Pursuing your higher education in Germany? Ready, Steady, Go! – Auf die Plätze, fertig, los!

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Pursuing your higher education in Germany? Ready, Steady, Go! – Auf die Plätze, fertig, los!

The recent BREXIT and toughening immigration laws in the US have led to an increase in the number of students opting for other locations including Australia, Germany and New Zealand. Amongst these, Germany continues to remain a preferred destination driven by their pursuit of excellence in research and innovation, making it the top 5 countries that are favoured by Indian students for higher education.  

According to DAAD, engineering comprises the most popular course preferred by Indian students followed by  Mathematics and Natural sciences. Perhaps the biggest attraction for Indian students choosing German universities over the US and UK counterparts is the offer of new unlimited work and residence permit for foreign students, allowing them to look for suitable work for almost 18months post completion of studies.

 For students who want to enjoy an European lifestyle- the premise of Germany has become very promising as it offers them the lifestyle and opportunities similar to the West at affordable rates. While anyone with an international university degree/ higher education qualification is generally permitted to study in Germany, they will all need to pass the higher education entrance examination to register for courses in the country.

Generally, to be eligible for completing your Master’s from a German varsity, you’d need to have completed the German equivalent of a bachelor’s degree in the relevant subject. It will be a good idea to get the course that you’ve graduated from, verified for eligibility at German varsities. If you have already completed a course of study in your home country and want to do a Master’s degree in Germany, then get this verified at the German International Office (Akademisches Auslandsamt) at the university of your choice. Even if the diploma from your home country is not equivalent to a German diploma giving access to higher education, you still have a chance of studying in Germany. Before taking up your studies, you must take a preparatory course from university run centres for international students for a period of a year.

Apart from this, most universities will either offer you the option of learning the course content in German or English, so we’d advise you to prep up for both IELTS/TOEFL as well as GMAT/GRE. A searchable database of English-taught courses is provided by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD). Do keep in mind that IELTS/ TOEFL would test your language skills while GMAT/ GRE test your aptitude for the subject that you’d like to pursue in Germany. While the overall tuition fees for education in Germany is usually cheaper than other European cities, do ensure to talk to your preferred educational finance provider to set you up with the necessary funding for the IELTS/ TOEFL, GMAT/ GRE coaching and examination fees. Students in later semesters and PhD students from abroad can apply for a scholarship from the German Academic Exchange Service.

If you are applying for a course imparted in English, it may not be mandatory to know the German language. However, it is always an advantage to have basic proficiency in German if you wish to blend with the people around you, to find attractive part time jobs, to land good internships or more importantly seek employment in Germany after your studies. For some international degree programmes, basic German language proficiency is required. As an Indian student, you can work for 120 full days or 240 half days in a year in Germany. The eligibility criteria differs from university to university. So ensure to refer to the University website for the eligibility criteria for the course that interests you. The nation is an attractive place to study and German university degrees are highly respected by employers worldwide.