Business German Module 1: Applying for a Job

Topic: Stellenbewerbung (Applying for a job)

Level: Advanced Low (ACTFL)

Time Needed: Eight one-hour class periods (will vary based on number and level of students)

Goals: Talk about your career aspirations, strengths and skills; present your weaknesses in a positive light; identify and analyze cultural differences between Germany and the U.S. in advertising and applying and interviewing for jobs; experience and reflect on the process of applying for a job on the German job market; summarize and interpret information in a graph; master appropriate vocabulary for the context of applying for jobs, relating to job ads and the application process, including words/phrases to describe personal strengths and weaknesses; hone skill of circumlocuting unknown words.

Module Plan:


In-Class Work and Homework

Materials Needed


Vokabelliste Eigenschaften (My best qualities) - Using the vocabulary, students identify their five best qualities that they would want to share with a potential employer. The instructor asks students to describe themselves using these descriptors and probes for more information, e.g., examples of situations or experiences that concretely demonstrate these characteristics. Students are then asked to list two of their weaknesses (Schwächen). Individual students voluntarily give one of their weaknesses and as a group, the class works to describe how this weakness can be portrayed in a positive light. Example:unorganisiert --> flexibel und kreativ.

Vokabelliste Bewerbung (Job application) – Students begin independently to complete the table with whatever they know thus far.

Homework: Complete Vokabelliste Eigenschaften; use the words (or their opposites) to describe yourself to a potential employer, following the example given.


Meine Wünsche an den zukünftigen Beruf (My wishes for my future career) Using the worksheet (Berufswünsche), students identify their top ten priorities for their future jobs. They then read the graph to compare their own wishes with that of German young people.

Homework: Prepare summary and interpretation of the graph. Continue work on Vokabelliste Bewerbung, to be completed by end of module.


Lebenslauf (Resume) – Presented with a sample German resume, students identify and analyze the differences between German and American resumes.

Homework: Write your resume, using the example as a guide.


Anzeigen lesen (reading job ads) – Students read through a sample job ad (Anzeige) with a partner and complete handout (Anzeigen lesen) that guides them through finding key information.

Homework: Examine and critique a website (Quelle) related to the topic of job applications.


Das Anschreiben (letter of application) –

The instructor presents by PowerPoint the general rules about writing a letter of application. Students work with sample cover letter.

Homework: Write a letter of application for the sample job ad or for one they found on the website they reviewed. Anschreiben schreiben handout reviews information from PowerPoint and provides additional examples.


Vorstellungsgespräch (Interview) – Students are introduced to guidelines on interviewing for a job in Germany. The class then views a sample interview (Interview Example) and critiques it based on the guidelines discussed. Interview groups are assigned and students are given some time to begin preparing.

Homework: With a partner, do a role-play of a job interview, based on work done during this module. This must be video-taped and posted online before the next class


Vorstellungsgespräch (Interview) – The class views each interview by the partner groups. Peer review includes evaluation of job applicant’s level of success in the interview, awareness of cultural differences in his/her actions, etc.

Homework: Prepare for the quiz and compose final reflections on your learning experience during this module.


Quiz / Final Reflections