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What are the application and enrollment documents required for German universities?

If you are planning to apply to German universities, several documents are required to get admission. What documents you need to submit depends on the university and the study program you wish to apply for.

Documents required for applying to German universities

The following documents are the most important ones and will be asked for by each German university:

 

University application form

There are different ways on how to apply to German universities – for example via the website of the university, Compounder or Uni-Assist, an institution that evaluates international certificates. Depending on what application procedure is required by the German university you wish to apply to, you will need to complete an online application form in some cases.

Certified copy of your school or university leaving certificate

If you are applying for a bachelor’s degree, you should submit your school leaving certificate. In case you want to get admission to a master’s program, you need to provide a certified copy of your bachelor’s degree. Be aware that the certificates need to be officially translated if they are not issued in German or English. If you have not completed your studies yet, some universities accept a certificate with your current total number of ECTS credit points and your current GPA.

Proof of language proficiency

Depending on whether you want to study in Germany in German or English, you need to prove the respective language skills. If you are applying for an English-taught program, you can prove your skills for example by certificates like IELTS or TOEFL. For programs which are fully or partially taught in German, language exams like TestDaF or DSH can be submitted. If you are a native speaker, many universities don’t need any further proof. You can read more on what language skills are required for studying in Germany and how to prove them here.

P.S. Did you know that you don't need to speak German to study in Germany? There are plenty of universities in Germany that teach in English – our blog article lists some of them.

Universities that teach in English

Additional application documents

Some German universities may also ask you to submit the following documents:

 

Copy of your passport or ID

Passport photo(s)

Letter of recommendation

Motivation letter (some German universities may ask you to submit a motivation letter in which you explain why you chose that specific course and university)

Current certificate of enrollment or exmatriculation (if you are or have been enrolled at a German university already)

Uni-assist VPD (Preliminary Review Documentation issued by Uni-assist. For some German public universities it is mandatory to apply via Uni-assist. You can check here whether the university you wish to apply to requires an application via Uni-assist)

APS Certificate (if you are from the People’s Republic of China, Vietnam or Mongolia, you need to get the certificate from the Academic Evaluation Center (Akademische Prüfstelle – APS) from the German embassy in your home country)

Documents required for enrolling at a German university

Once you applied successfully and got admission to your desired German university, you need to get enrolled. The enrollment process involves submitting the following documents:

 

University Admission Letter (public university) or study contract (private university)

This letter is provided by the university and states that you got accepted and are offered a study spot at the respective university.

Valid residence permit

You need to apply for the residence permit upon arrival in Germany at the foreigner’s registration office. Our 7-step guide gives you more information on how to get the residence permit.

Proof of Health Insurance Coverage

In order to be able to study and stay in Germany, you need to proof a valid health insurance. Be aware that a health insurance from your home country may not be valid!

If you are not sure whether your health insurance is valid or if you would like to get insured, our partner Fintiba can help you.

Get your Fintiba health insurance

Checklist

Ready to apply for a German university and enroll in a bachelor or master programme? Here you can find all application and enrollment documents at a glance.

 

Application documents

University application form

Certified copy of your school or university leaving certificate

Proof of language proficiency

Copy of your passport or ID

Passport photo(s)

Letter of recommendation

Motivation letter

Current certificate of enrollment or exmatriculation

Uni-assist VPD (Preliminary Review Documentation)

APS Certificate

 

Enrollment documents

University Admission Letter (public university) or study contract (private university)

Proof of Health Insurance Coverage

Valid residence permit

 

Need more information on the application and enrollment procedure? Our 7-step guide gives you a detailed overview of how to apply to German universities. You can download it here for free.

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