Gruppe junger Menschen

Integration + literacy courses

Under the rules of the German Immigration Act (passed on 1st January 2005), immigrants and foreigners already with a residence permit are entitled, or required, to attend German courses as part of their integration.

The Volkshochschule (VHS) Lahr provides two different German integration courses, plus the “Leben in Deutschland” (Living in Germany) course:

German Integration Courses with Literacy Training

These courses are designed for immigrants with very little or no schooling in their home country, or those who have learned a different system of writing.

A literacy course comprises 900 hours of teaching.

General German Integration Courses

These courses are designed for immigrants who know the Latin alphabet, and who would like to learn German, or who already have some prior knowledge.

A general integration course comprises a language course (600 hours of teaching, split into six modules, each with 100 hours of teaching), ending with an examination.

At the end of the course, participants take the B1-level “Deutschtest für Zuwanderer” (DTZ) (German Test for Immigrants).


Living in Germany Course

The Living in Germany course is aligned to the German language course, and covers law, order and politics in Germany.

It comprises 100 hours of teaching, and also ends with an examination.

The individual modules build on each other, and correspond to the requirements of the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR). You can join the course at any time, subject to places being available.


Frequently asked questions

When are the courses held?

There are weekly classes in the morning, afternoons or evenings at three to five different times. At the same time, the VHS Lahr runs up to 12 integration courses at varying levels. The group size is between 12 and 22 participants.

How do I sign up for a course?

Anyone who is interested can obtain personal advice and all the information they need at VHS Lahr every Monday between 2.00 p.m and 5.00 p.m. The consultation covers both the integration courses with literacy training and the general integration courses.

If you have already attended an advice session about German language courses, we will then invite you to a separate assessment appointment.


What does a course cost?

A module costs (plus copies and course book):

Without financial support:

298.00 euro

With certificate of eligibility:

195.00 euro

With certificate of eligibility and unemployed status II (Berechtigungsschein and ALG II):  

    0.00 euro


Individuals with no entitlement to support from the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (for example asylum seekers, au pairs, visitors with a visa, etc.) may also attend the courses. They will be required to pay the course fee in full prior to the start of the course, and will be issued with an appropriate certificate.

There are no discounts with the LahrPass.


How do I apply for support from the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees?

The VHS Lahr is happy to help you with your application to the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF) for a certificate of eligibility for admission to the integration course.

This applies to the following interest groups:

  • Foreigners
  • German nationals with a migration background who have sufficient knowledge of the German language, and are in particular need of integration
  • Ethnic German resettlers
  • Asylum seekers with a residence permit pursuant to Section 55, Paragraph 1 of the Asylum Act, and are who are nationals of one of the following countries of origin: Iran, Iraq, Syria, Eritrea
  • Foreigners with exceptional leave to remain pursuant to Section 60a, Paragraph 2, Clause 3 of the German Residence Act
  • Foreigners with a residence permit pursuant to Section 25, Paragraph 5 of the German Residence Act


Please bring the following documents with you to your consultation:

  • Passport with valid residence permit and/or proof of identity
  • Where applicable, temporary residence permit/ letter confirming exceptional leave to remain
  • Non-EU citizens: Confirmation of eligibility (from the Foreigners Registration Office or the agency responsible for basic social security provision)
  • Where applicable: valid letter confirming unemployed status or receipt of social security benefits (Arbeitslosengeld- oder Sozialhilfebescheid)


Detailed information in various languages can be found here:

Federal Office for Migration website