The country best known for its incredible automobile industry is one of the most efficient and internationally reputed education hubs in the world. Germany has quickly climbed to the second spot in the most popular migrating destinations in the world, just after USA. The country shares its borders with 9 countries: Denmark, Poland, the Czech Republic, Austria, Switzerland, France, Belgium, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands.

The country is a key member of Western Europe’s economy and this is reflected in the country’s culture and populace. As one of the most densely populated nations in Europe it is home to some of the most amazing cities to live in. Munich, Berlin, Frankfurt, Cologne are just a few cities that are great spaces to live in grow your career in. Each country has its own identity and niche and no two are ever the same.

The German culture is a fine blend of technology, avant-garde art and an old world charm that is unique to its cities. The best way to know more about German culture is to submerge yourself in it, and as a student you will have the opportunity to do just that. The country has no shortage of natural bounty, it is home to 14 national parks, 98 nature parks and over 400 registered zoos. Be it hiking in the woods or appreciating modern art in a museum, the country offers all that and much more.

The country usually has moderate weather. The winter temperature can fall as low as -10 degrees and can rise as high as 24 degrees in summer. Its northern regions are more influenced by their proximity to the Atlantic Ocean and are windier and rainier than other regions. Since the country is exposed to mild air from the Atlantic Ocean and cold air from Russia and the North Pole, the weather can be slightly erratic.

Universities in Germany are some of the best in the world and are usually ranked among the top 100 on the globe. Not only are these education institutions packed with state-of-the-art infrastructure and machinery, they are also home to some of the most reputed researchers and educators in the world. Moreover, the country attracts students from all over the world and will help you meet people from various countries. Being an economic superpower enables the country to provide students not only the best education possible but also the much needed professional exposure.

Germany’s economy is booming and it enjoys one of the highest Purchasing Power Parity (PPP) around. The country is one of the largest exporters of machinery, vehicles, chemicals and household equipment. Germany has always been the land of breakthrough science and technology and it continues to lead the way in that. This is directly reflected in its education system which regularly is counted among the best in the world.

In Germany one not only gets the best education possible, they are also prepared thoroughly to enter into the professional world. With its booming economy and overall economic strength the country is a very desirable place for aspiring students.

Germany is considered to be a go-to destination for education among most students of technology. The qualifications earned from German universities are recognized around the world. Germany is also considered to be a hub for automobile technology. It is home to automobile manufacturers like Volkswagen, Mercedes-Benz, Audi, BMW, and Porsche. The country is highly industrialized and has a robust economy, making it a great place to advance your career.

Germany is also considered to be a land of breakthrough technology and science. It has a history of being at the cutting edge of science, research and churns out patents on a regular basis. Moreover, as a huge benefit to prospective students, all state and government universities have stopped charging national and international students tuition fees for undergraduate programs. The living expenses, however, stand as they are. This rule, however, does not apply to private universities and education institutions.

The German government also encourages a lot of partnership programs with international universities around the world. This encourages intercultural organizations by providing them scholarships, funds, reimbursement of travel costs among many forms of financial support. The oldest university in Germany is Heidelberg, established in 1386. Over and above that, Germany has more than 300 institutions of higher education, including 82 universities and 132 institutions that offer shorter courses.

Having a basic knowledge of German is required by many universities for enrolment. The national regulatory and quality agency for higher education is TEQSA, or the Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency. The education in Germany focuses a lot on the practical aspect of studies, it is for this reason that German graduates are in great demand around the world. There is also a heavy focus on research subjects which reflects in the scientific and technological breakthroughs coming out of the country. The state also provides money for the research projects being undertaken and helps students learn in real life situation.

Universities also provide internship opportunities to students. In large cities there are a higher proportion of these internships considering the higher number of businesses in big cities. The education system in this country provides a great number of scholarship to deserving students. Lodging and accommodation is also easily obtainable provided you are willing to share. Moreover, for students studying in Germany the whole of Europe becomes accessible. This is a great way to travel and meet new and interesting people.  

It is important to note that health insurance is mandatory to enrol into a German university. Students usually go for the public health insurance policy rather than the private option. The country offers a lot to students over and above high class education. The country is an economic and industrial prime mover for Europe. The city provides a number of activities for students to indulge in and has one of the most vibrant nightlife’s in Europe. Be it music, movies, art festivals, sports or even soaking in the verdant beauty of nature, Germany offers it all.

Statistics state that one tenth of all the students pursuing international education come to Germany. The universities in this country are self-governed and focus keenly on new and innovative teaching methods as well as research. Germany has always been at the forefront of developing new and exciting technologies and discoveries. This is one of the main reasons why so many students prefer to study in Germany.

German universities have courses in myriad fields, including medicine, engineering, management, English, arts, etc. The country’s education system is designed to provide a great deal of academic freedom. Public universities do not charge students, be they local or international students, any fees. This makes Germany a big attraction among talented international education aspirants. The country, however, has state-run universities and colleges, private universities as well as cooperative universities. These schools, among others, offer a range of courses that are both full-time and part-time.

Undergraduates need to have a minimum of 13 years of education, 12 years of schooling plus one year of university. If they do not have the same then they can opt for a foundation course. If you are applying for a master’s program you need to have a certified bachelor’s degree and the duration of the course needs to be a minimum 3 years. A master’s degree is equivalent to a German ‘diploma’ or ‘magister’ degree. A bachelor’s degree can be obtained after six to eight terms of education. Some bachelor’s courses end with a state examination, or Staatsprüfung, instead of a bachelor’s examination. After taking the state examination a student can start preparing for the second state examination or for a doctorate. The examination regulations in German universities are governed by the state and not the university. A master’s degree lasts for two to four terms depending upon the course.

There are lot of colleges and universities in Germany that allow for dual studies programmes. These programmes link theoretical training in an academic environment with a practical, on-field, training. The objective of these type of courses are to help students get over with their professional training school along with obtaining their academic diploma simultaneously. Studies and work occupy an equal fifty-fifty weightage in such courses. These courses, however, require a certain amount of research. Most companies support dual studies programmes and may ask students to sign a contract with them. This works well for students as it ensures you a salary while you are studying, making the cost implications that much milder. This, however, would require a higher standard of proficiency of the German language.

The major intake for German universities is September, the deadlines for the same are from 15th February to 31st May. There are also a select few universities that offer intakes in March, their deadlines range from 15th November to the end of January.

Application to German universities has to be according to the requirements of the universities. The student has to plan their admission process well in advance to meet the application deadlines. Undergraduate students usually need to show that they have one year of university education over and above 12 years of schooling. This is in addition to securing at least 6.0 bands in IELTS or 80 points in TOEFL (IBT). A master’s degree application requires 12 years of graduation plus 3 or 4 years of university education with an overall 75% average or a 2.75 GPA. The expected English proficiency scores are 6.5 bands for IELTS and 85 points in TOEFL (IBT). Admission into MBA courses also takes the same amount of education qualifications as any master’s degree and similar English proficiency scores. Over and above this, an MBA aspirant must also score a minimum of 550 in their GMAT exams and have about 2 to 3 years of work experience.

If a student wants to apply to a TU9 university they need to have the same qualifications and English proficiency as that required by any other master’s course. However, over and above this, they also need to have over 200 hours of German language training and have at least 1300 on their GRE examinations. TU9 universities is an alliance of some of the leading universities and education institutions in Germany. These include RWTH Aachen University, TU Berlin, TU Braunschweig, TU Darmstadt, TU Dresden, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, TU München, University of Stuttgart. It should be noted that 57% of all doctorates awarded in Germany come from TU9 universities.  

Here are the basic documents that you will need to ensure that your application process goes off without a hitch:

  • Academic records certificate for 10th, 12th and all the years of degree/diploma education you have received
  • Average grade certificate
  • Diploma of bachelor or Master degree
  • Diploma supplement
  • Educational, professional and/or vocational background certificates
  • Extracurricular activities certificates
  • Language certificates (English and/or German)
  • Updated passport
  • Statement of purpose
  • Ten passport size photographs
  • Updated CV

It is also of grave importance to find the best possible channel for your admission process. Contacting your university is the best way to figure out the most appropriate channel, like Trust for Admission to Higher Education, Uni-Assist, or directly at the university. A student may also need additional documentation in the form of a motivation letters and recommendation letters from college professors or employers.

Since 2014 all the 16 states in Germany have slashed the fees for all undergraduate courses in public German universities to zero. All domestic or international students can study for free in German public universities and they need to pay only a small fee for administration and other costs every semester. The state of Baden-Württemberg, however, changed this law and reintroduced fees for non-European Union students since 2017. Private universities can charge anything from 15,000 to 20,000 euros per year for tuition.

Non-consecutive master’s degrees for students who have not done their bachelor’s degrees at the same universities can be up to 5000 euros in a public university. The same cost can range up to 30,000 euros in a private university. Tuition is free for all doctorate degrees in Germany and students need to pay only about 300 euros for administration costs. The German Academic Exchange Service, also known as DAAD, helps students by providing a number of scholarships. These scholarships are open for academics and researchers as well. The Federal Ministry of Education and Research, or BMBF, also has a site dedicated to providing talented individuals scholarships to further their academic dreams.

There is a certain cost of living associated with German cities, which is slightly on the higher side but provides you great value for your money. Once again, some areas are more expensive to live in than others. Cities like Munich, for example are more expensive than most others. Living costs in Germany, on an average, range between 9500 euros to 11,000 euros. Rent can range from 300 euros to 240 euros depending on whether you are choosing to live in a shared flat or a hostel. Students should expect to spend about 165 euros per week on food and about 80 euros on transport facilities. Over and above this there is also the added cost of telephone, internet, TV, clothes, and leisure activities to consider.

Any Indian planning to stay in Germany for more than 90 days needs a visa to enter the country. Students will need to apply for a student visa, or an applicant visa if the student has not secured a place in a course. If a student arrives in Germany on a visitor visa it cannot be later converted to a residence permit once the student is in Germany. If you are extending your stay in Germany more than the stipulated 90 days, you need to apply for a residence permit before the 90 days are through.

Overseas students need to provide a certificate of enrolment to the university they are to attend. The students, on arrival, must immediately register with the local Aliens Department along with proof of finances and health insurance. A prospective student must prove that they have enough finances to survive for a year in Germany. The cost for this will be something around 8000 euros per year. A resident permit for students is usually for a 2 year duration and should be renewed with enough time to spare. Applying for the student visa costs around 25 euros while applying for a residence permit costs 60 euros.

International students have been given the permission to work for 120 full days or 240 half days for each year without any work permit. The students who are enrolled in short-term language or preparatory courses are not allowed to work. If you are studying in Germany on a DADD scholarship you need to check with the DAAD authorities if you are allowed to do any paid work along with your course.

Students who have earned a degree from Germany can get a residence permit for one year during which they can look for a secure a job. When you find a job within this period you can apply for an extended residential permit from the local Aliens Department. There are a couple of things to keep in mind while making the visa application. Do not submit your original documents when applying for your visa, certified or notarized copies work just as well. All visa applicants need to compulsorily be present when the application is being filed.

Students in Germany can work up to 20 hours a week during their term time. They can earn from 9 to 10 euros per hour and about 150-200 euros every week. Part time jobs are widely advertised in newspapers and university and college career cells. The universities, however, do not guarantee employment for students. Germany also offers students an 18 months job search visa after their graduation to facilitate their job-seeking efforts.

Over and above part time jobs there are a number of ways a freshly graduated student can look for jobs in Germany. Newspapers and magazines regularly advertise about openings in big and small businesses around the country. The Saturday edition of national dailies usually carry advertisements for openings in some of the biggest businesses in the country. The internet is one of the most popular means to get a job in Germany. Over the years websites have become the most popular means of applying for jobs in Germany. The labour offices or Arbeitsämter, are also quite popular in terms of sourcing jobs.

The German economy is among the most robust in the world. This plays a huge role in ensuring that graduates from German universities have ample opportunities to apply for careers in the country. Graduates from German universities also have their options open across the continent of Europe since the degrees are valid in all European Union countries.

Is it necessary to learn German to study in Germany?

German language skills are not a prerequisite for a student to study in Germany. Most programs are exclusively taught in English and require no German language skills. If you are, however, willing to learn the language, German language courses are available free of cost at the university. A good command of the German language can increase your employability greatly.

What can I do if my school leaving certificate is not recognized in Germany?

The DAAD admission database has all the information about whether your university entrance qualification or school leaving certificate or any other degrees/certificates will be recognized in Germany. The database also informs you about how these qualifications are assessed. If your school leaving certificate is not recognized in Germany you may need to do a foundation course. To do the foundation course you will need to pass an entrance examination. You need to have at least a B1 level of competency in German for this.

Can I immigrate to Germany after finishing my education there?

Germany has put in place new immigration laws since 2002. Under these laws you are allowed to work 90 days full-time or 180 days for part-time when your course is on. You can do a campus job or any other job during this time. Once you have finished your degree you can stay in Germany for about a year. This time can be used to obtain employment. Once you have gotten a job your permanent residence permit will be guaranteed.

Can I do a postgraduate medical course in Germany?

Medical courses in Germany are not split into graduate and postgraduate. If you want to do a medical course in Germany you will need to complete a six year programme which ends with a final state examination. All medical courses are in German and you will need to have very high German skills to complete the programme.