FAQ: GOETHE-ZERTIFIKAT 2017-11-12T23:00:31+00:00

Frequently Asked Questions on the GOETHE-ZERTIFIKAT

Do I have to be a student at a German language centre to take the GOETHE-ZERTIFIKAT?

Anybody who wants their German skills to be recognised can take the GOETHE-ZERTIFIKAT, and there are no prior conditions. If you are not German and would like your German skills to be recognised for personal or professional purposes, you can take the GOETHE-ZERTIFIKAT. The exams of the Goethe-Institut are available to anyone interested, regardless of the exam candidate’s citizenship. They are designed to demonstrate knowledge in German as a second language and/or as a foreign language.

Which level should I take?

The GOETHE-ZERTIFIKAT diplomas are independent, so you can take the examination of your choice. You can also sit the examinations for a number of diplomas during the same examination session. Which level you take will depend on your current level of proficiency in German.

Can I take the exam without being enrolled on a German language course?

The participation for the exam requires neither prior attendance at a specific language school or in a prep course nor the acquisition of a lower level certificate. However, it is advisable as you will learn the necessary linguistic and exam-specific skills that will help you succeed in the exam.

Which level does my exam represent?

The Goethe-Zertifikats A1 through C2 correspond to the ‘Common European Framework of References for Languages (GER)’

Can I verify my language skills with a letter of acknowledgement from the Goethe Institute or Clonmel Tuition academy?

Acknowledgements stating participation in a language course, an evaluation test, an exam, etc., are not sufficient. Only an exam certificate of having passed a Goethe exam (A1 through C2, Kleines or Großes Sprachdiplom, respectively) are recognized as proof of the respective knowledge level in German as a Second Language.

What is the Goethe-Institut?

The Goethe-Institut is a non-profit German cultural association operational worldwide with 159 institutes, promoting the study of the German language abroad and encouraging international cultural exchange and relations. The Goethe-Institut is autonomous and politically independent. Partners of the institute and its centers are public and private cultural institutions, the federal states, local authorities and the world of commerce. The relationship with the Foreign Office is governed by general agreement. The Goethe-Institut fosters knowledge about Germany by providing information on German culture, society and politics. This includes the exchange of films, music, theatre, and literature.

Which Goethe Exam entitles one to study at a college/university in Germany?

Goethe-Zertifikat C2: Großes Deutsches Sprachdiplom, Zentrale Oberstufenprüfung (ZOP), Kleines Deutsches Sprachdiplom (KDS) and Großes Deutsches Sprachdiplom (GDS) are recognized for study at a college/university in Germany, and exempt one from taking the TestDaF exam or any similar exam.

To find out more about the language requirement of a specific university and/or a course or field of study in Germany, request information directly from the university, or visit www.sprachnachweis.de.

How much time do I need to attain a specific language level?

Learning is an individual process. How much time you need to attain a certain level depends on various and individual factors: your commitment, your time input, and your taking advantage of additional practice resources.

Should you already have studied one or more languages, you may learn German faster. It makes a big difference if you participate in a language course in your home country or in Germany, where you will be exposed to the German language outside the classroom.

Also of relevance is the intensity of the instruction (intensive vs. evening courses, for example).

Where can I get practice materials for the exams?

For each exam level you will find “practice and info materials“ by downloading materials free of charge by additionally ordering materials. You also may receive materials from the language department of the Goethe-Institut nearest you.

Where do I register?

Candidates must register in approved examination centres in Germany or outside Germany. You can register in one country or in different countries, and there are no time limits.

Can I register online?

No. Candidates must register with the examination centres. Only examination centres are authorised to register candidates.

Can I take an examination more than once?

Candidates can take examinations as many times as necessary, until they pass. However, they cannot take the examinations for a diploma that they already hold, unless they revoke the existing diploma in writing before the examination session. If a candidate does not pass the diploma on the second attempt, the first diploma will remain invalid.

Does the certificate/exam expire?

Goethe-Zertifikats A1 through C2 do not expire. Many institutions and employers, however, expect the certificate to be dated not more than two years ago.

What shall I do if I lose my certificate or it becomes lost in the mail?

No duplicate will be issued. If the exam was taken within the last ten years, the testing location where you took the exam will issue a substitute document for a small fee.

My name changed. Can I get a new certificate?

In the case of a name change (for example due to marriage, adoption, divorce, etc.), neither a new certificate nor a substitute document will be issued. A change of name can be verified either with an official document from the relevant authority (birth certificate, marriage license, etc.) or a notarized copy of the above. Name/ spelling of name must be documented via photo ID during registration at the testing location. The certificate for the exam will be issued based on this previously recorded personal information.

Where can I get my certificate notarised?

You may have your certificate notarized – for example, for the purpose of studying in Germany – by any valid notary public (court, government office, school, bank, etc.). Employers usually require a notarization from a law firm.

Where can I have my certificate translated?

An official translation can be prepared by a state-recognized translator or translation office.

Is GOETHE-ZERTIFIKAT recognised everywhere?


 Is GOETHE-ZERTIFIKAT valid for life?


How can I get a statement of equivalent qualification?

You must contact the last examination centre where you took an examination.

How can I find out what my level of German is?

Candidates can take a competency test to find out their level of German for general purposes in each skill (reading, writing, listening, speaking). Information: https://www.goethe.de/pro/relaunch/prf/en/Pruefungsordnung_GTP.pdf