Share your experience on preparing to take the Deutsch B1 exam

86 posts in this topic

12 hours ago, TurMech said:

@dj_jay_smith congratulations for your success. 

 

Did you need the certificate in order to apply for citizenship?

 

Secondly why did you take the TELC B1 instead of TELC DTZ

 

Thanks.  Yes, I wanted to get this for the citizenship application.  

 

I chose Telc over Goethe because of a recommendation from my Tutor, although I think there is not too much difference to be honest.  And I never considered the Telc DTZ, because either I pass B1 or fail.  An A2 certificate does not bring me any advantage as I would have to take the B1 test again as this is what I needed.  Plus if you fail one section of the B1 but pass the other section then you can retake that section you failed, where as with the DTZ you would just get the A2 certificate.

 

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On 11/10/2018, 19:48:56, GreenVirgo said:

. The next part was, we were given a choice between two themes to discuss-- again, the model tests, are exactly the same-- and we could note what we wanted to say.

 

 

great post.  btw, what were the two themes?

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On 11.10.2018, 19:48:56, GreenVirgo said:

Reading- if you check out the modeltests on goethe's website, OR TELC, or ÖSD or any other model test you can go over before you go in, this section was exactly like those.

Writing- have a native speaker correct you. 

there are youtube videos with sample letters and you can drill the sentence structure you need for some of this stuff, key phrases etc. 

I recommend youtube vids with B1 audio

 

 

I appreciate GreenVirgo's suggestions, which I found helpful.  I hadn't had any classes for years.  My tips: YouTube is a great training tool, there are tons of helpful videos to prepare for the test.  Doing practice tests was good training and knowing the format ahead of time familiarized me with the test so that I knew what to expect.  One's goal when facing the test is not to learn German, but to know how to use the German you have to pass the test.

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17 hours ago, Derek said:

Just doing my B1 practice and wondered about the timing. In the "Lesen" section for example, it (the Goethe practice PDF) says that the total for the Lesen section is 65 minutes, and it breaks down into 10 mins, 15 mins, 10 mins, etc. I wondered whether they're just being helpful with those times and to treat them as useful milestone times to help you pace yourself for the entire Lesen section, or if somehow you have to complete them all in the time allocated (e.g. they come along and take away the text from section 1A after 10 minutes and give you the text for 1B. I'm assuming it's not this strict and that if you struggle on section 1A and spend 20 minutes on it, you could in theory recover your lost time on another section that you find particularly easy.

 

Also, is it like with the einbürgerungtests (where they choose 33 questions to ask you from a total of 310 and you have to get 17 right) as in there are multiple question sets and you might get any random one on the day? For example, row 1 in the exam room might get set A, row 2 get set C etc. It would be good to have multiple practice tests to try. I've only got one currently (from Goethe).

 

 

To answer you questions (albeit on the other thread!):

 

I done TELC, but I think it is basically the same:

If they say you have 65 minutes for the reading section then that is the "timed" section.  The breakdowns are just for guidance and information.

I found that I done one of them much quicker, one a little quicker but the third was probably either bang on or a bit slower than the guidance,  But everybody is different.

 

 

For the einbürgerungtest I think they basically group the questions and then ask a certain number from each group, but I am not certain and this was a feeling I got rather than finding any information.

 

I highly recommend this website:

https://www.einbuergerungstest-online.eu/

 

You can take the test for your state and practice.  At the top there are also different "modus", so you can select the difficultly level.  I started on standard, and then moved to difficult and very difficult.

BUT:  Be aware, that only "standard" has the right mix of questions as per the real exam.  So if you select the more difficult levels, then it won't select from all the questions only the most difficult ones, which means it is not like the real exam.  So I did actually move back down to standard for the last couple of weeks before the exam, so that I could get used to all the questions again.  But it is 

 

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55 minutes ago, dj_jay_smith said:

To answer you questions (albeit on the other thread!):

 

Thanks for the reply. I never got around to posting the question here yet ;-)

 

The einbürgerungstest seems easy enough to get 17 right. I've tried over a 100 questions so far (and will try the other 200 before my test) and got about 80% right so far.

 

It's the German that's scaring me. For the Lesen section I can easily get 28/30 (and 30/30 if I give myself the full alloted time). For the Hören section I found the short sentences with two questions easy, and the middle part easy enough to get 90% on that part, but the final part, where on the Goethe practice test it's an interview between a moderator and two guests talking about Kinderkrippen. I totally lost it on that. There were about 8 questions, of which I got 3 that I knew were right and had to randomly guess on the other 5 (and got 2 or 3 of them right by guessing). I could easily have got 2/8 on that. Scary. I'm pretty sure I'm gonna fail on Schreiben or Sprechen though. My real-time sentence construction (grammar-wise) is good enough for someone to figure out what I'm saying, I get by just fine, but an examiner is gonna nail me to the wall with docked points. Back to England for me then :-(

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1 hour ago, Derek said:

 

Thanks for the reply. I never got around to posting the question here yet ;-)

 

The einbürgerungstest seems easy enough to get 17 right. I've tried over a 100 questions so far (and will try the other 200 before my test) and got about 80% right so far.

 

It's the German that's scaring me. For the Lesen section I can easily get 28/30 (and 30/30 if I give myself the full alloted time). For the Hören section I found the short sentences with two questions easy, and the middle part easy enough to get 90% on that part, but the final part, where on the Goethe practice test it's an interview between a moderator and two guests talking about Kinderkrippen. I totally lost it on that. There were about 8 questions, of which I got 3 that I knew were right and had to randomly guess on the other 5 (and got 2 or 3 of them right by guessing). I could easily have got 2/8 on that. Scary. I'm pretty sure I'm gonna fail on Schreiben or Sprechen though. My real-time sentence construction (grammar-wise) is good enough for someone to figure out what I'm saying, I get by just fine, but an examiner is gonna nail me to the wall with docked points. Back to England for me then :-(

 

 

You don't have to be perfect, and you could be terrible in one section and still pass the exam.

 

I suggest buying an exam prep book (links in this thread) and they are really good, and I put my pass down purely  to getting the book.  It will explain everything about the exam and tell you what to do and what not to do as well as provide lots of example tests.

 

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On 16/03/2019, 15:42:10, Derek said:

 

Thanks for the reply. I never got around to posting the question here yet ;-)

 

The einbürgerungstest seems easy enough to get 17 right. I've tried over a 100 questions so far (and will try the other 200 before my test) and got about 80% right so far.

 

It's the German that's scaring me. For the Lesen section I can easily get 28/30 (and 30/30 if I give myself the full alloted time). For the Hören section I found the short sentences with two questions easy, and the middle part easy enough to get 90% on that part, but the final part, where on the Goethe practice test it's an interview between a moderator and two guests talking about Kinderkrippen. I totally lost it on that. There were about 8 questions, of which I got 3 that I knew were right and had to randomly guess on the other 5 (and got 2 or 3 of them right by guessing). I could easily have got 2/8 on that. Scary. I'm pretty sure I'm gonna fail on Schreiben or Sprechen though. My real-time sentence construction (grammar-wise) is good enough for someone to figure out what I'm saying, I get by just fine, but an examiner is gonna nail me to the wall with docked points. Back to England for me then :-(

 

I answered a bit in the other thread, but just to add. Try not to be so worried. Lesen and Hören (despite my confidence) turned out to be my worst sections (relative - I still passed absolutely fine). So you'll be fine there. Even if you completely balls up a section. The writing (if you stick to the advice) is actually quite easy. Stick to the formula. I got 100% in speaking. If you can get a point across and understand what the other person is saying then it's basically 100%. B1 is still relatively basic. They are not looking to dock points at all. B2 is where they start to become more critical.

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On 3/16/2019, 4:44:18, dj_jay_smith said:

You don't have to be perfect, and you could be terrible in one section and still pass the exam.

 

I suggest buying an exam prep book (links in this thread) and they are really good, and I put my pass down purely  to getting the book.  It will explain everything about the exam and tell you what to do and what not to do as well as provide lots of example tests.

 

1 hour ago, theGman said:

 

I answered a bit in the other thread, but just to add. Try not to be so worried. Lesen and Hören (despite my confidence) turned out to be my worst sections (relative - I still passed absolutely fine). So you'll be fine there. Even if you completely balls up a section. The writing (if you stick to the advice) is actually quite easy. Stick to the formula. I got 100% in speaking. If you can get a point across and understand what the other person is saying then it's basically 100%. B1 is still relatively basic. They are not looking to dock points at all. B2 is where they start to become more critical.

 

Well, I spent about 20 hours over the weekend practicing. I'm averaging over 90% on the Lesen, between 70% and 90% on the Hören (it's the long discussions with multiple questions to be answered at once that get me). The speaking part I haven't been able to score but I'm sure I can pass that without any further thoughts (my Gerwoman has banned English between now and the test). It's the writing that's letting me down and that's what I'll spend most of my time on.

 

I've seen advice that says you need to get a few key phrases locked into your head (e.g. "Sehr geehrte Damen und Herren" of course) and if you can squeeze them into the E-mails/letters then you're half way there. If I do fail though, it'll be the written part. Despite being here for donkeys years, I hardly ever have to write in German as I work for an American company and it's 100% English.

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12 minutes ago, Derek said:

Well, I spent about 20 hours over the weekend practicing. I'm averaging over 90% on the Lesen, between 70% and 90% on the Hören (it's the long discussions with multiple questions to be answered at once that get me). The speaking part I haven't been able to score but I'm sure I can pass that without any further thoughts (my Gerwoman has banned English between now and the test). It's the writing that's letting me down and that's what I'll spend most of my time on.

 

I've seen advice that says you need to get a few key phrases locked into your head (e.g. "Sehr geehrte Damen und Herren" of course) and if you can squeeze them into the E-mails/letters then you're half way there. If I do fail though, it'll be the written part. Despite being here for donkeys years, I hardly ever have to write in German as I work for an American company and it's 100% English.

 

My German writing is also very very shit. If you have time, do the B1 preparation course. It gives you good writing tips...to the point where I only really had to make up 1-2 sentences on the fly. The rest were exactly as you said...key phrases.

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Yes. The 'form' or 'shape' of different responses is a large part of what they are looking for here - that you know how to phrase a reply to a Beamter compared to your neighbour who has invited you for tea etc. and how different forms of writing (letter, email etc) look on the page and that info. is readily available. We had never written any appreciable German before preparing for the test and both did fine. We got to hang onto our listening/reading scripts during the writing part - I don't know if that is normal, but it did mean that in my written answer about renting a flat, I managed to copy several phrases out of the adverts in the reading section, which was cool. 

 

I don't know that much about the marking - one of the Alexs on TT is an examiner and will know for sure, but my impression is that they mark to the requirements of the test, and so perfection is not required just 'good enough' for B1. 

 

I wish I had bought a book specifically for preparing for the written portion, for the peace of mind, mostly. 

 

Good luck!

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9 minutes ago, theGman said:

My German writing is also very very shit. If you have time, do the B1 preparation course. It gives you good writing tips...to the point where I only really had to make up 1-2 sentences on the fly. The rest were exactly as you said...key phrases.

 

8 minutes ago, kiplette said:

Yes. The 'form' or 'shape' of different responses is a large part of what they are looking for here - that you know how to phrase a reply to a Beamter compared to your neighbour who has invited you for tea etc. and how different forms of writing (letter, email etc) look on the page and that info. is readily available. We had never written any appreciable German before preparing for the test and both did fine. We got to hang onto our listening/reading scripts during the writing part - I don't know if that is normal, but it did mean that in my written answer about renting a flat, I managed to copy several phrases out of the adverts in the reading section, which was cool. 

 

I don't know that much about the marking - one of the Alexs on TT is an examiner and will know for sure, but my impression is that they mark to the requirements of the test, and so perfection is not required just 'good enough' for B1. 

 

I wish I had bought a book specifically for preparing for the written portion, for the peace of mind, mostly. 

 

Good luck!

 

There are a couple of good videos on youtube which show dozens and dozens of example German letters (specifically for B1 practice) and the more you see of them, the more you spot phrases. I'm gonna look at some letters I've received from my accountant (who naturally writes quite formally) and various random crap letters that are still around. My sister-in-law is coincidentally a teacher of German to asylum immigrants but I don't like her enough to ask her for help. I did get some tips from her though, pretty much the same as on here.

 

My biggest tip I'd give for anyone who wants to learn German is to ask me how I did it, and do the opposite.

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On 3/18/2019, 11:07:18, theGman said:

 

 

All done. Had my B1 test yesterday. As many have said, it wasn't as bad as you can build it up to be. If I have to give myself an estimate of what I'll get, I'd say Lesen: 90%+, Hören: 95%+, Schreiben: 60-85% (pretty sure it was good enough for a pass), and Sprechen: 80-95%.

 

I asked how long the results will take and she said there's a reasonable chance I could get it within 4 weeks, but it can take up to 8 weeks and I should be prepared for that.

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22 hours ago, Derek said:

 

All done. Had my B1 test yesterday. As many have said, it wasn't as bad as you can build it up to be. If I have to give myself an estimate of what I'll get, I'd say Lesen: 90%+, Hören: 95%+, Schreiben: 60-85% (pretty sure it was good enough for a pass), and Sprechen: 80-95%.

 

I asked how long the results will take and she said there's a reasonable chance I could get it within 4 weeks, but it can take up to 8 weeks and I should be prepared for that.

 

Well done! Definitely post your results here. I'd be interested to know what you got in the writing part.

 

It's definitely not as scary as it can be built up to be. I learnt on the prep course that B1 just requires basic understanding and communication. Grammar doesn't have to be perfect. You don't need to nail your der/die/das. They don't try to trick you in any of the questions. It's all very reasonable. Only at B2 does it start to get serious.

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On 3/25/2019, 9:09:05, theGman said:

Well done! Definitely post your results here. I'd be interested to know what you got in the writing part.

 

Amazed at my results. I got the weakest pass on the part I figured would be weakest (writing), but for that I got 73%.

 

b1b.jpg.b16985076a10ad0c6f6185a0762eb07c

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53 minutes ago, Derek said:

 

Amazed at my results. I got the weakest pass on the part I figured would be weakest (writing), but for that I got 73%.

 

b1b.jpg.b16985076a10ad0c6f6185a0762eb07c

 

Congratulations! See, easy eh. My experience is that it really is easier than one would think. I believe B2 is the step up into technical difficulty. At B1 level, as long as you can roughly get a point across (100% in speaking easily shows that) and more or less understand what is going on, then you'll pass.

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Hello there

Just passed mine. Not as difficult as I thought it would be. But I recommend anyone preparing for the test that they do invest in the book;  Pons Deutsch-Tests für Zuwanderer. €12,99 from Amazon. It also contains 2 CDs. Really helpful!!!

 

Good luck to anyone taking the test.

 

Lee

 

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On 5/1/2018, 10:03:38, dj_jay_smith said:

 

Thanks.  Yes, I wanted to get this for the citizenship application.  

 

I chose Telc over Goethe because of a recommendation from my Tutor, although I think there is not too much difference to be honest.  And I never considered the Telc DTZ, because either I pass B1 or fail.  An A2 certificate does not bring me any advantage as I would have to take the B1 test again as this is what I needed.  Plus if you fail one section of the B1 but pass the other section then you can retake that section you failed, where as with the DTZ you would just get the A2 certificate.

 

 

 

Things must have changed now - Just my luck!!

I just called my Telc examination centre to find out if this is true...they said, if I don't make the grade then I will have to resit the whole exam, not just the failed bits.

 

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