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Language Institute in Holzkirchen, Germany

Language Institute in Holzkirchen, Germany
KU’s program in Holzkirchen was established in 1961 and offers students the opportunity to study German language and culture in a small Bavarian town south of Munich.
Holzkirchen, Germany
Language of Instruction: 
Academic Disciplines: 
Germanic Languages & Literatures
Program Type: 
Fulfills KU Core 4.2
Open to non-KU Students
Faculty Led

**For Summer 2021 only, this program will be based in Heidelberg, Germany.  The information below is updated for the 2021 program in Heidelberg.**

  • Earn 9 credit hours for advanced German language and culture study
  • Live in student accommodations in the heart of Germany's most beautiful city.
  • Program includes group excursions, cultural activities, and day trips to Frankfurt, Stuttgart, Ludwigsburg, and one additional location TBD.
  • KU students are eligible for a $5,000 scholarship with the Krehbiel German Language Summer Institute Scholarship. See Further Reading below for more information.
  • Review our coronavirus information page for details on how we're planning for study abroad this summer.
Program Summary: 

Join us in Heidelberg this summer to deepen your German language skills and explore new facets of German culture while experiencing life in a beautiful and well-known city in southern Germany.  This year's program will start with one week of classes online.  After the first week of the program, the group will travel to Germany to spend the remaining seven weeks of the program based in Heidelberg, Germany.

Courses are a combination of classroom time with instruction by KU professor Dr. Andrea Meyertholen and a variety of group cultural activities, museum visits, day trips, and local exursions intended to take advantage of the rich culture of the city of Heidelberg and surrounding areas.  Some of the planned activities include a walking tour of Heidelberg, Heidelberg Castle, the German Pharmacy Museum, AUDI and Mercedes-Benz museums, bike tour of Neuenheimer Feld and day trips to Frankfurt, Stuttgart, Ludwigsburg, and either Freiburg or the Rhine River Valley.

Accommodation is in double rooms in a conveniently-located student villa.  A tranpsortation pass is included for unlimited use of public transportation in Heidelberg. Transportation day passes are also included for Stuttgart and Frankfurt.


Heidelberg, Germany

Heidelberg is a city of approximately 150,000 located in the southwest German state of Baden-Württemberg.  Its picturesque setting along the Neckar River, stately bridge, hilltop castle, and impressive baroque Altstadt make it one of Germany's most beautiful cities. Much of Heidelberg was spared bombing during World War II, so its old town maintains a historic feel with original architecture. 

Heidelberg is home to Germany's oldest university and students comprise a quarter of the city's population. The city is a scientific hub in Germany with several well-known research institutes as well as a city attractive to literaries including Mark Twain and Goethe.  Students will enjoy exploring all aspects of this youthful, historic, and popular destination in southern Germany.

Academic Information: 

Credit & Courses Offered

Each student enrolls in three 3-credit hour courses for a total of 9 KU credits. All students take GERM 350 plus two additional courses based on preparation. The language of instruction in all classes is German. Outside of classes students are expected to use German for all everyday purposes including group activities, meals, and excursions.

  • Students now completing their fourth semester of college German (GERM 202 Intermediate German II or equivalent) should enroll in GERM 333, GERM 334, and GERM 350
  • More advanced students (two or more courses beyond fourth-semester college German) should enroll in GERM 350, GERM 375, and GERM 400.

Please consult with Dr. Meyertholen if you have any questions concerning your course selection.

Course Descriptions

  • GERM 333: German Conversation and Idioms (3 credit hours): Intensive practice in conversational German with instruction in proper pronunciation as well as an introduction to idiomatic usage. Only for students in the KU Summer Language Institute in Holzkirchen, Germany. Prerequisite: GERM 202 or equivalent fourth-semester German course.
  • GERM 334: Deutsche Grammatik - Review of German Grammar (3 credit hours): Only for students in the KU Summer Language Institute in Holzkirchen, Germany.  Intensive review and practice of selected grammar topics.  Prerequisite: GERM 202 or equivalent fourth-semester German course.
  • GERM 350: Special Studies in German Language, History and Culture (3 credit hours): This course is required of all students at the Deutsche Sommerschule in Holzkirchen. Students will discuss and write reports in German on aspects of German language, culture and history with a focus on the 20th century.  Course content will be integrated with excursions to museums and cultural sites in Cologne, Berlin, Munich and other locations during the summer institute. Prerequisite: GERM 202 or fourth semester German course.
  • GERM 375: Topics in Film of German-Speaking Countries (3 credit hours): Examination of topics such as Expressionism, Turkish-German culture in contemporary German film, popular filmmaking, post-unification film, German literature as film, German film and national identity. Topics and periods vary. Prerequisite: GERM 302 or equivalent sixth-semester German course.
  • GERM 400: Introduction to German Literary Masterpieces (3 credit hours): For students enrolled in the KU Summer Language Institute in Holzkirchen, Germany. Selected works of major German Language writers of the 19th and 20th centuries. Not open to native speakers of German. Prerequisite: GERM 302 or equivalent sixth-semester German course.

Classes generally meet Monday through Thursday mornings, with Fridays reserved for excursions, day trips, and cultural activities.

Life Abroad: 

Summer 2021 Program Itinerary (Tentative)

  • June 21 - Program begins. Classes will be in an online format for the first week of the program.
  • June 28 - Depart for Frankfurt, Germany
  • June 29 – Arrive in Germany, on-site orientation, and welcome dinner at Heidelberg restaurant
  • June 30 – Guided walking tour of Heidelberg including Germany’s longest shopping street, the famous Heidelberg castle, and the old bridge over the River Neckar.  You’ll also have a walking tour of the neighborhood near your accommodations to learn where you can find the grocery store, ATM, bank, pharmacy, etc.
  • July 1 – Classes begin; scavenger hunt of Heidelberg to explore hidden gems of the city
  • July 2 – Classes
  • July 3-4 – Free weekend
  • July 5-8 – Classes
  • July 9 – Travel to Frankfurt; explore Frankfurt including the Money Museum and Main Tower rooftop observation platform.
  • July 10 – Guided tour of Heidelberg Castle and German Pharmacy Museum
  • July 11 – Free day
  • July 12-15 – Classes; bike tour including Neuenheimer Feld where Heidelberg’s university is located
  • July 16 – Guided tour of AUDI and Ludwigsburg Residential Palace
  • July 17-18 – Free weekend
  • July 19-23 – Classes
  • July 24-25 – Free weekend
  • July 26-29 – Classes
  • July 30 – Travel to Stuttgart; explore Stuttgart including tour of Mercedes-Benz Museum and Stuttgart’s cultural mile
  • July 31-August 1 – Free weekend
  • August 2-5 – Classes
  • August 6 – Day trip TBD (Rhine River Valley or Freiburg)
  • August 7-8 – Free weekend
  • August 9-12 – Classes
  • August 13 – Farewell dinner
  • August 14 - Departures

** Program itinerary, travel, excursions, and other arrangements are subject to change or modification in order to respond to the local context regarding COVID-19. **

Identity Abroad: 

SAGE is dedicated to creating international engagement opportunities that meet the needs of all our students and providing resources to support you through the process of studying abroad. Study abroad is achievable for students of all identities including our BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ students, students with disabilities, and students with religious/non-religious viewpoints. Before selecting a program, consider how your identities may impact your experience abroad in unique ways and talk with your Program Coordinator about any program-specific concerns. Students with documented disabilities should discuss any accommodation needs with their Program Coordinator early in the planning process.

Considerations for Germany

Germany has laws in place to protect ethnic and religious minorities, LGBTQIA+ individuals, the differently abled, and other groups. Same-sex marriage is available in Germany and most large city governments officially encourage and host LGBTQIA+ pride events.

Germany’s cities and public transportation are generally accessible to individuals with disabilities.  Older sections of the cities and smaller towns may be less accessible due to centuries-old architecture, cobblestone streets, and small indoor spaces. Germany offers services for people who are mobility, sight, or hearing impaired.

Source: U.S. Department of State country information pages and Diversity Abroad.

Additional Resources

Check our Identity Abroad page and resources listed below for information specific to you and other students who may be on your program.


Open to students from any accredited U.S. college or university who have completed four semesters of college-level German or the equivalent. Minimum 2.50 GPA and strong record of performance in German courses required. (Exceptions considered only after submission of a petition.)

Further Reading: 

Krehbiel German Language Summer Institute Scholarship
Fund created with the generous contribution of Carl Krehbiel to provide support for KU students attending the German Summer Language Institute programs in Holzkirchen and Eutin, Germany. Amounts up to $5,000. The scholarship application deadline is March 1. Applications are available online: https://ku.studioabroad.com/?go=KrehbielGermanScholarship

For more information, contact:

Andrea Meyertholen
Department of Germanic Studies
Wescoe Hall
1445 Jayhawk Blvd, Room 2088
Email: a948m955@ku.edu

Jenna Hunter-Skidmore
KU Study Abroad & Global Engagement
108 Lippincott Hall
Phone: 785-864-3742
Email: jmhunter@ku.edu

Program Faculty: 

Program Director

Andrea Meyertholen, Assistant Professor of German Studies

Dr. Meyertholen is Assistant Professor of German at KU. She studied abroad in Würzburg and Berlin, interned in Munich, traveled extensively throughout German-speaking Europe, and has served as director of study abroad programs in Krefeld and Eutin, Germany and in Graz, Austria. Course instruction is provided by Dr. Meyertholen and faculty of the Volkshochschule with training in Deutsch als Fremdsprache and traditional German studies.

Add Course: 
This course is for students now completing the fourth semester of college German (GERM 202). Students taking GERM 220 should also take GERM 333 and GERM 453.
Course Prefix: 
Language of Instruction: 
KU Course
KU Credit Hours: 
This course is for students now completing the fourth semester of college German (GERM 202). Students taking GERM 333 should also take GERM 220 and GERM 453.
Course Prefix: 
Language of Instruction: 
KU Course
KU Credit Hours: 
This course is for students who have completed two or more courses beyond fourth-semester college German. Students taking GERM 375 should also take GERM 400 and GERM 453.
Course Prefix: 
Language of Instruction: 
KU Course
KU Credit Hours: 
This course is for students who have completed two or more courses beyond fourth-semester college German. Students taking GERM 400 should also take GERM 375 and GERM 453.
Course Prefix: 
Language of Instruction: 
KU Course
KU Credit Hours: 
For students now completing the fourth semseter of college German (GERM 202), this course should be taken with GERM 220 and GERM 333. For more advanced students who are two or more courses beyond fourth-semester college German, this course should be taken with GERM 375 and GERM 400.
Course Prefix: 
Language of Instruction: 
KU Course
KU Credit Hours: 


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