Germany || Courses

Education system
The German higher education system has many facets, many different types of institution. This diversity enables students to select the best course for their needs.
Research centres: the university is the conventional form of higher education institution. Germany’s 102 universities closely link research and teaching. Most universities offer the full range of subjects. However, a university with a strong technological orientation is known as Technische Universität (TU, technical university) or Technische Hochschule (TH, college of technology). Compared to universities of applied sciences, they place greater emphasis on basic research.

Practical training: Germany’s 170 Fachhochschulen (FH, universities of applied sciences) have a strong practical orientation and close ties with the world of work. The main emphasis are technology, business, design and the social sector. However, student cannot study medicine or law or complete a doctorate at a university of applied sciences.

Kunst-, Musik- und Filmhochschule
The art of learning: 53 state recognized colleges of art, music and film usually only admit students who successfully complete an entrance examination. Germany’s 23 colleges of music are particularly popular with foreign students: the proportion of foreign students at these institutions is 35.7%. Although the entrance requirements for these arts colleges are high, the training given – frequently by individual tuition or in small groups – is excellent.

For career beginners: Germany’s 38 Berufsakademien are not institutions of higher education, but some of their qualifications are recognized as comparable with of those universities of applied sciences. These institutions offer a focused education in business, technology or the social sector combined with a vocational training programme. Student can only study at a Berufsakademie if they have a trainee contract with an employer. Graduates have good job prospects with global players.

Private Hochschulen
For self-payers: 69 private colleges primarily offer small study groups, close ties with industry combined with a high level of practical orientation and short courses – for tuition fees ranging between 1,800 and 4,700 euros a semester. However, not all private colleges meet expectations. It is very important to check whether a private university or college is state recognized.

Course Requirement
To be admitted to a degree programme, you have to send an application thru Sanctum consulting to the University of your Choice. The following check-list shows you which papers and documents you generally have to enclose with your application.

  1. Application Form for Admission to Studies:
  2. An officially or publicly authenticated photocopy* of the secondary school leaving certificate that entitles you to enter higher education in your home country
  3. Officially or publicly authenticated photocopies* of certificates confirming any university entrance exams passed abroad, plus the relevant list(s) of individual grades scored (e.g. a transcript of records).
  4. Officially or publicly authenticated photocopies* of any university certificates or degrees gained plus the relevant list(s) of individual grades per academic semester or academic year (e.g. a transcript of records).
  5. An officially authenticated copy of the certificate awarded for passing the  assessment test(If your school leaving certificate does not qualify you for admission to studies in Germany) at Feststellungsprüfung plus list of individual grades scored (e.g. a transcript of records).
  6. Proof of German language proficiency (TestDaF or DSH certificate)
  7. Passport photo (format: 4 x 5 cm maximum)
  8. Three to five International Reply Coupons (Coupon-Réponse International)
  9. Copy of your passport (page with name details and photo)
  10. Proof of any subject-related vocational training or any aptitude tests passed (required for applications for a study place in admissions restricted subjects or in subjects with an aptitude assessment test, such as sport, art or music).

Special Graduate Studies
Special graduate study programmes usually require a relevant first degree and / or work history. They are aimed at students wishing to further qualify in specific areas of their first degree.

Course Fees
After the Constitutional Court of Germany lifted the ban on tuition fees in January 2005, many federal states announced that they would introduce tuition fees. Baden-Württemberg, Bavaria, Hamburg, Lower Saxony and North Rhine Westphalia have been charging tuition fees for the first degree since the summer term 2007, Hesse and Saarland are to follow suit from the winter term 2007/08 onwards. The ceiling of tuition fees has been set up to 500 Euro per semester everywhere. However some institutions are charging up to 1500 Euros from non European students enrolled in structural doctoral programmes or in consecutive masters programmes

Registration Fees
Regardless of such tuition fees, German students need to pay a registration fee. The so-called "social contribution" of approximately 100 Euro per semester goes to the student union and the social services. It also entitles students to quite a number of benefits such as free public transport (buses and trains), student reductions etc.

Universities in Germany are not able to offer students grants. There are, however, other organisations to which students can apply for funding. Several private foundations offer a variety of scholarship schemes.
The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) has put together a database which you can search for possible sources of financial support.
Details of the DAAD scholarship database can be found at: www.daad.de/deutschland/foerderung/stipendiendatenbank/00462.en.html

NB!!! Please note that there are very few scholarships available to students who are just starting their studies. It is usually only possible to apply for a scholarship once you have reached the midway point in your studies onwards.

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