Comparing TestDAF and DSH , learn german vn. learngermanvn,

If you are planning to apply to a German University, chances are you have been asked to submit a proof of language proficiency and has you wondering which of the two more famous options to opt for. There is obviously the TestDAF – a standard examination conducted across various centres across countries and the DSH examination offered by the University applied to. While both of the examinations are essentially a test of your understanding of the language and the ability of express yourself in German – both in writing as well as orally, the structures vary slightly. Even the grading is different across the two and like any comparative, both the examinations have its merits and demerits. So before you decide which of the two is more suited to you, here’s a quick review of the two to help you decide.

Comparing TestDAF and DSH 

Level of Difficulty Standardization Yes, standardized pattern of examination facilitates preparation as you are aware of what would essentially be required of you No, level of difficulty varies from University to University and you might be able to choose between an easier exam
80 Percent, graded across three levels of 5, 4 and 3, TestDAF 3 is not enough for a German Taught course but might be sufficient for you to apply to DSH course in Germany 67%, the qualifying level is usually DSH 2
Content and Structure Test
Divided across four equal parts of Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking, the examination is conducted on the same day over 3 - 3.5 hours Divided into two broad examinations - Written and Oral spread across a week with Written Examination carrying 75% of the weight
You are graded across the parts and hence you can easily better your score as you go It becomes necessary to score a minimum of 57% (passing marks) in both the examinations for you to qualify the DSH
Examination Process Grammar Grammar is not an essential part of the examination. Grammar is both important and sometimes even tested separately in a small sub section of the written examination
Centres The exam is conducted across 90 countries and various centers and you can write the exam in your own country The examinations are conducted by different universities within Germany hence you can only appear for the exam when you reach Germany and is usually conducted before the semester starts
Repetitions You can write examinations multiple times which gives you more chances to improve your score Most Universities only allow 2 attempts hence limited chances
Fees €110 (standard across the world and payable online) € 40 - € 150 (Varies from university to university)

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