Five things to think about when doing TestDaf

Sooo, do you want to study at a German university in the near future? Ja?
If so, there is a LOT of options for you. Germany is practically exploding from excellent universities and mind blowing courses. There are just a few (which in Germany means "many") papers to fill in and one long language test to sit through. Here are five useful tips for when you take the TestDaf - Test of German as a foreign language, a necessity for most educations in Germany.

Last update: October 2014

First thing's first, and this is an important one. Not even a finger print or a drop of fresh blood will get you out of the sticky situation that will appear if you don't have your ID with you. If you don't bring the same identification that you used when you registered for the test you will not be allowed to take it. Might seem like a relief, since the test is about 5 hours long and extremely intense, but after paying roughly 170 euro it will definitely feel a bit sour to miss out.


TestDaf consists of four parts; reading comprehension, listening comprehension, written production and oral production. At TestDaf-Institut's website you will find modules to practice. You can also buy books to work with, or sign up for a preparation course. Make sure that you understand what each part entails so that you don't waste time reading the instructions whilst taking the test. Oral production is what freaks most people out. It's tested through a computer that records your speech - a situation that can feel very strange if you're not prepared.


"Pens with blue or black ink" - that's what you're supposed to use to put down your valuable answers. Bring extra pens in case one of the following scenarios occurs: a) you lose your pen down a drain, b) you want to lend one to a desperate neighbour or c) you find yourself inkless halfway through the test.
A whole pile of extra pens on your desk will help ease your nerves. Just take a look at this and see how relaxing it is: pen-pile.


Yeah, it's true. You are only allowed a visit to the bathroom if you fear you might be sick. It's tough shit, but peeing is only permitted during the breaks. So don't go crazy on your best friend's home-made smoothie, a deliciously cold soft drink or a refreshing thermal bottle with coffee. The need to pee could be disastrous to your result!


As stated earlier, do plenty of model tests at home. It's the best way to prepare for the time pressure you will experience. There will not be an abundance of time in any of the four parts, so you need to work quick and make sure to have all your answers down on the answer sheet when the time's out. If you keep writing after the time is up you could be disqualified.

I really hope that these tips will help you in preparation for TestDaf. Don't forget - you can always retake it if the first time didn't go as you wished!


Recent-TestDaf-participant Lisa Jalakas


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