Scandinavian Studies (Master of Arts)

Conditions of admission


Course content and focus areas 

The MA in Scandinavian Studies is aimed at graduates of the BA courses in Scandinavian Studies (major) or Empirical Linguistics with a focus on Scandinavian Languages at the Goethe-Universität as well as graduates of comparable courses as long as they fulfil the linguistic requirements (see below).

The MA enhances the subject knowledge in Old Norse Studies and Modern Scandinavian Studies acquired in the BA course. It is conceived on the basis of philological and literary studies and incorporates problems and methods of cultural studies. The object of the course are the modern Northern Germanic languages Swedish, Danish, Norwegian, Icelandic and their earlier historical stages as well as texts written in these languages, their historical and cultural contexts, the history of their reception, and the history of Scandinavian Studies as a discipline. Students can choose between three core strands:

  1. The philological core area focusses on linguistic and literary problems and methods in Old Norse Studies and Modern Scandinavian Studies and incorporates other philological disciplines.
  2. The medieval core area is based on Old Norse Studies which is concerned with the time period from the beginning to the end of the Middle Ages.
  3. The modern core area is based on Modern Scandinavian Studies which spans the period from the Reformation to the present.

The MA in Scandinavian Studies thereby offers a course of study that is theoretically well-grounded and is based on the current state of research and the concept of learning through research. It systematically expands on the knowledge gained during the BA in such a way that students will be able to assist in research-oriented projects and to devise their own research contributions. Particular importance is attached to the refinement of language abilities to which a period of study at a Scandinavian university may contribute significantly. Among the course aims are excellent mastery of a Continental Scandinavian language in both speaking and writing as well as very good passive knowledge of the other Nordic languages, including their historical stages, and broad knowledge of Scandinavian literature in the context of culture, history and society.

The MA in Scandinavian Studies prepares students for further postgraduate study and an academic career but also for occupations in the media, in the cultural sector (theatres, museums, education etc), in academic institutions in Germany and abroad, in publishing, in the tourism industry and many others. Since the course itself imparts writing, research and language skills in particular, it is recommended that students undertake additional practical work experience or internships of relevance to their prospective career.

Detailed information

Information from the department
Study regulations


Master of Arts in Scandinavian Studies


The standard length of study for the Master of Arts is 4 semesters. 

Languages of instruction

German (Norwegian, Danish, Swedish)

Start of the programme

The study programme starts at the beginning of the winter- and summersemester.

Student advisory service

Please contact for an appointment.

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Conditions of admission

Admission requirements

  • Bachelor degree from the Goethe-University in Scandinavian Studies or in Empirical Linguistics with a focus on Scandinavian Languages or
    a bachelor degree from the Goethe-Universität in a related subject (such as Comparative Literature, American Studies, English Studies, German Studies, Latin Philology, Greek Philology, Romance Studies or another philological discipline, History, Philosophy, Catholic Theology or Divinity) in combination with a minor in Scandinavian Studies or Empirical Linguistics with a focus on Scandinavian Languages or
    a degree from a German or foreign university in the same subject or a related discipline (e.g. Comparative Literature, American Studies, English Studies, German Studies, Classics, Romance Studies or another philological discipline, History, Philosophy, Protestant or Catholic Theology or Divinity) and good knowledge of at least one Continental Scandinavian language (Danish, Norwegian, Swedish) as well as knowledge of philological methods.
    The examining board makes decisions on the comparability of degrees.

  • Proof of English language skills by certificates or another equivalent form of proof recognised by the examination office (Niveau B1)

  • very good language skills of at least one continental-scandinavian language (Danish, Norwegian, Swedish)
  • knowledge of Old Norse
  • knowledge of Latin
  • Applicants with an international university entrance qualification and Bachelor's degree must prove sufficient German language skills according to the regulations of the Deutsche Sprachprüfung für den Hochschulzugang (DSH), the German language test for university entrance.

Provisional admission

Provisional admission may be granted on the basis of a provisional Transcript of Records if

  1. at least 150 CP have been obtained
  2. the bachelor thesis has been submitted or is about to submitted and a report or a recommendation from the thesis supervisor has been provided
  3. proof of the requirements for the specific course has been provided
  4. proof of matriculation to the bachelor degree has been provided.
Provisional admission is granted under the condition that proof of the completion of the BA degree is provided to the Examination Board within the next six months at the latest. If proof of completion is not provided by the end of this period, the Examination is required to inform the Registrar’s Office immediately with regard to the revocation of the provisional admission to the MA degree.

Mode of admission

There is no restriction on the number of admissions to the course. If the admission requirements are fulfilled in full, admission is granted directly.

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Documents to be submitted

  • if you are not already enrolled at Goethe-University Frankfurt:
    a university entrance qualification (e.g. A-Levels)
  • Copy of the BA degree certificate
  • If the BA degree certificate is not yet available:
    Transcript of Records or a comparable document with a list of the completed course modules and a calculated overall mark
    - A reference by the supervisor of the bachelor thesis (Download in the online application portal or here)
    - Matriculation certificate for the BA degree course
  • proof of English language skills (Niveau B1)
  • proof of language skills of at least one continental-scandinavian language (Danish, Norwegian, Swedish)
  • proof of knowledge of Old Norse
  • proof of knowledge of Latin
  • Declaration of examination claim (Download in the online application portal or here)
  • if the first degree was obtained at an international higher education institution:
    certificate of German language skills. See here for more information about the required German language skills
  • you may need to submit other documents depending on your country of origin and your previous education; please see the general information about applying for a Master’s degree

Deadline for applications

01.06. - 31.08. for the winter semester
01.12. - 28.02. for the summer semester 

Address for applications

Online application portal for Master's study programmes

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