TestDaF is an acronym formed by the word “Test” and the abbreviation “DaF” (Deutsch als Fremdsprache) which is translated as GFL (German as a Foreign Language).
German language proficiency test for university admission
TestDaF is a German language proficiency test, whose main purpose is testing German language skills for university admission. TestDaF is recognized – as far as I know – by all German universities as proof of German language proficiency.
The TestDaF Institute
TestDaF is developed by the TestDaF Institute in Bochum, Germany, which is supported by well-known German institutions as the German Rectors’ Conference (Hochschulrektorenkonferenz), German Academic Exchange Service and Goethe-Institut. It has been licensed to “Test Centers” around the world, where you can take TestDaF six times a year.
The TestDaF exam
The TestDaF test covers four parts: reading comprehension, listening comprehension, writing and speaking. Results of every part of the exam are separately assigned to one of three levels the so called “TestDaF levels”, in German “TestDaF-Niveaus” (TDN): TestDaF level 5 – TDN 5 (highest), TestDaF level 4 – TDN 4 (intermediate) and TestDaF level 3 – TDN 3 (lowest). TestDaF does not differentiate lower levels than TDN 3. If you did not reach the minimum level TDN 3 in one part of the exam, your certificate states “under TDN 3” for this part.
How much does TestDaF cost?
Examination fees for TestDaF differ from country to country. At the moment (2015) the price in German test centers is 175 Euro.
You can register for TestDaF online at www.testdaf.de. The registration period starts about eight weeks before the test and lasts about four weeks.