German Language Requirements

To apply for direct admission to undergraduate study programs at Goethe University along with your application, you will have to demonstrate German language proficiency at DSH-2 level (Deutsche Sprachprüfung für den Hochschulzugang). This also applies to master's degree programs taught in German. The Master Portal lists all the requirements for the respective master's programs. For the study programs medicine and dentistry, the DSH-3 level (or equivalent) is required.

Language requirements granting direct admission

Accepted certificates to demonstrate language proficiency at DSH-2 level:

  • DSH-2: at a HRK registered location
  • TestDaF (German as a foreign language test): all results being at least at level TDN 4
  • Goethe certificate C2
  • KMK examination: German language diploma second class (DSD II) with level C1 throughout
  • Telc German C1 higher education: with a result of “satisfactory," “good," or “very good"
  • KDS and GDS (Kleines/Großes Deutsches Sprachdiplom – small/big German language certificate), Zentrale Oberstufenprüfung (ZOP)
  • Deutsche Sprachprüfung II

Also the following educational qualifications:

  • "Feststellungsprüfung" (university assessment test; Studienkolleg): with examination part German
  • German Abitur (certification of eligibility for university entrance) or equivalent certificates from Austria, Switzerland, or Liechtenstein (with German as first language)
  • Foreign certificates according to KMK-resolution (as of June 2, 1995 in the version from March 23/24, 2016) 
  • Intermediate school leaving certificate ("Mittlere Reife") at a school with German as main language (continuous lessons in German until graduation with the minimum grade "ausreichend" in German in the school-leaving certificate) in combination with one of the following certificates:
  • A-Level "German" of the british General Certificate of Education, Higher Grade in "German" in the Scottish Certificate of Education or Standard Level in "German" of the IB Diploma

In the following cases, an individual exemption is possible:

  • Completed vocational training (abgeschlossene Berufsausbildung) in Germany
  • German school certificate of completed 10th grade at a German High School (Gymnasium) or secondary school certificate (Realschulabschlusses/Mittlere Reife) from Germany in conjunction with other certificates proving German language proficiency

In those cases please contact Dr. Wollert, head of the ISZ (Internationales Studienzentrum) at Goethe University Frankfurt.

Language requirements for medicine and dentistry

Accepted certificates to demonstrate language proficiency at DSH-3 level:

  • DSH-3: at a HRK registered location
  • TestDaF (German as a foreign language test): all results being at level TDN 5
  • Goethe certificate C2: with a result of at least "good"
  • "Feststellungsprüfung" (university assessment test; Studienkolleg): with examination part German and result of at least "good"

German language requirements for DSH preparation course or the preparation college (Studienkolleg)

If you do not have any of the above mentioned proofs of language proficiency, you will have to attend DSH preparation course first, before starting your studies. Applicants with indirect university entrance qualification have to attend the Studienkolleg (preparation college). Successful participation in the preparation college will provide you with the required German language skills.

To apply for DSH preparation course or preparation college at Goethe University, you must have German language skills at B1 level (minimum) as stipulated by the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (GER). You must prove this with appropriate documentation and certificates

Certificates merely confirming attendance or participation are not accepted:

  • Certificate B1 (GER), for example from the following institutions: Goethe-Institut, ÖSD, UNIcert, telc, DFA-Sprachinstitut
  • DSD-I, Deutsche Sprachprüfung I, (at minimum) TestDaF 4x3
  • Certificate of attendance at a German intensive course at ISZ at the Goethe-University

The DSH is the "Deutsche Sprachprüfung für den Hochschulzugang" (mandatory German language proficiency examination to assess your qualification for study at a German university). For admission and enrolment at Goethe University you have to prove the minimum level of DSH-2 or an equivalent certificate by the application deadline.

Frequently asked questions concerning the DSH and proof of language skills

Yes, you can take the DSH multiple times. The examination fee is 105 euros for applicants who take part in the DSH preparatory courses of the ISZ, and 120 euros for other applicants.
You can apply for an intensive language course at the Internationales studienzentrum (ISZ) or a language course at a private language school. Please make sure you attend an intensive course (about 20 hours per week).

A number of universities in Germany also offer the DSH for external applicants. The following universities provide this opportunity in and around Frankfurt: Frankfurt University of Applied Science, University of Applied Science Darmstadt, Philipps-University Marburg, University of Applied Science Fulda, and University of Mannheim.

Please consider that there is a limited number of places available and that the requirements for participation vary among universities. At you can find an overview of all German universities offering the DSH. Please contact the specific universities directly to receive information regarding the conditions of registration.

The International Study Centre ISZ offers the opportunity to take a German language course parallel to your main course of study once you register. The center offers subject-specific as well as general courses. Further information on the courses offered in parallel to a main course of study.
With the exception of some master's programs in English, all applicants to Goethe University must already have knowledge of German at a DSH-2 level when they apply. Therefore, you must learn German (in Germany or abroad) and obtain one of the accepted language certificates (see above).