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Study in Germany

Germany Quick Fact

  • 81.8 million people in 16 constituent states
  • Germany is the most populous member state of the European Union.
  • Second most popular human migration destination after the United States
  • A great world power and has the world’s 4th largest economy
  • Germany founded European Union in 1993

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Did You Know?

  • Germany is a developed country with a very high standard of living sustained by a skilled and productive society. It upholds a social security and universal health care system, environmental protection and a tuition-free university education
  • Germany is the EU’s largest economy
  • Germany military’s expenditure is the 9th highest in the world, so security is paramount.
  • Known for its rich cultural history, Germany has been the home of mentors, philosophers, musicians, sportspeople, entrepreneurs, scientist, and inventors. It is sometimes known as ‘’the home of poets and thinkers’’
  • Germany has more cultural activities and places than any other country; with 6200 museums, 820 theaters, 130 professional orchestras, 8800 libraries. There are more museums, exhibition halls and art galleries than any other country.

Tuition Free Education

University Education in Germany is free of charge in most state. However, some states charge some amount as semester fee, but this amount will not exceed EUR400 per half year. This free education also applies to international students. So by studying in Germany, students save a lot of money compared to other developed countries.

Affordable Cost of Living

Compared with other European countries, the cost of living in Germany is reasonable. The cost of food, rent, clothing and cultural activities are equivalent to the EU average. There are also a number of concessions to students. You can receive reduced prices at theaters, museums, opera houses, cinemas, swimming pools, and other institutions; all you have to do is present your student ID.

Study and Live in a Safe Country

Germany is a very safe country. The police are reliable and help you in every situation. Their military expenditure is ranked 9th highest in the whole world. Whether you live in a big city or in the county, you can move freely day and night without having to take any special precautions.

Work while Studying in Germany

International students are allowed to work in Germany while completing their programme of study. During study session, students are only allowed to work part-time, a maximum of 20 hours per week. However, the student can work full-time during holidays. This is so that the student can devote enough time to their studies.

Qualification Valued Around the World

German Universities are among the top universities in the world with highest standard. The country has also consistently ranked among the top 10 countries in the world for high education standard. Therefore qualification obtain from German institutions are well respected all over the world.

Learn a Language that opens many doors

German is one of the 10 most spoken languages in the world. Some 185 million people worldwide can speak German. You can still study in Germany if you don’t know German, but having some knowledge of the language can make everyday life easier and help you to make friends faster. Knowing a foreign language also looks good on a resume!

Most German universities are tuition free. However, some universities charge a few Euros per semester, an amount not exceeding EUR570 per year. Still education in Germany is very affordable compared to other developed countries.

Nonetheless, cost of study is made up of tuition and living expenses. So even if students are not charged tuition, they are to bear there cost of living i.e. accommodation and feeding, transportation, insurance, etc.


Just as mentioned, German universities are tuition free with just a few exceptions that charge next to nothing when compared to other developed countries. However, to enter German universities, students are required to have a minimum knowledge of German at least at A1, which is basic German language. Therefore, for most Nigerians you will pay tuition for a language program before you access the free education at the university.

Thus, for students with WAEC/NECO; students who have completed 12 year of education, you will need to achieve B2 (upper intermediate) in German language in other to proceed to German University to study University Foundation Pathway with German Universities. To attain B2 German Language Level, you require at least 6-8 months German Language course which cost between EUR6800-EUR 7500 per year. At the end of this and having acquired the B2 requirement, you can now proceed to the university for your foundation programme where you do not have to pay any more fees.

Second, students with A levels, IB or 1- 2 years of university education and those going for graduate/masters program will need to achieve C1 (advanced) in German language in other to proceed to year one and masters respectively in German Universities. To attain C1 in German Language, you require 9-12 months German language course. This costs EUR 7900-EUR 8600 per year. At the end of this and having acquired the C1 requirement, you can now proceed to the university where you do not have to pay any more fees.

Cost of Living in Germany

The cost of living in Germany in affordable when compared to the like of United Kingdom and United States. Cost of living includes accommodation and feeding cost, transportation cost, insurance cost, entertainment cost, etc. This can be low or high depending on the lifestyle of student and the city of study. However, It is estimated that you should budget EUR735 monthly while studying in Germany. This totals EUR 8820 for a year. This amount must be paid into a German Bank Account for the student called Block Account. When the student arrives Germany, he/she is allowed a maximum withdrawal of EUR735 monthly from this account. The student uses the money to pay for his accommodation and feeding, transportation, insurance, etc. Also after this first year deposit, student has no other financial requirement because it is assumed that they can work to cover this cost for subsequent years through out the duration of their entire programme.

To study in Germany, international students will have to first of all meet with the German language requirement before being admitted into German universities. Therefore, most international student who wishes to study in Germany will have to pass through a Language School to study German Language before proceeding to the university.

Thus to be admitted into a German Language School in Germany, you must meet the language programme requirements.

German Language Course in Germany

Entering higher education in Germany for all international student require that you first of all enroll for the German language course.

Documents required for the Language program are:

  • Completed Language School Application Form
  • WAEC/NECO Result
  • High School Transcripts if applying for undergraduate programme
  • Bachelor Degree Certificate and Transcripts if applying for Masters/Graduate programme
  • Two (2) Recommendation Letter
  • Valid International Passport data page
  • Birth Certificate
  • 2 Passport photographs
  • Letter of motivation/Personal Statement

Undergraduate Programme in Germany

In Germany undergraduate study lasts at least 3-4 years. To qualify for this you must have at least 13th Year of education, A level, IB or first year of university. The 3 year degree is usually called the Minor or Basic Bachelor whereas the 4 year Bachelor is referred to as honors Bachelor or Bachelor (Honors).

For admissions, you will require the following:

  • WAEC/NECO Result
  • A level/IB or First Year of University Transcript
  • 2 passport photos
  • International passport data page
  • Confirming your German Language Proficiency just like English language Proficiency test: you can show this proficiency in the following ways: (i) Copy of A1 Certificate (from Goethe, TELC or other German Language School (ii)Confirmation of registration and paid fees for a language program in your home country of at least 100 hours duration (iii) Confirmation of registration and paid fees for a German Language course of B2 with Germany Language providers.
  • Proof of scholarship if applicable
  • Confirmation Letter from Deustche bank in Germany showing a deposit of EUR8700
  • Get health Insurance usually about 37 EUR per month. Some universities offer service packages including accommodation, meal vouchers and a health insurance policy.
  • Motivation Letter/Personal Statement

Graduate Programme in Germany

Graduate degree in Germany is a 2-year long period of study, and to qualify you must have undergone a 3-4 year Bachelor degree in a related field. Also another measure requirement will be to show German Language Proficiency at C1 level.

Major requirements include the following:

  • Degree/HND Certificate and
  • WAEC/NECO Result
  • Confirming your German Language Proficiency just like English language Proficiency test: you can show this proficiency in the following ways: (i) Copy of A1 Certificate (from Goethe, TELC or other German Language School (ii)Confirmation of registration and paid fees for a language program in your home country of at least 100 hours duration (iii) Confirmation of registration and paid fees for a German Language course of B2 with Germany Language providers.
  • 2 passport photos
  • International passport data page
  • Two (2) Recommendation Letter
  • Motivation Letter/Personal Statement

The major course or programme start dates in Germany is Winter Semester(September). However, most German Language Courses starts once or twice every month. Also the German Language course are pre dated, meaning that German Language schools set a particular day of the month that the programme starts.

To study in Germany, International students are required to obtain either the German Language Course Visa or the Student Applicant Visa.

The German Language Course Visa is valid only for the German Language Course programme and cannot be switched to the Student Visa in Germany. To change this to a Student Visa for your undergraduate or graduate programme, you will have to return to your home country and re apply for the student visa.

However, the Student Applicant Visa allows you to study for the validity of your German Language Course and can be changed to a Student Visa in Germany without returning to your home country. Therefore, we usually encourage our students to apply for the Student Applicant Visa.

Thus to apply for either the German Language Course Visa or Student Applicant Visa in your home country, you will need the following documents:

  • Conditional Letter of Acceptance into German University
  • Confirmation Letter of Acceptance from German Language School
  • Confirmation of Accommodation in Germany
  • Confirmation of Health Insurance
  • Block Account Confirmation Letter from Deutsche Bank Germany
  • Two (2) Passport Photographs
  • Original Copy of International Passport
  • Curriculum Vitae

Earning money while studying is a way of life for many international students studying in Germany. Students from the EU countries or EEA or Switzerland can work freely as any German citizen. But outside of these, work while studying is restricted 20 hours per week. To do this you will need authorization from the employment agency as well as the German authorities.

Working On-campus while Studying in Germany

There are many possibilities to earn money during studies in Germany. You can find job ads on the ‘’Schwarzes Brett’’ (notice board) on campus or on your university website. Take note in supermarkets, your university and libraries or other job-finding services for students.

How much you earn in a part-time job on-campus depends on your skills and knowledge. The 20 hours/week work limit may not apply to students who work on-campus. Like say you take a job as student assistant or research assistant at the university, it is usually no problem to exceed this work limit but you are obligated to inform the Alien Registration office.

Working Off-Campus While Studying In Germany

Working off-campus while studying in Germany depends on your skill set and knowledge, the region and branch you will like to work. Larger cities like Munich, Hamburg allows you to earn more money, but cost of living in these areas is usually higher.

While some cahiers in supermarket or fast food restaurants earn around six euros per hour, you can make up to ten euros per hour working in an office or as a promoter. Whatever you decide, remember that you want to be sure the requirement for your country is adhered strictly to.

For instance, you do not need a work permit in Germany if you are from the following countries:

Poland, Portugal, USA, Belgium, Estonia, Greece, Austria, Denmark, Luxembourg, Switzerland, United Kingdom. In fact all EU and EEA countries.

In this category of EU countries you are allowed to work as much as you wish without a work permit. However like German students, the amount may not exceed 20 hours per week. Otherwise you are required to pay into the German social security system.

For students from a different country like Nigeria, you are entitled 20 hours per week.

Half of Germany’s international students will stay after studying. For a fact, you are allowed 18 months to find a job in Germany after graduation. Within the 18 months, you have access to unlimited work hours. The 18 months starts as soon as the final exam result has been issued in writing, so you need to start looking for a job in your final semester if you plan to work in Germany.

Remember it is what skills you have that employers seek not your specific course of study. Most times it is wise to launch you’re your career with the University’s career Centre. They help student transit from studies to professional life. Then after working for 5 years, your work permit will change to Permanent Resident status.