Integration Exam 2023 for expats remains at level A2.
Implementation of the Civic Integration Law 2021 stagnates and the B1 requirement has been postponed.
For how long? Only the future can tell.
Make sure you have two extra years, by taking part in one out of five exam subjects in 2023.
Read how to secure your permanent residence permit or naturalization in this blog
Estimated reading time 7 minutes
To which civic integration group do I belong?
Are you an expat or a highly skilled migrant? Continue reading!
Expats are not subject to civic integration requirements. However, you may want either a permanent residence permit or naturalization.
Second, keep in mind the date that you entered the Netherlands. Was it before January 1st, 2022? Then you are under the 2013 Law on Civic Integration. In 2023 you are lucky: language level A2 is enough to pass the Civic Integration exam.
Was your entering date after January 1st, 2022? Then you are under the 2021 Law. The B1 requirement has also been postponed for you: language level A2 is enough to pass the Civic Integration exam. Though the 2021 Law requires B1 as an exam level for Civic Integration, its implementation is stagnating.
Covid, lack of housing, and a failing learnability test are the cause.
Do I have to pass all five Civic Integration A2 subjects before January 2024?
No, there is transitional law. However, you should take part in one of the five subjects of the Exam in 2023. It does not matter if you pass or fail: once you have started, you can finish your exam at level A2.
You have got 3 years to finish it, starting from the date that you registered for the exam.
As Inburgeren.nl does not mention this, you may check at Contact met DUO
How much time does it take to prepare for the Integration Exam for expats in 2023?
When you are highly educated you’ll manage in 6 months – this requires 4-6 study hours per week.
In case you don’t work in the Netherlands, it will take a year. You’ll have to take the ONA part. ONA is time-consuming. It is about how to find work in the Netherlands.
KNM, Knowledge of Dutch society, has to be done by all candidates. Learn more about KNM in KNM mock- exams.
How much time does it take to prepare for the integration exam at level B1 – if I want to have a higher language level?
Learning Dutch or NT2 from zero to B1 takes twice as much time as up to A2 – a year. Moreover, learning to speak and write at level B1 without any professional support is unlikely. The reading and the listening part you may do yourself – though self-study always takes longer than studying with professional support.
By the way, do you know that there are three possible civic integration exams? Read Dutch citizenship, which exam?
Can I prepare for the Civic Integration Exam by myself?
Yes, you can prepare part of it by yourself. You can find a lot of information online. However, it will save you time and exam money if you pay for guidance. Good e-learning materials. like Nederlands, voor Buitenlanders provides you with all the materials to learn reading and listening. However, for speaking you need others. E-learning and online conversation classes are the quickest way. Read more about E-learning with conversation classes
Moreover, classes on location are more expensive than any form of online learning. Extended courses on location are primarily meant for refugees – the government pays for them.
What will be the costs to prepare for the Integration exam for expats in 2023?
The price depends on your strategy, intelligence, and discipline. Of course, you cannot avoid paying for the exam, normally € 250, with ONA € 300,-. Inburgeren.nl Let’s dive deeper into the three elements that determine price and success.
Preliminary research is half the battle – inform yourself! Read on the internet and compare courses and prices. Time-consuming, but worth it. Additionally, ask friends or colleagues how they managed their studies and ask for references.
Facebook has several Inburgering groups. Watch out: it takes a while to distinguish between sense and nonsense. On the other hand, both social media and social contacts reinforce your studies. One of the most informative groups is Facebook Inburgeringsgroep Ad Appel
We cannot influence how intelligent we are born, but make sure you use a course that matches your level of intelligence. When you are highly educated, attend Buurthuis, Library, and other free conversation groups for no longer than 3 months. Then you’ll notice that there is not much progression and both Buurthuis and Library groups seldom reach the level which is required for the Civic Integration Exam for expats in 2023.
Moreover, be careful not to choose any course longer than 3 months- they lack flexibility. And note: an online test intake test is limited, you should have an intake by phone at least.
Last but not least: Discipline
Studying all by yourself requires a lot of discipline – that’s why I do not recommend it. However, Word learning, making it part of your daily life is a helpful blog.
Sure, Duolingo is great to learn vocabulary and useful sentences, up to level A2. Though vocabulary is indispensable, learning to talk Dutch needs real-life practice.
Doing parts of your studying in a group, be it online, keeps you on track.
Of course, you can try to form a group yourself – in the Facebook groups you’ll find soulmates. However, those groups generally have a short life.
Moreover, talking without professional guidance and correction may be useful to get some practice – but only a Dutchman, either a schooled volunteer or a professional like Margreet Kwakernaak, can give you good feedback for the Civic Integration Exam. Your Dutch partner? Sometimes it works, sometimes not.
- for expats, A2 stays at the required language level in 2023
- completing a part of the exam in 2023 ensures you two extra years
- The Delft method with conversation classes is the fastest way to speak Dutch
So, what’s the best for me?
Nobody but you can tell. Of course, I love to tell you that Suitcase talen conversation classes with the Delft method are the best for you – but it all depends on your situation. Here’s your to-do list:
- check available courses on the internet
- ask friends and colleagues
- decide how much help you want: no help may cost time and money, and you may have to redo parts of the exam
- for the Civic Integration exam at level A2, € 1000 is the budget for online learning with professional help plus exam money. For classes on location, you’ll pay much more.
- choose a school, study its website, fill out the contact form describing your target+situation, and ask for advice. A (free) intake by phone is the start of successful studies.
Suitcase talen’s Delft method Modules are the most flexible way to the Civic Integration Exam
Are you highly educated, willing to study 4-6 hours per week, and looking for professional conversation classes and advice, including a lot of flexibility? Fill out the Contact Form in English, mentioning:
- what is your general education level
- since when you are in the Netherlands and your situation
- how is your actual level of Dutch
- your target: Dutch for daily life, Dutch because of (future) children, Dutch for work, Civic Integration Exam 2023 at level A2, or Civic Integration Exam at level B1.