Jena/Berlin Program

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Jena/Berlin Info Session:

Thursday February 7, 5pm in WLH 117

Application Deadline:

FEBRUARY 15, 2018

Intermediate German (S130/140)

Students who take first-year German during the academic year, or who test into intermediate level German, can enroll in intermediate level German in the summer, and attend our advanced level courses in the fall.

L3/L4: Through the Yale Summer Session, we have conducted a successful combined third and fourth semester class in New Haven and Berlin since 2004, and this year (2018) the program will be held in Jena and Berlin. In this course, students spend four weeks in Jena (for GMAN 130) and then spend four weeks studying in Germany in Berlin (GMAN 140).

Host Families

Jena/Berlin study abroad students stay with host families while they are in Germany. Thus, apart from full credit for the class, students get first-hand experience living in a German home. The host families are carefully selected by our coordinators. The host family stay is an integral part of the program; it offers the unique opportunity to experience everyday life in Germany in a short period of time, and has been much appreciated by our students, undergraduates and graduates alike. Many students stay in touch with their host families long after their stay. Some even return to visit them, when they go back to do an internship or for graduate study after their degree from Yale. Host families live in various parts of the city but are all within a reasonable distance to the classroom via public transportation.

Read below for what former students said about their experiences with their host families:

In Berlin I stayed in Pankow with a couple and their 8-year-old son, who all gave me a lot of their time,  patience, and hospitality. They cooked and ate dinner with me, took me to performances and parks, and took me on a road trip east of Berlin.

While in Berlin, I stayed with a German host family who helped me acclimate myself to Berlin. I was able to speak German with my hosts every day, and learned from them much about typical meals, leisure activities, and popular sights in Berlin.

 I spent time in just about every Stadtteil, biked from Charlottenburg to Lichtenberg, tried a new type of food and beer daily, visited my host family’s workplace (a optoelectronics research institute and a self-owned clinic), hanged out with my host brother and his friends, went shopping for food as well as building materials for my host brother’s new apartment, sailed with my host family on Wannsee, etc…

I lived with a German host family, and they played a fundamental role in helping me with my German.


Classes are held in Jena and Berlin from 10am to 1pm. Classes in Berlin are held at a private college, the SRH Hochschule, across from the TU (Technische Universität) in the heart of Berlin, right on Ernst-Reuter Platz. It is easily accessible on the U2 subway line or via bus. The bus stop is across the street from SRH. Students meet from 10-1pm every day.

The SRH is about 5-10 minutes from Tiergarten, Berlin’s central park, with several Biergärten and the opportunity to jog. Students can also take advantage of subsidized meals at a number of cafeterias at the Technische Universität or Universität der Künste. Or they can explore various smaller cafes and restaurants in Goethe Straße, Berlin-Charlottenburg.


Extracurricular Activities

In order to expand the classroom experience, students participate in a variety of afternoon (and sometimes morning) excursions and activities to local museums, attractions, and sights. In the past students have visited the Bundestag, the Holocaust Memorial, the former Stasi-prison Hohenschönhausen, Schloss Sansoucci, the Museumsinsel, and many more places.


The study abroad program also includes overnight trips to different places in Germany, such as Hamburg, Leipzig, Dresden, or Weimar.

Of course there is also time for students to explore the city and all it has to offer on their own and with their host families. 

Germany’s vibrant capital is currently one of Europe’s foremost destinations for young people and artists in particular. There is always something to do in Berlin: The German capital has numerous theatres, three opera houses, more than 175 museums, countless cabaret and variety theatres, and more than 100 concert venues.

More questions about the program? Contact the Berlin study abroad site coordinator Theresa Schenker.