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The English HF Oral exam

Not all students have to take an oral on the HF English exam. Students who have failed ONE part of the written exam are given an oral examination.

You will be notified whether you need an oral exam or not when you get your results for the written exam. These will be published on the Lektorat website, where you will be given your individual time.

The dates of the oral exams for the Winter Semester examination, to be held in April 2017, will be announced after the Written Exam results have been published.

Important note:

If you cannot attend at the time given to you, you must contact us in advance. Alternative times for orals can only be offered to students who are either:

a) ill, and produce a doctor's note within two weeks


b) studying abroad at the time of the test (or Praktikum as part of an official year abroad).

We regret that neither work experience ("Praktikum") not required for one's studies nor a pre-booked holiday can be accepted as a reason.

If you cannot or choose not to take the oral exam, you will receive a ‘5’ for the oral exam and thus fail the HF exam as a whole. If you fail the HF exam you can take it again, up to three times.

Note that if you need an oral, it will count as ¼ of your final exam HF English grade: for your final HF grade add together all FOUR grades and divide by four.

Topics for the oral examination

Topics for the exams in Summer Semester 2016 were as follows

1)      Should people be punished for cyberbullying?

2)      Is terrorism ever justified?

3)      Should Germany introduce a Universal Basic Income? (Careful: "Universal Income" does not mean the same as a Minimum Wage./Mindestlohn)

The new topics for the Winter Semester  oral exams (to be held in April 2017) will be announced here  after the results of the written examination have been published.


About the examination

The total length of the exam is 30 minutes. This includes preparation time of about fifteen minutes and fifteen minutes with the examiners.

The exam will test:

- Relevance and coherence of what you say

- Language accuracy and style

-Communication skills generally

You will have to explain  your opinion on the topic in a structured way. However,  the examiners may ask questions which take you away from your originally planned structure, so you will need to be flexible.

You can bring notes to the exam but you cannot read from a prepared script.  You should not memorize a speech about the topic.