Twin Cities campus
Twin Cities Campus

German Advanced-Level Proficiency Certificate

German, Nordic, Slavic & Dutch
College of Liberal Arts
  • Program Type: Undergraduate credit certificate
  • Requirements for this program are current for Spring 2018
  • Required credits to graduate with this degree: 6 to 8
  • This certificate requires an intensive German-language immersion experience. There are 3 options for completing this requirement; (1) An academic study abroad experience of at least 6 weeks that includes at least 1 course taught in German; (2) Completion of an immersion experience preapproved by the German Director of Undergraduate Studies (DUS). This could include a service learning experience or internship, or the completion of the Community Engagement Scholars Program , with a focus on opportunities to engage with native German speakers; (3) Completion of two full semesters of weekly language exchange with a native speaker through the CLA Language Center’s TandemPlus program including 15 hours devoted to conversation in German. This experience must be documented through TandemPlus. Since this will involve less contact with German speakers than options 1 and 2, students should only take option 3 if it is the only one available to them.
  • Degree: German Advanced-Level Proficiency Certificate
This certificate is designed for students interested in achieving advanced-level proficiency in German and having their skills formally recognized. People who have advanced-level proficiency in German possess the speaking, reading, writing and listening skills sufficient to satisfy the requirements of everyday situations at home and at work. They also generally understand and are understood by native speakers of German . For an extended definition of advanced-level proficiency, please visit the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages website: The Certificate of Advanced-Level Proficiency is open to all University of Minnesota undergraduate students, especially those who seek higher levels of German proficiency in order to become more competitive for graduate or professional programs, careers with domestic German-speaking populations, or international careers.
Program Delivery
This program is available:
  • via classroom (the majority of instruction is face-to-face)
Admission Requirements
For information about University of Minnesota admission requirements, visit the Office of Admissions website.
General Requirements
All students in baccalaureate degree programs are required to complete general University and college requirements including writing and liberal education courses. For more information about University-wide requirements, see the liberal education requirements. Required courses for the major, minor or certificate in which a student receives a D grade (with or without plus or minus) do not count toward the major, minor or certificate (including transfer courses).
Program Requirements
The German Language Advanced-Level Proficiency Certificate consists of six required components: (1) pass the German LPE; (2) complete two upper-division courses taught in German with a grade of C- or higher*; (3) complete a German-language immersion experience; (4) complete the self-assessment instrument; (5) submit a critical reflection essay; (6) obtain a rating of at least Advanced-Low on all four sections of the ACTFL (speaking, writing, listening, and reading). *A note about the coursework: students have two options; (a) German 3011 and one pre-approved content-based course; or (b) two pre-approved content-based courses. Content-based courses are taught mostly in German and explore literature, culture, media, or other issues from an academic perspective. See the Certificate website for a list of approved courses. Courses taken abroad will count only if they are taught in German and have a minimum of 10 pages of written work in German with at least one assignment of at least 5 pages in length.
German LPE
Pass the German Language Proficiency Exam (LPE). This exam is typically taken after 4 semesters of college-level study, or the equivalent. For more information, please visit
Two Upper-level Courses Taught in German
Complete two upper-division courses taught in German, for a total of 6-8 credits, with a grade of C- or higher. There are two options for completing this requirement: (1) GER 3011 and one pre-approved content-based* course; (2) two pre-approved content-based* courses. *Content-based courses are defined under "Program Requirements" above.
German Language Immersion
Participate in an intensive German language immersion experience. There are three options for completing this requirement; (1) An academic study abroad experience of at least six weeks that includes at least one course taught in German; (2) Completion of an pre-approved immersion experience; (3) Completion of two full semesters of weekly language exchange with a native speaker through the CLA Language Center’s TandemPlus program including 15 hours devoted to conversation in German.
Self-assessment Instrument
Take the self-assessment and use this information to gauge your own proficiency level. It is strongly recommended that you do not attempt the ACTFL exam until the self-assessment results indicate that you may have achieved advanced-level proficiency.
Critical Reflection Essay
Submit a short essay (of 450-600 words) written in English that; (1) reflects on your German self-assessment results; (2) describes your current level of German language proficiency; (3) demonstrates how you have used your language and cultural understanding skills at the University and beyond through completion of some or all of the “Additional Recommended Experiences” listed below.
Achieve Advanced-Low or Higher on the ACTFL
When your self-assessment results indicate that you may be at advanced-level proficiency, you may take the ACTFL Advanced-level Exam. In order to complete your certificate, you must achieve a rating of Advanced-Low or higher in all 4 sections: speaking, writing, listening and reading. The cost for 4 sections of the ACTFL is $200. However, if you participate in the PACE Project you will be able to take the reading, listening and speaking exams at no cost and pay only for the writing exam.
Additional Recommended Experiences to Increase German Language Proficiency
- Study abroad in a German-speaking country for at least a semester (this is highly recommended). - Additional upper division coursework taught in German (see the Certificate website). - Service learning, volunteer work, or internship in a German-speaking context for at least a semester. - Participation in TandemPlus. - Participation in the GSD House. - Spend an average of 15-20 hours per week outside of class actively using your German (reading, writing, speaking, listening)
More program views..
View college catalog(s):
· College of Liberal Arts

View future requirement(s):
· Fall 2018

View checkpoint chart:
· German Advanced-Level Proficiency Certificate
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