How to apply to german universities

Requirements for Studying in a German Higher institution

Once you make a decision on studying in a German higher institution, then you should make sure that you meet the minimum requirements.

These requirements to study in Germany in 2022 are listed below with detailed information:

#1 German Higher Education Entrance Test Clearance

You should be able to present proof that you went through secondary school to gain the qualification to study in Germany. Once you have this qualification, you can then study in Germany using your international school-leaving certificate.

Students that studied in EU countries and who possess a school-leaving certificate, qualify to be admitted to German Higher education institutions. If you come from countries that are not in the EU, they should show proof that they have studied for at least two or three semesters in a university in your home country. This is however dependent on your country of origin. Students who wish to take artisan courses are often admitted not on their academic merits but by their samples of work as well as tests such as aptitude tests.

To check the requirements that are needed to enroll in German higher institutions, you can g to the DAAD database to get this information. This will help you realize if your education qualification from your home country qualifies you for admission to a German higher education institution. This database will give you information on what you qualify to study for. More information can also be gotten from the portal on information on foreign qualifications in German institutions.

Note: You can get information that is more detailed on the German higher institution that you select from the international office of the institution you wish to join. This is because the institution is the main decision-maker on your application.

#2 German University Database Search

There is a database of German Universities and Germany Scholarships that is used by foreign students to check whether they qualify for admission to the chosen higher education institution or not.

#3 IB-Diploma recognition in Germany

The IB Diploma (International Baccalaureate Diploma) is given by the Geneva-based private sector International Baccalaureate Organization as a qualification for school leaving. Over a thousand schools offer this qualification. There are instances where the IB diploma is used as an admission qualification to German higher education institutions.

#4 General Certificate of Education (GCE) recognition in Germany

There are certain conditions where GCE can be used as an admission qualification in Germany. It is however only used in certain subject courses.

#5 Foundation courses Selection

If you find out that your school-leaving certificate does not qualify you for admission to a German Higher institution, there is another alternative. You can take the foundation course. This course takes a period of two semesters and it can be done in university facilities and universities that offer applied science courses. This course is stepping to help you start on your degree programme. To sit for this course, you need to have a level B1 comprehension level of German as well as pass the entrance examinations. The classes for this course can last for 28 hours to 32 hours every week.

Once you complete this course, you will then take a higher education entrance exam. It will include a test of all the subjects that you will study in your degree programme. It may also include a language test. Once you pass this course, you will be granted the authorization to begin your degree.

#6 German Study VISA

To legally study in Germany, you need a German Student VISA or German Residence Permit. After securing admission to the German University, you have to apply for a study VISA for Germany in the German embassy of your country.

What are the other requirements to apply for admission in Germany?

There are other requirements that may be needed for securing admission to German higher education institutions. You may be needed to show proof of language skills. You should also make a compelling application, have a visa, have health insurance, and have a permit for residence and show proof of your financial resources.

A TestAS (test for foreign students) can help students find out if they can meet the requirements for studying in German higher education institutions. The test will help you find out if studying in Germany is a great decision and it may up your chance of admission to a German higher education institution.

Note: Before making a decision to study in Germany, you have to take care of many things. This is why you need to make sure that you gain all the necessary information to apply for German University admission, application for DAAD German Scholarship, German Student VISA, opening a blocked bank account in Germany, and so on. Make sure that you have all the requirements right so that there are no hiccups.

Kaplan Pathways helps with US university admission

We offer the following routes to university study in the USA:

  • Direct admission to a US bachelor’s or master’s program: Year 1 entry to a degree
  • Transfer into a US bachelor’s program: enter a US undergraduate degree in Year 2 or 3 if you have some previous university-level study
  • Pathway program before a bachelor’s or master’s: qualify for US degree admission, while earning transferable academic credits
  • English language preparation: improve your English for pathway or degree admission
  • Online study during high school: earn U.S. high school or undergraduate credits

Do you have questions about how coronavirus might affect your studies? Visit our dedicated FAQs page.

These paths have different entry requirements. If you are unsure which are available to you, please contact our friendly advisors.

Apply now

Apply to Arizona State University

Apply to Pace University

Apply to Simmons University

Apply to University of Connecticut

US university application deadlines

University Program Semester start Application
I-20 deadline
Arizona State University Undergraduate degree* Fall 2022 (Aug) Jun 29 Jul 18
Graduate degree* Fall 2022 (Aug) Jun 9 Jul 18
ASU-USA Pathways undergraduate Fall 2022 (Aug) Jul 11 Jul 15
English Language Program
– Campus immersion
Fall A 2022 (Aug) Jul 11 Jul 15
– Online immersion Fall A 2022 (Aug) Aug 4 n/a
Pace University Undergraduate and graduate degrees Fall 2022 (Sep) Jul 15 Jul 15
Global Pathways programs Fall 2022 (Sep) Jul 15 Jul 15
Intensive English Program Summer II 2022 (Jul)
Fall I 2022 (Sep)
Jun 13
Aug 8
Jun 13
Aug 8
Simmons University Undergraduate degree Fall 2022 (Sep) Jul 6 Jul 18
University of Connecticut Undergraduate degree
– Regional campuses (if UConn housing required)
Fall 2022 (Aug) Mar 15 Aug 1
– Regional campuses (no housing required) Fall 2022 (Aug) May 1 Aug 1
Undergraduate transfer Fall 2022 (Aug) Apr 1
for most majors
Aug 1

* Some degrees e.g. in Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts, Master of Laws LLM, Computer Science MS, and some others have much earlier deadlines. For exact dates, please check the summary sheets.

How to apply to US universities

We’ve made the application process as simple as possible, with 4 steps to US university admission:

  1. Fill in your application form, and upload supporting documents, including academic transcripts.
  2. We will review your application and, when it is complete, we submit it to the University within 24 hours. You’ll be notified as soon as the University has made its admission decision.
  3. Once you accept your offer of admission, you’ll be advised how to pay your deposit (if there is one), and show proof of finances to cover your study and living costs for one year.
  4. When you receive an I-20 form, you are eligible to apply for your student visa. You can interview for your visa as early as 120 days before the start date listed on your I-20.

Our staff can give you guidance throughout the process. Contact us if you have any questions.

How much will it cost to study?

Studying in the US is an investment of money as well as effort, so you’ll need to make sure your finances are well-organized. See the tuition booklet for the price of pathway programs and degrees at our partner universities in the USA.

As well as your program tuition, you must also have funds to cover costs such as university fees, course books, housing and health insurance. This amount varies by university and degree:

More application information

There are several start dates throughout the year. Typically, Fall semester starts in August/September, Spring semester starts in January, and Summer semester starts in May.

Application deadlines

We advise you to apply as early as possible, so that you have enough time for your qualifications to be checked, visa to be processed, and to make pre-arrival arrangements. Choose your preferred university to check exact deadlines:

To help with the cost of studying in the USA, there are partial tuition scholarships available for academically outstanding students. You will be automatically assessed for a scholarship when you apply to a degree at our US partner universities. You can find more details on our scholarships page.

When your application to study at a US university is complete, the university makes an admission decision. If successful, they will issue you an offer. There are 2 types of offer:

  • Unconditional: there are no conditions you need to meet, but you may still need to send financial documents as part of the visa application process
  • Conditional: if you need to improve your English proficiency, you will be conditionally admitted to a degree or pathway program. You must then submit a qualifying language score or join an English preparation program, before you start your academic program.

If your application is not successful, we can look at alternative or more suitable study options for you, based on your qualifications and circumstances.

If you start your university studies in Germany, you will usually conclude them with a bachelor degree. The Staatsexamen is currently the most common degree for courses such as medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine, pharmacy and law. Find out now what you should know about admission requirements.

  • Criteria check
  • Getting information

Criteria check

University entrance qualification

If you wish to study a Bachelor or Staatsexamen course, you will need a university entrance qualification, called a “Hochschulzugangsberechtigung”. These are educational certificates which prove that you are qualified to study at a German university – especially your school leaving certificate. Depending on your country of origin, several semesters of university studies in that country may additionally be required.

Are you unsure if you have a university entrance qualification? Use our tool “Check: university admission” to find out.

Your result – what happens next?

  • Direct admission
  • Preparatory course
  • I don’t know

Direct admission

Do your educational certificates qualify you for direct entry into your chosen course of study? Please read our guidelines on additional criteria.

Preparatory course

Are you qualified for the Studienkolleg (preparatory course)? Use our Studienkolleg page to find out what this means for you and what happens next.

I don’t know

If you are not sure whether you can take up your studies directly, if you need to attend a Studienkolleg first or even if you are not qualified to study in Germany at all, we will find out while processing your application. You should look into additional criteria now.

German language proficiency

In Germany, most courses are taught in German. Therefore, you need to show adequate proficiency in German.

Tip: If your German language proficiency is not sufficient yet, many universities offer a preparatory German language course. For more Information, please contact the university of your choice.

Further criteria

In addition to the university entrance qualification (HZB) and German language proficiency criteria, there are further admission criteria for university studies. These are set by the universities.

The criteria may include proficiencies in other languages and formal application requirements such as deadlines and certification and translation of documents.

Getting information

To ensure a successful application, get information from the uni-assist universities about your options and criteria for your desired course of study.

Get information on the following from the universities of your choice:


The required level of language proficiency, as well as other admission criteria, may vary between universities and between courses of study.


Application deadlines may depend on your chosen course of study, your nationality, or the country in which you attained your educational certificates. Many courses start only in the winter semester, not in the summer semester. You can find more information under Deadlines and processing time.

Who handles applications?

uni-assist is not automatically responsible for all applications to a uni-assist university.

Applications to the first Staatsexamen course semester in medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine and pharmacy

Please note: In the following cases, applications are handled via and not by uni-assist:

  • If you are a German, EU or EEA citizen or
  • if you have a German Abitur or
  • if you live in Germany and a member of your family (spouse, parents or child) is a German, EU or EEA citizen.

Applying to a foreign university is usually the most daunting task for a student who wants to study abroad, but it is usually not so difficult. Here we will look at it step by step.

When should I apply?

The basic rule is the sooner, the better. If you apply early, you have a greater chance of arranging everything on time, and you will be able to apply for another school if you are not accepted. Early applications also give you greater chances of getting a scholarship.

High-ranking universities often have an application deadline of up to one year before the start of the course. The University of Cambridge in England, for example, has their application deadline in October for the programs that start in October the following year. Ordinary universities often have deadlines approximately six months before the start of the course while smaller colleges and low-ranking universities often take applications up to a month or two before the semester starts. However, it is always better to apply early, so you have enough time to submit a complete application and get a visa on time.

For longer courses in Japan, you should apply close to half a year before the start of the course to get your student visa on time. If you want to study in the United States, you should also apply in good time since visa interview slots will be in shortage at many US Embassies close to the big starting dates. Read more about student visa to the US and Japan.

How many schools should I apply for?

It is better to make one good application than many bad ones. Often you can get a reply within a month, so if you apply early, you still have the chance to apply for more schools if you don’t get accepted. Many schools charge application fees for international students so that is another reason not to apply to so many schools.

For low-ranking universities, community colleges and language schools it is easy to get accepted so applying to one school is usually enough, but if you apply for high-ranking universities, it will be harder. Then you might apply for a couple at the same time.

Where do I apply?

Nowadays applications are usually made online on the school’s website. In the UK most university applications are made online through UCAS.

We and/or our partners can help you with the application to many language schools and universities abroad. Fill out an information request so we can help you!

What are the requirements to get accepted to a university abroad?

This is a very common question which is impossible to answer. Each school and program have their own admission requirements which you can look up on the school’s website.

To apply for an undergraduate program, you need to have graduated from high school, and you will need to fulfill the school’s language requirements. To study at Master level you need a Bachelor’s Degree and/or several years work experience. Language requirements are usually higher at Master level since you will be dealing with a more complex academic language. Read more in our article do I need good grades to study abroad?

However, you can study abroad even if you have bad grades or never graduated from high school. Seattle Central College has a high school completion plus program where you can take an Associate Degree and a high school diploma in only two years. Another option is to study at a language school abroad, they are open to anyone who wants to improve their language skills.

What documents do I need to submit when I apply?

What you should submit with your application differs from school to school. You will find this information under Admission Requirements (or a similar headline) on the school’s website. Here are some of the most common documents that you need to submit when you apply to a university abroad:

  • The school’s application form. This usually consists of simple questions like personal details and details about the program that you are applying for. Read it carefully and fill out all the required fields. Do not forget to sign it.
  • Your grades from high school and college. These documents must be translated into English. Some schools even require that your high school or translator send the grades directly to them.
  • A copy of your passport so that the school can issue a visa letter. To some countries, for example Japan, you might also need to send copies of entry stamps and visas from previous visits.
  • Proof that you meet the school’s English language requirements. In the U.S. the TOEFL test is usually requested while English and Australian universities prefer an IELTS exam. However, most universities approve both of these tests and many also accept the Cambridge exam. The scores required for entry depend on the school and program that you are applying for.
  • Standardized tests If you are applying for degree programs in the US and some other countries you might need to take a standardized test such as SAT for undergraduate level and GMAT or GRE for Master programs.
  • A financial statement to show that you can pay for your studies and living expenses. You will need a bank statement in English. It should preferably be a letter written by the bank that states how big your assets are and how much it corresponds to in the school’s currency. The letter must be signed and stamped by the bank. Read the school’s instructions for more information about what amounts you need and how it should be documented.
  • Motivation letters and reference letters. Universities in the English speaking world don’t only look at your grades. It is also common that you are asked to submit references and motivation letters to prove that you are a suitable student. A good motivation letter can help you to get accepted even if your grades are not great and it can also help you to get a scholarship from the school, so put some effort into these letters. See samples and advice about reference letters and motivation letters.

Can you help me with the application?

Together with our partners we can help you with the application to:

  • All UK universities and programs in English in the Netherlands, Spain, Germany and Italy.
  • All universities in Australia
  • Many colleges and universities in the US
  • Selected universities in Korea and Malaysia.
  • BHMS Business and Hotel Management School in Switzerland
  • Language schools all over the world
  • On the schools featured in our school database you can also get more help from us and the school.

More information

You might also be interested in our article how to get into the best universities in the world.

Follow @dreamstudiesabroad on Facebook, Instagram or Youtube to get updated about our new schools and articles.

You would like to study at Leibniz University Hannover?

Here you can find out how to apply and what to consider for the application.



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