Karl Pfeiffer studied at the University of Cologne to become a teacher of German and English. From 1986 to 1989 he taught as a German Academic Exchange lecturer at Goldsmiths College, University of London. In 1989 he became a teacher of German at the Goethe-Institut London and a teacher liaison officer for the support of the teaching of German in England. Since 2005 he has been the Director of Educational Links at the Goethe-Institut London. From 2010 to 2012 he was President Elect, President and Past President of the Association for Language Learning. He is an Honorary Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Linguists.