Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

American Studies


Combined bachelor, Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) - course without teacher training - please see ‘Bachelor’s and master’s courses at HU’.

Standard time for completing course

6 semesters

Start of study

Winter semester only, with numerus clausus

Course structure and combinations

American Studies can be studied as:

Core subject: 120 CP*, an additional secondary subject must be selected
Not available with English as a secondary subject
Secondary subject: 60 CP, with a core subject
Not possible with the core subjects Biology, Chemistry, English, Physics

*One credit point (CP) equals a workload of 25 - 30 hours for preparation, follow-up and attendance at classes.

Special entry requirements: Language skills

Evidence of the English language skills required (level B2) should be submitted in one of the following four formats:

  1. School certificates: Performance level averaging at least 5 points over the last four semesters of the university admission qualification (Abitur) (qualification stage) on the English advanced course or 
  2. Cambridge First Certificate in English (B-C) or 
  3. International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Certificate (min. 5.0) or 
  4. Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL, internet-based test with min. 87 points, paper-based test with min. 560 points or
  5. UNIcert® II-Zertifikat: 3,0.

Information on German language skills for prospective students from abroad:

Studies abroad

Study visits abroad are strongly recommended, and learning agreements are concluded for this purpose at the department before departure.

Why study American Studies at HU?

It is a broad course, encompassing American literature as well as numerous cultural areas (popular culture, film, the electronic media, etc.). The course is oriented towards fields of American Studies where the Humboldt-Universität has particular expertise: the interaction between literature, culture and society; cultural diversity (ethnicity, gender/sexuality, class, age, religion); the interdependency between Europe and America; and the role of the media.

Students play an important role in American Studies activities (student projects and conferences, lectures by international academics in lecture series and symposia). The department has close contacts with universities and colleges in the US. Students receive unfailing support from highly motivated American Studies teachers and experience education at a traditional university, combined with the benefits of studying in an international, multi-cultural city like Berlin.

What skills and interests do you need?

  • Excellent English and German language skills
  • An interest in critically analysing, considering and assessing texts and other cultural practices
  • A desire to read widely, discuss, and play with language and cultural forms
  • A readiness to collaborate on student projects
  • A particular interest in movement with other cultures and in inter-cultural exchange

Course content

The best place to find information about course content is the annotated university calendar. It is online at You’ll find module descriptions, the course curriculum and other details in the course and examination regulations, available online at, no. 64/2014, 1. amendment no. 05/2017, 2. amendment no. 53/2022. The Course Advisory Service is also available to help, see Important addresses.

American Studies as Core Subject with 120 CP

Mandatory modules (80 CP):
Module 01: American Literary and Cultural History I (8 CP)
Module 02: Literary Theory (7 CP)
Module 03: American Literary and Cultural History II (6 CP)
Module 04: Culture in Context (7 CP)
Module 05: Language (10 CP)
Module 06: Paradigms of American Literature and Culture (12 CP)
Module 07: Literature, Culture and Media in American Society (10 CP)
Module 08: Research, Practice and Writing (10 CP)
Module 09: Bachelor's thesis (10 CP)

Mandatory elective modules (20 CP):
Module 10: In-depth module - Priority area (10 CP)

Module 11: Practical Orientation or
Module 12: Internship (each 10 CP)

General elective modules (20 CP)

In addition to specialised study, Students acquire subject-specific, non-specialist and interdisciplinary key qualifications of 20 CP. The general elective modules can be chosen from the module catalogues of other subjects or central institutions (see:

American Studies as Secondary Subject with 60 CP

Modules 1 to 7 as for American Studies core subject (see above)

General elective course offerings for Students coming from other courses of studies

Module 13: Introduction to American Studies (5 CP)


You can apply for the American Studies master’s course at HU. For other possible master’s courses, please see ‘Course catalogue’.

Important addresses

Department of English and American Studies: Dorotheenstr. 28,, Tel. +49 30 2093-70900
Course Advisory Service and Classification and recognition of studies and qualifications: Dr Löbbermann, Tel. +49 30 2093-70938, Room 1.13A,
Applications: How to apply, Information for prospective international students

Links to job market: careers information centre, Hochschulteam calendar of events

Version: November 2023
Back to course catalogue

Contact for questions or feedback regarding this page:

Information according to EU-DSGVO


When contacting facilities of the study department, personal data are partly collected and processed. The processing of personal data, such as the name, address, e-mail address, or telephone number shall always be in line with the General Data Protection Regulation (EU-DSGVO) and in accordance with the Berlin Data Protection Act (BlnDSG). Further information on this, your rights and options can be found at