Step by Step Guide to application process for UG Courses at Universities in Germany
Deciding to pursue your under-graduation from Germany is akin to graduating from one of the top colleges in India. The high standard of education ensures that the bachelor’s degree from Germany are highly sought after. More is the case for the engineering degrees. With the world’s best automotive industries centred in Germany, the demand for German engineering courses (source: Shiksha Study Abroad) is on the rise. Students from across the world are looking towards Germany.
However, simply looking is not enough. What one needs to understand is that Germany is a foreign destination and while there would be similarities, the application process is different and requires adequate research and time management. So here’s what we recommend – a step by step guide to the German Universities’ Application Process. We endeavour here to answer the questions – How to choose a college? How and when to apply? What you must know before you apply? And so on.
Step 1: Learn the language
Every aspirant keen on pursuing education from Germany should start with brushing up his/her language skills.
International Courses at Universities in Germany are often courses taught in English and German Language Proficiency, in turn. It is however important to note that a basic understanding of the language is a good thing. Reasons for learning the language are many. Some universities might require a basic understanding of the language even from its international students, some might offer additional subjects to students who have taken the tests, and so on. Also, learning the language would help you acclimatize to the culture and adapt to the surroundings. It would also open up a plethora of part time work options.
So, first thing first…if you plan to study in Germany – start learning the language.
You can take the step further and appear for the German Language Proficiency tests, take your pick and add a check on your application even before you apply!
Step 2: Understand the eligibility requirements
Now that you have taken the first step towards your journey to Germany, the next big step is picking the right college. To begin with, you need to look for colleges offering international courses. There are different kinds of short term courses available as well so be careful in picking the right college which is offering an international course for bachelor’s degree. An important resource for this is the German Academic Exchange Service - DAAD. You would be able to find colleges offering International Courses and understand your eligibility for admissions to various courses in Germany.
Understanding your eligibility for different courses in Germany is a bit tricky. Unlike USA, Germany does not have widely accepted standardized tests like the SATs or the ACTs. There is the TestAS, which is accepted widely but not across all universities. We recommend you to first check the university website to ascertain the eligibility before applying for and taking any tests.
Different universities across Germany use various permutations and combinations to define your eligibility. It becomes important to understand the eligibility criterion of the university you are applying to as per the course of choice. You can understand your eligibility for different under-graduate courses in Germany here.
Step 3: Understand whether the college is a member of Uni-Assist
Many universities in Germany are member of an independent organization – Uni-Assist. In case the university you are applying to is a member of Uni-Assist, you would be able to find its information on its website and apply to the college via the same.
In case the university you are interested in is not a part of Uni-Assist, you would have to apply directly to the University and a useful way to start that process is by approaching the International Office of the respective university.
This is applicable for all colleges and courses including Engineering, Medicine, Veterinary Sciences, Pharmacy, Dentistry, Pure Sciences, Humanities, and Social Sciences and so on.
Step 4: Create a checklist of the Documents that would be needed for the application
Again, we insist to check the university’s international office/ uni-assist coordinator for the final list of documents that would be needed. However, generally the list would include
- Attested and certified copy of the higher education entrance qualification in the original language
- Original mark sheets and transcripts as a certified translation
- Copy of your passport
- Language proficiency certificate/ Online Verification Code for language proficiency
Step 5: Understand the cost involved and explore funding options
As mentioned earlier, all the public universities offering under-graduate course are mandated not to charge any tuition fee. This however does not rule out the application charges, examination fees and living expenses.
While there are no tuition fees, you would still need to provide proof of funds for your continued stay in Germany. The living costs in Germany would vary as per the city by usually ranges between €400 - €700 per month. Accordingly, your cost of pursuing an under-graduation from Germany for 3/4 can be calculated.
In case you are applying for a scholarship, it would be advisable to refer to the requirements for the scholarships and accordingly prepare.
Step 6: Understand the Visa Process and Documentation
Usually, the call for admission is received in the month of August or early September for the Winter Semester which start in October. Similarly, for the Summer Semester, the call for admission would be received in February or early March. Whatever might be the case, the fact remains that you would have precious little time for the start of the semester. Hence, it is advisable to be prepared and have the necessary paper work like proof of funds ready.
Health insurance is also an integral part of the Visa Process and you would want to understand the various possibilities and research the options beforehand.
Step 7: Start Applying
You are all set. You have gained the language proficiency required, done your homework, understood your eligibility. There is only one thing left…start applying. As mentioned, you can either apply directly or via the Uni-Assist channel, depending on which one is valid. The applications for Winter Semesters (which start in October) usually start in early March and close by June. There is a Summer Semester as well which starts in April and applications for the same start in October of the previous year and end by January.
So, understand which course/ college you wish to gain admission in, decide when you want to start the course and accordingly start your application process.