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Goethe Certificate B1- B1 German exam and certificate - your guide
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B1 German exam and certificate – All you need to know

I took the B1 German exam on August 25, 2023 at Goethe Institute in Munich city, Germany. There were four (4) parts of the exam. Reading, listening, writing and speaking. Each was taken for 60 minutes each with fifteen (15) minutes break in between, except before the speaking part. Understandably, I prepared for this test, as I needed it for my residence permit, ( at least to get it extended to five (5) years). If you plan to take the same journey, here’s my personal experience and all you need to know for taking the B1 German exam and receiving a certificate.

Getting a B1 German exam and certificate – where to begin

Before you start your undertaking to B1 German exam and certificate, you first need to check the schedule. When are you most convenient, and if there’s an available schedule. You can start by checking Goethe Institute website

Create an account, if you haven’t had one yet. This will also serve as your portal where you can check your exam details later.

Check certificates. From there, you can see which country you’re taking the exam from. For example, Germany. And it will show you which exam and location you can choose to take your exam from. 

Goethe Institute select the exam
Screenshot from Goethe Institute’s website

Select the module. You can choose the time and date, and which parts of the B1 German exam you plan to take. 

Screenshot from Goethe Institute's website

After selecting, you can proceed to payment. The confirmation will be sent to your email. It looks like this.

Email received from Goethe

How much does it cost for the B1 German exam?

I paid €255 for four (4) modules. Reading, listening, writing and speaking. If you like to take an individual course, that is also okay. It costs €99

B1 German exam and certificate – why do you need it?

Personally, I need a B1 German and exam and certificate because, the KVR -Kreisverwaltungsreferat – Landeshauptstadt München / District Administration Department- City of Munich need it, for my hopefully extending my Aufenhalstitel- residence permit up to five ( 5) years. That I was told last time when I went to renew my residence permit. Now, nearly one year before it expires, they wrote me a letter stating that the B1 German certificate is one of the requirements.

t goes without saying, you can only get a B1 German certificate if you’ve passed the exam. Don’t get it wrong!

There are many reasons why you need the B1 German exam and certificate. Some of them are your job, the Äuslander office ( Foreigner’s office), your school, if you want to work and live in Germany, among many others.

B1 German exam practice test

You can find the most helpful B1 German exam practice tests on Goethe’s website. I used it myself, and I’m glad I did, because it was exactly the same pattern that came out on the exam day. For your reference, here are some of the situations that might be used.

Writing / Schreiben practice test – write an email sample

The writing test will have three (3) situations. You will be given three (3) sets of paper to write your answer and for your notes.

Situation 1

  • Write an email to a friend.
  • Tell her / him you bought a new computer
  • What is it for?
  • What do you like about it?
  • Suggest for a meet-up.

Make sure to write in 80 words. Don’t forget the beginning, main body and ending.

Liebe Martin,

wie geht es dir? Ich hoffe, dass es dir gut geht. Ich möchte dir zusagen, dass ich habe ein neue Computer gekauft. Mein alte war schon kaputt. Ich brauche diese Computer zum Arbeit. Mir gefallt diese Gerat weil, es gut funktioniert, Leicht und Der Akku hält lange. Macht mir zufrieden. Hast du Zeit? Lass uns Treffen. Ich habe Frei nächste Woche! Ich freue mich auf darauf!

Bis bald,

Catherine

Writing / Schreiben practice test -write your opinion sample

  • * Some people only want to stay in the hotel room, and lounge in the sun when they go on holiday. I find that very boring. When on vacation, you should enjoy the time and take advantage!

Make sure to write in 80 words. Don’t forget to agree or disagree.

Ich persönlich finde es auch schlimm, wenn Leute in den Urlaub fahren und einfach im Hotelzimmer bleiben oder den ganzen Tag im Sand liegen. Es gibt viele interessante Dinge, die man im Urlaub unternehmen kann. Sie können beispielsweise eine Stadtrundfahrt machen, kurze Wanderungen unternehmen, sich neue Veranstaltungen ansehen oder einen kulinarischen Ausflug unternehmen. Verständlicherweise ist das Hotelzimmer komfortabel und es ist entspannend, den ganzen Tag am Strand zu sein. Ich stimme auch zu, dass Menschen, die im Urlaub faul sind, die Gegend zu erkunden, besser zu Hause bleiben sollten.

Writing / Schreiben practice test -write an apology sample

  • Write Frau Sauer that you can’t meet her on the day you promised to meet her for your apartment’s heating system
  • Tell the reason why you can’t
  • Tell her when do you meet next time
  • Tell her you’re apologetic
  • Suggest to meet her next time
  • Make sure to write it in 40 words. Don’t forget the beginning, main body and ending.

Sehr geehrte Frau Sauer,

Wir haben über einen Termin für die Heizungsanlage meiner Wohnung am Samstag gesprochen. Leider habe ich keine Zeit. Ich habe an diesem Tag einen Termin bei meinem Arzt und muss unbedingt hin. Enstchuldigen sie mich.. Hoffentlich nächste Woche, wenn ich Zeit habe.

Danke für dein Verständnis!

My tips?

Keep it brief and simple. Don’t use too many flowery words. You can even use the words that are already written in the task. For example, in the say your opinion part, you can say, ” I agree to the statement / ich stimme das Aussage ****** zu. And just add your thoughts. If you make a wrong grammar, it’s okay. You don’t need to perfect hat, as long as your thoughts are understandable.

Reading / Lesen practice test sample

There will be five (5) parts in the reading part. This will take sixty five (65) minutes.

Part 1

Reading an announcement and answer right or false

B1 German exam readiing sample 1
Screenshot from Goethe institute’s website

Part 2

Reading a blog and choose a, b, c

B1 German exam readiing sample 2
Screenshot from Goethe Institute’s website

Part 4

Reading a news articleChoose a, b, c

B1 German exam reading sample 3
Screenshot from Goethe Institute’s website

Part 4

Reading an advertisement. Choose a, b, c

B1 German exam reading sample4
Screenshot from Goethe Institute’s website

Part 5

Choose the correct advertisement that matches the need of the statement. Choose the letters a-j.

My tips?

Read it carefully. Try to understand the statement, or the sentence. Don’t try to translate it right away in your language. Doing so will only confuse you. Like it did to me. Guilty as charged! 

B1 German exam hören test sample

In my experience, the speaking was the most difficult part. Nearly all of them were only played once. Only the last one if my memory is correct, was played twice. And it was hard to catch up. 

For your reference, some of the situations might be;

  • A tour 

Dialogue between three (3) people. Moderator, one woman and man guests 

Conversations between friends about moving to a new university 

My tips?

Try to focus. Write some important words as possibly can. 


PIN IT ON PINTEREST

B1 German exam and certificate on Pinterest3
B1 German exam and certificate on Pinterest3
B1 German exam and certificate on Pinterest2

B1  German speaking test

Before 3pm, the teacher came into the waiting room, started looking for the participants. Ufortunately, some didn’t arrive yet. So, I guess, they took the exam later than the scheduled time. 

My partner also wasn’t there yet, when the teacher called. When she came back the second time, luckily, he was back. 

She told us to prepare for the situation. The teacher handed us out pieces of paper to write our notes. She was so kind. She even let me choose which situation I am more familiar with. I took the kindergarten scenario. We went inside the room to prepare for twenty (20) minutes, where another teacher is supervising. 

After the given time, we were directed to the exam room. There were two (2) teachers, one man and one woman (same woman who gave us the brief). They introduced themselves and we started right away. 

My tips?

Conversation with a partner

As you’ve been given the brief beforehand, 

Listen to his presentation and take down notes. Exchange conversation as if he’s your friend or classmate you’ve known. Write down some points and try to ask a few questions about his thoughts. For example, if you’re discussing about a presentation you want to show in your German class, you may say “ let’s add this part, what do you think?”. Nod and agree or disagree. 

For the self presentation about your chosen topic 

Make it clear already what you have in mind and translate it in your notes. You are allowed to look at your notes while speaking. But also make sure to be brief, but complete. End it with a smile and be confident. But know that it’s also okay to feel nervous. Like I was before. 

For your partner’s presentation 

Listen to his presentation. Be attentive while jotting down some notes. Ask only non complicated questions. For example, if his topic is about his traditional foods in his country, you may ask “ what is your favourite traditional food in your country?”. 

Don’t forget to thank your partner and the two teacher’s participation. 

asdSAER

B1 German exam procedure at Goethe Institut

Read it carefully. Try to understand the statement, or the sentence. Don’t try to translate it right away in your language. Doing so will only confuse you. Like it did to me. Guilty as charged! 

My exam time was at 9am. In the email, it was written that we have to arrive fifteen (15) minutes before the time. And so I did. There were already many exam takers waiting in the same room. But some were for B2. 

The first part- writing came first. The teacher came in at 9:15, he told us to go to the third floor. We showed him our ids, told our last names, the method on how we want the certificates delivered, surrendered our phones, took a number for it, put our bags in the corner of the room and chose a seat. 

Soon, he discussed to us about the entire procedure of the exam. What we were going to write on our paper, how many minutes allowed for each, and how many minutes of break we would have. 

After that, we began the B1 writing exam for 60 minutes. 

We had a break time for fifteen (15) minutes.

Then, came the listening part. Just like the writing, we also had sixty (60) minutes allowed for it. 

Then, break time for fifteen (15) minutes.

Then came the reading part. We also had sixty (60) minutes allowed for it. 

This was 12:45 pm already. We could get our phones back, had our lunch, and waited until the speaking exam. 

B1 German exam passing marks

You have to score 60 points over 100 points at least to be able to pass the exam. Unlike A1 German exam that sums up the total of all the tests in one, B1 German exam passing marks depend upon the individual test.

How difficult or hard is German B1 exam?

Difficulty depends on your preparation, I must say. If you’ve prepared for it, then, I’m certain you won’t find it difficult. However, if you didn’t, then, it could be. But, to be honest, the most difficult part for me was listening. Also, some situations were only played once, resulting into me not understanding what was it all about. And I only guessed which answer was correct. I didn’t wonder when I didn’t pass the listening itself. haha.

How to pass the German exam

Read. Review. Learn new vocabularies. Keep it simple. Practice. If you’re really serious about passing the B1 German exam, you must practice and practice. Relax. Arrive on time. You got this!

B1 German certificate

You can still get a B1 German certificate if you passed any parts of the B1 German test. For example, if you scored 67/100, which means passed, you can get a certificate for that. The same goes to speaking, or listening. However, if you didn’t pass listening, for instance, then, you don’t get a certificate in this.

When to receive the B1 German certificate?

I received mine after four  (4) days, excluding weekend via post. Yes, I still received a certificate from the three (3) parts that I passed. For the listening, obviously, I didn’t get one. 

Is B1 German enough for getting a job?

It depends on the job that you’re applying for. Similarly, jobs like doctors, engineers, bank works, or the like need a fluent German such as C1. You can always check the qualifications of the job you wish to apply for. But, jobs like as a cashier, for example, I think B1 is sufficient. In my job as a Music Teacher and Play leader at Gymboree and Substitute teacher assistant in an International school and bilingual workplace, B1 isn’t a requirement.


Articles you might be interested with to read: Germany Diaries


German books for practice and preparation

If you’ve studied B1 already, I assumed you already have this book. Otherwise, consider these books to help you review for your B1 German exam and getting a B1 certificate. 

Check it out on Amazon

check it out on Amazon

Goethe Institute location

Goethe Institute is located at Rablstraße 24, 81669 München. You can take any U bahn to Silberhornstrasse, then take the tram to Rosenheimplatz. Walk to Goethe Institute for around 5-10minutes.

If you’re taking S1, just get off to Rosenheimplatz and walk to Goethe Institute for around 5-10minutes.

Personal note

The B1 German exam was manageable for me, the preparation itself wasn’t. I had to read and understand sample statements and situations, learn and memorise new vocabularies, and spend so much time practicing. I also asked my husband to check my writings. It was kind of stressful for me. Even in my dreams, I was learning new words. haha! But it was worth it, though. The lucky thing is, I still received B1 German certificates. Hooray! I might as well repeat the listening exam, if the KVR requires it. Cross fingers not! I’m happy overall.

Good luck!

If you have any questions, please feel free to leave it in the comments below. Please don’t try to send me message on my social media, as I usually don’t check spam or request messages. Thanks! 

Born, raised, and forever loyal to the Philippines. Catherine is a teacher and a BA in Mass Communication graduate who loves anything child-friendly. She loves writing in her diary every day and is in love with beaches, books, Safari, and Tokyo. Her ultimate dream destinations are Madagascar, Mongolia, and Hawaii. Check out her van camping adventures in Europe at vancampingguide.com.

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