University of Reading cookie policy

We use cookies on to improve your experience, monitor site performance and tailor content to you

Read our cookie policy to find out how to manage your cookie settings


German has 110 million native speakers worldwide and is first place in terms of numbers of native speakers in the European Union. 24% of the EU's population speak German as their first language. Germany is the UK's most important trading partner.  It is the world's third largest contributor to research and development, placing German in second place as the most important scientific language.

British Council (2014), Languages for the Future

What's it like to learn German with the IWLP?

Have you heard that German is hard? As an English speaker, you have a head start because German and English are related languages and share thousands of similar words. German also has clear pronunciation and spelling rules, so once you have learned the basics, you can tackle any of its famously long words.

Read posts from former students on our blog. You can also read about how you’ll learn a language and the reasons why you should learn a language.

As an IWLP German student, you may get the chance for some extra-curricular activities such as weekly conversation clubs and film screenings, as well as trips to UK-based Christmas markets and German films and plays, depending on what is available. You can join the German Society, and there are Study Abroad opportunities in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland.

How do I sign up?

For detailed information, see our how to apply page. New students arriving for their first year who want to take IWLP for credit need to request to take the module via their support centre before week two of Semester 1. Existing students who want to take an IWLP module for credit in the following academic year need to sign up via RISIS module selection in April. All non-credit students must submit the non-credit application form please note that non-credit applications open in September.

Placement test

If you have any previous knowledge of German, you must complete the placement test so that we can put you in the correct stage please note that the placement test is only open from April to October.

Language ladder

If your placement test suggests that your ability is already higher than the modules offered by the IWLP, or if you have already completed Stage 3, you might be able to enrol on one of the language modules offered within the degree programme, which are available as credit and non-credit options.

More information is available from the German Language Lead.

Modules available


This beginner’s module is for students who have no prior knowledge or virtually no knowledge of German. This module will provide an introduction to German, concentrating on its use in familiar, everyday situations. Students will acquire a basic understanding of the language and the ability to communicate at a survival level.

German 1 module description


This post-beginner module is for students who have some basic knowledge of German, such as that acquired by attending LA1PG1 or equivalent. Students will increase their ability to communicate in German by consolidating and building on their existing knowledge of language necessary for everyday situations.

German 2 module description


This lower-intermediate module is for students who have some previous knowledge of German, such as that acquired by attending LA1PG2 or equivalent. Students will increase their ability to communicate in German through engagement with a range of socially relevant and interesting topics, such as migration, the climate and generational relationships, and a short research project.

German 3 module description