German Pupil Courses
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Please note: the application process is currently closed. The courses usually take place between mid-July and end of August every year. The application process for 2018 will open in the week beginning 22 January. The deadline for applications is 1 March 2018.
What are the German Pupil Courses?
The German Pupil Courses are two-week courses in Germany for UK pupils studying German. There are three courses every summer for 12 pupils and one accompanying teacher each. The courses are run by the Pädagogischer Austauschdienst (PAD), which is the German governmental institution in charge of international education at school level and works to develop and promote international co-operation at school level. The courses are administered in the UK by UK-German Connection. They are a fantastic opportunity for pupils to get first-hand experience of German life and culture and improve their German language skills at the same time.
Who can take part?
There are two possible course options:
Option 1 is for pupils who:
- are currently in year 12 (England, Wales) / year 13 (Northern Ireland) / S5 (Scotland)
- have been learning German for at least two years
- are permanent UK residents
Option 2 is for pupils who:
- are currently in year 10 (England, Wales) / year 11 (Northern Ireland) / S3 (Scotland)
- have been learning German for at least one year
- are permanent UK residents
Preference will be given to those showing particular ability in German. As competition for these places is high, places may be restricted to one place per school. Preference may also be given to those who have not previously had the chance to participate in similar opportunities.
Please note: this programme is for permanent UK residents only. It is not open to German nationals and German native speakers.
Where and when do the courses take place?
There are three courses in three different locations in Germany. The dates for the 2017 courses are:
- Option 1: 16 - 30 August 2017 (two courses)
- Option 2: 15 - 29 July 2017
IMPORTANT: Further information on the organisations responsible for the courses, host school and family selection, group leader selection and the safety measures in place on the courses is on our health and safety pages. Please click here to read these, as well as passing on the information to your teachers and parents.
What happens next?
We will contact all applicants by mid-April and notify them of the outcome of their application.
Participants are expected to take a very active and constructive part in all aspects of the programme and follow all programme guidelines and code of conduct. If participants don't comply with the rules, they may be sent home at their own / their parents' expenses.
Primary ambassadors project
Our courses include an element of practical outreach work for all participants, in order to bring an authentic element of German culture to primary schools, and to give participants an opportunity to share their experiences and learning with the wider community. Before the start of the course, participants will need to contact a local primary school for which they will prepare a small project (e.g. a workshop or a presentation) after their time in Germany. After the course, they go into the primary school and share their experiences with the pupils. Former participants have reported that this was an exciting and rewarding experience with benefits for not only them but also the primary teachers and pupils. On completion of their project, participants are required to provide us with brief feedback on the outcomes. Participants will receive guidance on the projects from UK-German Connection. You can read about previous participants' primary projects on the German Pupil Courses feedback page.
Participants are required to report on their time in Germany through a variety of media, including questionnaires, contributions to social media and a report, which will be featured on our website. The outcomes of the thematic workshop session and the primary ambassadors project will also be published on the UK-German Connection website. To view results of all projects and a summary of participants' reports from previous years, visit the German Pupil Courses feedback page.
How much does it cost?
The courses are part-funded by the German government through the Pädagogischer Austauschdienst (PAD) which covers all course-related costs in Germany. The Department for Education part-funds other programme costs, and participants are required to pay £300 to cover travel between London and the course centre, insurance and teachers' costs. Participants are also responsible for the cost of domestic travel to a London airport and pocket money.
Who will accompany the German Pupil Course participants?
The groups are met on departure at a London airport by a member of UK-German Connection staff and their group leaders, who are all qualified and vetted teachers. The teacher will accompany them to their destination and be their group leader during the entire stay in Germany.
Who organises travel?
UK-German Connection books return journeys between a London airport and the German destination. Participants arrange their own journey to and from the London airport. Individual travel arrangements to and from Germany are not possible nor can flight or travel dates be altered.
Before going to Germany
All participants will 'meet' in a closed online forum before travelling to Germany, giving them the opportunity to get to know each other beforehand, as well as discuss aspects of the courses such as travel to the airport and primary ambassadors projects. In addition, participants will also be able to contact peer mentors, who have previously participated in the German Pupil Courses.
If you have any questions, or would like further information on the programme, please contact our pupil programmes manager.
How can I apply?
The application process for the German Pupil Courses 2018 will open in mid-January 2018. The deadline for applications is 1 March 2018.