German is the official language of Austria and there are different institutions offering a variety of German language courses for foreigners. Courses in other languages are also in their programmes.
Universities and private language schools have joined forces to form CAMPUS AUSTRIA. Strict quality criteria characterise this association of schools offering instruction in "German as a foreign language".
The main language of instruction at Austrian universities and universities of applied sciences is German. A considerable number of programmes are taught in English, which are listed in the study programme database (choose filter criteria: Language English).
In order to be admitted to a degree programme you have to prove sufficient knowledge of German. At some universities you need proficiency in German corresponding to level B2, at others corresponding to level C1 of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. There are different diplomas that are accepted, e.g. the Österreichisches Sprachdiplom Deutsch, Austria’s officially recognised examination system for German as a foreign language with licensed examination centres all over the world.
The University Preparation Programmes offer intensive German language courses for foreign applicants for a place at university to prepare them for supplementary examinations prescribed by the universities. Attention: Only students who have been admitted by an Austrian tertiary education institution can attend these courses.
The Austrian Language Diploma (Österreichisches Sprachdiplom)
The Österreichische Sprachdiplom (ÖSD) is a four-level examination system for German as a foreign language and it has been conceived for young and adult learners of German in Austria and abroad. It is of international importance as a proof of proficiency in German and is recognised as a qualification by universities, educational institutions and employers in many countries.
The ÖSD is conceived as a central examination that is not dependent on a certain course and that is oriented towards communicative skills. It is not so much linguistic knowledge but rather proficiency in speaking with a view to future situations in which the language is going to be used that is examined.
Austria Institute (Österreich Institut)
Österreich Institute conduct German language courses outside Austria (Rome, Ljubljana, Warsaw, Krakow, Bratislava, Budapest and Brno); they promote and support education in German as a foreign language and collaborate with interested partner institutions in the field of German as a foreign language and other languages.