Faculty members in the German Department are engaged in a range of sustained individual projects of research and scholarship. Most often these address cross-disciplinary issues, such as notions of belonging and Heimat, gender and performance, religion and literature, cultural negotiations of economic concepts, globalization, and multiple literacies. A special feature of that work is its high level of internal collaboration, among faculty members, but also including undergraduate and graduate students.

At the same time, numerous projects involve national and international collaborations. Recent examples include a research group on constructions of the "New Europe" at the Eurovision Song Contest (see Sieg), on knowledge histories of hearing (see Dupree), and on the development of advanced forms of second language literacy, particularly within the paradigm of systemic functional linguistics (see Byrnes).

Together, these activities give the department particular scholarly strength in performance (see Dupree, Sieg), gender issues (see Dupree, Eigler, Sieg, Weigert, Pfeiffer), second language acquisition and literacy (Byrnes, Pankova), curriculum and assessment (Byrnes, Pankova, Pfeiffer, Weigert), and social change and literary form (Eigler, Murphy, Pfeiffer). A number of faculty members have received prestigious research awards (see Byrnes, Murphy, Sieg) for their outstanding contribution to the field.