The Higher Education Institutions (HEI) in Germany are divided into state and private institutions. Due to a high level of competition amongst the two, they are offering top-quality programmes for extremely low prices.
German universities are rapidly gaining popularity for offering a large variety of programmes. The ample choices make it easier for students to select their courses as per the career they aspire towards. The excellent syllabus and modern teaching methods make these universities much sought after.
Technical universities in Germany cover more traditional courses. In fact, being an industrialised country, Germany has invested a lot in engineering universities, which have become particularly valuable programmes to study. In some other programmes they have become global leaders, like medicine and pharmacy.
The Universities of Applied Sciences focus on the practical application of their courses. In fact, 70% of each programme is the actual functional training and real-scenario application. This helps students become better equipped to handle real-life work challenges. Programmes include economics, social sciences and business administration.
The Colleges of Art and Music cover artistic and creative programmes. They include fashion designing, filmmaking, music, fine arts and theatre.
“There are over 350 recognized colleges/universities in Germany offering over 17,0000 courses.”
You can choose from an extensive range of courses offered by German colleges:
There are a few options available to students in Germany when it comes to accommodation, however the main choice you will have to make is between student accommodation or renting a private residence. German universities do not automatically assign students accommodation, so you will need to do the relevant research to find a place yourself.
Student halls of residence owned and maintained by Studentenwerk (Student Services Organisation) are present in every university town. This is the most affordable type of accommodation, averaging around 240 EUR per month. The 181,000 placements are in high demand, and it is therefore advisable that you apply for this housing as early as possible. This is done through the website of the Studentenwerk administration local to your chosen university.
Numerous types of housing are available from Studentenwerk. The cheapest and most sociable option would be a room on a floor with a communal kitchen, bathroom and living space. You could also opt for self-contained apartments with between two and seven bedrooms. For a more private residence, there are single and double apartments available which are also a little more pricey. Price also fluctuates depending on level of furnishing. You can apply for housing with basic furnishing, typically entailing a bed, desk, wardrobe and shelving, or unfurnished for a cheaper price.
There is also the opportunity to rent accommodation from a private landlord or estate agent. Prices fluctuate greatly depending location and quality of the apartment, however the price of housing in Germany averages around 210 to 360 EUR per month (although in major urban centers the price could be higher). To save on cost, consider living with roommates in flatshare. Wohngemeinschaft, or WG as the Germans call it, is very popular among university students.
If you want to study in Germany, you’ll be happy to know that public universities do not charge tuition fees for Bachelor’s and Master’s programmes (except if you plan to pursue a Master's degree that focuses on a different subject than the one you studied as a Bachelor’s student). The German free tuition system is available for all foreign students, regardless of their country of origin.
The only exception is the Federal State of Baden-Württemberg, which, at the end of 2017, reintroduced tuition fees of 3,000 EUR/year for non-EU/EEA students.
Most German universities are public, so you will only have to pay an administration fee, which usually costs between 100 - 350 EUR/semester. This fee covers the student organisation services and your enrolment.
There are exceptions to this tuition-free rule, however. If you don’t finish your degree course on time and you study in Bremen, Lower Saxony, Saarland, Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt or Thuringia, you may have to pay tuition fees.
At German private universities, tuition costs can reach 26,000 EUR/year for a Bachelor’s degree and 40,000 EUR/year for a Master’s. Programmes in Engineering and Business & Management are the most expensive.