Testdaf Exams: Dates, Format, Questions & How to Pass [2022]

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Kapitel Zwei TestDaF Prüfungszentrum

Testdaf stands for Test Deutsch als Fremdsprache which translates to ‘Test of German as a foreign language’ and is a German proficiency language test for non-native German speakers. The Testdaf exam covers levels B2 to C1 on a scale of six laid down by the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR). The Testdaf exam helps candidates trying to get admission or do research in German universities. The test includes listening & reading comprehension, writing, and speaking, and German universities recognize Testdaf results. This test can be taken in 95 different countries around the world.

What is Testdaf Exam?

The first Testdaf exam was conducted on 26 April 2001. The proposal to introduce a language examination for international students enrolling in German universities was made in 1996. This proposal came into action on 1 August 1998; three modal tests were drafted and tested worldwide before 31 July 2000.

The duration of the Testdaf exam is 3 to 3.5 hours and is conducted across the world in different countries. It is among the most popular and accepted language proficiency tests because universities across Germany accept it. 

Testdaf exam in India Cities

The Testdaf exams are conducted in five different cities in India, and the details are as follows:

City Institute
Chennai Goethe-Institut Max Mueller Bhavan
Coimbatore PSG College of Technology
New Delhi Max Mueller Bhavan / Goethe-Institut 
Pune Max Mueller Bhavan / Goethe-Institut
Bangalore Max Mueller Bhavan / Goethe-Institut

Testdaf exam in India format

There are two test formats of the Testdaf exam, and they are:

  • the paper-based Testdaf exam 
  • the digital Testdaf exam.

The structure of the paper-based Testdaf includes Reading comprehension, listening comprehension, written expression, and oral expression. The structure of the digital Testdaf exam includes reading, listening, writing, and speaking.

Testdaf exam dates 2022 India

The Testdaf exam dates 2022 are conducted in different cities in India through various organizations. 

The Testdaf exam is conducted six times a year, and these are the dates for 2022

  • 18.05.2022
  • 14.06.2022
  • 20.07.2022
  • 13.09.2022
  • 13.10.2022
  • 10.11.2022

The Testdaf exam can be taken in the five cities mentioned below and the corresponding dates for the exam. 

City Date Institute
Chennai 20.07.202213.10.2022 Goethe-Institut Max Mueller Bhavan
Coimbatore 20.07.2022 PSG College of Technology
New Delhi 13.09.202213.10.202210.11.2022 Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan 
Pune 13.09.202213.10.202210.11.2022 Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan
Bangalore 13.10.2022 Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan
  18.05.202214.06.2022 Past dates when the Testdaf exams were conducted

The result evaluation will take 6 weeks and 4 weeks, respectively, for the paper-based Testdaf exam and digital Testdaf exam.

Testdaf exam 2021 Format

The Testdaf exam is conducted on both paper-based and digital tests, the duration of paper-based is 195 minutes, and the duration of the digital test is 190 minutes.

The paper-based Testdaf exam follows the same structure, and the detailed structure is as follows:

Sections/Parts Description Duration
Reading Comprehension 3 reading texts:Short textsJournalistic textText from the journal 30 items:10 assignment items10 multiple-choice items10 items yes/no/text says nothing about it 60 minutes
Listening Comprehension 3 audio texts:DialogInterviewLecture/interview 25 items:8 short answers10 items true/false7 short answers 40 minutes
Writing 1 task Write a structured text with graphic descriptions and reasoning 60 minutes
Oral Expression 7 tasks Speaking in various typical university situations 35 minutes

The digital Testdaf exam is carried out online in the g.a.s.t test centers (gesellschaft für akademische studienvorbereitung und testentwicklung e.v) follows the same structure and the detailed structure is as follows:

Sections/Parts Description Duration
Read 7 tasks34 items 55 minutes*
Listen 7 tasks30 items 40 minutes
Write 2 tasks 60 minutes
Speak 7 tasks 35 minutes

*The count of tasks and duration may vary, but the duration will be the same for candidates based on the questions.

Testdaf exam fees in India

The Testdaf exam fees in India for 2022 are 100 Euro, approximately INR 8,500 in India.

Testdaf exam in India: How to Crack

You can prepare for the Testdaf exam by joining training institutes either physically or online, based on your preference. There are institutes like Curiotory, where there is a customized German curriculum to suit the needs of the students. You can also learn the curriculum online at the Testdaf website.

The Testdaf website has tutorials that match the examination pattern. Candidates must have gone through and practised all the modules so the exam can be cracked. The modules and their details are as follows:

Module: Read

  • Fill in the blank/gaps
  • Arrange text in sequence
  • Multiple-choice questions
  • Match statements
  • Detect errors in statements/paragraph

Module: Listen

  • Short answers: complete the overview
  • Match phonetic to the image
  • Detect errors in statements/paragraph
  • Multiple-choice questions

Module: Write

  • Write an argumentative text
  • Summarize information from text and images

Speak

  • Weigh options
  • Summarize text
  • Criticize statements
  • Present a topic
  • Present arguments and defend the topic

Testdaf exam sample papers

Practice materials for listening, writing, reading, and speaking sections are available for Start Deutsch 1 exam. The practice materials are available in the below link:

Material that can be accessed online

Material that can be downloaded

A1 Set of model exercises

A1 Set of practice exercises 01

Model tests for the paper-based TestDaf

Testdaf exam preparation

There are many preparatory courses for the Testdaf exam across the world. The training courses are conducted by the test centers and other language training centers. The details can be obtained from the official website of Testdaf.

The Testdaf classifies participants’ language skills at the fourth or fifth level of competency (B2 or C1). To take the exam, your German language knowledge should be equivalent to competence level B2.

The candidate should have gone through 700 to 1000 45 minutes of teaching in the German language.

A candidate’s preparedness can be checked by attending a placement test on the Testdaf website, giving a fair idea if the candidate will be able to crack the Testdaf exam.

Testdaf Exam

The Testdaf exams consist of four parts; the candidate will have to prepare so the TDN is scored greater than TDN 3 to achieve the minimum qualifying factor.

  • Reading Comprehension
    • TDN3 – overall meaning and important details of written text can also be understood; the candidate can partly understand the written text on general academic topics
    • TDN4 – overall meaning can be understood by the candidate and specific details of written texts relevant to common study-related situations and general academic topics that are mainly written in the non-specialized language.
    • TDN5 – The candidate understands the overall meaning as well as specific aspects of linguistically and structurally complex written materials relevant to frequent study-related situations and general academic topics. 
  • Listening Comprehension
    • TDN3 – overall meaning and important details of spoken text can also be understood; the candidate can partly understand the spoken text on general academic topics
    • TDN4 – the main ideas of spoken text can be understood by the candidate, including non-specialized language.
    • TDN5 – The candidate can understand the meaning and specific details of complex spoken text on general academic topics.
  • Writing
    • TDN3 – The candidate can write comprehensible and structured text on common topics and can write simply structured text in a general academic context. Linguistic and structural deficiency may impair understanding.
    • TDN4 – The candidate can structure the sentence appropriately to the context; linguistic deficiency may impair understanding.
    • TDN5 – The candidate can write well-structured text in a style appropriate to the context using different vocabulary and in a general academic context.
  • Speaking 
    • TDN3 – The candidate can communicate on common topics; linguistic deficiencies may slow understanding. The communication will have to improve.
    • TDN4 – The candidate can communicate on common topics; there is no linguistic mistake while speaking.
    • TDN5 – The candidate can communicate clearly in a style appropriate to the context using proper vocabulary in common study-related situations and general academic contexts.

The scores are between TDN 3 and TDN 5; there is no score below TDN 3 as it is considered not qualified. If a candidate scored TDN 5 on all four parts, i.e., Reading comprehension, listening comprehension, writing, and speaking, then the total score will be a TDN 20. In general, most of the universities in Germany accept a TDN 16 for admission.

In conclusion, Testdaf examinations are very popular for non-native German-speaking students and researchers. The advantages of Testdaf exams are as follows:

  • The Testdaf certificate is recognized in all German universities
  • The language skill necessary for studying in Germany is assessed in the Testdaf exam.
  • The content of Testdaf is all related to scientific, academic, and all topics related to study.
  • The Testdaf can be taken in the respective home country, which cuts down on traveling to Germany to take the exam.
  • The Testdaf exam certificate is valid for an unlimited period.
  • The Testdaf examination can be taken multiple times till the candidate is satisfied with the result.
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