German Pupil Courses
The German Pupil Courses are two-week courses in Germany for UK pupils studying German. The German Pupil Courses are a great opportunity for young people to experience Germany, its culture, language and lifestyle first hand. We offer three courses for 12 pupils each in three different German towns.
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.
Who can take part?
There are two 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*
*Please note: Applicants must have lived in the UK for at least three years at the time of application. It is not open to German nationals and German native speakers.
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.
Where and when do the courses take place?
There are three courses in three different locations in Germany. The dates for the 2020 courses are:
* Option 1: 17 – 31 August 2020 (two courses, near Berlin)
* Option 2: 11 – 25 July 2020 (Bavaria)
IMPORTANT: Each date option is only open to a specific age group – see ‘Who can take part?’ above for eligible age groups.
Please note that locations are subject to final confirmation.
What does the programme include?
Successful applicants will travel together with 11 other course participants and a UK group leader. Accommodation is with a German host family and the stay will be packed with lots of lessons and activities including:
- German language and culture lessons for 2-3 hours a day
- Some lessons with German pupils covering a wider range of subjects and a chance to experience German school life
- A joint thematic workshop with German peers on a topic of mutual interest
- Various trips with other participants and the group leader (Previous programmes included visits to local towns, a boat trip on the river Rhine, a trip to the Königssee lake, a bike tour of Potsdam and a visit to the Stasi museum.)
- Time with host families, experiencing daily life in Germany (Host families have previously taken participants to visit Eiscafes, outdoor swimming pools, football matches or the cinema.)
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 organises travel and insurance?
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 and, where possible, UK-German Connection advises participants on who may be able to travel to the London airport together.
The group is met on departure at a London airport by their group leader and a member of UK-German Connection staff.
Individual travel arrangements to and from Germany are not possible nor can flight or travel dates be altered.
UK-German Connection organises travel and health insurance for all participants.
Requirements and expectations
Participants are expected to take a very active and constructive part in all aspects of the programme for the full duration which involves excursions and other activities of an active nature. This could include activities such as walking tours and sporting activities.
This includes preparation for the course before travel to Germany (sending back forms on time, getting in touch with other participants, the group leader and host family, and contacting a primary school to discuss the primary ambassadors project – see below for details). During the course participants are expected to actively participate in lessons, excursions and activities, as well as a thematic workshop, during which they will have the chance to discuss a current topic of interest with German pupils.
Participants are also required to follow all programme guidelines and a code of conduct. If participants don’t comply with the rules, they may be sent home at their own / their parents’ expenses.
How do I apply?
The online application process for the German Pupil Courses 2020 is now open.
Before you apply, please make sure you read all the information on this page carefully as well as the application guidelines for this programme.
To apply, we require from you:
- An online application form – fully completed and submitted online.
- A reference from one of your teachers – to be submitted to us via email (more information in the application guidelines).
- A recent, marked piece of written work – to be submitted to us via email (more information in the application guidelines).
Your application is not complete until you have submitted all three required documents. Please note that we are unable to accept incomplete applications.
The deadline for submitting your application is **1 March 2020.**
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.
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 UK-German Connection with brief feedback on the outcomes. Participants will receive guidance on the projects from UK-German Connection.
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.
Spread the word in school
Participants should also tell others in their own school about their experiences, for example giving a talk in an assembly or writing an article for the school magazine.
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 read this carefully as well as passing on the information to your teachers and parents.
If you have any questions, or would like further information on the programme, please contact our pupil programmes manager at email@example.com.