After a week of debate with the college, I’ve given in and agreed to schedule a NT2 language exam. I’m very concerned about the overall implications of this move, coming right in the middle of my annual visa renewal with IND.
I want to (and plan) to take the exam: the only issue is timing. The college cut me off their resources over the summer and I had to craft an alternative program with a private teacher, exam prep workbooks, and online / streaming resources. That has all made a big difference in my vocabulary, grammar, comprehension, and confidence, but I’m no way yet prepared for a real NT2 exam.
So the questions come down to requirements and risks. From the college’s standpoint, they want to get paid so they want me to take the test, regardless of outcome. From the government’s standpoint, they want to see that I’m willing, if not able to learn the language. From the IND standpoint, there is no alternative to passing a language exam to get permanent residence (except that is waived for over-65’s).
The literal requirement is that I pass the A2 Europese Referentiekader voor Moderne Vreemde Talen. The key is “A2”, a level of proficiency that I am probably pretty close to now (contrasted with B2, the requirement for University attendance. The risks of not passing seem to be that I would have to take the exam again (although it’s not clear if I get credit for the sections I am able to pass), while the risks of not attending could be much more severe.
So, I’ve sent in my passport and bank number and have been scheduled for Nov 12-13 in Eindhoven. Six weeks: a lot of lezen en luisteren lies ahead.