But what does it mean? Are you talking to a professor, asking what department he works in? (Then we wouldn't be using "dein".) We don't usually say students have a department. Students have a major-meaning a major area of study.
It doesn't literally translate, but "area of expertise" or "discipline" would make most sense. You would likely say this to a university professor "Was ist Ihre Fachbereich". You'd get a response in the sense of "Meine Spezialität ist Psychologie" or whatever discipline he is into.
When asking a student you are more likely to ask: "Was ist der Fachbereich Ihrer Studie". However this does sound a bit forced.
In France, in each univertity have its own faculties, today named UFR (for unity of formation and research). They are kinds of schools in the university, with their own President and organisation. An UFR is not an area of reseach ! For example, when I was a student in modern litterature, I was both on French and comparated litterature UFR AND french language UFR. And I had to go to other UFR for complementary classes. My italian class was at the Italian AND Romanian UFR. When I worked for the university, later, I was member of the staff of only one of these faculties.
We have the same thing in America! Though the term "college" can be used interchangeably with "university", the term "college" more precisely refers to a specific school of discipline within a university. In other words, within a university, there are many colleges. For example, the college of engineering is one college within the University of South Florida. I hope I'll find the same basic concepts apply to uni in Germany, and seeing as the Uni of Kaiserslautern is near France, your comment gives me hope.
"Fachbereich" what does this mean literally? Bereich is area, right? so what is "Fach"?
It can mean your field of specialty.
In the world of opera, a singer's voice is often catagorized by its "Fach," though I have never heard the full term Fachbereich used in this case. Maybe I just haven't been exposed to it. In any case, a soprano who was especially good singing the coloratura phrases of Rossini would be in a different Fach than a dramatic soprano singing the works of Verdi.
That's right, but "Fach" generally means "subject" in the original context above. So, for example: "What subject should I choose?" would be "Welches Fach soll ich wählen?".
Fach has a meaning of subject, so subject area would seem a good translation, but I'm not a native german speaker.
Fach - compartment, drawer, subject.
Bereich - range, scope, area, field.
Haupt - head, chief, main.
So, Fachbereich - subject area.
Hauptfach - major subject.
Fachbereich is one's speciality. I think it is a much clearer translation than department (which would be only "Bereich" or "Amt").
Fachbereich, Fachgebiet or Spezialgebiet is one's specialty, one's special field. A faculty is eine Fakultät.
Wouldn't this be more accurately translated as "What is your major?", as opposed to DL's "What is your department?" ?
I'm reporting but i'd like a confirmation :)
Yeah why doesn't "specialty" work? That seems like one of the best, if not the best, translations for "Fachbereich"
Having looked at all these comments, I went to Google Translate, which gives "subject area" or "special field" and which ties up with many of the comments.
Discipline, area of study, major, field of expertise...all great translations. But not department. Wollten Sie wirklich fragen, "Was ist Deine Abteilung?" Glaub nit.
I think specialism is more appropriate than speciality here, but it is a close call.
British students don't have majors. They have subjects. Their department is simply the building where they get lectures or do practicals. Given the lengths that Duo goes to to warn of false cognates in the German system versus the US one, and given tbat the system is different again in probably all English-speaking countries, and given that a number of Duo users doing this course have English as a second language anyway, I think this whole area is hopeless and might be better left out of the course altogether.
Yes, i agree, an american high-school is just not a Höhere Schule or Gesamtschule. Some things are untranslatable. And a Gesamtschule is not a community-school. A community school is not a Kreisschule. A kindergarten is a Kindergarten and a university is eine Üniversität. But a Fach-hochschule gibt es einfach nicht in the UK or USA. And a technical-university is not a good translation, certainly no for the medical and social professions.