This paper reports the results of a study on automatic keyword extraction in German. We employed in general two types of methods: (A) an unsupervised method based on information theory (Shannon, 1948). We employed (i) a bigram model, (ii) a probabilistic parser model (Hale, 2001) and (iii) an innovative model which utilises topics as extra-sentential contexts for the calculation of the information content of the words, and (B) a supervised method employing a recurrent neural network (RNN). As baselines, we employed TextRank and the TF-IDF ranking function. The topic model (A)(iii) outperformed clearly all remaining models, even TextRank and TF-IDF. In contrast, RNN performed poorly. We take the results as first evidence, that (i) information content can be employed for keyword extraction tasks and has thus a clear correspondence to semantics of natural language’s, and (ii) that - as a cognitive principle - the information content of words is determined from extra-sentential contexts, that is to say, from the discourse of words.