20th century political system. We will be covering some of the subsequent modifications in the theory of totalitarianism, insights gained from the close examination of historical changes and developments, especially in the former Soviet Empire.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 7: Berlin: History, Memory, Literature

This course will explore representations and topographies of Berlin between the first German unification and the second, focusing on the major events and conflicts that have left their mark on this urban landscape: the rise of the modern metropolis, economic depression and social unrest, the two World Wars, Nazism and the Holocaust, and the Cold War and its aftermath — in short, the most disruptive and defining events of the twentieth century.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 8: Modern German History in European Context – A Thematic Approach

the course addresses various topics in German and European 20th century history: different political ideas, systems and movements, as well as social and cultural developments. We will compare and contrast the German variety of these phenomena with other European varieties. Two major themes are the struggles between democracy and dictatorship, and capitalism and communism, which played out through the 20th century. The course will connect these essentially ideological struggles to the two World Wars and the ensuing "Cold War", to memories of trauma, to the history of everyday life, pop culture and gender, and to the experience of youth and immigrants in Germany.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 9a: The Promise of German Philosophy – Kant to Hegel

The two Philosophy courses offered by the FU-BEST program are survey courses. They address the historical reality of German philosophy in two chronological parts: in the first part (FU-BEST 9a), offered during the Fall semester, we follow the emergence and full deployment of German philosophy from its Kantian beginnings to Hegel’s grand but fragile synthesis (and its critique by the Young Hegelians as well as by the late Schelling), trying to understand its richness as well as its limitations.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 9b: Tragedy and New Beginnings in German Philosophy – From Marx and Nietzsche to Habermas

The two Philosophy courses offered by the FU-BEST program are survey courses. They address the historical reality of German philosophy in two chronological parts: In the second part (FU-BEST 9b), offered during the Spring semester, we discuss the later development of German philosophy in the nineteenth century and its historical tragedy in the twentieth century. This will include a discussion of the links between Marx and Marxism, between Nietzsche and the German political/ideological right- wing, between the ‘Vienna circle’ and the scientific revolution of the early twentieth century, as well as between German academic philosophy and Nazism.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 10: Islam and Europe: Historical and Contemporary Dimensions

This course will take a closer look at Muslims and Islam in Europe and will try to analyze and discuss the present condition of Muslims living in Europe from a socio-anthropological perspective. Here issues such as Muslim-state relations, gender, and religious practices of Muslims in Europe will be examined and accompanied by a critical analysis of certain public controversies concerning Islam.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 11: European Business Cultures: Management and Marketing in Cross-National Perspective (5 ECTS; 3 U.S. Credits)

The objectives of the course are to enhance the students’ understanding of the high variety of European business cultures and to learn about the corresponding variety of management styles. The course provides an interconnected focus on the state of the European Union, its social economies, business ethics and the standards of corporate social responsibility with corporate cultures, their marketing pressures and aspects of multicultural team development. Companies in different parts of Europe will be subject to case-study analysis.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 12: Architecture in Berlin from the 19th Century to Today

This course provides an overview of the development of public and private architecture in Berlin during the 19th, 20th, and 21st centuries. Following an introduction to architectural terms and an examination of the urban development and architectural history of the Modern era, the Neo-Classical period will be surveyed with special reference to the works of Schinkel. This will be followed by sessions on the architecture of the German Reich after 1871, which was characterized by both modern and conservative tendencies, and the manifold activities during the time of the Weimar Republic in the 1920s. The course concludes with a detailed review of the city’s contemporary and future architectural profiles.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 13: Contemporary Cinema in Germany and Europe

["The course invites students to explore and critically reflect upon the current state of\nGerman cinema in a European context. It falls into three parts: the first part will\nintroduce students to historical, cultural, and critical paradigms pertaining to the\ncurrent situation of European cinema.The three parts will\ncover the following subjects: film and authorship","art cinema vs. popular cinema","the\nconcept of national cinema","the formation of history, memory, and cultural identity in\nfilm","film production and film policy","film culture and the role of film festivals."]

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 16: Themes and Issues in Transatlantic Relations

This course surveys and analyzes the interaction between Europe and America since 1945 in the fields of politics, economics, and culture. Special emphasis will be placed on the roles of the United States, Germany, and the European Union. The first part will have a timeline approach, discussing cooperation and divergence of interests during and after the Cold War and after 9/11. During the second part, we will focus on issues of common concern for the U.S. and Europe today and on challenges, both external and internal, facing the transatlantic partnership and affecting social cohesion of the “West”.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 17: European Legal Traditions

The course seeks to provide a broad overview of European legal traditions from a social, political, economic and comparative perspectives. Starting with Roman Law, its coverage ranges from discussing the authority of law in history, literature, economics and religion, through the creation of the European legal frameworks up to the establishment of a human rights tradition in Europe and beyond. Focus is given to the wider scope of legal developments in history that have shaped the conceptualization of law in present-day Europe and beyond. The first session will be dedicated to how social aspects (i.e. geography and religion) influence European legal developments. During the second session we will deal with the fascist tendencies leading to World War Two.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 18: Environmental Politics and Policy in Europe

After a brief recap of the basics of policy-making in the EU, students will learn about the guiding principles and developments within the EU’s environmental policy. Subsequently, the course will cover the major environmental challenges we are facing currently. In the first part of the course (sessions 1-6), we will discuss the functioning of the European Union to be able to better understand the factors influencing European environmental policy and politics. The second part of the course (sessions 7-12) will be devoted to different forms of pollution, such as air, noise, water and soil pollution, as well as humanity’s impact on biodiversity loss. The last session will be devoted to discussing the challenges and the opportunities for the future of the environmental policy.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 19: Art and Dictatorship

This course provides an introduction to art and politics in the context of dictatorship, focused on the examples of Hitler's Germany, Stalin's USSR, Mussolini's Italy, and Franco's Spain. In the first part of the semester, students will gain an understanding of art in a democratic society by analyzing the art and architecture of the Weimar Republic in Germany. Official art and architecture in Germany, Italy, and the Soviet Union will then be examined, focusing on the works of Albert Speer, Giuseppe Terragni, Arno Breker, and Leni Riefenstahl. Modernist and Jewish artists were persecuted, forced into emigration or deported to concentration camps.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 20: Pop Culture – European-American Trends

In this seminar, we will consider the many facets and dimensions of pop culture, including its cultural history and the possibilities hidden within what is often assumed to be nothing more than entertainment. Some of the topics we will address are popular culture’s reflection of discourse, its capability of criticizing or affirming the status quo, and the various modes of ideology within. We will cover all relevant pop culture representations: film, television, comic books, fiction, radio, music, paintings etc. and will discuss their significance within the historical frame of reference as well as their international social impact.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 21: European Traditions in Sociology

While American sociology is best known for its strong empirical orientation (‘social research’), sociology in Europe has developed further the theoretical traditions of the classics (‘social theory’). The aim of the course will be to portray prominent European sociologists and apply their ideas to the challenges of our time.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 22: Media Politics: Structures and Case-Studies in Germany and Europe

This course introduces its participants to mass media systems and structures in Germany and Europe and provides them with the analytical tools and background knowledge to assess the ways in which the mass media and politics interact and thus shape each other. At the end of the course, students will also have the opportunity to compare European and American media politics and to ask whether there may be trends and influences across the Atlantic (one or both ways) that are shaping today’s politics and mass media on both sides.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 23: History of Modern Diplomacy

This course surveys the history of German diplomacy in the context of European diplomacy from the involvement of European diplomacy in the U.S.revolutionary war from 1776 to 1783 until today. The course will examine the continued relationship between European diplomacy and U.S. diplomacy and the influence of other players on the world scene. The course will show that it is essential to focus on the past as a basis for understanding the present and making intelligent guesses about the future. The most current issues of diplomacy in Europe and the world and their potential impact on the future, also in light of the events of the past, will be discussed in the context of press surveys (student presentations) at the beginning of each session.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 24: Europe in the Global Economy

The European Communities were conceived as a union of democratic nations shaping the economic and social model of the world. Is the permanent enlargement process that made the EU big paying off? In a changing global economy, what is Europe’s comparative advantage? “One market – one money” was what Europeans believed in. In a crisis not coming to an end the common currency is seen more and more as liability. Is an ill-designed Euro going to blow up the Eurozone? a look at Europe’s social model shall tell how free markets and social responsibility are combined for more inclusion and less income disparities within member states.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 25: Jewish Life in Central Europe

This course will introduce and discuss canonic texts by European-Jewish authors from Moses Mendelssohn to Paul Celan. It thus gives an extensive overview of German-Jewish culture since the late 18th century. Every class session starts off with a contextualization of the historic circumstances in which each text was created.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 26: Statistics for the Social Sciences – Quantitative Research Methods

This course aims to acquaint students with the basic concepts in statistics and equip them with a toolbox to conduct their own quantitative research in a social science context. The course covers key statistical concepts, descriptive and inferential statistics as well as (multiple) regression. The emphasis of the course is on understanding statistical concepts and developing the ability to apply them as well as to critically read and interpret quantitative research, and less on the mathematical details and proofs of the methods.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 27: Women’s and Gender Studies in Transatlantic Context

["This course on gender and women\u2019s studies in a\ntransatlantic context focuses on the boundary\u2014that which both divides and unites. We investigate sexed and gendered boundaries between bodies, communities, cultures, classes, races, ethnicities, religions, sexualities, and nations. Our exploration of boundaries is grouped into three units: the way sex\/gender boundaries are mapped onto the body","analyzing\nconceptualizations of citizenship as practices of drawing boundaries","the boundary between the public and the private in an investigation of gender (politics), migration and work, including sex work and domestic work. Our guiding approach is one of transnational feminism, which seeks to find solidarity between women by understanding and embracing their differences. Ultimately, our analysis of a multiplicity of subject positions and histories reveals the overall instability of the sex\/gender system."]

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 28: Film Music: Listening Outside the Frame

In this course, we will uncover an equally important, yet often overlooked, component of film: music. Over the course of the semester we will examine how music has contributed to the success and evolution of films throughout the history of the film industry in North America and Europe. Each week will focus on one genre—for example, action/adventure, horror, musicals—with detailed discussions of representative works in these genres from a variety of time periods and locations.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 29: Music in the Digital Age

Digitalization has significantly transformed and affected musical practices and aesthetics. New means of recording, processing, analysis and reproduction have profoundly changed the ways in which music is composed, produced, performed, disseminated and consumed. Sound synthesis and computational methods of structure generation have opened up new compositional possibilities. In this course, we will examine the development of electronic, computer music and sound art as well as more general shifts in the consumption and production of music.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 30: Energizing Europe: 21st-Century Renewable and Fossil Transformations

Today, the EU is seen as a world leader in alternative energy efforts, notably Germany’s Energiewende to replace coal and nuclear with wind and solar for electricity. We begin by looking at Europe’s previous energy transitions, each the product of larger, industrial revolutions. Informed by this history, we then critically examine Germany’s Energiewende (EW) and EU energy policy. Throughout, we compare the German and EU energy reality to US policy. The course should be of interest to students of either social or natural sciences.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 32: The Reformation Heritage

This course explores the legacy of the Protestant Reformation on Germany and Europe in light of its upcoming 500th commemoration. It discusses the linkages between the intellectual and religious dynamics of the epoch of the Augustinian monk Martin Luther and those of our modern society. In doing so, it explores the basic question to what extent we can interpret modern aspects of and changes in the realms of religion, politics, economics, science, and art as a demonstrable outgrowth of the Reformation and its aftermath. The aim of this course is not to present an uncritical Reformation history with Martin Luther as some kind of comprehensive “initiator of modern times”, but to inquire into the political, societal, and religious transformation that began in the 16th century and (perhaps) still shapes our age.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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Green Business: German and European Sustainable Entrepreneurship

This course provides an introduction to recent developments in Germany and the EU with regard to a green and sustainable economy. It offers theoretical as well as practical insights based on conceptual discussions, case studies, a field trip, and group work to develop a green business case. This course begins by exploring key concepts for a green and sustainable economy in the German and European policy contexts and then looks at the development that has taken place both at the political level and in the economy in recent time. We then focus on the micro-level, i.e. the businesses themselves. The goal of the course is to provide the students with a theoretical foundation in the development of green and sustainable solutions within the economic context of Germany and Europe and to develop an understanding of how sustainable entrepreneurship is unfolding creative potential and opportunities for environmental improvements using core business activities.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division division  

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FU-BEST 34: Migration: Dynamics and Controversies in Europe and Berlin

The European Union consists of pluralist nation-states. This is official policy up to the highest levels of the EU-bureaucracy, in which “any discrimination based on any ground such as sex, race, color, ethnic or social origin, genetic features, language, religion or belief, political or any other opinion, membership of a national minority, property, birth, disability, age, or sexual orientation shall be prohibited.” In the lecturing-parts of the sessions, migration dynamics, discourses and policies in the wake of the 2015 “refugee crisis” on the European and the German level will be introduced. Then we will ground our discussions of the respective topics on content-related as well as theory-oriented texts, which provide us with alternative viewpoints.

Language of Instruction: English    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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German C2 (Advanced 2) - GermanPlus+ Track

This course will enable you to approximate your competence in speaking and writing German as well as your vocabulary to the native-speaker level. This includes understanding connotations and idioms as well as using stylistically and situationally appropriate forms of communication.

Language of Instruction: German    Language Level Required: Advanced   Course Level: Upper Division  

Course Level: Upper Division  

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Deutsch-ALS-Fremdsprache (DAF) Unterrichten – Eine Einführung (Teaching German as a Foreign Language) - GermanPlus+ Track

This course introduces students to teaching German as a Foreign Language (“Deutsch als Fremdsprache”, DaF). Participants will be familiarized with theories of (foreign) language acquisition and linguistics and get to know tools, methods, and strategies with which to design, implement, evaluate, and optimize DaF lessons.

Language of Instruction: German    Language Level Required: Advanced   Course Level: Upper Division  

Course Level: Upper Division  

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Wissenschaftliches Schreiben Auf Deutsch (Academic Writing in German) - GermanPlus+ Track

This course offers a compact introduction to academic text production methods. Students will be familiarized with the structure and style of different academic text forms and create according texts themselves. We will prepare for these text productions through exercises dealing with, among others, creating theses and definitions and with the construction and elaboration of an argument.

Language of Instruction: German    Language Level Required: Advanced   Course Level: Upper Division  

Course Level: Upper Division  

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Theatermetropole Berlin: Gegenwart und Vergangenheit (Theater Metropolis Berlin: Past and Present) - GermanPlus+ Track

We examine classic and Director's theater productions, theater-critical receptions, political participation of theater in a multicultural society, experimental stylistic devices, taboo Breaks, persistent issues.

Language of Instruction: German    Language Level Required: Advanced   Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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Deutschland un seine Kunst – ein Nation in Bildern (Germany and Its Art – a Nation in Pictures) - GermanPlus+ Track

During the semester, we will select examples of German art, with the focus on famous national icons, analyze them more closely and include them in theirs overarching historical, philosophical, political, social and arrange cultural connections. Comparisons to international developments of visual arts in Western Europe and (in the second half of the semester) in the US. At the end of the course the participants should learn about the methods and the terminology, artworks on their formal structure, their style and the used technique and their imagery to investigate. You can do it in the further political and cultural environment of their time and conditions evaluate their production and reception. The students acquire special knowledge about German art from the last two centuries and about its double relevance as a mirror, but also as a designer of German identity within the German society.

Language of Instruction: German    Language Level Required: Advanced   Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 5   Course Level: Upper Division  

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FU-BEST 31: Deutsch, Deutscher, Deutschland: Identität(en), Geschichte, Politik (German, German, Germany: Identity(ies), History, Politics) - GermanPlus+ Track

What is "German", who is "German"? Who defines that and who decides about it - Politicians, scientists, groups, each one for themselves? How does "German" feel? his "on? What makes you a "German" and who might think he / she is German than others (and why)? What is "Germany", where is "Germany"? Since when is there even a "Germany", and is it still one "Germany" or not rather several "Germany" s? And what to think actually others about "the Germans"? The course will address these questions (and more) from different angles illuminate - those of history, sociology, politics and politics Cultural studies.

Language of Instruction: German    Course Level: Upper Division  

Recommended US semester credits: 3   Contact Hours: 5 Course Level: Upper Division  

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Highlights
  • Courses in English and German
  • Program designed for international students
  • Tandem partner program
  • Special options for advanced German speakers
  • FORUM on Education Abroad QUIP accreditation
  • International excursion in spring

API semester/year students studying at FU-BEST will live in single, studio apartments located approximately a 45-50 minute commute from school, (typical for German students). Students can reach the city center from the apartments in about 20 minutes. All apartments come equipped with a kitchen, bathrooms, and common areas. Kitchen utensils can be rented for an additional fee. Washing machines are available, and students are responsible for their own meals. Between-term housing (the period between fall and spring semesters) is included for academic year students.

API semester/year students studying at FU-BEST will also have the option to live with a host family. Host families serve as a unique introduction into German culture and may be made up of a married couple with children, a divorced or widowed woman with children still at home, or a family with some members living at home and others living outside the home. Students living with a host family will have two meals per day provided. Students will have their own single room, and a key to come and go as they please. Between-term housing (the period between fall and spring semesters) is not included for academic year students, so these students will need to move their belongings out while they return home or travel over winter break.

A monthly transit pass is included for all students.

Session Program Dates Program Cost Application Deadline Payment Deadline
Spring Jan 26, 2020 - May 15, 2020 $16,750 Oct 1, 2019 Nov 1, 2019
Spring Jan 27, 2019 - May 17, 2019 $16,580 Oct 1, 2018 Nov 1, 2018
Fall Aug 18, 2019 - Dec 6, 2019 $16,580 Mar 1, 2019 Apr 1, 2019
Academic Year Aug 18, 2019 - May 15, 2020 $32,180 Mar 1, 2019 Apr 1, 2019