In today’s job market, it can be important to build upon a bachelor degree by pursuing master’s level studies. If master’s studies are in your future, be sure to look into the attractive opportunities open to you at Germany’s universities and universities of applied science.
A country with a long, proud history of academic excellence, Germany is home to more than four hundred universities that offer a wide variety of study programs at the master’s level.
Each year, hundreds of Canadians carry out degree studies at German universities. Among those students who chose to do their master’s studies in Germany is Laurence Martel, a Canadian and recent graduate from the University of Hamburg’s program in Politics, Economics and Philosophy. When asked if he would recommend master’s studies in Germany to other Canadian students, he was clear: “Totally! It was a challenging and amazing time. Looking back, I would say that I made the right decision in doing my master’s degree in Germany.”
Why study in Germany?
There are many factors that make Germany an attractive destination for university studies and these include the following:
- Graduates receive a degree recognized by employers all over the world.
- The German university system offers a broad range of programs spanning the disciplinary spectrum. Whether you are interested in a more traditional, academic education or a practice-oriented approach, chances are good that you’ll find a program that meets your needs and interests
- You can study in English; nearly 1,000 master’s programs at German universities use English as the language of instruction.
- The costs associated with post-secondary education in Germany are relatively low; Many study programs are tuition free, even at the master’s level and even for international students. Add to that a cost of living that averages out at about EUR 800 / month and it’s clear that study in Germany makes dollars and sense.
Of course, studying in Germany will also place you at the centre of Europe and provide you with an excellent jumping off point for exploring this fascinating continent. And don’t forget studying in Germany will give you an opportunity to learn German, Europe’s most spoken language and one central to commerce and culture around the world.
German universities are also extremely diverse settings, bringing together students from around the world. Today more than 320,000 international students (or nearly 12% of the student body) are pursuing their studies at German universities. For Laurence Martel, this international flavour was an added attraction and he notes: “The strong international composition of the student bodies at German universities is another opportunity to open yourself to discoveries. You can expect to learn not only about Germany, but about the entire world.”
Things to keep in mind
While the German university system is open to students from all around the world, it’s important to remember that you’ll be studying in another academic culture. Isabel Taylor, a Canadian who completed a Master’s in Law at the University of Tübingen, points out that, “Study is significantly less structured in Germany. It is essential to do a lot of additional reading above and beyond the set texts for exams. Professors have less of a supervisory role than they do in the English-speaking world, and you will mainly have to rely on student assistants and other students for hints on exam and essay preparation.”
Where to start?
If you’re interested in learning more about studying in Germany, a great place to orient yourself on all aspects of pursuing degree studies there is the Study in Germany website found at www.study-in.de.
The Study in Germany portal contains information on all aspects of studying in Germany from the academic to the practical; it even includes a searchable database with entries on every degree program on offer at German universities. Matches generated by a search are linked directly to the university program pages and there you will find further information on the study program including details on how to apply.
German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) in Canada
In Canada, the German university system is represented by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), which has an Information Centre in Toronto. This office provides interested individuals from across Canada with information on study and research in Germany, and also gives details on DAAD scholarships and grants open to students and faculty at Canadian universities.
DAAD’s Study Scholarship is specifically designed to support exceptional graduates of Canadian universities who wish to carry out master’s studies in Germany. Deadlines to this program typically occur in October or November of the year before you plan to begin your studies in Germany. For more information on this program, please visit:
Staff at the DAAD’s Information Centre in Toronto will be happy to assist you with questions you may have as you navigate your way toward study in Germany. To contact the Centre, please visit their website at: www.daad.org/canada.
German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) Canada