Step-by-Step Guide to Studying in Germany in English for FREE!
Hey! I am happy to continue discussion with you guys on the possibility of achieving your career and personal goals by studying in Germany. Since the past 48 hours that I posted my first blog on “Study in Germany in English for FREE!”, I have received lots of mails and questions from people who have strong interest in taking up this rare opportunity…and of course funny mails too like: “You are good-looking guy, can you send me your number” 😀
In any case, I am particularly excited to be sharing more with everyone on these yet-to-be-overloaded opportunities! There are less than 20 Nigerian students in my University and much lesser in other schools in Germany…so, guys…opportunities abound for admissions and for jobs! You should also note that most German Universities are being consistently ranked among the best Universities in the world, so, you will be receiving top-quality education and a degree highly regarded anywhere in the world.
In this blog I will be answering some major questions in a clear, concise and precise way. If I do it well – and I will do my best, I hope you guys will come away enthused and have most of your concerns unraveled. This is a step-by-step guide from seeking admissions to settling down in Germany to commence your study.
Step 1: Find the right school for your preferred course
The first step is for you to find the schools that offer the kind of courses you will like to study. In cases where student do not know exactly what courses to study, you can do a broad search of study areas e.g. Sciences, Social Sciences, Arts etc. In my last blog I dwelt majorly on this step. Kindly refer to the blog here. A very important online tool that will guide your search can be found in this link.
Step 2: Review the School’s requirements and Apply
Now you have found your preferred University for your course. Next step is to find out if you meet the requirements of the University. Generally, to get accepted at a German university you have to apply well in advance. The International Students Office of the University will consider your application to make sure you meet all the requirements for admission, including evidence of your previous academic records. These requirements vary with Universities and course. Your best option here is to read directly from the course-webpages on the University’s website. Most University will however require that you have an academic achievement of about 65% – 75% of the total attainable grade (e.g. 70% connotes a CGPA of 3.5/5.0 in Nigeria)
To study at a German university you will need a higher-education entrance qualification. You need a secondary-school certificate that corresponds to the German standard. To apply for undergraduate studies (to get a Bachelor’s degree) you will require a school-leaving certificate for example your high-school diploma or, if required in your home country, proof that you have passed the university entrance examination.
While for admission at a post-graduate level (Master’s or PhD program) you need a recognition of your university degree from your home country or another country.
One major obstacle for international students who want to study in Germany is the language barrier. However, this only affects students whose course will be taught in German (i.e. in case your course is not offered by any University in English Language). Still, this is not much of a big deal. There is the possibility of taking German course for 6months or 1year before the commencement of your studies.
Some Universities may request a proof/certificate of English Language proficiency e.g. IELTS, TOEFL etc. (In many cases, WAEC certificate is sufficient for West Africans.) Kindly confirm the details of this with your contact person in the University before applying.
Step 3: Visa Regulations and Funding your Study
This is perhaps the most crucial part of completing your study application process. Before you are ready to travel, you will need to get through the Embassy. You will need to produce proof that you will have enough means to support yourself for one year in Germany during your studies. The Embassy will require a proof of approximately EUR 8,000 before you can be granted a visa. However, there are several ways in which you can prove this, such as by:
- Proof of Scholarship awarded – in case you have a scholarship
- Bank deposit in a blocked German account
- Somebody from Germany will provide for you.
Make sure to prepare and submit your visa application and all necessary documents, well in advance of your studies since the visa application process may take up to 4 – 7 weeks.
Remember that if you enter Germany without a visa or with a Schengen visa, you will have to leave the country after 90 days, since it is not possible to extend your short-stay visa to a student visa. So please bear in mind that if you wish to study in Germany you need to get a student visa before you leave your home country and not enter Germany on a tourist visa.
Step 4: In preparation to travel
Issues regarding preparing for your stay in Germany will be covered in a later blog. Please stay tuned.
However, I will like to shed more light here as regards working as a student in Germany.
There are many opportunities to work alongside your studies. This may vary depending on your area of study/specialization. There are generally more opportunities for students in IT, Engineering and social sciences. Another important determinant here is your dexterity.
If you are not a citizen of the EU or the EEA, you are normally allowed to work up to 120 full days or 240 half days per year. Students can take jobs as research assistants, student assistants and jobs in industries (max. 20 hours per week). Bear in mind that it may take two or four months before you obtain work and start to be paid. I will advise students not to work during their first few months (especially Bachelor students), trust me, you will need some time to understand the system of education in Germany.
If this blog is relevant to you, kindly share it with others. Someone out there needs this information more than you do. I am still available to answer more questions and shed more light on areas of concern. My name is Kehinde Fawumi. Feel free to contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org).