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International English Language Testing System [IELTS]

International English Language Testing System(IELTS) is an international standardized test that measures the level...

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Test of English as a Foreign Language [TOEFL]

Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is an international standardised test conducted to assess the level of English fluency of non-native speakers...

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PTE (Pearson Test of English) is an English language proficiency test conducted by Pearson PCL group in association with Edexcel. Any person whose na...

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Study in Germany: Find Universities, Costs, Courses, Visa, Rankings, Scholarships

Hitaishi Bhatia Hitaishi Bhatia
Study Abroad Expert

Renowned as the world's most popular non-anglophone study destination, Germany welcomes over 350,000 students from different countries across the globe (2020). Having established itself in the list of top 5 study-abroad destinations among international students, the country is home to over 13 top universities in Germany that make the world’s top 250 prestigious institutes.

From a globally reputed curriculum with 20,000 courses to extremely low tuition rates, the country has proved itself a perfect overseas destination for international applicants after Canada, UK and the USA. India is among the second largest senders of international students (6.1%) in Germany preceded by China. The number of Indian aspirants in Germany almost doubled from 53,386 to 124,095 within a span of 6 to 7 years.

Top Countries represented in student body of Germany

In the 21st Century, Germany has presented itself as a global powerhouse and is currently the 5th largest GDP in the world. This adds points to its credit when it comes to seeking employment opportunities post graduation which is also reflected in its high employment rate of nearly 80%. Apart from this, it’s gradual decrease in the rate of unemployment over the decade just makes the country more promising for international students seeking to study in Germany.

Unemployment Rate in Germany from 2001 to 2019

Why Study in Germany?

From globally-reputed universities to almost free education at the Undergraduate level, Germany offers a great deal of promise for all the individuals across the globe. Extensive student support, scholarships and thousands of diverse programs are some of the attractions that fascinate international students seeking to study in the nation.

Some other factors that contribute to credibility in the favor of the country are as listed below.

  • Tuition-free university education: There is no tuition fee. Students have to pay a nominal fee of 250 EUR per semester, which covers the administrative costs.
  • A Wide array of courses: There are more than 1,800 international programs along with 18,000 Bachelors, Masters and doctoral degree programs to choose from.
  • World-class universities: There are above 400 institutions of higher education in Germany out of which, 150 universities offer courses and degrees in English. Around 30 universities in Germany are ranked in the world’s top 500 universities. An average acceptance rate for a German institute is around 92%.
  • Dual Education System: Allows students to pursue an apprenticeship in a company along with a vocational course at a vocational school. International students can earn up to 14 to 19 EUR per hour.
  • Economical cost of living: The cost of living in Germany amounts to 841 to 1,287 EUR per month, which is quite low as compared to its European counterparts.
  • Financial Aid and Scholarships: Plenty of scholarships are offered to both undergraduate and postgraduate students in Germany by DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service) and other non-governmental foundations.
  • Employment/Job opportunities for graduates: It has a graduate unemployability rate of 3.04% which is the lowest in Europe. Nearly 77% of the graduates find employment in Germany within months of completing their degrees.

Study in Germany: Top universities for international students

Germany has a range of prestigious institutes across both public and private sectors for the applicants to choose from. To aid you in the process, we have compiled a list of 10 most reputed universities in the country along with their corresponding international student percentage.

Name of the instituteTHE World Rankings 2021THE German Rankings 2021International Student Population
Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich32117%
Technical University of Munich41227%
Heidelberg University42318.6%
Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin=75419%
University of Tübingen=78514%
Humboldt University of Berlin=80618%
University of Freiburg83723%
RWTH Aachen University=107821%
University of Bonn=114913%
Free University of Berlin=1181021%

Some of the top institutes in the country along with their enrollment statistics are depicted in the graph below.

Student Population Across major Universities in Germany

What to study in Germany?

Germany provides thousands of varied courses across its 400 public and private universities that provide a perfect fit program for every individual. Since the tuition fee in the country is comparatively lower than other nations around the world, Germany majorly attracts students of STEM courses looking for degrees in Computer science, Mathematics, Engineering along with programs in Natural science, Business and Economics, etc.

Other popular top courses to study in Germany among international students in the country comprise Law, Psychology, Medicine and Dentistry, Natural Sciences and Architecture are also equally popular.

Germany also provides a wide array of unusual degrees such as Aerial Archaeology, Bionics, fusing technology, among others. 5 most popular streams along with other relevant information regarding the same is as mentioned below.

Popular ProgramBest German University for the courseTotal Students in program in Germany
Engineering (Mechanical Engineering)Technical University of Munich71,352
Business Management (MBA)University of Mannheim52,168
HumanitiesHumboldt University of Berlin37,619
Computer SciencesTechnical University of Munich20,000
MathematicsUniversity of Bonn10,000
Fine and Applied ArtsTechnical University of Berlin24,412

How to study in Germany: Application Process

If you have reached a final decision that Germany is the country you are applying to in the upcoming session, it is highly recommended to start working on your application at the earliest possible opportunity. To serve you in the process, the step-by-step guide for the application process of Germany is as compiled below.

  1. Explore your options: Since the nation has nearly 400 countries offering over 20,000 programs, choose the alternative that best fits your needs and budget.
  2. Plan your finances: Germany is renowned for offering almost free to affordable education to aspirants irrespective of their nationalities. While most public universities in the country are free of cost, private and master programs might charge fees at par with other renowned institutes of the world.
  3. Prepare your application: Universities in Germany usually follow their own application process, application fee (not more than 50 EUR) and deadlines. Some institutes are organized centrally and accept applications via UniAssist. Make sure you have carefully gone through all the eligibility requirements of your particular course
  4. Submit your application: The country has 2 admission seasons with their individual deadlines. Applicants are highly encouraged to send in applications at least 4 to 6 months prior to these deadlines, especially if they have to apply for a visa to avoid last-minute complications like rejection of visa etc.
  5. Apply for a study in Germany visa: As soon as you have received your acceptance letter, apply for a student visa at your nearest German Embassy along with relevant documents like passport, health insurance and proof of funds. From January 2020, an applicant has to demonstrate funds of around 10,236 EUR to be eligible for a student visa.

Requirements for study in Germany

Some basic information regarding the admission process and basic requirements are as tabulated below.

Where to applyUni Assist portal/ Individual portals of respective universities
Application Fee75 EUR per course with 30 EUR for each extra course in same semester
Basic RequirementsTranscripts, Standardised tests like GMAT or GRE
Additional RequirementsValid Visa, Interview (video interview on case-to-case basis), CV, Statement of purpose
German/English Language RequirementsIELTS: 6.5; TOEFL: 69 to 80 (German language requirements for courses in German)

When to study in Germany: Application Cycle

Germany accepts admission applications season wise. The primary 2 seasons of intakes in the country are Summer and Winter for most of its institutes. The deadlines for german universities are usually common, except a certain few that observe their own admission process and respective deadlines.

  • Summer
    • Applications need to be made by January 15.
    • The summer semester runs from March to August at Applied Sciences universities and April to September at Research universities.
  • Winter
    • Applications need to be made by July 15.
    • The winter semester runs from September to February at Applied Sciences universities and October to March at Research universities.

Study in Germany Cost

Germany in comparison to other European countries is not considered highly expensive and is quite affordable when it comes to a student enrolled in one of the institutes in the nation. In fact, it is ranked #15 highest in terms of cost of accommodation and is found to be cheaper than the UK, Italy, Denmark, Norway, France, or the Netherlands.

While the average cost to study in Germany differs depending upon the city, type of program and university a student opts for, but an average amount of 850 EUR per month which can go up to 1,500 to 2,000 EUR. The estimated fee and other expenses comprising the total budget list for surviving in the country is as mentioned below.

Is study in Germany Free?

Germans consider Education to be a basic right that should not be capitalized and thus charge no to highly affordable fees when it comes to international students. While many undergraduate courses and all the doctoral courses are free of cost for international applicants, some universities might charge tuition fees as high as 20,000 and 30,000 EUR for public and private universities, respectively.

Level of EducationTuition Fee (in EUR, per year)
Undergraduate Programs500 (public) to 20,000 (private sector)
Graduate Programs20,000 (public) to 30,000 (private sector)
Doctoral ProgramsFree of Cost (250 EUR administrative fee, per sem)

While many renowned universities like University of Stuttgart, University of Mannheim and University of Bremen are free of cost, some other popular German Universities (mainly private) along with their respective estimated fee are depicted in the chart below.

Tuition fees for Popular Institutes in Germany

Cost of Living

As discussed above, cost of living varies depending on the individual's personal expenses and the city one chooses to stay in. For instance, Munich is one of the most expensive German cities (up to 1,500 EUR per month) while Berlin being the capital city is comparatively cheaper. The estimated cost of accommodation in the country is tabulated as follows:

Type of ExpenditureCost (in EUR, per month)
Accommodation and utilities300 to 500
Food and supplies200 to 250
Health insurance100
Phone and internet30
Leisure and hobbies50 to 100
Travel costs (car and public transport)94
Books and Supplies20 to 25

How to study in Germany with scholarship?

Since the tuition fee in the country is so low, any candidate can actually study in the country for free if he/she obtains a studentship to fund their education. The German Academic Exchange Service, popularly known as the DAAD provides a range of awards and funding services for international students hoping to enroll at a reputed institute in the country. These scholarships are offered to both domestic and international candidates at all levels including academics and researchers.

Another source of gaining funding for studying in Germany is the Federal Ministry of Education and Research or BMBF that hosts a site dedicated to providing information on scholarships for the aspirants of the country.

Scholarships to study in Germany for International students

From government-funded awards to non-government funded scholarships and university-specific studentships, Germany as a country provides a range of awards for its international aspirants. Some such scholarships in Germany for international students are as follows:

Name of ScholarshipEligibilityAmount (per month)
Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung Scholarships in Germany for International StudentsInternational doctoral candidate looking to pursue masters/doctorate at a German university1,091 EUR
Heinrich Boll Scholarships in Germany for International StudentsInternational students who appeared for their university entrance qualification, outside Germany and wish to pursue a Masters or Ph.D. Degree in Germany842 EUR (Masters) and 991 EUR (PhD)
German Studies Research GrantGraduates and doctoral students from North America whose research works are focussed on German cultural studies1,277 to 2,555 EUR
Development-Related Postgraduate Courses (EPOS)Graduates with a minimum professional experience of 2 years; outstanding academic achievement1,217 EUR (Masters) and 1,388 EUR (PhD)
RISE Germany - Research Internships in Science and EngineeringScience and Engineering undergraduates who have completed at least 2 years of study743 EUR

Jobs after studying in Germany

Thanks to the generous immigration policy of Germany, students from any backgrounds and nationalities can stay in the country for up to 18 months post completing their degrees and find their desired job in the time span. Majority of students prefer to enter the professional world post their graduation and this is where having a strong command over german language will add wonders to your job profile.

As discussed above, since the unemployment rate in the country has been on a decrease for years now, there is a lot of scope of ending up with high paying-jobs in Germany. Some of the statistics for the last 2 years regarding job opportunities in the nation are as mentioned below.

German Labour2020 (first quarter)2019 (last quarter)
Employment Rate75.80%77%
Unemployment Rate4.40%4.30%
Employed Persons44,62244,567
Full-time Employment30,45929,922
Minimum Wages9.35 (EUR/hour)9.19 (EUR/hour)

Since Germany is renowned for its Automobile Industry across the world and is a hub for Engineering students, a degree in the field or related discipline will obviously be of great merit. Other industries that an international candidate can consider are Telecommunication, IT and Computers, Finance, etc. An estimated average salary for students of different streams is compared in the chart below.

Average Salaries for Different streams PG from Germany

In a nutshell, Germany is rightly one of the top 5 coveted destinations for studying overseas that not only provides an impressive education curriculum and innovative research options, but also some of the finest jobs in the industry. From trendy Berlin to traditional Munich, the nation harbors a rich diversity and welcomes applications from round the globe which are considered on equal grounds without any partiality.

The country thus is a worthwhile pursuit for bright and diligent aspirants, especially for MS in Germany, and should definitely make your list if you are considering to study abroad in the near future.