Tandem-FAQ

Our tandem programme is for everyone who has basic knowledge of a foreign language and who is willing to help a learner of his or her native language. Although the tandem programme is designed for students and staff of Berlin universities, we welcome everyone of age (18) who wants to improve their language competencies.

Please note that this is a face-to-face tandem-programme. If you are interested in a virtual tandem (Skype or e-mail), please see What alternatives do I have if I still have not found a tandem partner? for further information.

You only have to fill out the online registration form on our website. For a successful registration, your browser must allow cookies and pop-ups.

Please try to answer the questions as detailed as possible. The more details we have, the more likely we are to find your perfect match. Above all, make sure that you include your field of study, your university, your interests and your language competencies.

Note: After completing the registration, you will not receive a confirmation via e-mail. If your registration is successful, the following message will appear in your browser:
“Thank you! Your application has been registered. If you have any questions, please consult our FAQ or contact us at tandem@zedat.fu-berlin.de."

At the beginning of each semester, we organise a Tandemtreffen (tandem meeting). At this event, you can match yourself with a language partner (for more information see What is the Tandemtreffen?).

Yes, you can.

You can offer more than one language if you grew up bi- or multilingual, or if you went to school or studied in that language. In general, we only match native speakers or near-native speakers with each other.

You can also search for a tandem partner in more than one language. In this case, please fill out the online registration form for each language. If you fill them out consecutively, your information will be saved in the form.

However, please make sure that you have enough time to meet with more than one tandem partner on a regular basis.

Your registration is only valid until the end of the semester of your registration, as we start a new database in the beginning of each semester. If you have not been matched with a tandem partner within this period and you still want to do a tandem, you have to register again in the following semester.

If you wish to withdraw your registration before the semester ends, please let us know via e-mail at tandem@sprachenzentrum.fu-berlin.de.


We match tandem partners throughout the whole semester as fast as possible. Once we worked our way through the first rush at the beginning of each semester, it only takes us a few days to match you with a partner. Of course, this only applies if there is a suitable match for you in our database. If not, it may take longer.

Note: If you choose “20+ years or more” as the acceptable “age difference” and “no preference” for the category “preferred gender”, you significantly increase the number of suitable matches.

You can find the status of all registrations for all languages on our website (see Tandemsuche).

As soon as we find a match for you, we send you an e-mail with your partner’s contact details. If you do not receive any e-mail, it means that a suitable match is not yet available.

You can always view the list of current registrations for all languages on our website (see Tandemsuche).


Contact your tandem partner and set up a meeting. Your partner’s contact details will be provided in the e-mail you receive from us.


You can organise the meetings according to your own needs. Discuss your expectations and wishes for the tandem partnership with each other. Would you like to focus on conversation or on cultural exchange? Do you need help with understanding texts, homework or with pronunciation?

You can meet in a café or use our social learning spaces at the Selbstlernzentrum: it is completely up to you.

The Selbstlernzentrum also offers a variety of grammar books and exercises, textbooks and magazines as well as a diverse collection of audio and film materials for different languages and different levels of proficiency. You can use any of these options free of charge during our opening hours. Are you looking for something specific? Check its availability in our online catalogue.

If you need more ideas on how to organise your tandem partnership, you can have a look at the suggestions in our tandem folder at the Selbstlernzentrum, or make an appointment with the Sprachlernberatung (Language Advising Service). If you wish to receive a tandem certificate, please come to the Sprachlernberatung at the beginning of your tandem partnership.

Additionally, we also offer Tandemtipps and Tandemlinks on our website.

Note: We are still working on the translation of our website. Unfortunately, our online-tips for tandems are not yet available in English. Maybe your tandem partner can help you out?


At the beginning of each semester, we organise the Tandemtreffen (tandem meeting), which allows you to find a tandem partner without having to register online. However, if you cannot attend, simply register online and we will match you with a partner. The date of the meeting will be published in advance on our website.


Please wait a few days and message him/her again. It is possible that your partner does not have regular access to the internet or that your e-mail ended up in his/her spam folder. If you still do not receive an answer, please contact us at tandem@sprachenzentrum.fu-berlin.de. Please include your name, your partner’s name and your language combination in your e-mail. We will match you with someone else as soon as possible.

Please contact us at tandem@sprachenzentrum.fu-berlin.de. Please include your name, your partner’s name and your language combination in your e-mail. We will match you with someone else as soon as possible.

Not enough time for a tandem, leaving the city, or already found a tandem partner yourself? No problem! Please let us know via e-mail at tandem@sprachenzentrum.fu-berlin.de so that we can withdraw your registration.


A tandem certificate is a written confirmation of your work as tandem partners.

In order to receive a tandem certificate, you have to sign a learning contract with your tandem partner at the Sprachlernberatung at the beginning of your tandem partnership. This contract includes keeping a learning journal throughout your tandem partnership. At the end (timeframe is determined by you and your tandem partner in your contract) you write or record a short report, and discuss it in a final evaluation at the Sprachlernberatung. At the end you will receive a tandem certificate.

The tandem certificate does not award credits for your studies. It is rather a tool to help you structure your language exchange, keep up your motivation and have a record of your learning process. If you are an exchange student at the Freie Universität, it may be recognised by your home university. For any queries about accreditation, please contact our Sprachlernberatung at giovanna.tassinari@fu-berlin.de.


We match tandem partners throughout the semester. Generally, we are able to match 70-80% of all applicants. Therefore, we would like to ask you to be patient if it takes a bit longer to match you with someone.

If we are unable to find you a suitable partner, you can get in touch with native speakers of your target language by other means:

 

Language Cafés

Sprachcafé der Sprach- und Kulturbörse

http://www.skb.tu-berlin.de/contao/index.php/de/sprachcafe.html

The Language café at the TU Berlin hosts occasional events dealing with a variety of topics. Information about dates and locations are on the website.

Language Meet-ups (Sprachen-Stammtische)

Internationaler Club at the Freie Universität Berlin

http://www.fu-berlin.de/studium/international/internationaler_club/index.html

The International Club hosts various meet-ups for different languages, as well as an international meeting. Current dates and announcements are available on their website or Facebook page.

English Meeting "Connect"

http://www.connectberlin.de/

Connect is a meeting opportunity hosted by the English Speakers Cultural Club Berlin e.V. and takes place once a week. In winter, the meeting is held in “The Lir” bar, and in summer in various beer gardens.

Rencontre franco-allemande - German-French Meet-up

http://tandem-franco-allemand.blogspot.com/

This blog publishes the meeting dates for the German-French meet-ups. The group meets weekly, but each time in a different bar. Everyone is welcome.

Berlin accueil - conversation en français

https://www.berlin-accueil.de/Conversation-en-francais

Once a month, for German speaking people who wish to practice French.

Impro-match Liber - Matchs d'improvisation franco-allemands

http://www.liber-impro.com/index.php/matchs/

Matchs of theater improvisation in German and French. Every third Sunday in the month..

Italian Meet-ups

 Emilia-Romagna in Berlin

http://www.emiliaromagnainberlin.de/

The association Emilia-Romagna in Berlin hosts a meet-up on the first Friday of each month for members and non-members.

Spanish Meet-ups

Se habla espan͂ol

http://www.spanischinberlin.com/spanisch-stammtisch

The language portal Spanish in Berlin hosts regular meet-ups in Berlin

 "Intercambiando"

http://www.intercambiando.de/

The German-Spanish meet-up Intercambiando meets regularly on Mondays and Tuesdays in different bars within Kreuzberg and Friedrichshain.

Intercambio español aleman Berlin

http://www.groops.de/intercambio-espanol-aleman

Intercambio español alemán is organised over the internet and meets occasionally.

Corean Meet-up

http://forum.meet-korea.de/forum

New meeting dates are updated regularly on the forum page of the website Meet-Korea.de.

Russisch-Stammtisch

https://www.facebook.com/groups/379145004663/

Facebook group for the German-Russian meetings in Berlin.

 

 

Other Tandem programmes

 Humboldt-Universität Berlin

http://www.sprachenzentrum.hu-berlin.de/selbstlernzentrum/vollautonomes-lernen-im-tandem

Connects you with speakers that are interested in a tandem of 62 different languages with the possibility of an e-mail tandem-partnership.

Technische Universität Berlin

http://www.skb.tu-berlin.de/contao/index.php/de/tandem.html

Virtual tandem-exchange. All entries are erased after 4 weeks.

 Seagull

http://seagull-tandem.eu/?page_id=223

Tandem-exchange from the Seagull Project: Tandem per E-Mail, Skype, and Chat

Tandempartner

https://www.tandempartners.org/

Germany-wide platform to find tandem-partners.

HelloTalk

http://home.hellotalk.com/

World-wide tandem platform.

 

 

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