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Germanic Languages

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Germanic Languages Major

1,450 yearly degrees
#221 in popularity
$64,000 median salary

Germanic languages is a major that typically falls into the Foreign Languages & Linguistics category.

There are 13 programs available throughout the country that offer an associate’s degree in German, 389 that offer a bachelor’s degree, and 78 that offer a master’s degree. There are also at least 49 schools in the nation where you can get your doctorate degree in the field.

Who Is Getting a German Degree?

This is a less frequently chosen major. Only 1,300 students graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Germanic languages in 2017. According to recent stats this major attracts about equal numbers of men and women. Roughly 52.6% of the graduates are women, and 47.4% are men.

Racial Distribution

At the countrywide level, the racial distribution of German majors is as follows:

  • Asian: 2.8%
  • Black or African American: 2%
  • Hispanic or Latino: 5.9%
  • White: 77.2%
  • Non-Resident Alien: 3.4%
  • Other Races: 8.8%
Germanic Languages Majors Ethnic Diversity Statistics

Americans aren’t the only ones with an interest in German. About 3.4% of those graduating in 2017 were international students. The most popular countries sending German majors to the U.S. are Germany, China and Austria.

What Will You Learn as a Germanic Languages Major?

An O*NET survey asked people with careers related to German to rate how important certain subject areas were to their job. The following are some of the results of that survey. Importance was rated on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being most important.

Knowledge Areas for German Majors

German majors often go into careers in which the following knowledge areas are important:

Important Knowledge Areas for Germanic Languages Majors

Skills for German Majors

When studying German, you’ll learn many skills that will help you be successful in a wide range of jobs - even those that do not require a degree in the field. The following is a list of some of the most common skills needed for careers associated with this major:

Important Skills for Germanic Languages Majors

Abilities for German Majors

German majors often go into careers where the following abilities are vital:

Important Abilities for German Majors

What Can You Do With a German Major?

Below is a list of occupations associated with German:

Careers Related to Germanic Languages
Job Title Job Growth Rate Median Salary

Foreign Language and Literature Professors



Interpreters and Translators



Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education



Germanic Languages Major Salary

German majors often go into careers where salaries can range from $55,000 to $79,000. This range includes all degree levels, so the salary for a person with just a bachelor’s degree may be a little less and the one for a person with an advanced degree may be a little more.

To put that into context, the typical high school graduate makes between $29,000 and $57,000 a year. The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $44,000 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,000 and $120,000.

Average Salary for a German Major  ( 55000 to 79000 )
Average Salary for High School Graduate  ( 29000 to 57000 )
Average Salary with Bachelor's Degree  ( 44000 to 99000 )
Average Salary with Advanced Degree  ( 55000 to 120000 )

The area of the country you choose to work in will also affect your career and salary prospects. Getting a graduate degree may open up more options with higher salary potential.

Amount of Education Required for Germanic Languages Major Jobs

Some careers associated with German require an advanced degree while some may not even require a bachelor’s. In general, the more advanced your degree the more career options will open up to you. However, there is significant time and money that needs to be invested into your education so weigh the pros and cons.

Find out what the typical degree level is for German careers below.

Education Levels for Careers Associated With Germanic Languages
Level of Education Percentage of Workers

Less Than a High School Diploma


High School Diploma or Equivalent


Post-Secondary Certificate


Some College Courses


Associate's Degree or Equivalent


Bachelor's Degree


Post-Baccalaureate Certificate


Master's Degree


Post-Master's Certificate


First Professional Degree


Doctoral Degree


Post-Doctoral Training


Online Germanic Languages Programs

There are 389 colleges that offer a bachelor’s degree in Germanic languages, with 3 of them offering at least some courses online.

Online learners must listen or watch video lectures, participate in group chats or forums, submit papers and assignments electronically, take tests, and meet deadlines.

Many learners are drawn to online programs due to the ease of use and flexibility. Students should be warned that those who enroll in online programs can take longer to graduate than average and are more likely to drop out.

Is a Germanic Languages Major Worth It?

The median salary for a German grad is $64,000 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.

This is 65% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $508,800 after 20 years!

Germanic languages salary compared to typical high school and college graduates over a 20 year period


Bureau of Labor Statistics
National Center for Education Statistics
O*NET Online
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