College of Arts and Sciences

Germanic Studies

Placement, Articulations, and Language Certification

Goethe-Institut Certification

Indiana University is proud to be a certified examination center for the Goethe-Institut.  For information about the Goethe-Institut and their German language exams (recognized world-wide), please click here.

To learn more about earning your Goethe-Institut language certification or to schedule an exam, contact Susanne Even (Global and International Studies Building 3139), or Troy Byler (GISB 3113),

The College of Arts and Sciences Foreign Language Requirement

The College of Arts and Sciences requires all undergraduate majors to demonstrate proficiency in a foreign language.  The Department of Germanic Studies offers four language options for this requirement: Dutch, German, Norwegian, and Yiddish.

Please note:

  • The Bachelor of Arts (BA) and the Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) degrees require proficiency through the fourth semester of a single foreign language.
  • The Bachelor of Science (BS) degrees require proficiency through the second or third semester of a single foreign language. See individual degree description for exact requirement.
  • International students may fulfill the foreign language requirement through demonstrated proficiency in their native languages (contact the Office of the Undergraduate Academic Affairs, Owen Hall, 855-1647).

Placement, AP, IB, Concurrent Enrollment, and Special Credit in German

The German Online Placement Exam administered by the IU Bloomington Evaluation Services and Testing (BEST, Franklin Hall 014, 855-1595) is for placement purposes only. Scores do not fulfill any requirement, but are used to find the most appropriate level course for the student. All incoming freshmen and transfer students who have previous German experience are required to take the exam prior to arriving at orientation (FYE).

Transfer students wishing to pursue a German minor or major who place lower than previous course work may be advised to retake transferred course work.

Students taking the ETS German Advanced Placement (AP) test while still in high school will be awarded the following course credits based on score and may fulfill the College of Arts and Sciences foreign language proficiency:

Score 3 – 8 credits (G100, G150)
Score 4 – 11 credits (G100, G150, G200)
Score 5 – 14 credits (G100, G150, G200, G250)

These students are still required to take the online placement test as incoming freshmen. For more information, contact the Undergraduate Secretary.

Incoming freshmen who enrolled in International Baccalaureate (IB) courses in German while in high school may be awarded credits only after taking the German Adaptive Proficiency Exam administered on campus by the IU Bloomington Evaluation Services and Testing (BEST, Franklin Hall 014, 855-1595)

Concurrent Enrollment coursework in German successfully completed in high school, such as through IU Advance College Project (ACP), will be awarded with equivalent course credit. Incoming freshmen will still be required to take the placement exam.

To earn special credit students must take the placement test, complete a validating course on the IUB campus at the level into which the student placed (or higher) with a grade of C or better, and apply for the special credit to be posted retroactively.

Special note: All special credit is awarded by the College of Arts and Sciences Recorder's Office, not the Department of Germanic Studies. International students may not earn credit or be awarded special credit for any courses at the first- or second-year level in their native languages.

*See the undergraduate secretary in the main office of Germanic Studies (Global and International Studies Building 3103) to apply for special credit.

Course Articulation for Non-IU German Language Credit

Who this applies to:

Students who either a) transfer into IU with GER-UN100 through UN400 credit or b) earn, as matriculated students, GER-OS100 through OS400 credit at an overseas program, and who wish to articulate that language credit to equivalent IU courses in the Germanic Studies Department.

Steps for articulating credit:

1) All students wishing to articulate any credit must take the GOPE placement exam. If the student places into G250 or G300, the equivalent credit for G200 or G200-G250, respectively, articulates automatically. No credit for G100-G150 is articulated as per university rules.

2) If a student places into G400 and wants to articulate credit to G300 or G330, s/he must enroll in G400 to confirm the placement before an articulation is made. After completing G400 with C- or better, the appropriate credit will be articulated to G300 and/or G330.

3) If for demonstrated scheduling reasons a student is unable to take the confirming course, the student can instead take the Goethe Institute German Exam to certify language proficiency in German.

Nota Bene: whether or not any articulation to Department of Germanic Studies courses is made, credit for undistributed GER-UN or GER-OS courses counts toward the fulfillment of the campus 120-credit-hour requirement.

Special Credit in Dutch & Norwegian

Special credit is also available to qualified students in Dutch and Norwegian. There is, however, no standardized exam to determine placement. Interested students should see the Undergraduate Secretary.

Germanic Studies
Global and International Studies Building 3103
355 North Jordan Ave.
Bloomington, IN 47405-1105
Phone: 812-855-1553
Fax: 812-855-8927