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The University of Southampton
Modern Languages and LinguisticsPart of HumanitiesUndergraduate study

Alice Greenfield BA German Linguistics

Alice Greenfield's Photo

Hi, I'm Alice Greenfield and I studied BA German Linguistics within Humanities at the University of Southampton.

Humanities subjects are fascinating because they are so varied, and this variation means that you develop such a wide range of skills, which make you particularly desirable in the working world.

As soon as I started learning German at school, I knew I wanted to become as fluent as possible, and studying a language at university, as opposed to a more factual subject, seemed more exotic, unusual and exciting to me.

Varied programmes of study

I was drawn to Southampton because Humanities had a really friendly atmosphere and the staff seemed, and proved to be, very open and approachable. I also thought the course was a lot more varied than those at other universities I’d visited; I had the opportunity to not only study history and literature but also linguistics, which was completely new to me.

My degree is German Linguistic Studies. I started simply reading German Studies but transferred once I realised how much I enjoyed linguistics, as this meant much more scope to explore this field of study.

Adapting to university life

I took to university life like a duck to water. I’d never lived away from home before but I made friends instantly and settled in quickly and easily. Everyone is in the same boat so you all discover things together and help each other out. Although different, studying at university was not difficult to adjust to, you’re guided through every step of the way and the staff are very understanding.

Humanities subjects are fascinating because they are so varied, and this variation means that you develop such a wide range of skills, which make you particularly desirable in the working world.

In my second year I was a Social Secretary on the German Society Committee, which was great fun and an enjoyable learning experience. I got to know a lot of students in the first and final years that I might not have known otherwise, which was so useful as I could find out more about the year abroad, for example. I also dabbled in a number of other societies; there are almost too many to choose from!

Future plans

I have attended some careers events, and although I have work experience, it was not oriented at a specific career, though it was useful in giving me a taste and understanding of working life.

In my time at Southampton I have gained a real passion for sociolinguistics, so I would love to study this subject further, at masters level, but I am keeping my options open. I’ve applied for some masters courses but also some graduate schemes, so I will see what opportunities come my way.

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