Tag Archives: Student Visa

EU Immigration Authorities Can Only Refuse a Student Visa if a Person is a Risk to National Security

International students wishing to study in the European Union should not be denied a student visa by local authorities if they satisfy European entry requirements says the European Court of Justice (ECJ). This ruling comes with major implications for foreign students hoping to study at European universities.

The ruling
The ruling, published in September 2014 by the ECJ, concerns Mohamed Ali Ben Alaya, a Tunisian student who had been accepted to study mathematics at the Technical University of Dortmund and applied to the German authorities for a student visa.

The German immigration authorities refused his visa, saying that his grades weren’t high enough and he wouldn’t have time to learn German to an adequate standard before the course began.

Ben Alaya brought his case to the administrative court in Berlin, which in turn consulted the ECJ on the validity of the refusal. The Berlin court wanted to know if the German Immigration authorities were allowed to refuse his visa even though Mohamed Ali Ben Alaya fulfilled all the minimum requirements laid out by a 2004 European Commission directive on students from outside the EU.

Basically, the Berlin Court wanted to know if the Directive set up an exhaustive list of minimum requirements to meet or if national governments could add more requirements on top.

The applicant claimed to have proven that he met all the requirements, including the availability of financial resources; as for his proficiency in German, he claimed that he had mastered the language well enough to study mathematics, and that the entry level course was sufficient to bridge any gaps.

The ECJ concluded that the German authorities should have accepted the student visa, since the applicant appeared to meet the requirements of the EU’s current directive on non-EU students and did not pose a threat to public policy, security or health.

The Directive
The Directive was set out to promote the European Union as a “world centre of excellence for studies and vocational training.”

Requirements for non-EU students set out by the Directive are:

  • holding a valid passport or ID;
  • subscribing to an EU recognised health insurance programme;
  • to not be regarded as a threat to public policy, public security or public health;
  • have been accepted by an establishment of higher education to follow a course of study;
  • provide the evidence that during his/her stay he/she will have sufficient resources to cover his/her subsistence (amount determined by each country), study and return travel costs (i.e a paid flight/train ticket back to the country of origin);

and if the member state requires, provide evidence of

  • sufficient knowledge of the language of the course to be followed by him/her;
  • the applicant has paid the fee for processing the application;
  • the applicant has paid the fees charged by the establishment.

Implications for future foreign students
The ruling has significant implications for non-EU students looking to study in Europe.

First, it states that requirements to apply to study in Europe have been established exhaustively by the Directive, so that national government cannot add further requirements. Indeed, the aim of the directive was to harmonise access to EU Universities for non-EU students.

Secondly, the EU court confirms national authorities can only refuse a student visa if a person is a risk or a threat to public security and the rest falls into the hands of higher education establishments. So when it comes to a student’s language skills, which under the directive must be adequate before admission can be granted, it is the university’s opinion that counts.

While the right to come study in Europe is not too controversial, it is possible that EU countries will try regain more control by setting up quotas of student visa or restrain access to the local labour market. The UK, Ireland and Denmark are not concerned by the Directive.

Source: http://curia.europa.eu/jcms/upload/docs/application/pdf/2014-09/cp140120en.pdf

English Taught Bachelor Degrees Offered in Germany

Here is the list of most exciting and innovative English taught courses available at German Public institutions next year – which means that no tuition fees are required to enrol and no German is required to study them!

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Bachelor of Arts in Agribusiness at Rhine-Waal University
The BA Agribusiness trains you in business economics and management skills that will equip you to successfully manage agricultural and food supply chains in the face of these global challenges.

Admin fees: Approx. 260 EUR per semester.
Cost of Living: 700EUR per month

561c75806b.jpgInternational Business Management at Berlin School of Economics and Law
The International Business Management programme combines classic business administration content with international and intercultural aspects.
This international focus is similarly evident in the language of instruction, with all lectures and seminars held in English throughout the entire programme. In addition, students have to learn German as a second language parallel to the economics and business modules.

Admin fees: Approx. 280EUR per semester.
Cost of Living: 850EUR per month

Students of the BA Ökonomie or Teacher Training International Business Ethics Seminar Winter Term 12:13 .jpg

Bachelor in International Business and Technology at Nuremberg Institute of Technology
An innovative combination of knowledge and experience provided and supported by the faculties of Business Administration, Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, and the faculty of Applied Mathematics, Physics and Humanities.

Admin fees: Approx. 42 EUR per semester.
Cost of Living: 800-1000EUR per month


Business and Engineering at University of Applied Sciences Würzburg-Schweinfurt
With this course, you will acquire insight into the three areas of modern biotechnology, i.e. red (medicine), green (agriculture) and white (industry) biotechnology; and gain core competencies in the fields of economics, law, communication and presentation, as well as market analysis and marketing research.
Successful graduates find jobs in different areas of the chemical, pharmaceutical or biotechnology industries, in research institutes or governmental agencies, as well as with the food industry, or in agro-technology, environmental or waste management.

Admin fees: Approx. 260 EUR per semester.
Cost of Living: 800EUR approx per month

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Digital Games at Cologne University of Applied Sciences
You love games and are into writing, audio visual design or coding? This Bachelor is for you.
After a general introduction to the creative and technological process of game development and the academic study of digital games in the first and second semesters, students specialise in Game Arts, Game Design or Game Informatics in the following semesters.
Throughout their studies, students of all specialisations are instructed in Media and Game Studies, and they develop games in collaborative projects.
In the fourth semester, students can choose between an exchange semester at a university abroad, an internship or a self-initiated project.

Admin fees: Approx. 250 EUR per semester.
Cost of Living: 800EUR approx per month


Communication and Information Engineering, BSc at Rhine-Waal University of Applied Sciences
In today’s world, data acquisition, transfer and analysis are of increasing significance: temperature, air humidity, sound, air pollution, traffic density, blood sugar level, the location of people – all these data and information can be measured, collected and then transmitted across the world by sensors.
This degree course Communication and Information Engineering aims to give you the skills you need to work anywhere from data acquisition, preprocessing, transmission, distribution and collection up to automatic analysis.
You will develop your expertise in the fields of electrical engineering, signal processing and computer science, and will gain a sound understanding of the basics of business management.

Admin fees: Approx. 250 EUR per semester.
Cost of Living: 800EUR approx per month


Bachelor of Science Textile and Clothing Management at University of Applied Sciences Niederrhein
This seven-semester Bachelor’s degree programme offers an impressive curriculum of subjects in textile and clothing technology and related fields such as chemistry, design and technical textiles and subjects in management and business administration like controlling, fashion retailing logistics, e-Commerce and marketing.
Under the instruction of internationally renowned professors and scientific and well-educated staff, the course guarantees a scientific education oriented on the demands of industrial branches and international business.

Admin fees: Approx. 280 EUR per semester.
Cost of Living: 600-700EUR approx per month


UK Visa Changes Affecting International Students

A lot of misleading information is being shared on the internet about the new UK immigration rules and how they affect the rights of international students.

At Migreat, as much as we want to keep up to date with the news, we also want to ensure we provide the most reliable and clearest information. Hence, we cannot publish immigration news as it is shared. We wait to hear from several trusted sources to confirm any new information. If Migreat isn’t the fastest to react and write about changes to student visa rules – rest assured that it is because the news hasn’t been verified yet.

Migreat will update our readers with the most up-to-date information and connect you with experts who are abreast of the latest changes and can answer your visa questions.

We recently received a surge of questions from students about the proposed changes and we wanted to take the chance to reply to the most common questions. For each question, we will link to a trusted source for more detailed information The rules are changing only for some international students. It depends on where you are studying. Hence, this is why we are splitting this article into two parts: those at UK universities and those at UK Colleges.

International students at UK universities

How much savings do I need to prove to apply for a student visa? [Starting 12th November 2015]
Starting in November, first time international students and students extending their time will have to prove they have access to significantly more savings than before.

Depending on the length of your course and the location of your university the amount will vary. International students studying in London will have to prove that they have more savings than international students studying outside London. Students will also need to show that they can financially support themselves for up to nine months or the full length of the course, whichever is shorter.

Example: A student studying in London that needs to stay for a nine month course will have to demonstrate that they have at least £11,385 in the bank (that is £1,265 per month). For a student outside of London to study for nine months, the amount needed in the bank is £9,135 (£1,015 per month).


Can I extend my stay on my student visa at the same level? [Starting 3rd August 2015]
If you are extending your stay on a student visa, the new rules state that you will have to show you are moving up a level on the National Qualifications Framework. If you want to extend your studies at the same level you will only be able to do so if the proposed course is linked to the previous one or if it supports your career aspirations (the later if approved and validated by your university).

Can I work after graduation?

Yes, and there are a few work/business long term visas that you can apply for depending on the type of work and the role you have been offered and/or salary you will be paid. You should know that the government is reviewing tier 2 visa minimum salary requirements – and is likely to raise them by at least £10,000.

If you are looking to stay after graduation to work on a tier 2 general visa, it is likely that your company will have to pay more than the current £20,800 minimum annually in order to sponsor you. Verify if you may be eligible for one of the visas via Migreat’s UK visa assistant.

I am the spouse or dependent of an International Student here. Can I work? [Date yet to be confirmed]
A proposal yet to be finalized suggests that spouse and dependants of student visa holders will only be allowed to work in skilled/Highly-skilled full time jobs . This has yet to be confirmed and implemented.

International students at Further Education Colleges

Am I allowed to work part-time while studying? [Starting 3rd August 2015]
No. Students at publicly funded colleges will no longer be allowed to work 10 hours a week after August 2015. Note that this new rule will apply to international students who apply for their tier 4 visa on or after 3 August, but won’t apply retrospectively to students already here.

Can I extend my student visa or switch to a Work visa from within the UK? [Starting November 2015]
No, you will have to apply from outside the UK to make an extension or to apply for a work visa.

Can I extend my studies with any education provider? [Starting 12th November 2015]
You will not be able to extend your studies in the UK unless they are registered at an institution with a formal link to a university.

How Many years maximum can I be granted if I apply for a student visa for a FE college? [Starting 12th November 2015]
Study visas at Further Education level will be cut from three years to two.

Do you have questions about your UK student visa applications and you rights as an international student in the UK? Ask @migreat for answers.

The top European countries where International Students are welcomed in 2015

Studying abroad has become more accessible. In 2014, 4 million students chose to study abroad, 2 million more than back in 2000.

Yet, going on a study abroad program remains a risk: most international students will use of a loan or family money to pay the university fees and living costs- without a guarantee that he/she will be able to pay it off back.

Here is a list of what the top 5 European countries have to offer for international students in terms of visa, tuitions fees, work while studying and courses compared.

It is ordered from the cheapest to study at (fees + costs of living) to more expensive.

Studying in Germany by migreat.com

1. Germany

Germany is actively looking to recruit International Students in the next years. Germany has lots to offer:

Germany has abolished tuition fees at public institutions: This means that will only have to pay for admin fees around €100 to €250 a semester  and living costs (this does not apply to private universities and for most Masters students expect if you have studied a bachelor in Germany before)

– A simple student visa process; and a no-visa policy for courses of less than 3 months for international students coming from Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, South Korea, New Zealand, Switzerland and the USA. 

– A two years maximum visa for international students taking on a German Language course in Germany.

– The right to work part-time while studying; and stay after graduation for 18 months on a post-study work visa, that allows work too.

– A welcoming job market for international students: the government created a website to help foreigners find jobs and has created specific initiatives to recruit foreign workers from Asia. For the record, a recent statistics quoted that 68% of International students found a job after graduation in Germany.

Studying in France by Migreat.com

2. France

France and its world known capital Paris is an attractive destination for International students speaking French or interested in learning French. However, you should know that French universities are quite picky about who they accept and expectations are high. Nevertheless you should consider studying in France because

– Education matters in France, so you are sure to get a quality and world class education while studying there.

– France excels in the following courses: Nuclear, Space and Aviation, Engineering, Teaching, Linguistics, Art, History, and Medicine.

– Annual tuitions fees are set by the French Government for Higher Education Universities: from €200 to €700 maximum depending on the course. Fees for private institutions—particularly schools of business and management—is generally higher, fluctuating between €3,000 to €10,000 a year.

– Finding a job in France is not easy because of high rates of unemployment and strict rules over employment contracts. This said, you can work while you study or look for work for a year after graduation if related to you course.

Masters’ and engineering students can apply for a further one year, non-renewable temporary residence permit, which allows to work in any job up to 60 percent of a normal working week.

If the work offers a salary of at least 1.5 times the minimum wage, students can change status from student to employee and work full-time.

Study in Italy by Migreat.com

3. Italy

Italy’s your destination of choice if you are interested in History, Arts and living a unique millenary culture. Italy’s research and higher education system has good reputation for excellent standards.

– A knowledge of Italian is highly recommended to enjoy your stay but not compulsory to get the visa.

– Italy offers incredible diversity of courses in Fine Arts, Fashion and History – especially related to the period of the Renaissance.

– The average fees at University is in between 850 euro and 1,000 euro per year.

– There are many scholarships available to International Students and an extra efforts is made by the government to help students from poorer countries.

Working while studying is allowed up to 1,024 hours a year, and international students with a masters degree or abovs can stay for up to 12 months after graduation to look for a job.

Study in Madrid by migreat

4. Spain

Spain became a hub for international students thanks to the successful Erasmus Program implementation there – European Union program to encourage EU students study abroad. Spain remains an attractive destination, especially for Latin American students who benefits from the common language and easier visa rules.

– Spanish is the third most spoken language in the world, and second most spoken in the Western world. Improving your spanish early might open to you many more doors tomorrow.

– Tuition starts at €5,500 per semester and can go up to €12,000 per semester.

– You can work part-time while studying or even full-time for less than three months if it does not conflict with your studies.

– Spain Higher Education holds great reputation for its Law courses and humanities. Studying those topics can open to you other European countries where these diplomas are recognised.


5. UK

UK remains the first destination for International Students in 2014. With an excellent Higher Education reputation and offer, UK Universities have it easy to sell themselves. However the recent changes in fees and visa rules might change UK’s leadership in the sector.

– UK has a clear advantage of being the country’s where English is from and spoken everyday. The Language commonly spoken in Business and the second most spoken language after Chinese.

– University tuitions fees are the highest of all European Countries. On average, International Students University fees starts at £10,500 and can go as high as £20,000 if you are aiming at specific courses in finance and management. There are plenty of scholarships available to check.

– Student Visa for the UK are hard to get. It requires to prove a good knowledge and practice of the English Language and that you can financially support yourself, along providing the right documents. Always ask an expert for visa guidance and advice if you have doubts.

– Working while studying is restricted to 20 hours a week . UK’s job market is quite flexible and vibrant so it is not too hard for International students to find a part-time job.

– However, work after graduation is difficult to find because of strict rules over post-study work visas. International Students to work after graduation will either need to find a job that can be sponsored by an employer; or an internship that pays the minimum wage; or start your own company.


Studying abroad can prove to be a fruitful investment if well thought through.

International students may want to think of the topic of study and the language in which they wish to study the course before looking for universities and tuitions fees.

Studying abroad is expensive make sure you make the most of the many scholarship available for international students in Europe.

“International students: Give me your money, take my degree and piss off my country”

Every now and then, Migreat blog opens up to people with a strong view on immigration or working at making immigration works.

Today, we turn to Sheffields Student Union’s, one of UK most active Student Unions on their fight for the return of a post study work visa for International Students, to write about the actual situation faced by International Students in the UK and tell us more about their campaign.


Today, if the Government spoke plainly about international students, I believe it would not be far from this statement.

How regularly do you hear a politician criticise immigrants for taking jobs from British people, putting pressure on public services, or that they come just to enjoy the UK’s benefits?

If I was to make a drinking game out of it, I would be pissed at work every single day.

No Borders Student Unions Fights International Student visa rules by Migreat Blog

Discovering the problems

Whether or not international students truly feel welcome in Sheffield is not just down to us. The truth is that international students have far too many problems to consider it a good decision to study in the UK. The following are just a few:

  • International students are included in the net migration figures of the Government. Despite being almost forced to leave the UK when they graduate, the Government insists that they are permanent migrants and subjects them to all the damaging, restrictive and abusive immigration policies.

  • The possibility for international students to find work after they graduate is very limited after the Post Study Work visa route closed in 2012. This caused the first drop in international students coming to study to the UK for more than 30 years; particularly with Indian students.

  • Many International students from war/conflict areas see their sponsorship lost or frozen. They are forced to leave the country to face life or death scenarios if they cannot find an alternative payment method.

  • After paying thousands of pounds, international students enrolled at an institution that loses its “Highly Trusted Sponsor” status face deportation from the UK without recovering any of their money, despite being the victims.

Finding solutions

In the same way there are problems, there have been solutions proposed to the Government over and over again by students, public institutions, employers and the public; basically almost everyone that is not Home Secretary Theresa May or a hardliner on immigration:

  • International students should be removed from the net migration figures: They should be considered temporary migrants just as our global competitors do (USA, Australia, Canada…) and with this, stop subjecting them to the current immigration policies. This position is now the official policy of Labour, the Liberal Democrats and even UKIP, as well as many Conservatives who are dismayed by ongoing messages which damage such a vital success story for the UK internationally.

  • The Post Study Work visa should be reintroduced: International students value a UK work experience (between 6 months and 3 years) as much as a UK Higher Education degree. The work experience is an integral part of international students’ education at the UK.

  • The Government should introduce a hardship scheme to protect international students from war/conflicts outbreaks. We should protect them from having to face a life/death scenario whilst they have reached a safe environment in the UK.

  • International students should have access to a fee protection scheme. International students should be entitled to recover their money if their institution fails relocate them when they lose their “Highly Trusted Sponsor” status.

International Student Parade by Sheffields SU. Credits to Mohamed Al Mannai
International Student Parade by Sheffields SU. Credits to Mohamed Al Mannai


What do you think?

Think about your international friends. Put yourself in their skin and picture yourself subjected to all these borders I have just been explaining:

  • Would you be happy paying for using the NHS despite paying already tens of thousands of pounds to be here?

  • Would you be happy if your landlord judges whether you are a eligible to rent a property?

  • Would you be happy if you only had four months to find a graduate level job after you graduate or face deportation?

  • Would you like to be forced to return to a war zone area?

Unfortunately, I could interrogate you with questions for hours but just remember: Do you really think the Government welcomes you?

We need to urge changes in the Government’s policies with respect to international students if we want to make the UK a welcoming place for them.

Jose International Student Officer Sheffield #NoBorder by Migreat Blog
Jose Diaz De Aguilar Puiggari, International Student Officer leading the #NoBorder Campaign

Action not complacency

The values at stake are too important for any complacency. When I leave my post as International Students’ Officer, I want to see international students in a far better position than the present one. As such, I would like to invite you to join us in this journey:

We launched an epetition to the Home Office, asking for the removal of international student numbers from net migration figures. We are hoping to make some real noise in Parliament over the treatment of international students in the UK by getting 100,000 signatures by the end of March 2015.

Please visit the Students’ Union campaign page or join our campaign group at facebook.

It is our hope that this campaign will inspire the government and campuses around the UK to embrace international students for their talent and diversity, and not just for their fee payments.


Britain should open its doors to International Students

International students bring a great deal to the UK and there is no doubt that they are of great significance to both, the UK education sector and economy as a whole.

Contribute to the economy

Not only do they contribute to the intellectual diversity to Britain’s universities, they also contribute billions to the UK economy in expenditure. In fact, expenditure by international students (non-EU) on fees and accommodation alone amounted to £3.8 billion in 2011–12, supporting 137,000 full time-equivalent jobs in the UK. Further, the research shows that 60% of people recognise that students bring money into their local economies. 


International students also help boost innovation & creativity by bringing skills and talent to the UK. They help sustain the UK’s research base particularly in areas where the UK currently has a shortage of skills such as science, technology, engineering and mathematics. In fact, international students account for over 40% of UK postgraduate students and 50% of those doing full-time research degrees.

International students want some work experience before going back

The prospect of post-study work is an important driver for many international students in deciding where to study and our international competitors such as US, Australia and Canada are competing to secure a greater share of this rapidly increasing student market by implementing bold strategies like offering boosted post-study work opportunities. A report published by Universities UK highlights that such strategies are making visible differences in the latest figures showing a 10% increase in International students in the United States; 8% in Australia, and 4% in Canada – a great contrast with UK’s figures below.

Flow of international students to the UK over the last year. 2011 was the year when the PSW was introduced
Flow of international students to the UK over the last year. 2011 was the year when the PSW was introduced

A constraining UK immigration policy for International Students

Despite the benefits that international students bring to the economy, the UK’s immigration policy is constraining international graduates post-study work opportunities and including them within net migration numbers. These increasingly rigorous and ever changing immigration policies are affecting the sentiments of prospective international students; with many of them believing that they are unwelcome here.

Drop in International Students coming from Asia except for China
Drop in International Students coming from Asia except for China

Together, this has led to the UK experiencing stagnation in an industry where it traditionally shined. The most recent immigration data shows that study related visas (excluding student visitors) rose by 3% in the year ending September 2014 when compared with previous 12 months; however, there were falls in the numbers of Indian (-6%), Nigerian (-7%) and Pakistani (-10%) nationals. Also, non-EU long-term immigration for study, excluding dependants, fell by 8% in the year ending June 2014 when compared with the previous 12 months.

Recent data and reports by The Entrepreneurs Network and NUS

Launch of Entrepreneurs Network & NUS Report on International Students in company of Lord BIlimoria
Launch of Entrepreneurs Network & NUS Report on International Students in company of Lord BIlimoria

At a recent roundtable discussion put on by the think tank, The Entrepreneurs Network, the principal guest, Lord Bilimoria and members supporting the growth of International Students in the UK discussed how the UK could catch up with its international competitors. The key recommendations from this meeting include:

  • A report by NUS and The Entrepreneurs Network based on a survey on 1599 international students was launched at the event. It urges the UK government re-instate a post-study work visa, de-coupled from the sponsor system, to allow international students to explore post study work opportunities.
  • As per the latest net migration numbers, students represent the largest portion of non-EU immigration and a recent ICM poll shows only a meagre 22% of the British public think that international students should count as migrants while the majority 75% thinks that international students should be allowed to stay and work in Britain after graduating from British universities. While many people may have negative feelings towards immigration, most concern appears to be focused on the numbers of unskilled workers. Thus, international students must be removed from the net migration figures to provide a more clear and accurate picture of the immigration numbers. Doing so will also help ensure that the valuable contribution that genuine international students make to Britain is no longer caught up in the immigration debate.
  • The government should launch an international student growth strategy to promote British universities overseas, build new international partnerships and ultimately attract more international students.
  • Finally, the UK government should also promote and increase visibility for available post study work options such as Tier 5 Government Authorised Exchange scheme amongst more permanent routes like Tier 1 & 2.


Policy makers must strike a right balance in the approach they take to immigration and leave behind the ‘one size fits all’ approach, focused on reducing overall numbers. It is vital that UK does not lose its position as a preferred higher education destination and remains as “One of the best places to live and work”, OECD. The UK is on the back foot and needs to catch up with its competitors, providing a more open and welcoming environment for the worlds best and brightest to study and work in the UK while benefitting from the economic and cultural contributions that international students make.

zenia-chopraThis guest blog post is provided to you by Zenia Chopra, Head of Sales & Marketing at Access Tier 5, overarching body of the Tier 5 GAE route and partner of Migreat.com.

Data source: Universities UK

Grants for International Students: Italy to provide equal access for students from poor countries

A new Italian regulation makes it easier for non-EU prospective students to access financial support.

The new regulation on grants provided to students confirms the right of non-EU students to access services and grants that support the right to study on equal footing with Italian students.
Special provisions will apply on how to establish the economic situation of the student. In particular a decree adopted each year lays down the list of poorest countries from which students are most likely to be able to prove their poor economic situation. For students coming from one of these countries, a declaration by the Diplomatic representative that they do not belong to a rich and high-ranked family.

Afganistan Angola Bangladesh Benin Bhutan Burkina Faso Burundi Cambogia Central African Rep. Chad Comoros Congo Dem. Rep. Djibouti Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Ethiopia Gambia Guinea Guinea Bissau Haiti Kenya Kiribati Korea, Dem. Rep. Kyrgyz Rep. Laos Lesotho Liberia Madagascar Malawi Mali Mauritania Mozambique Myanmar Nepal Niger Rwanda Samoa Sao Tome & Principe Senegal Sierra Leone Solomon Islands Somalia South Sudan Sudan Tanzania Tajikistan Timor-Leste Togo Tuvalu Uganda Vanuatu Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe.

Link to the decree:


Get your visa to-do lists of documents to apply for an Italian Student visa on migreat.com

German Universities now all free of tuition fees for International Students

Universities in Germany are now free of tuition fees for all including international students. Yesterday, Lower Saxony became the last of seven German states to abolish their tuition fees, which were already extremely low.

German universities had been charging for tuition since 2006. The measure proved unpopular, and German states began dropping them one by one. It is now all gone throughout the country, even for foreigners.

This means that now, both domestic and international undergraduate students at public universities in Germany are able to study in Germany for free, with just a small fee to cover administration– usually between €150 and €250 (US$170-280)  – and other living expenses costs per semester (food, transport, accommodation, entertainment, course materials and other necessities).

Germans barely had to pay for undergraduate study even before tuition fees were abolished. Semester fees averaged around €500 ($630). It is now gone.


Free education is a concept that is embraced in most of Europe with notable exceptions like the U.K., where the government voted to lift the cap on university fees in 2010, and tripled the tuition fees therefore. The measure has reportedly cost more money than it brought in. The Guardian reported last March that students are failing to pay back student loans.

Maybe for now, learning German might be the best financial choice an high school student can make.


Find out about German Universities offering English only Bachelor Degree.


This article was originally published October 2014 and last updated November 2015.