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.
We do recommend a minimum age for taking the exams.
The testing locations make every effort to accommodate participants with special needs (such as chronic illnesses, visual or hearing impairment). The level and type of chronic illness/disability must be disclosed upon registering for the exam and be confirmed by a doctor’s attestation. The testing location is obligated to maintain strict confidentiality.
More detailed information can be obtained directly at the testing location at which you wish to take the exam.
Please contact the testing location of your choice and request a personal consultation.
You may leave the room for a reasonable time (bathroom). This absence will be noted in the “Report on the Administration of the Exam”.
The Goethe-Zertifikats A1 through C2 correspond to the ‘Common European Framework of References for Languages (GER)’. You can check the classification under:
Level classification of the Goethe-Institut exams and language courses
Common European Framework of References for Languages (GER)
Please contact the testing location of your choice and request a personal consultation.
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.
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
Binding for the scoring of the written part of all Goethe exams is the orthography introduced in August 2006. The basics are „DUDEN. Die deutsche Rechtschreibung“ (as of the 24th edition, 2006) and „WAHRIG. Die deutsche Rechtschreibung“ ( editions as of 2006).
The currently effective rules can be found at:
Duden. Die deutsche Rechtschreibung
Der Duden Produktkatalog
Bertelsmann WAHRIG. Verlagsprogramm
Institut für Deutsche Sprache (IDS)
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). Please consult the testing location of your choice and request a personal consultation.
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.
Some exams offer distance learning material and online courses.
Learning German by correspondence course
Goethe-Zertifikat A1: Fit in Deutsch 1
The exam is deemed to have been passed if at least 30 points (50% of the maximum point score) have been earned and if all sections of the exam have been completed.
Goethe-Zertifikat A1: Start Deutsch 1
The exam is deemed to have been passed if at least 60 points (60 % of the maximum point score) have been earned and if all sections of the exam have been completed.
Goethe-Zertifikat A2: Fit in Deutsch
The exam is deemed to have been passed when at least 60 points (60 % of the maximum point score) have been earned and if all sections of the exam have been complet-ed. Of these points, at least 45 points must have been earned in the written exam and at least 15 points in the oral exam. Otherwise, the entire exam will be deemed to have been failed.
Goethe-Zertifikat B2 (modular)
Goethe-Zertifikat C2: Großes Deutsches Sprachdiplom
A module is deemed to have been passed if at least 60 points or 60% are attained.
You can know more about the Goethe certificates by clicking on the examination title.
The exam as a whole can be re-taken as often as needed. Details on re-taking the exam or part of the exam can be found under Terms and conditions for exam administration.
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.
The certificates of the Zentrale Oberstufenprüfung (ZOP), das Kleine Deutsche Sprachdiplom (KDS) und das Große Deutsche Sprachdiplom (GDS) will be valid after the introduction of the new Goethe-Zertifikat C2: Großes Deutsches Sprachdiplom and with the change of the the exam offers on the level C2 beginning 01.01.2012.
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.
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.
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.
An official translation can be prepared by a state-recognized translator or translation office.
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, we recommend participation in a prep course at the testing location. There you will learn the necessary linguistic and exam-specific skills that will help you succeed on the exam.
For more information, please contact the testing location of your choice and request a personal consultation.
Course participants and past course participants who attended a course at the Goethe-Institut within six months prior to the exam date will receive a discount on the exam fee. But Partial Repetition for C1 is not valid for this discount.
If an exam is not started or is terminated after it begins due to illness, the exam office must be notified by e-mail within 5 business days and a doctor’s note must be presented. In this case, the full exam fee will be refunded or it can be postponed to the next exam.
With the C1 exam, participants have the option of repeating the section they did not pass. This means that if you did not pass the written (Reading, Listening, and Writing) or the oral section, you have the option to retake the part you did not pass one time within one year at the GI Korea exam center.
You may only receive a certificate if you pass the entire exam. It is, however, possible to pay a fee to receive a certificate of participation that states the number of points earned on the exam.
You can access your exam results in the same year you took an exam. For example, if you took an exam in November 2016, you can access your exam results until December 2016. When new exam results are released, you will not be able to view older exam results for approx. 2 weeks.
If a family member picks up the final certificate, valid documents (family register, photo ID of the family member and the exam participant) must be presented to confirm the family relationship.
As long as the exam was taken in the last 10 years, you can pay a fee (10,000 KRW) to receive a certificate of participation that states the number of points earned on the exam.
You can reissue the certificate and a fee(50,000 KRW) may be charged for that. The certificate can only be requested and reissued once. Please contact us by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
A complete certificate may only be issued for B1 exams taken after August 2015 and for B2 exams taken after September 2019. Exam participants who pass all four modules in Korea on different exam dates within one year may request a complete certificate that shows they passed all four modules in one document.
Requests to issue a complete certificate will only be accepted online for a fee of 25,000 KRW. The complete certificate can only be requested and issued once.