After nine writing assignments and approximately six months, I have completed my German lessons! I took a correspondence course with the Goethe-Institut for writing training. It was generally a good experience overall and something I’m glad that I did. But there were little things that frustrated me.
As a quick recap, I signed up for the Besser Deutsch writing training correspondence course. When I signed up I was sent a binder with nine writing assignments that I had roughly six months to complete. I could complete each assignment on whatever time frame I wanted. Some assignments I flew through and sometimes life got in the way and I took longer than I would have liked to submit them. All assignments were submitted to my instructor via email. She generally responded with in a day or two with my corrections and comments on my strengths and what I could do better. I always found her very responsive and I think that’s part of what made my experience a positive one.
My only real complaint with the correspondence course is that I was only as challenged as I wanted to be. All of the assignments started with 2 or 3 exercises for building vocabulary and conjugating verbs — both relatively low-level and basic skills. It was only when I got to the essays that each assignment ended with that I was really challenged. Each essay was between 150 and 250 words — which is a lot considering it was to be written in a different language. Trying to figure out what to say was difficult, too.
I will say I was very surprised and excited when a certificate of completion arrived in my mailbox from Munich earlier this week. It helps make the German lessons and correspondence course feel like more of an accomplishment. The best part was that even though I’d been assessed at level A2 during placement exam, my tutor assessed me as B1. And the certificate reflects that.
I’m glad that I took the correspondence course. I feel like my writing skills and use of grammar have improved (albeit no less stressful). But as for taking another German lesson course, I’m still trying to decide.