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2018-07-30 11:56:46

Higher education in Germany for foreign students

Higher education in Germany for foreign students

Higher education in Germany is one of the most popular offers on the foreign market of educational services. A developed, modern state with a rich history and culture is one of the most student countries: there are about 150,000 foreign students studying here, which places Germany in third place in the world.


The secret of success and popularity of higher education in Germany lies in the structure of university education: universities combine ancient traditions and practices with an innovative approach and the active implementation of modern techniques and approaches, actively use the latest technology and equipment. Traditionally, higher education in Germany has strong technical and philological profiles, faculties of medicine: the diplomas received are highly valued both in the country and around the world, giving the graduate a chance for a successful career. Across Europe, they note the degree of equipment, the latest equipment of German institutions, and the qualifications, experience and professionalism of teachers have become a kind of quality standard.

The Government of Germany, together with the institutions of the country, actively attracts foreign students. One of the main bonuses of higher education in Germany is the provision of a temporary right of residence after graduation, which gives the right to find work in the specialty, as well as the relatively low cost of tuition and living (especially in comparison with other Western and European countries). Moreover, students of German universities can work during their studies - this is enshrined in legislation, and many enterprises and companies constantly cooperate with universities, look for future employees and specialists, organize internships.

For German students, Germany is a fairly close state, so a trip to study at German universities does not cause much discomfort, and German is the second most popular foreign language after English. In Germany compulsory secondary education is guaranteed and free - and the number of public institutions of higher education is much larger than private ones, in contrast to other European countries. And foreign students enter German universities on an equal footing with German citizens.

How to apply to universities in Germany?

Higher education in Germany has its own characteristics and sets certain requirements for entrants. A compulsory condition is good (and better distinct) knowledge of German. If you are not sure about the quality of your linguistic level, there is a huge amount preparatory courses, language schools and centers, camps for summer and seasonal holidays.

In Germany students spend 13 years in school, and only this course is the standard of secondary education. That is why only the certificate for admission to universities in Germany is not enough - you need to add to it 2 years of study in any local university. At the same time if your higher education is not completed, you can file documents only for those specialties, the directions of which were studied at home. If you managed to get a higher education (bachelor's degree, you can submit your documents to your heart's content - the studied disciplines will be credited and recalculated for German credits. Higher education in Germany is distinguished by academic freedom - students themselves determine which courses and subjects will enter their own diploma.

Where to go to study?

Higher education in Germany can be obtained in several institutions of various profiles:

  • Universitat (or as it is often called, Uni) is intended for students who want to build a career as a scientist and researcher
  • Technische Universitaten, or TU (technical universities) will be the best choice for fans Engineering, natural sciences, applied specialties (and today there are humanitarian courses in them). You can also choose institutes of applied sciences - Fachhochschulen, abbreviated as FH
  • Musik-and Kunsthochschulen are creative universities for future artists, artists, artists, etc. In them, the highest percentage of foreign students is about 30% (for comparison, in other institutions this parameter is about 10%)
  • Commercial higher education institutions (for example, theology)
  • Universities that teach programs in English are ideal if you want to build a career in the future in an English-speaking country.

To assess the quality of the work of universities, there is a special ranking that is drawn up by the Center for Development of Higher Education Institutions (CHE): state institutions participate in it, the best of them receiving substantial funding and subsidies from the state budget.

Higher education structure in Germany

According to the Bologna system adopted in Europe, a two-level model of higher education operates here:

  • Bachelor (education 3 - 3.5 years, or 6 - 7 semesters); For the first 1,5-2 years the student obtains a degree of a licentiate (initial stage)
  • The Master (1-2 years of additional education - 2-4 semesters), also this degree is called a workshop
  • Doctoral.

Note that for some particularly difficult and "voluminous" specialties, the bachelor's degree is not provided, only a complete higher education is required, that is, a master's degree. Future doctors study 13 semesters, pharmacists - 8 semesters, teachers - at least 10, and lawyers - 9.

Higher education in Germany provides a fairly short period of study if you are already getting a second higher education: because of the maximally concentrated and structured plan, the duration of studies does not exceed 1-2 years (2-4 semesters) in all specialties.

Upon receiving higher education in Germany, the student independently chooses the disciplines for study and those subjects that will be included in his diploma. There are no usual academic groups here - each student independently determines the schedule (both classes and exams) and reports at the end of each semester.

Pay or free?

Until recently, the whole system of higher education in Germany in public universities was completely free, but this principle quickly goes to the past - and universities are introducing paid education. The cost of education is regulated by the authorities of the federal state (county, region of the country) in which the university is located, so the figures can vary greatly - but in general the price of the semester does not exceed 500 . This makes higher education in Germany one of the most accessible throughout Europe!

Be prepared that foreign students incur some additional expenses - for example, pay custody, etc.

Is your language level sufficient?

As already mentioned, the higher Education in Germany is worth receiving, being confident in their knowledge of the German language. There are several international tests (including online tests) that allow you to objectively test and assess the level of your knowledge. Usually, to get a diploma or a certificate you need to recruit at least 80% of the correct answers - if the result is unsatisfactory, you should pay attention to intensive German courses. Of course, it will be much more effective to learn the language in an atmosphere of linguistic and cultural immersion, so SMAPSE is ready to pick up courses for you at German schools or universities, summer camps with language learning, etc.

Please note that for studying in German universities there is not enough good spoken German, the ability to understand the interlocutor in everyday situations - academic German is required, a knowledge of the terminology associated with your future specialty.

Are you ready for entry yet?

Most of the German universities that provide higher education in Germany for foreign students (excluding the directions of medicine, creativity and art, jurisprudence) do not establish entrance examinations for entrants - it is enough to file a full package of documents, to provide a German gymnasium certificate on the passage of 13-year course and certificate Abitur. Students can be attracted to the interview, small profile tests, to the thematic role-playing game.

As already mentioned, the certificate is not enough to immediately go to the German university (an exception is made only for the holders of the gold medal). But there is another way, except for education for 2 years in a local university: it is called Feststellungsprufung. This is a special qualification exam that allows you to study at a German university after the first day of full-time studies (if you were studying in the evening or correspondence department, you will need 2 courses). Feststellungsprufung consists of 2 parts - written and oral - dedicated to all subjects and areas that the student studied in college. The certificate of the exam is accepted and highly regarded by all universities in Germany. But pay attention: in case of failure of delivery you will have only one attempt at retake and only after 6 months - carefully distribute your forces and evaluate opportunities.

Admission to Feststellungsprufung the student receives, having studied for 2 semesters in the profile preparatory college Studienkolleg: usually courses in Studienkolleg are offered directly by the institution of your choice. Admission to Studienkolleg is incomparably easier: you only need to produce a certificate of secondary education (including excerpts from the test card), a certificate of knowledge of German and pass an internal language test. Most Studienkolleg free, only a small semester fee is charged (30-200 ). Especially persistent and ambitious students can choose their own preparation for the qualification exam, without attending Studienkolleg - but SMAPSE experts do not recommend this option, because for the unprepared foreign student here the chances of success are extremely small.

How to get a student visa to Germany?

On the official website of the German Consulate you can see the required list of documents that is provided for a German visa - SMAPSE help you collect and translate the required documents, will write you to the consulate at a convenient time. It is necessary to prepare a questionnaire filled in the prescribed form, a valid passport, photographs of the established sample, an invitation from the educational institution and a document confirming your financial solvency (minimum 8,000 for 6 months). Financial documents can be as follows:

  • Letter of guarantee from a German citizen or from a permanent resident in its territory
  • A receipt for depositing money into an account with one of the German banks (Sperrkonto) - every month it gives you the right to withdraw only 1/12 of the invested funds, which guarantees your solvency throughout the whole period of study
  • A statement from the parents that they are ready to incur all costs for your studies and content + bank statement + certificate from the place of employment indicating income.

In addition, the applicant should write a motivation letter in which you argue your desire to study in Germany and choose a university: indicate where and when you studied German, why you chose this specialty and educational institution, what personal and career goals you plan to achieve.

An interview at a consulate usually does not take more than 5-10 minutes, but it's worth it to prepare for it. Be ready to answer where your university is located, what to study in the chosen specialty, what is the duration of the education - and, of course, prepare to be interviewed, most likely, will be in German.

Where do foreign students live in Germany?

Most universities providing higher education programs in Germany for foreign students provide a place on their campus, in common residences - it costs 200-300 per month. Sometimes for the same amount it is possible to rent a separate dwelling (apartment, room or hostel), also the joint form of apartment or apartment rent (Wohngemeinscfiaft, or WG) is also popular.

How to choose the best university?

As already mentioned, the best state universities are determined by the evaluation of the Center for Development of Higher Educational Institutions - the list you can find below:

  • University of Würzburg
  • University of Tübingen
  • University of Karlsruhe
  • The University of Würzburg Humboldt (Berlin)
  • The University of. Ludwig-Maksimiliana (Munich)
  • The University of. Albert Ludwig (Freiburg)
  • The University of. Friedrich Alexander (Nuremberg and Erlangen, two campuses)
  • Technical University of Munich

Among the individual faculties the following are considered to be the most popular and prestigious:

  • Jurisprudence (Frankfurt am Main, Munster, Bayreuth, Mannheim)
  • Informatics (Berlin, Karlsruhe, Sarrbrücken)
  • The economy of production (Munster, Mannheim, Munich)
  • Pharmaceuticals (Heidelberg, Freiburg)
  • Economics of the economy (Erfurt, Bayreuth)
  • Economic Engineering (Cottbus, Clausthal)
  • Economic Informatics (Münster, Magdeburg).

What documents are submitted to the German university?

  • Certificate or diploma of secondary education (certified copy) + Certified translation
  • 2 passport photos
  • Certificate of knowledge of the German language
  • Certificate of the Feststellungsprufung examination certificate (certified copy; a list of disciplines and grades is required)
  • Certificates of education (list of educational institutions, disciplines studied, Examinations and points)
  • If you are a student of a institution of higher learning in your country - a certificate from the place of study (a list of the disciplines passed and the points awarded is mandatory).
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Egor Eremeev
Current material has been prepared by Egor Eremeev
Education: Westminster University (Business & Management), London.
Egor studied and lived in the UK for 8 years and graduated from the university of Westminster. He is currently the co-founder and the director of business development at Smapse Education and personally visits foreign schools and universities, interviews students studying in those institutions.
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