Language learning is not an easy process. It requires hard work, a lot of practice and bags of enthusiasm. While a lot of universities in Germany do not require proficiency in the German language, there are universities in which learning German is a requirement. So if you opt for a particular course, the medium of which is German and not English, you need a proof of proficiency to be submitted. There are tests that decide your language proficiency in languages. Just like the TOEFL is for English proficiency, DELE is for proficiency in Spanish, there are proficiency tests for the German language as well.
The TestDAF or the Test Deutsch Als Fremdsprache (Test of German as a Foreign Language) is a standard test for the German learners. The certification is provided for the B2 to C1 level of proficiency in the language. This test is taken to pursue education abroad or have access to the job opportunities after learning the German language. This three-hour long test is conducted across the four major cities in India.
Here’s everything you need to know about the TestDAF:
You need to have at least completed the intermediate level of German to appear for the test; i.e. 700-1000 hours of German language learning. Your learning schedule and the prescribed level should be from a recognized German language institute.
Fees and registration
The test is offered by the Goethe Institut/ Max Mueller Bhavan in India, though it is developed and managed by the TestDAF Institute in Germany. The exam fee for the TestDAF is 90 Euros, which is approximately INR 7100, by making an online payment. The Max Mueller Bhavan conducts tests in centers across New Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai, and Pune.
The TestDAF is bifurcated into four parts: Reading, Writing, Speaking and Listening. These four classifications assess whether the student is proficient in the language to study and conduct research at the university level. The test assesses the candidate on the basis of certain communicative situations that he/she would face after entering the university.
Each part holds five points, making a grand total of 20 points. The standard score that universities demand should lie in the range of 16-18 out of 20, and the test has no repetition limit as such.
The reading comprehension includes reading three texts and answering the questions that follow. The time allotted for this particular section is 60 minutes.
The listening part of the comprehension encompasses listening to three audio texts and answer 25 questions related to them in a time span of 40 minutes (approx).
The writing task is an hour long test that requires the candidate to write a well-structured text about a certain topic, by providing statistical data, facts and their opinion on the same.
The oral production part of the test includes seven speaking tasks that the student needs to complete in approximately 30 minutes. These tasks involve everyday university situations that the candidates are required to respond to.
The exam grading comes in the following levels:
- TestDaF-Niveaustufe 3 (TDN 3)
- TestDaF-Niveaustufe 4 (TDN 4)
- TestDaF-Niveaustufe 5 (TDN 5)
The TestDAF issues a certificate within 45 days, which has lifetime validity. The certificate contains the grading of each level, with a description of the same.
Before you give the TestDAF, here are some tips that you must give a quick glance:
- Go through the practice tests for the exam that you’re about to give to have a look at the test pattern.
- Last minute preparation will not get you through. Make sure you prepare in advance.
- Remember that the whole test revolves around university lifestyle. So make sure that you are familiar with those topics.
- Practice as much as possible. The more you practice; the better will be your score in the test.
- There are German language institutes that train students for this very test. So if you need proper guidance, enroll in one of them.
The Test DAF is not to be taken lightly as it is the ticket to your education abroad. So learn German language, take the test, and pass with flying colors to pursue your dream in the land of Germany!