Why is Germany the perfect destination to study abroad?
Germany your ultimate destination for higher education!
Germany is becoming one of the most sought after country for higher education. It is said to be the third most popular destination for higher education among international students.
More than 12% of the students in German universities are international students.
There are a plethora of reasons for this huge influx of international students from different parts of the world and the reason are good enough for you to consider if you are planning to study abroad.
High Quality of Education
German universities offers you quality education through internationally distinguished degrees which will give you an advantage in the global labour market. There are many German universities which have a worldwide ranking. In a survey conducted in the year 2018 by Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU) 6 German universities made it to the top 100 and 18 were a part of the top 200 worldwide university ranking.
Low or No Tuition Fee
A survey conducted in the year 2018 highlighted that 35.3% of prospective international students chose Germany for higher education because of the low or no tuition fee universities. 16 states in Germany abolished tuition fee for undergraduate courses in the year 2014 for all public German universities. But in the year 2017 the south-west state of Baden-Württemberg, reintroduced the tuition fees for non- EU students leading to a possibility of other states following the suit in the years to come. Still when compared with countries like USA, Canada or the European Union universities in Germany charge much less tuition fee.
Inexpensive cost of living
When compared with other countries in Europe the living expenses in Germany is quite inexpensive. The amount of money which you need to shell out on food, accommodation ,etc is line with the EU average. You will be spending somewhere close to 850 euros for your monthly. Again this cost will vary depending upon where you choose to housed.
Accommodation constitutes the major part of this monthly expenditure.
Offers wide range of courses
German universities have a wide range of outstanding academic programmes to offer. Universities in Germany are famous for their excellent education not only in engineering but other courses as well. It has a wide variety of courses to offer to students be it music, history, languages, medicine and many other. Though Engineering being the most preferred degree among the international students. 37% of the international students are studying engineering in German universities.
One of the decisive factor when you plan to study abroad is safety. Germany is a safe country where you can move around freely be it day time or night. It is a country with political and economic stability that makes it the ultimate country for international students to pursue higher education.
Courses taught in English
Vast majority of courses are taught in English, especially at the masters level. Hence, knowing the country language (German) is an advantage but not a prerequisite to apply in German universities. While proficiency in the language is not required to study in Germany but one is sure to learn the language by spending a considerable amount of time in the country while studying. This can increase your worth if you are someone seeking an international career as German is a popular language and one of the most spoken language in the world.
International students are offered numerous scholarship programmes based on their academic performance. The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) happens to be one of the biggest scholarship organisations in the world and offers a wide variety of scholarship programmes to international students. So if you have an excellent academic record then you can apply for a scholarship programme which caters your needs.
These are some of the reasons that makes Germany a hotspot for higher education among international students. Apart from the above listed reasons there are many other factors that adds to the worth of this country. Germany is one of the most beautiful countries in Europe. It is an amalgamation of rich cultural heritage and modern metropolises which gives an opportunity to international students to witness and experience Europe at its finest.
Cost of Higher Education in Germany
- Undergraduate Courses: Most of the public universities in Germany offer tuition free higher education to international students. Except the Federal state of Baden-Wuerttemberg, which reintroduced tuition fee for non- EU students w.e.f the winter semester 2017/18. The public universities offering tuition free education will ask the students to cover a nominal cost towards enrolment, confirmation and administration per semester. The cost will be somewhere €250 (~US$290) per semester, which may vary depending upon the university you apply for. In addition to this cost, the students need to purchase the semester ticket which will cover the cost of transport for the next six months. Again the price of the semester ticket will differ as per the ticket you choose to buy. You may have to face long term fee charges if you exceed the standard period of study by more than four semesters €500 (~US$540) per semester.
The country also offers financial aid programmes which helps students to cover their educational expenses. The Federal Student Financial Aid Programme being one which is open for German students, international students subject to certain conditions and EU students. One is eligible to apply for this aid if the student is below 30 years of age. For students pursuing masters the age limit is 35 years which is subject to exceptions depending upon the circumstances.
- Master’s and Postgraduate Courses: If you are someone who have studied bachelors in Germany and wish to pursue masters as well in the country then the good news is that your master’s degree will be considered as consecutive. This implies that your masters will be free and you will be asked to pay a nominal charge towards enrolment, confirmation and administration costs. For those who have pursued their bachelor’s degree elsewhere (non-consecutive master’s degree) the tuition fee may be different from university to university and maybe somewhere around €20,000 (~US$24,400) per year at public universities. The tuition fee at private German universities may go up to€30,000 (~US$36,600) .
Scholarships programmes in Germany for International Students:
Numerous scholarships programmes are offered to international students in the form of government funded scholarships, non-government funded scholarships and university specific scholarships.
- Government Funded Scholarships: There are two scholarships programmes facilitated by the government for international students. They are:
- DAAD: The German Academy Exchange Service (DAAD) has a wide variety of scholarship programmes for international students which is subject to an eligibility criteria.
- Erasmus +: This scholarship is meant for the students who aspire to study in Europe. In order to avail this scholarship the students must meet the predetermined criteria.
- Non-Governmental Scholarships: A number of non-governmental organisations are also offering scholarship programmes which are tailored as per the needs of international students. Few of them are listed below:
- Heinrich Böll Scholarships;
- Kurt Hansen Science Scholarships;
- Marie Curie International Incoming Fellowships;
- Humboldt Research Fellowships;
- Einstein International Postdoctoral Fellowship.
- Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (KAS) Scholarships
University specific scholarships:
- DRD Scholarships for Sub-Saharan Africans
- Hamburg University of Applied Sciences Masters Scholarships
- Heidelberg University
- HHL International MSc Scholarship for Effective and Responsible Leadership
- Universität Hamburg Merit Scholarships
University specific scholarships are offered in Germany based on different categories like, scholarships for women, work experience and merit students.
Accommodation options in Germany for International Students:
Finding an affordable accommodation is one of the major challenges faced by students who aspire to study in Germany. The rate of accommodation varies depending upon the region you choose to dwell in. South Germany is the most expensive area to live in Germany while east Germany being the cheapest.
International students have a handful of accommodation options at their disposal which are listed below:
- On campus hostels: Students can seek accommodation in on-campus hostels which is strictly done on first come first serve basis. Also not all universities have the facility of on campus hostels.
- Students hall of residence: These hall of residence provide affordable accommodation to students and are located near the university campus. Here also accommodation is provided on first cum first serve basis.
- Shared accommodation: In case the students are not early enough to find accommodation in hall of residence then they can opt of shared accommodation. Shared accommodation is very economical option where a number of students share the rooms. If you are planning on it then do check out WG-Gesucht, Studenten-WG.de and WGcast for shared accommodation options.
- Apartments: If you are more of a solitary person then renting an apartment is the best option for you.
How to Apply in German Universities for Higher Education?
Are you are somebody who is keen on procuring a degree from this paradise of higher education but doesn’t know how to go about it? The steps listed below will help ease your process of application.
- The first step is to figure out the universities of your choice from which you wish to pursue your degree.
- Check whether you fit the eligibility criteria and if you do, choose the programme you wish to study.
- Once you have chosen the programme of your choice begin the online application process for the universities.
- Furnish all the documents to the universities along with the essays and statement of purpose.( Note these will vary from one university to another)
- If your profile is shortlisted by the universities , then they will contact you for the interview process.
How to reach Germany ? ( Student Visa Process)
German visas are divided into two:
*Long term visa
*Short term visa
If you are planning to study in Germany then you are supposed to stay there for at least 6 months which means you need to apply for long-term visa which is known as D visa. Indian students are required to procure a studying & learning language visa in order to be allowed to study in Germany.
If you are from India and applying for a student visa for Germany then the first step is to book an appointment at the German embassy for submission of your student visa application. If you fall under the categories given below then you can skip the wait time and need not make an appointment with the German Embassy for student visa:
- Master students
- Doctoral Students
- Postdoctoral Students
- Scholarship holders
- Some highly skilled professionals
You need to submit the following documents for a German Student Visa:
- A valid passport
- Properly filled application form
- Copy of your passport
- Cover letter
- Letter of admission from an accredited German university
- Proof of language proficiency
- Proof of financial capability to cover the cost of living in Germany.
German Study Culture: Germany has a lot to offer to international students in terms of culture, traditions and language. The students who move to Germany from different parts of the world gain a lot by exploring about the rich cultural heritage and diversity that the country offers.
Germany has surfaced as one of the most desirable country in the recent times when it comes to higher education. We hope that this article has helped you decide whether Germany is your destination for higher education or not!