The most current certificates of proficiency include the DSH (German language test for university admission of foreign applicants) and TestDaf (German as a Foreign Language) certificates for German as a foreign language. Both are Equally well Recognised.
Regardless of what you intend to study, you are advised to have a command of German corresponding to level B1. That will help you to communicate freely with others for your daily activities, whether going out shopping, appointment at the Aliens authority or visiting a doctor. More over, it makes your social lifestyle easier and will raise your career prospects if you intend to stay on in Germany after your studies.
If you want to take a German exam while residing in your home country, you can do so in one of the 158 Goethe Institutes worldwide.
Some students do also decide to enroll for language course at a language school, university or at a Goethe-Institut. This helps in expanding their German skills, as they get an instructor teaches them on their specific goals. Taking a Language course often involve a charge. The language centres at German universities hold language courses for International students for free. They also offer intensive courses during the semester breaks. These courses will help you learn a lot in just a few weeks as well as allowing you to socialise with fellow students, familiarising yourself with the country and people.
There are also a range of options for people who prefer to learn independently. Whether it will take place as a traditional private study, in a university language centre or using various media, especially the Internet, is up to you.
The Deutsche Welle has set up a comprehensive online portal for learning German. This includes a variety of different formats, from traditional audio and reading texts through to multimedia clips.
The Goethe-Institut also has well-established online offers. There are interactive educational games, expert chats or the option of finding online learning partners. Apart from these free offers, fee-based offers are also available, such as the Deutsch-Uni Online. This provides fee-based online modules, including technical support, forums, chat and an electronic translation tool.
Whether in everyday life, with a language partner, or at home on the computer: there are many ways to improve your German.
Anyone living in Germany will learn German easily. Learning German easy when you are in the country. Try to get a room in a student residence or in shared accommodation with German housemates. When you cook or socialise together, you will learn the language without even noticing. You can also listen to radio, watch television or read newspaper to improve your German. This will help you memorise new words and expressions more quickly. By trying to communicate and interact with fellow German students, your German speaking skills will quickly improve.
If you want to improve your language skills and get to know new people, then tandem language learning is just the right way for you. This is when two partners who want to learn each other’s native language get together. You don’t have to analyse grammar or fill in the blanks, you can just have a chat. One hour in one language before switching to the other, to allow both tandem partners to benefit. You can arrange to cook together, go to a café or a walk through the city. This lets you learn another language and you get to know other people and learn about a country’s culture.
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