Admission Requirements for German Universities
Germany is home to numerous degree programs and courses to satiate student’s requirements. Hence, knowing the Admission Requirements for German universities is of utmost importance. Apart from that, its world-class education serves as a paradigm for the entire world. Consequently, the country emerged as one of the top choices for international students. Meanwhile, around 400,000 students from abroad opted for Germany as their dream destination.
List of application documents
Even though every university possesses specific application requirements, however, a few documents are essential:
- Recognized higher education entrance qualification
- Certified copy of School/college (depending on bachelor’s or master’s degree program)
- Translated copies of grade
- Proof of language proficiency
- Application form
- Copy of passport and photographs
- European CV
- Letter of Recommendation(LOR)
- Statement of Purpose(SOP)
Higher Education Entrance Qualification(Abitur)
It is also known as Hochschulzugangsberechtigung (HZB) or Abitur. It is an education certificate that students receive after completing 12-13 consecutive schooling years. Usually, it showcases the grades students achieved over the last 2yrs of schooling. Moreover, the abitur incorporates school-level studies covering various subjects namely
- Literature, arts, and language
- Natural sciences, maths, and technology
- Social sciences
The Abitur grading system holds 6 as the highest grade. Whereas, a minimum of 300 points is mandatory for passing a German Abitur test.
Studienkolleg: A prerequisite for admission in German Universities
In case if the school-leaving certificate is not accepted in Germany, an additional preparatory course of 1year “Studienkolleg” must be undertaken. It acts as a bridging course that helps in acclimatizing students from the academic culture in their home country to that of Germany. Besides, its main intention is to prepare students with the requisite knowledge and skills on a particular subject as per one’s chosen university course. Various kinds of Studienkolleg are available depending on the type of university i.e. state-run, private, university, or university of applied sciences.
- Specialized courses offered at university Studienkolleg:
- T-course – For mathematics, science, or technical degrees.
- M-course – It is for medical, biological, and pharmaceutical degrees.
- W-course – It is for business, economics, and social science degrees.
- G-course – It deals with humanity degrees or German studies.
- S-course – For language degrees.
- Specialized courses offered at University of Applied Sciences Studienkolleg:
- WW-course – For economics and business degrees.
- TI-course – For technical and engineering degrees.
- GD-course – For design and art degrees.
- SW-course – For social science degrees.
Although there are no tuition fees for state-run studienkolleg. However, 100-400EUR/sem is charged depending on the type of studienkolleg. This course prepares students for the university entrance examination “Feststellungsprüfung”, which will ultimately provide an equivalent qualification as the Abitur. Meanwhile, this particular examination will assess the qualification of International students for studying at German universities. The exam is very demanding and lasts up to 60mins. The maximum number of attempts for clearing the exam is 3. However, once you fail the test, you can’t re-attempt it for the next 6 months.
TestAS: Admission requirement for a few German Universities
TestAS which is a short form of für Ausländische Studierende (test for foreign students), is an aptitude test for international students. Moreover, it aims to measure the general and subject-related aptitude of students. In addition to that, the assessment enables universities to assess the cognitive skills of students before admission. The test mostly encompasses non-EU students wishing to study undergraduate courses in Germany. However, not all German universities ask for TestAS certification.
The TestAS evaluation is composed of 3 parts:
- The “on-screen” language test – The test aims to assess the general language proficiency in either German or English. Level B1 language skills are mandatory to pass the language test of TestAS. Moreover, the online test will take only 30mins of your time.
- The Core-test – Also known as the General scholastic aptitude test. The main goal of the test is to gauge the student’s skills in general fields required by almost every university. It consists of 4 subsets and takes around 110 minutes to finish. The subsets include quantitative problems, completing patterns, inferring relations, and continuing numerical series.
- Subject-specific test modules – The test evaluates the cognitive ability of students required for succeeding in the selected field of study. The modules are enlisted:
- Economics module– The test module will not take up more than 150 minutes and includes 2 subtests namely analyzing processes and analyzing economic interrelationships.
- Engineering module– This particular module takes 150 minutes to finish up. Moreover, it encompasses 3 subtests known as visualizing solids, formalizing technical interrelationships, and analyzing technical interrelationships.
- Humanities, Cultural studies, and Social science module– The module yet again takes up 150 minutes. Additionally, it takes into account 3 subtests popularly known as understanding and interpreting texts, using representation systems flexibly, and recognizing linguistic structures.
- Mathematics, Computer Science, and Natural Science module– The module will not take up more than 145 minutes. Furthermore, it incorporates 2 subtests namely Analysing scientific interrelationships and understanding formal depictions.
How to register for a TestAS examination?
At first, one must register online at the TestAS website. Followed by booking test date and center via username and password as received in e-mail. Meanwhile, its procedure must be accomplished 5 weeks before the commencement of the examination. Moreover, the test takes place 3 times a year with a nominal price of 80EUR(INR2500). Additionally, there is no age barrier for appearing in the test.
The validity of the TestAS certificate will never expire. Nevertheless, there are no underlying restrictions when it comes to the number of attempts.
Language Requirements for admission to German Universities
Language proficiency falls under the university admission criteria. In case your chosen degree program is in the German language then German language proficiency must be provided for example Deutsche Sprachprüfung für den Hochschulzugang (DSH) or TestDaF. Whereas, if the degree program that you opted for is in English and you are not a native speaker then IELTS or TOEFL scores must be provided.
International English Language Testing System(IELTS) is a widely accepted English language test worldwide taken up by more than 2milion people each year. The main objective of the examination is to assess the English proficiency of students above 16yrs, who want to study at a place where English is the native language. Moreover, the IELTS test score is recognized by more than 9,000 institutions across the globe. Besides, the countries include the US, UK, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, Canada, and South Africa. Meanwhile, there are 2 types, IELTS Academic and IELTS general training. While the former applies to those who wish to pursue university(higher education) or study in an English-speaking environment. Whereas the latter is suitable for those wishing to study in an English-speaking school or college.
The format constitutes listening skills (30mins), academic reading(60mins), general training reading(60mins), academic writing(60mins), general training writing(60mins), speaking(11-14mins). The test results are declared within 3-5 days in computer test while it takes up 13days in case of paper test. Moreover, the results are reported on a band scale from 1(lowest) to 9(highest). Even though the fees may vary, however, an approximate amount of $234 or INR 14,700 will suffice. Apart from that, there are no limitations on the number of attempts for the test. Besides, the score is valid for 2yrs.
Test of English as a Foreign Language(TOEFL), is an English language test for international students. It is an online test that provides more detailed results with scores out of 30. TOEFL iBT is an academic English test, covers reading, listening, speaking, and writing, all within a span of 3hrs. However, the test score comes up after 15 days. TOEFL Essentials is a convenient English language test that is more friendly. Even though its reach is not that much compared to TOEFL iBT yet 90% of universities of US, Canada and UK accept it. The test format includes 4sections measuring listening, reading, writing, and speaking skills within a time frame of 1.5hrs. Moreover, the test scores are instantly available that comes in handy.
There are more than 4,500 test centers across the globe. Usually, the fees may vary depending on the country however it ranges from $160 to $180 (INR 11,468-17,919). However, there are no limitations on the number of attempts. However, within a span of 12days, the test can’t be taken more than once. Apart from that, the test score is valid till 2yrs of the commencement of the exam. If one wishes to attempt multiple times within a span of 2yrs, in that case only the latest score will be applicable.
The Pearson Test of English(PTE) is a computer-based test that came into existence in 2009. The test comprises 3 versions namely PTE academic, general and young leaders. For university aspirants, PTE academic is the way out, that includes reading, listening, speaking, and writing tests, all in a single go. Additionally, the test lasts for 3 hrs at a stretch. Several countries accept PTE test scores such as the US, UK, New Zealand, Australia, Canada, Thailand, and many more.
The score will range from 10-90, which will effectively grade your English ability against the global English scale. Additionally, sub-scores will be provided for communicative skills(reading, writing, speaking, listening) and enabling skills(grammar, oral fluency, pronunciation, spelling, written discourse, vocabulary). Furthermore, for Foundational courses, the minimum score should lie in the range of 36-50, however, for Undergraduate courses it lies between 51-60. Whereas, if you are aiming for Postgraduate courses, the minimum score will be 57-67. The fees vary as per country, it is $240 or INR 13,700 for Germany.
It is the abbreviated form of Deutsche Sprachprüfung für den Hochschulzugang. This assesses your German language competency. Moreover, if your subject course is in the German language then DSH is inevitably the top priority among all the admission requirements for German universities. Additionally, the exam is composed of 2 sections: oral(30%) and written(70%). Also, it offers certification for the enlisted German proficiency levels:
- Basic German- A(1,2)
- Intermediate German-B1(DSH1)
- Advanced German- C1(DSH2) and C2(DSH3)
The universities often demand an examination fee that varies from one university to another. However, the estimated expense comes around 40-170EUR (INR 3.463-14,718).
TestDaf is a central examination that aims to evaluate the command of international students in the German language. Also, it was brought into the picture and is maintained till date by “TestDaf institute” in Hagen, Germany. There are around 80 test centers spread across the globe. Moreover, the test inculcates 4 sections: reading(60mins), listening(40mins), writing(60mins), and speaking(35mins). Overall, the test duration lies between 3-3.5hrs. Each section has 5 points, hence the total comes to 20 points. Also, the TestDaf levels (TDN3, 4, and 5) are based on the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR). TDN 3-5 denotes B2 to C1 level for CEFR. Once a candidate scores TDN3, there’s a possibility of admission. However, if the students score TDN4 or TDN5, then admission is granted.
The test results are accessible after 6weeks of the commencement of the exam. There will be 6 exams every year. Even though the scores are valid for a lifetime, however, some universities insist on the latest scores(1-3yrs). Meanwhile, the examination fee is 100EUR(INR 8,500).
In short, a few documents and certifications are essential admission requirements for German universities. Apart from that, the rest of the ride is smooth sailing. Once, you get to Germany and experience its rich culture and heritage, every test will seem worthwhile. In case of some assistance regarding SOP or LOR, please contact us.