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As an EU citizen, I have the right may apply for admission to but do not have the obligation to do an Integrationskurs (integration course) in Germany, after I will move there. Apparently, the language component ends with level B1 (according to BAMF). I strongly suspect I already have level B1 (5 years of German in school in The Netherlands and 6 months living in Germany in 2007), but I have no evidence of any particular CEFR classification. Likewise, I think I will be able to learn the cultural/societal party pretty quickly in self-study as I will be an immigrant from a relatively similar culture, although the Leben in Deutschland course may be useful in other aspects (I don't know what it contains, but I when I lived in Sweden a course that may be similar had some bits that were more useful than I expected).

If I will want to do the Einstufungstest (which would likely tell me I need a more advanced German course than B1) or the final exams (Deutsch-Test für Zuwanderer and Leben in Deutschland), will I still need to do the application for the Antrag auf Zulassung zu einem Integrationskurs, or is the latter only necessary if I will want to actually follow such a course? It may be useful to do the Einstufungstest to gauge my level, and the ones that belong to the Integrationskurs are more widely available than the ones from, for example, the Goethe-Institut.

  • I'm a little curious - the Integrationskurs is very specifically aimed at and designed for people moving to Germany. You don't seem to be doing so - what's your purpose in wanting to take these tests, exactly? Leben in Deutschland will be of no benefit whatsoever to a Dutch citizen who doesn't intend to move to Germany (and very little benefit - quite possibly still none - to one who does), and you appear to believe your German is already better than the Deutsch-Test für Zuwanderer is able to certify. – Chris H Oct 15 '18 at 15:19
  • @ChrisH Doch, I am doing so. Edited for clarification. I don't know the contents of the Leben in Deutschland course yet, so I cannot judge whether or not it will be useful to me. – gerrit Oct 15 '18 at 15:36
  • Ah, ok, that's clearer I think I've found enough for an answer, I'll write it up now. – Chris H Oct 15 '18 at 17:31
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The BAMF website doesn't seem to discuss the possibility at all, and talks about the exams exclusively as Abschlussprüfungen (i.e. course completion tests). But it does appear to be possible to take the language test (Deutschtest für Zuwanderer) without attending an Integrationskurs. For example, this website for language tests at the Volkshochschule in Bavaria states that the exam is free for anybody attending the Integrationskurs, and gives prices (up to €160) for those who are not.

This school in Bonn states that:

Auch Externe - also Teilnehmende, die keinen Sprachkurs/Integrationskurs besucht haben - können diese Prüfung ablegen, in diesem Fall müssen sie die Prüfungsgebühr selbst übernehmen.

(free translation: "External candidates - that is, participants who have not attended a language or integration course - can also take this exam, in this case they must pay the exam fee themselves.")

I don't have any association with the schools above and can't vouch for their quality, they were just some of the first results I found on google. Note that the availability to anybody not participating in an Integrationskurs is dependent on the venue - I first checked the website for the VHS in Hamburg, where the test is explicitly not available to anybody other than course participants.

The same applies to the Leben in Deutschland test. The same school in Bonn states for their LiD tests:

Die vorherige Teilnahme am Orientierungskurs ist für Integrationskursteilnehmende verpflichtend. Interessierte, die extern nur am Test teilnehmen möchten, können dies gegen eine Gebühr von 25,- Euro und eine persönliche Anmeldung machen

(rough translation: Previous participation in the orientation class is mandatory for Integrationskurs participants. Interested people who wish to take only the test externally can do so after in-person registration for a fee of €25.)

Although as I said in my comment, I'd be very surprised if you as a Dutch citizen were to benefit to any meaningful extent from taking the Leben in Deutschland course or exam. Depending which regions you pick, the cultural/societal differences between Germany and the Netherlands are much smaller than those between Germany and other parts of Germany. If you want an idea of what it covers (and how simple the test is), the full library of possible questions is available online from the BAMF website.

As for the Einstufungstest, I don't see anything firm but I'd be very surprised if it's possible to take it without registering for the Integrationskurs - its only purpose is to determine which level of the Integrationskurs you should start at, there's no sense in offering it to people who aren't participating in the Integrationskurs. Note that it would only give a rough idea of your level anyway, and that any school that offering German language courses should be able to offer you a similar evaluation.

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