NSW School of Languages

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Independent learner skills training

The staff of the German Department is committed to supporting students to develop life-long independent learner skills as part of their language studies. These are important skills for students to develop if they are to be successful in their distance education studies. On enrolment and during their studies students will be asked to fill in study skills audits which help to make them aware of the skills they have and the skills they still need to develop. Teachers encourage and support students to work on solving the problems they may experience when they study by distance education.

Independent learner skills will also help students manage their studies in general.

Course overview

Stage 5

200 hour course

After enrolment, students become members of our virtual German 200 hour class on the NSW School of Languages e-learning Moodle site.

Students need to confirm their email address before they are given a user name and password. The e-learning class allows students immediate access to the instruction sheets, work-return sheets, answers to self-correction exercises, as well as interactive exercises. Students start as for Year 9 students in the German Year 9 course and continue as Year 10 students in the German Year 10 course (200 hours).

In the 200 hour German course, students work with textbooks, after they have made a start with the first two Units of the Beginn mit Deutsch materials. The Beginn mit Deutsch materials are self-contained and the level of German is very basic to allow students to get used to the new way of working. This way the students can start their German work immediately and familiarise themselves with working in distance education mode while waiting for their textbook order to arrive.

The textbook for Year 9 is called Genau! and the one for Year 10 Ganz Genau! In their textbooks students follow the adventures of a group of German students and their Australian exchange students. Both the Kursbuch (Student Book) and the Arbeitsbuch (Workbook) are used. The cost of the textbook is approx. $63 for each Kursbuch and $43 for each workbook. Please ask the bookshop you buy it from for the exact price.

Audio CDs of the textbook series are part of the workbooks. Most audio files are also accessible through the e-learning class. A variety of enrichment and extension tasks is available to cater for students' learning needs. Phone lessons are scheduled weekly so students can do their speaking practice and discuss any questions they might have regarding the course.

100 hour course German

The 100 hour course is for Year 10 students who have not studied German before. The students will gain an elementary knowledge of German through their work with the course materials and phone lessons for speaking practice. Students develop insights into the culture of German speaking countries through their research for project work.

After enrolment (after confirming their email address) students become members of our virtual ‘German 100 hours' class on the NSW School of Languages e-learning site. The virtual class allows students immediate access to their Beginn mit Deutsch materials, instruction sheets and work-return sheets as well as interactive exercises.

Stage 6

German beginners

After an eligibility test and confirming their email address, students are given access with a username and password to the German Beginners e-learning class on the e-learning site of NSW School of Languages.

For the Year 11 students all the learning materials are available in the class (German Beginners Preliminary) except for the Genau! Arbeitsbuch (Workbook -cost: approx $35). There are 15 Modules that guide and support the learners. Each Module clearly states what work the students have to submit. Weekly phone contact with their teacher allows for the speaking practice the students need in the Beginners course, and also for more immediate support of the students in their learning. The Preliminary course students start their work with the self-contained Anfang-materials. They use cartoon stories and interactive exercises to expand their vocabulary and practise what they have learnt. In addition, the workbook is used to consolidate their learning of language patterns.

After completing the Preliminary course work students are given access to the e-learning class German Beginners HSC course in Term 4. The HSC course Units with accompanying audio files, together with the GanzGENAU textbook are the "basic text". (Cost: Student book approx. $55 and Workbook approx. $35) In addition, frequent HSC-type tasks give students the opportunity to develop good exam technique. There are links to German language learning sites, especially for practice of vocabulary, as well as to other relevant sites. The e-learning class also allows students to message their teacher and each other within the group.

German continuers

On enrolment (after confirming their email address) students become members of the virtual German Continuers class (Level 1 - Preliminary Course) or (Level 2 – HSC course) on the NSW School of Languages e-learning site.

Students access their learning materials in their e-learning class. There are links to languages learning sites they can explore as well as to the relevant sites on the Board of Studies website.

The course includes self-directed learning and many of the self-correction exercises have been transformed for interactive correction and grading over the Internet. The audio materials are also in the e-learning class.

The continuers course consists of 7 modules, one for each term of the course. Modules 1 to 3 are set for the three terms of the preliminary course. Modules 4 to 7 are the HSC course. Each module has 5 Parts. The students are given 2 school weeks to complete the work of one "part" of a module, unless they enrol late and have to catch up. Phone lessons are organized on a weekly basis with the aim of developing the students' conversational skills.

German extension

The German extension course is offered to students who have completed or are concurrently studying the German continuers course. The e-learning class is exclusively for students doing the German extension course with the NSW School of Languages.

The organisational focus of the course is the theme 'The individual and contemporary society'.

The German extension course involves in depth study of a contemporary German film on DVD and three contemporary issues in society, which arise in the film and in the related texts that are also studied by students. Students are provided with a wealth of support material to help them develop their skills in understanding and analysing the film and to manipulate language so that they can write texts related to the required issues.

The prescribed text is Robert Thalheim's 2007 film "Am Ende kommen Touristen" (And Along Come Tourists). Students need to be familiar with the whole prescribed text, therefore they are advised to purchase their own DVD or access it through their school library. A number of film extracts have been selected for study, and a study guide and other support material will be available to students on the NSW School of Langauges e-learning site.

There are a number of related texts in the e-learning class that also deal with the prescribed issues:

  • how we communicate with each other
  • impact of the past on the present
  • relationships.

To be well prepared for the assessment tasks leading to the Higher School Certificate, students need to closely follow the work plans for each term, which will include preparation for essay writing and the presentation of monologues (speaking skills).

Course Materials


The following is a list of learning materials which need to be purchased for the specified course. All prices are approximate. If a course is not listed, the materials are provided by NSW School of Languages.

Textbooks should be ordered online at language books using the correct ISBN.

Only quoting the correct ISBN, makes sure that you get the correct edition. The name alone might get you an edition which does not match our instructions.

Stage 5 - 200 hour course

Year 9 German

Genau! Kursbuch (Student Book) edition 3 approx. $63. ISBN 9780170197021.

Genau! Arbeitsbuch (Workbook) Edition 3 (Workbook with Audio CD and CD-ROM) approx. $43. ISBN 9780170197021.

Year 10 German

Ganz Genau! Kursbuch (Student book) Edition 3 approx. $63. ISBN 9780170197199.

Ganz Genau! Arbeitsbuch (Workbook with Audio CD & DVD) Edition 3 approx. $43. 

ISBN 9780170197267.

Stage 6 Courses

German beginners preliminary course

Genau! Kursbuch (Student Book) Edition 3 approx. $43. ISBN 9780170197021.

German beginners HSC course

Ganz Genau! Kursbuch (Student book) Edition 3 approx. $63. ISBN 9780170197199.

Ganz Genau! Arbeitsbuch (Workbook with Audio CD & DVD) Edition 3 approx. $43. ISBN 9780170197267.

German continuers courses – as enrichment material only

Genau Senior Student Book with free Grammar booklet approx. $59. Publisher Thomson Nelson. ISBN 9780170128315

The textbooks can also be ordered from the Language Book Centre. This is located at:

131 York St, Sydney 2000

 Phone: 02 9267 1397

 Fax: 02 9264 8993

 Outside Sydney Metro Area

 Freecall: 1800 802 432


All students should have a comprehensive language dictionary. Please consult the German faculty for advice regrading dictionaries.

Syllabuses (from NESA)

Go the NESA syllabus downloads page for more information on the syllabus.