Duke in Berlin


Apply Now

This four-week, one-course program is based in Berlin, the political capital of Germany and the economic capital of Europe. Directed by Susanne Freytag, Lecturing Fellow in Germanic Languages and Literature, Duke in Berlin offers a range of language courses that allow students to fully immerse themselves in German culture. Please note: Duke in Berlin is exceptionally running as a four-week program in summer 2024 due to international events hosted in Germany. The program plans to return to its six-week, 2 course interdisciplinary program in 2025.

Students with no prior German are welcome

Graduate students in all departments are welcome to apply and may enroll in all courses. It is advised you apply for funding from your own department or from other sources.


Location: Berlin, Germany

Term: Summer

Dates: May 6, 2024 - June 5, 2024

Application Deadline: February 1st

Academic Theme(s): German language

Credit Type: Duke Credit 

Eligibility: Open to all majors. Open to all graduate students. You need not have taken German courses to participate except as noted for specific courses. Language students will be placed in courses prior to departure. Must be in good academic standing. Non-Duke students are welcome to apply for this program.

Duke Affiliation: Department of Germanic Languages and Literature

Housing: Efficiency Apartments

Primary Contact: Susanne Freytag

  • Students Studying

  • Berlin Cathedral

  • Charlottenburg Palace

  • Duke in Berlin

  • Students Studying Photography

  • Students at Salzburg


Students enroll in one Duke faculty-led course for one Duke credit. Courses will be offered in elementary, intermediate, and advanced German.

Neither the pass/fail option nor auditing is permitted in any course.

  • German Courses

German Courses

Courses Taught in German

The following courses have been offered recently and are proposed for the upcoming summer:

First Year German I

(FL) 1.0 Credit

Introduction to German language and culture. Four skills (understanding, speaking, reading, writing) and communicative approach to the language of everyday life in German-speaking countries, the language of their histories and societies, their arts and letters.

First Year German II

(FL) 1.0 Credit

Second semester of introductory language course. Practice in spoken and written German, vocabulary building, building cultural awareness. Focus on topics of everyday life in German-speaking countries through stories, poetry, music, video, internet, as well as grounding in basic structures of the German language.

Intermediate German I

(CZ, FL) 1.0 Credit

Each of these courses builds language proficiency through a topic-oriented syllabus focusing on contemporary German-speaking cultures and societies (family, leisure, work, education, environment, current events).

Intermediate German II

(CZ, FL) 1.0 Credit 

(See description of GERMAN 203 above.) Increased focus on reading, speaking, essay writing. Extensive reading includes one full-length play by a contemporary German, Swiss, or Austrian writer.
Advanced German in Berlin 

(ALP, CCI, CZ, FL) 1.0 Credit

Prerequisite: GERMAN 204 or equivalent. May substitute for 305S or 306S to fulfill major requirement.

Reading and discussion of advanced material centered largely on contemporary Berlin. Development of written and oral proficiency in German, as well as insight into the cultural and historical aspects of the capital.


Past program activities have included:  

  • A visit to the Bundestag (parliament)
  • Guided tours of historical sites like the Sachsenhausen concentration camp
  • Concerts at the Philharmonie
  • Museum Visits 
  • A weekend excursion to Prague 


Students will be housed in small efficiency apartments where they will be able to cook their own meals.

Students are responsible for most meals but the program also provides welcome and farewell dinners and hosts several meals during excursions.


These costs are estimated based on previous years’ programs and the current exchange rate. All costs are subject to change.

Summer 2024

  Duke Students Non-Duke Students
Tuition $2,840 $2,840
Program Fee $5,500 $5,500
Transcript Fee N/A $120
Other Costs Other Costs Other Costs
TOTAL (Estimated) $12,170 $12,290

Explanation of Costs

Financial Aid

Duke students receiving institutional need-based grant aid are eligible for aid for this program; work-study funds are converted to grants. Students are individually responsible for making the necessary arrangements with the Karsh Office of Undergraduate Financial Support and the Duke Bursar’s Office.

Non-Duke students are not eligible to receive financial aid at Duke and should contact their home institutions for financial aid information.


This program offers the following scholarship opportunities:


Attendance is required at all classes, excursions, and group events. Given the intense nature of this program, late arrival and/or early departure is not permitted.

  • Arrival: May 6, 2024
  • Departure: June 5, 2024


You will make your own travel arrangements to and from the program site. You are expected to arrive on the arrival date cited above, which usually means departing the U.S. one day prior. Once you have a flight itinerary, log in to MyExperientialEd to update your travel registry.

Housing Before/After

You will need to make your own housing arrangements if you will be arriving before the program start date or leaving later than the program end date.



No visa is required of U.S. citizens to participate in this program. Non-U.S. citizens should pay special attention to the visa requirements for their specific citizenship by contacting the country embassy to find out if any visas may be required for participation.


All participants must have a valid passport. Make sure your passport has at least six months of validity beyond the program end date to avoid unintended disruptions. For instructions on obtaining or renewing your U.S. passport, visit passports.state.gov.

International Student Identity Card

An International Student Identity Card (ISIC) is optional. ISIC is the only internationally recognized form of student ID, endorsed by UNESCO. If purchased in the U.S., the card also carries with it a supplemental insurance policy, which can prove to be very helpful in the event of serious injury. You may purchase this card through www.myisic.com. Processing of the card takes between 4-15 days. 


The Duke in Berlin program director can assist with questions related to program academics, admissions, on-site needs, etc. For all other inquiries, please contact the Global Education Office.

Susanne Freytag

Lecturing Fellow, Germanic Languages and Literature and Summer Program Director

Kayla Soltis-Katella

GEO Assistant Director


Deadline: February 1st. This program has rolling admission. Applications must be received by the deadline to be considered.

PriorityPriority is given to applicants who apply early and meet the prerequisites.

Minimum GPA: There is no minimum GPA.

Non-Duke studentsNon-Duke students are welcome to apply for this program. You must be a degree-seeking student in good standing at an accredited college or university. Consult your university’s registrar and/or study away advisor for assistance with transfer credit. Students who are not matriculated at a college or university are not eligible to participate in Duke’s study away programs.


Please start your application early to ensure that it is complete by the deadline! Incomplete applications will not be forwarded to the program directors for consideration.

To apply to this program, please submit the following items using MyExperientialEd:

  1. Online application
  2. Transcript(s) from all colleges and universities attended. First-year students should wait for fall semester grades to be posted before submitting their transcript.
  3. Personal statement, no longer than one page, explaining why you would like to participate


Duke in Berlin Hosts Pop-Up Photography Exhibition

Duke in Berlin students in Chris Sims’ Documentary Photography course hosted a pop-up art exhibition of their work. The exhibition will travel back to Duke with the students and will be on view in October at the Center for Documentary Studies. 

Read More

A Night at the Opera

"I was reminded yet again how rich the cultural history of Germany is and how different it is from that of the United States."

Read More

Sally on Berlin: The City is the Classroom

“To really learn about what's going on in this world, both past and present. I now know that I have to step beyond books and talk to people to get a real understanding.”

Read More

The Best of Times, Not the Wurst

"Being exposed to another culture has sparked my interest in learning more as well as makes me want to continue sharing my Native American culture with others."

Read More

Duke in Berlin — Riley Hiers

"It was the picnics in Berlin’s massive Tiergarten, the casual Sunday swims in the Wannsee, and the €5 Döners (which never disappointed) that made my six-week stay in Berlin more than I could have ever hoped for."

Read More

Stephanie on Duke in Berlin: Fitting Right in!

“One thing that really surprised me about the spring program, even after completing the summer program, is how independent I became in Berlin. By the spring I felt much more like a resident of Berlin, instead of a Duke student on study abroad."

Read More