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Study Abroad In Germany: All You Need To Know


The economic success of Germany is based on high-level specialists, therefore, close attention is paid to maintaining the stability of the economy in the education sector. 

Over the past 100 years, Germany has been the heart of the innovation of the university system (for example, remember the role of the University of Berlin in the 20th century), therefore, going to study in Germany, you find yourself in the very heart of modern scientific and intellectual activity.

Before telling you why study abroad in Germany and how to study abroad in Germany, it is important that we put some light on the features of education in Germany. 

In Germany, there are several types of schools, each of which prepares the student for a certain option of further education: after graduating from the gymnasium, students pass the Abitur exam and go to university. 

Higher Education in Germany

Today, more than 160,000 foreign students study at German universities, making Germany the most popular destination within continental Europe. Higher education in Germany (with the exception of the state of Baden-Wurttemberg) is free, hundreds of programs in English are available, and their quality is constantly improving every year. 

German universities are divided into two categories: traditional universities and higher schools. They are mainly distinguished by the purpose and method of education – if classical universities mainly train researchers and teachers, i.e. focus is on theory, then in higher schools more attention is paid to the labor market and practical activities.

Study Abroad Programs in Germany: Requirements

A few years ago, to enter a German university, an applicant had to study at least a year at a university, then another year at a German student college, and only then apply for admission. 

However, today this scheme has changed significantly: it is not necessary to complete education in Germany. Moreover, there is no need to lose a year at your country’s university. 

Now, German universities accept applicants who have just graduated from school if they succeeded in passing the entrance exams. Even with regard to language requirements, everything has become much simpler: over the past few years, several hundred undergraduate programs in English have appeared in German universities at a cost equal to programs in German. In accordance with policy, universities have the right to recruit a limited number of students per course. 

Preparatory Programs in German Universities

Student College is an educational institution for preparing foreign students to enter German universities, intended for people from countries whose secondary education system does not provide them with sufficient skills for a German university. 

Education in student colleges takes place in German, while this preparatory program does not imply language courses, so when you enter you must already have a fairly good level. Studying in college lasts two semesters, at the end of which exams are taken. 

The study is carried out exactly in those subjects that an applicant needs for a further specialty, in addition to this, college students learn the basic methods of scientific work within the chosen specialty. 

You can enter the student college by completing one course at your country’s university or immediately after school (this applies only to excellent students), and you need to be fluent in German (B1-B2). A course at student colleges has a good effect on the level of the German language and is very desirable for admission to a German university, although it is not required.

Study Abroad Germany: Bachelor Program

The bachelor’s program at a German university includes two stages: elementary and main. During the first, students master the methodology of scientific work and gain general knowledge in fundamental subjects. At the end of the first two years of study, most universities pass the “intermediate” exams. This is followed by a period of 1-2 years devoted to an in-depth study of subjects in the specialty. It ends with a final qualification exam.

German Study Abroad Programs: Masters

Master’s programs at German universities are in incredible demand, both because of the meager tuition fees and because of the increasing prestige of postgraduate programs in Germany. The duration of the master’s programs is 2 years (with the exception of international business programs and MBA). For admission to a foreign student, it will be enough to have a bachelor’s diploma from a recognized university in Germany and speak German or English at a level not lower than Upper-Intermediate.

Doctoral Studies in Germany

A doctor’s degree can only be obtained with good academic performance in studies at the master’s level. Also, before starting training, it is necessary to find a supervisor, write a Ph.D. thesis and pass exams in specialized and additional subjects.

Study Visa To Germany

It is necessary to apply for a student visa to Germany a couple of months before the expected date of the study. A student visa is issued both to foreigners already enrolled in a German university, and to applicants who do not yet know the results of the competition. Initially, a student visa is valid for 3 months, during which you will need to extend it already in Germany.

Work While Studying in Germany

Foreign graduates of German universities who have successfully completed their studies will have the opportunity to extend their stay in the country to seek qualified work for a maximum of 1 year. It should be borne in mind that this permission is not tantamount to an official work permit, in which each case is subject to separate consideration. 

Renewal of work and residence permits is issued to a graduate-only in the case of specialized practice to deepen their specialty. However, the period of practice should be no more than 2 years. So, studying abroad in Germany is the best option you have. 

Why Choose German Universities?

With the exception of private universities, tuition at German universities is free. The main exception for foreign students in the universities of Baden-Wurttemberg, where tuition per semester is 1,500 euros. 

In other regions of Germany, only an administrative fee (about 200 euros per semester) will be taken from the student, which covers the cost of transport, membership in student communities, library membership and much more. Thus, students have the opportunity to get a high-quality education for scanty money, which is valued not only in Europe but also abroad.

Germany is one of the best destination to get a college degree but if you still want to check all the other options and see the differences between them you have our top universities section that will assist you and show you a lot of universities around the world to choose the one for you.

Of course if you need more study abroad tips check our study abroad blog to help you with your college life.

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