Step 2

Having found a suitable study program, it’s time to make sure that you assemble required documents and that you meet the requirements to proceed to making your application.

This step is extremely important. This is because institutions are generally very strict in terms of compliance. Failure to meet requirements or supply required documents could result in a delay that can cost you up to a whole year.

When choosing your course of study, you should be aware that study programs especially bachelor degrees are mostly in German. However, some universities offer English taught bachelor degrees. On the other hand, many post-graduate degrees are offered in English. To be admitted for study you have to prove you can meet the language requirements, you will thus have to submit proof of language proficiency.

Requirements to Study in Germany?

Click to expand

For Bachelor’s applications, this is your high school diploma from your country or an International Baccalaureate (IB) diploma. However, this highly depends on your institution of choice. The condition is that it should be equivalent to the German Higher education entrance qualification(HZB).

For Masters, you will need your Bachelor’s Degree Certificate from your university.

The most important thing to note is that diplomas from some  countries are not considered equivalent to the HZB. In that case, you need to fulfill a few additional requirements.

To check your eligibility, see the section “Check your eligibility…” in the table below to find out if your countries’ higher education diploma is accepted.

Prepare your school transcripts well in advance for evaluation. If you are applying for a bachelor’s degree, this may be your general high school reports. In case you have already studied for a year, this will be your transcript for both semesters.

In the event that you plan on studying a post-graduate degree, your previous bachelor’s/master’s degree and university transcripts will be required.

For programs which are English-taught, you will have to submit proof of Language proficiency. It is important to check with your institution regarding which certificates and proficiency levels they demand. Generally, the following are accepted:

1. TOEFL iBT (American)

iBT scores of 80 and above are recommended. Confirm with your school for the actual cut-off.

2. I.E.L.T.S (British Council)

A score of 5 may be considered but a score of 6 and higher is recommended. Confirm with your school for the actual cut-off.

3. CAE or CPE

Cambridge advanced English or Cambridge proficiency in English are also considered by some institutions. Confirm with your school if they accept them.


Confirm with your school if they accept it.

5. Proof that of studies in English or education acquired in an English speaking country

In the event that you studied in English, you may submit your school certificates or transcripts as proof. If you are a native of an English speaking country e.g. Australia or the UK and a few others, you may ask to be exempted from the requirement if your institution allows it. This is however unlikely without proof of schooling.


Other certifications not listed here may be accepted by your institution. Confirm on your application page/university website to see which ones they consider.

Study courses in German require students to submit proof of proficiency in German. To do so, you may submit one of the following certifications. However, confirm with your selected institution to establish which one’s they accept/require.

1. DSH (German language examination for university entrance) 

(DSH-2 or DSH-3).

2. DSD (Das Deutsche Sprachdiplom)


3. telc Deutsch C1 Hochschule

Pass the telc C1 

4. TestDaF

TDF Level 4 or Level 5

At least Goethe Certificate C1 
Other recognized qualifications:
– International Baccalaureate (IB German A)
– Studienkolleg assement in German
– A HZB diploma from a German Education Institution abroad

Some institutions will require you to write a Letter of Motivation to accompany your application. For instance, you will be asked to talk about your aspirations and explain why they should consider your candidacy and offer you a place in their program. The admission body will generally guide you on what they expect to see in the letter.

Eligibility criteria

Kindly follow this link to check the eligibilty criteria that applies to your country or to your higher education entrance qualification.

In that case you can follow any of these two procedures:

Apply to Studienkolleg (Bachelor’s Students)

Studienkolleg  is an institution that prepares you for university studies. They offer a year long course which upon successful completion, you automatically obtain a qualification to study at the university.

Study at a home university for a full academic year, then apply via Uni-assist.

With this option, you have to complete a full academic year at your local university. After that is done, you will be considered as having sufficient entrance qualification. You will however have to apply via Uni-Assist to have your credits and qualifications checked and converted to German equivalent. Once they convert your grades, you can then send the document they give you to your university or have Uni-Assist directly submit it on your behalf.
More on Uni-Assist in the table below.

Students from some countries may be required to apply via Uni-assist for their Masters.
The following documents will be needed by for the Uni-Assist Application:

-a university entrance qualification
-minimum grade requirements
-language proficiency
-meeting formal requirements (such as certification, translation and application deadlines)Once they 

Applying via Uni-assist

Uni-assist is an organization that evaluates applications by international students to allow them access to about 180 education institutions in Germany. They convert your grades and qualifications to their German equivalent to allow universities to decide if you meet the criteria for admission.

There are several procedures of applying for a course with Uni-assist. Depending on the university of your choice, you may need to follow one of these procedures.

1. Standard Application procedure with Uni-assist 

2. VPD Applications 

3. DoSV (Hoschulstart) applications

See below for expanded details

This is the most common type of application. For this procedure, apply directly to Uni-assist. Upon receiving all the required documents, they will evaluate your application. In the event that all requirements are met, they will forward your documents to the university/-ies of your selection. The university then makes a decision on your application and let’s you know if you are successful or not.  Remember that you ought to submit all the required documents well in advance before your university application deadline. The recommended period is about 8 weeks prior to the university deadline.

Download the Standard procedure checklist here.

To get more information on this, visit Uni-assist here.

VPD stands for Vorprüfungsdokumentation. In this procedure, you submit the same documents as those required in the standard procedure such as transcripts, certificates e.t.c. The difference is that once your documents are evaluated, you will receive a the VPD which contains the details of your converted qualifications. You will then have to submit the VPD document to the univerisity by yourself. Note that you will have to apply directly to the university in addition to Uni-assist. All this should be done well before the deadline, optimally about 6-8 weeks prior. In addition to that, make sure to submit the VPD to your university before the deadline.

Find the VPD checklist here.

To get more information on this, visit Uni-assist here.

Some universities use the Hoschulstart application process. In that case, the DoSV criteria applies for you. This a coordinated system by several universities to ensure applicants who apply to several universities and degree offers get their preferred programs/institutions thus allowing the additional/vacant slots they would occupy at other chosen schools be issued to other students who need them.

The first thing you will have to do is register on the Hoschulstart portal. Once that is done, you will be issued with two identification numbers: a BID(Applicant ID) and BAN(Authentication ID). You will then fill this in on your uni-assist portal and continue with the application as usual.

You will be required to submit your preferences for programs. When you successfully receive the study offer of your choice and accept it, the other slots you applied for can be given to other students who need them 🙂

Download the DoSV checklist here.

To get more information on this, visit Uni-assist here.