More Academic Information

German Placement and Proficiency Exams

The placement exam is designed to help you determine the correct course for beginning your language study at KU, if you already have experience in a foreign language. This exam focuses on your abilities and knowledge of the language, rather than on the amount of your prior coursework.

The placement exam is offered online ( and must be completed one week prior to your arrival on campus for orientation as it is a crucial component in your enrollment process. Those students failing to take the exam prior to arriving on campus may be unable to sign up for a foreign language course until the add/drop period at the beginning of the semester.

The process of determining the proper placement may also include a conversation with a placement advisor about your language background.

The proficiency exam is for students who want to fulfill the College foreign language requirement with German without taking any German courses at KU. They will take the placement exam and a proficiency exam (written and oral). Details follow:

1. Students should take the online language placement exam online (

2. Should a student receive a score below 500 and wish to test out of the College foreign language requirement equivalent to one, two, or three semesters of German, s/he will contact Dr. Emily Wallace, the departmental placement / proficiency coordinator, by email ( Dr. Meyertholen will arrange a written and oral exam for the student.

3. The student will meet with the coordinator at the scheduled time to take the written and oral exam and will be notified of the results.

4. Should the student receive a score of 500 or higher and wish to test out of the College foreign language requirement equivalent to four semesters, s/he will contact Prof. Lorie Vanchena, the departmental undergraduate advisor, by email,

5. If, after discussion with the undergraduate advisor, the student still wishes to test out of German, s/he will be asked to contact the departmental placement / proficiency coordinator, Dr. Emily Wallace (, to arrange a written and oral exam (see #2 above).

Goethe Institute Testing and Certification

Certificates issued by the Goethe-Institut are recognized throughout the world. The Department of Germanic Languages & Literatures will administer the Goethe Institute's B2 exam (Goethe-Zertifikat B2) each spring. The more advanced exam for the Zertifikat C1 will be offered each fall semester. In many countries, students need the Goethe-Zertifikat B2 to study German at a university. Please contact Mr. Jim Morrison,, for more information.

Research Experience Program (REP) Certification

A Research Experience Program Certificate, earned through the Center for Undergraduate Research, will appear on a student's official KU transcript. The Certificate indicates that a student has taken advantage of the unique opportunities offered by a national research institution. It also helps a student stand out when applying to graduate school or when on the job market.

Global Awareness Program (GAP) Certification

The Global Awareness Program (GAP), administered by the Office of International Programs, "facilitates global engagement through academic coursework, co-curricular involvement, and international experience." Students earning a major or minor in German will easily complete the academic component of the program, which can be tailored to meet their interests, experiences, and degree requirements.


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