How to Study in Germany for International Students (4 Steps)

There are many ways to get an education and even though all have a right to obtain one, some just do not have the opportunities to get any. So, those with the opportunities to study and even get better opportunities at education, try to utilize that opportunity and find ways on achieving their dreams. One chance is to go abroad and then pursue your studies there. Once in a lifetime opportunity has a higher chance of occurring there than in your own country so as much as possible, try obtaining one.

Next is choosing the country you want to study in, and in terms of success in academic, economic, and cultural success there is no other suitable country than Germany. Studying in Germany for international students can be intimidating especially when most of the people who graduated in Germany have become famous in the fields of their studies. However, what you just need to get going to Germany aside from your confidence are these things, especially the important ones with regards to entering the country. So here are some information and requirements when you are one of the aspiring international students who want to study in Germany.

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1. Know the Cost of Studying in Germany

Living costs in Germany are relatively higher compared to other European countries but the expense still depends on the city you are in and on the food and lifestyle that you will choose to practice. For around 820 EUR up to 1000 EUR monthly, a student can live comfortably while still sticking to their budget. On the other hand, tuition fees of universities range from 1500 EUR up to 3000 EUR annually.

2. Know the General Application Requirements for Germany

General English Requirements (Undergraduate)

Every international student who wants to study in Germany needs to take an exam or test to check if your proficiency in English will be enough to study in a different country, and these tests are the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) and Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) Every country has its grade or score requirement for either both tests, and for Germany, here are the conditions to get accepted.

In the Technical University of Munich, studying an undergraduate degree has a requirement of having a minimum average IELTS score of 6.5 with no other bands of examination of below 6.5. Moreover, a minimum internet-based test of 88 is the TOEFL requirement for Germany.

Meanwhile, according to the Free University of Berlin, the language proof for enrollment requires a minimum score of 4.5 in IELTS and a total IBT score of 60 for 5 years of English instruction at school. However, a minimum score of 5.0 and a total IBT score of 80 is the score requirement for 6-year English lessons at school.

For other universities, the average score requirements to enter Germany are 6.0 in IELTS and a minimum IBT score of 80 for TOEFL.

General English Requirements (Graduate)

For the English requirements of graduate students, the minimum score requirement for IELTS and TOEFL is a bit higher relatively with the requirements of the undergraduate requirements at 6.5 and 85 respectively. However, the requirements differ from each university so you need to visit their official websites and look for the admissions part regarding the university requirements.

Application Requirements (Undergraduate)

To study in Germany for international students, these are what undergraduate universities require their students for their application:

  • High School Diploma
  • Proof of Language Proficiency (IELTS or TOEFL)
  • Standardized Tests Results
  • Application or registration form
  • Application fee (General cost: 75 EUR)
  • Passport
  • Student Visa or Residence Permit

Application Requirements (Graduate)

For the graduate students, these are the things that are needed:

  • Proof of previous degrees
  • Proof of Language Proficiency (IELTS or TOEFL)
  • Standardized Tests Results
  • Application or registration form
  • Application fee (General cost: 75 EUR)
  • Passport
  • Student Visa or Residence Permit

3. How to Apply to Universities in Germany

The next step in studying in Germany for international students is actually applying to universities. For undergraduates, commonly, the application procedure for studying in any university is relatively the same as each other. Before choosing and applying for a university, first, you need to have a program or course in mind so that it would be easier to find a suitable university that might have a specialization in that program.

Next, get all the requirements of the university and meet them. To ease your experience in Germany, try to learn German. Communicating with the locals could help you a lot especially when finding good and cheap daily products.

Next, choose the university you want to enroll in. This is where the application procedure starts and is usually stated on the official school website. In the University of Bonn, application deadlines for the winter and summer semesters are on August 20 and January 15, respectively. According to them, you’ll need proof of your academic achievements and you must be ready for an interview. Only after passing the interview can you pay for the admission and tuition fees and you are already considered as a student.

Almost the same requirements and procedures are needed when applying for a master’s degree in the university, admission is directed to the faculty or department of your desired field of study. They will be responsible for your application and admission process and will be your guide throughout your master’s studies. But aside from the requirements for undergraduate students, students applying for graduate studies must have sufficient skills for the German language.

4. After you get your acceptance, apply for a German student visa

A student visa is one of the primary necessities or requirements that you will need from the moment that you planned on studying in a different country. Getting a student visa is the easiest step in this whole process of studying in Germany for international students. Why? You have all the documents that you need already!

In general, for every country, the same instructions or methods for getting a student visa are the same. Here are the step-by-step procedures on getting a student visa once you set foot in the land of Germany. First, if you are a citizen of any EU countries including Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland, a student visa will not be needed for entering the country.

Otherwise, if you are not from any of these countries, you have to schedule an appointment with Germany’s embassy in either your country or in Germany. As soon as got to your interview day, make sure that you are prepared for the questions of the consular officer. As you got accepted in getting a German visa, you will be given a list of requirements that you will need to process that visa including an application fee of 75 EUR. After getting through this process, you will need to wait for at least 6 up to 12 weeks for students whose residency is beyond 2 months before getting your physical student visa. For students who will be staying for less than 2 months, the waiting time before getting your visa is around 10-20 days.


Studying in a different country at a new university and environment might be very overwhelming for students who are not used to change. And if you are one of the students who would want to visit and study in Germany as an international student, make sure that you are prepared enough and that you have read all the requirements and guidelines before hopping on a plane to Germany.


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