Germany ranked third in overall rankings of the 2010 QS World University Rankings with German universities performing well in providing quality education. What is also notable is that German universities have been in the news because these schools welcome foreign students in their campuses. It is the friendliest country in Europe when it comes to receiving international students. Already, students from all over Europe go to Germany to get technical or college degrees. At the same time, German students are encouraged to study abroad or parts of the program in other European countries, the US, and even Asia.
The first common misconception is that you have to speak German in order to study at German universities. This is simply not true. While it gives you better chances to find more choices of German universities if you speak the language, there are also several institutions of learning that offer degree courses where the medium of instruction is in English. Examples of these schools are Heidelberg University (Germany’s oldest school), Technische Universität München (TUM), Freie Universität Berlin, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München (LMU), and Universität Freiburg. However, learning the local language is not a bad idea if you want to feel at home in a foreign country.
To study in German universities, you have to know the equivalent of your high school degree in the country. You must have at least a good GPA in order to find a place in German universities. Good SAT scores are also helpful. Remember that German universities also use a quota system making sure that there are places earmarked for minority groups and disadvantaged groups and those who have been on the wait list. Hence, 20% of total enrollment will already be allocated for these groups of students.
Compiling a list of German universities is a good start to get an overview of the types of educational establishments in the country and the type of degrees offered. Research online or go to your local libraries to find information on German universities. It will also help if you already know what you want to do at the university and which courses you are interested in. There are specialized schools such as vocational and technical schools if you don’t want a college degree, but are thinking of pursuing craftsman courses.
There are many advantages to going to German universities. Lower education costs and nearly absent tuition fees in comparison to American or UK universities makes the country an attractive place to study. The reason behind this is that the government subsidizes a majority of the school fees. In addition, schools do not have dormitories and students are not bound by the fixed costs of staying in these types of accommodation. Instead, students find flats in the vicinity and share costs among roommates.
Studying in German universities does not only give you the opportunity to immerse yourself in the culture of the nation; you can also do student exchange programs as part of your curriculum with other neighboring countries such as Belgium and The Netherlands. The UK is not far away, too and is another option for those exchange programs. The Free University usually offers student exchange programs and courses that can be done anywhere in European school campuses.
Verify if the degree that you will earn from German universities will be recognized in the US. Research the procedures for converting your diploma into one that is recognized in America.
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