Deutsch 204 - Mündliches Projekt
Week of October 22-26 -- exact date t.b.a.
This oral exam is only about 4-5 minutes long, so there’s no reason to be nervous. You’ll be paired with a partner from my other section of German 204, and you’ll simply need to have a short conversation with him/her. No, you don’t get to choose your partner -- part of the process here is to be able to have an unrehearsed little conversation with someone you’ve never met before. Here’s a short description of the setting:
Remember, it’s not at all meant to be stressful, nor should you be embarrassed to speak German with another student -- remember, they’re in the same boat as you. It’s just intended to show off your ability to communicate in German and think on your feet in an approximately real-life situation. Good luck!
- Imagine you’re an exchange student at the Humboldt-Universität in Berlin, Germany. You can use your real identity as an American UW-student, or you can make up a fictitious one (e.g. Chelsea Clinton, a rich tycoon, a famous actor’s son/daughter, anything). It’s often more fun to role-play a semi-famous person, but the choice is entirely up to you.
- You and your (unknown) partner meet in Germany after your first class, and introduce yourselves and learn a little bit about one another.
- You should be prepared to talk (and ask your partner) about where you come from, how old you are, why you’re studying in Germany, what you’d like to be once you graduate, where you’re living in Germany (e.g. a dorm room, a private apartment, a family home), if you have a family (siblings, children, spouse, pets), and what your hobbies and interests are. Naturally, you’ll have to improvise a little, since your partner may ask you something you hadn’t prepared for, but that’s part of the fun, and you can do the same to them if you wish. Plus, you can make up as much about yourself as you like!
- Please do be considerate of your partner and don’t throw totally unfamiliar concepts/words around, but as long as you can explain things well, anything goes.
- You can use the ‘du’ form with your partner, since most university students in Germany address each other as equals that way. If you prefer the Sie form, that’s all right too, but be consistent, don’t switch back and forth.
- You should be prepared to ask about 7-10 good questions of your partner, and also to answer that same number.
- You can use one or two index cards (or a half a piece of paper) to refer to short notes, vocabulary, or phrases -- but if you spend an inordinate amount of time simply reading from your cards, it will be counted against you. Having no cards doesn’t mean you’ll get an A -- a little bit of referring to notes is to be expected, just don’t go overboard.
- Feel free to ask for clarification from your partner, but not from me -- you’ll have to pretend I’m just not there at all.
- There are many factors that will be graded: pronunciation plays a moderate role, and grammar plays a relatively small role (it’s very difficult to focus on grammar when you’re speaking spontaneously). The most important criterion, though, is what I call “fluency” -- by this I don’t mean perfect German, but merely your ability to converse well to explain what you mean without lapsing into English (avoid that at all costs!) or having long thinking pauses, and to work around any unforeseen problems in understanding. Please ask if you want more explicit clarification of the grading criteria.
Place: 847 Van Hise Day: _________________ Time: _________________