Six steps to studying a masters in Germany

Kiran Shahidon 7 December 2020

Interested in Masters study abroad in Germany? Here are our six steps to help you land a place on your dream study abroad course.

Germany is a popular destination for international students looking to pursue a Masters. From the world-class professors to affordable education, studying in Germany is a worthwhile consideration.

Germany is consistently ranked as one of the best countries to study abroad in Europe, with German universities being renowned for their modern student facilities, high graduate employment rates, and high teaching standards. Whether you're planning on studying in Berlin, Frankfurt, Munich, Cologne, or any other German city, you're bound to find a quality institution.

Like what you’re hearing? Great. Before signing up though, there are a few things you’ll need to sort out. Here's what you need to do before pursuing a postgraduate degree in Germany:

Find a programme that suits your needs

This step goes without saying, but you'd be surprised how many students get it wrong. A Master's degree is a significant investment in time and money, and you need to be sure you're making the right choice.

You need to align your academic and career goals first, in order and find a program at a university that will help you achieve those goals. German universities offer a wide range of courses, so you're likely to find a programme that matches your preferences.

Researching in advance is imperative. It would be wise to consider several factors, such as tuition fees, location, course modules, and career opportunities, to help you make an informed decision regarding your future.

Check the minimum entry requirements 

Once you have a few universities in mind, you’ll need to work out which institutions you qualify for. Most universities will have their minimum admission requirements specified on their websites. 

Note that these entry requirements may vary from department to department within the same university. Double-checking is crucial since a mistake could potentially lead to your application being rejected. If you have any queries, reach out to the university for clarification. 

Apply for health insurance

Every resident in Germany is required to get health insurance, and international students are no exception. If you're from the European Union, you may be eligible for a European health insurance card, so double-check whether you qualify. 

There are various public and private insurance plans to choose from, so you should be able to find one that suits your needs fairly easily. Whether you should opt for public or private health insurance depends on multiple factors, including your age and health condition.

Applying for health insurance can be a long process, so prepare in advance. We suggest having all your documents in place before you receive any offers. Doing this will save time and help you to manage any surprises that may come your way. 

Check the linguistic requirements 

German universities typically require students to prove how proficient they are in either German or English. This is to make sure you’ll understand what's going on in class and be able to communicate with your peers and professors. 

Typically, at the undergraduate level, you may struggle if you're not proficient in German. At the postgraduate level however, you're likely to find courses that are taught entirely or partially in English. You would have to register for a standardized language test before submitting your application to prove your proficiency. 

The level of proficiency required will typically vary according to the university and course you're applying to. Usually, the level of proficiency required is higher for social science programmes than it is for mathematical courses, which focus more on critical thinking. 

Figure out your finances

As an international student, you'll need to demonstrate that you can afford the course in question. You will have to provide proof of funds above a certain amount every year to be eligible for a student visa. If you're unable to prove your finances, you won't be granted a student visa. 

Pursuing a Master’s in Germany can be costly, with the proof of funds threshold often being fairly high, so keep track of your finances beforehand. Consider saving for a few months and research loans or scholarships that you may be eligible for. 

Apply for a student visa

Every international student who's a non-EEA or non-EU citizen has to apply for a student visa to pursue a degree in the country. From the start of next year, this could complicate things for British applicants.

Once you have everything else sorted, you should book an appointment at your local German embassy to begin your student visa application.

You'll need documents such as your proof of financial resources and language proficiency as part of your student visa process, so ensure these steps are sorted beforehand. Apply well in advance of your travel date to account for any unforeseen delays. 

For anyone looking to pursue a Master's degree, Germany is an excellent place to consider. It offers a top-quality education in an environment that will help you fulfill your personal and professional goals.

There are lots of public and private universities to choose from, so do some research until you find an option that's affordable and matches your requirements. There's a reason Germany is called the 'land of ideas,' and you’ll find out why by following the steps above!

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Kiran Shahidon 7 December 2020