Tuesday, October 30, 2007

A Shiny Certificate

Last week in class, our German teacher announced that after completing the next course, we could go to the city of Aarau and take the official Goethe Institute German test and upon passing receive a shiny certificate that says we have mastered German.

After being in the real world for over 4 years (gosh, how have I survived) I find this whole test/certificate thing a little funny. Especially because what one can do on a test seems to be about 6 months ahead of what one can do in real life. For example, about four months ago, we learned to use sentences with "weil" (because). I got 100% on the test from that chapter. But it wasn't until now that I'm starting to actually be able to use "weil" in normal speaking circumstances without stopping to really ponder the word order.

On paper, my German looks great. In the hardware store, it appears I have not taken German at all. So while I'll go and take the test to say I've mastered the German language, I'll come home and show my certificate to my Swiss friend Tom and pronounce in English that I've now mastered German.


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