International students can find lots of funding opportunities and financial aid to cover their tuition and other fees. However, you must receive and accept an offer of admission to study on a scholarship in Germany.

Germany being the fourth-largest economy in the world has enticed international students into coming into the country. In 2019, QS ranked Berlin seventh as the best student city in the world. Not only is Germany one of the cheapest study destinations in Europe, but the nation also has an impeccable international reputation.

The Heinrich Böll Foundation awards approximately 1,200 scholarships a year to ambitious and dedicated undergraduates, graduates, and doctoral students of all subjects and nationalities.

These students are expected to be pursuing their degrees at any state-recognized university in Germany.


For most subjects, you can apply directly to the international office of the university of choice. Alternatively, you can use the website This website is a centralized admission portal for international scholars which is run by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD).


This is also commonly known as the German Academic Exchange Service in the English Language. The DAAD scholarships are awarded to students who want to study with mandatory attendance in Germany.

All year-round, the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) supports over 100,000 German and international students around the globe thereby making it the world’s largest funding organization. This organization’s objectives are for graduates, doctoral students, and postdocs.

Just for your consumption, DAAD scholarships do not require a payback. They offer monthly scholarship payment( which depends solely on the degree you are going in for) which can last for about as little as two semesters or may be extended to the entire period of study in Germany, a flat-rate travel allowance, and health, accident, and personal liability insurance. With all the advantages of DAAD, not all universities in Germany use this though most do.

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The requirements to secure a scholarship with DAAD in Germany are not difficult to meet. To secure DAAD funding, applicants will have to complete a bachelor’s degree or be in their final year of education. It is pleasing to note that there are no upper age limits although there may be a maximum time of six years between finishing your bachelor’s degree and taking up DAAD grants. The applicate should have at least two years of proven working experience.

Applications are processed via your university which must recommend you for a grant.

International already in Germany can also apply, provided they have been residents in Germany for less than fifteen months.


When dealing with academic grants it is usually advisable to apply early to get the best results. DAAD scholarship is no exception but there are some key dates to apply so as to get the best: In Germany, the application period for the academic year’s winter semester begins in May and ends on the 15th of July and the summer semester begins in April. With this, it is best considered that applications must be submitted from early December until the 15th of January.


Erasmus is a Europe Union(EU) wide grant program that is funded by the EU’s member states. It was created in 1987 and it has helped millions of students achieve their goals. Erasmus+  offers funds for one-year exchange periods for international students at German universities.

Erasmus+ offers a wide range of scholarships in Germany, however, this is not available for everyone.

For freshers, you will need to be studying at a higher education institution. Moreover, both your current institution and the college in Germany you are aspiring for must have signed the Erasmus Charter for Higher Education.

Most major universities participate in this Erasmus scheme because the requirements needed are not hard to be met.

To find out if an individual is qualified for an Eramus+ exchange, head to the Europe Unions’ website for more information.

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Most students combine DAAD with BAföG. This helps them to boost their income per month which is enough for many scholars to live on per month. This combination also creates a good chance for scholars to secure a full scholarship for master’s degree students.


If the options above did not suit you best, there is no harm in that because there is an alternative that should suit you.


The Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung was created in 1925. It seeks to promote social democracy via academic grants.

Any students residing in Germany can apply, provided the student can provide any evidence of their political beliefs and the public interest in their research. Although universities like these are rare, it is a good option for those scholars that are interested in social sciences, politics, or humanities.


This is another option for applicants. In this case, grants are commonly given to scholars with an interest in green issues and the environment.

Applicants can come from any globe of the world and are restricted to post-graduate study. However, those applicants must be fluent in German and various expert references will be required as well.


It is however of benefit to note that DAAD and other German government initiatives are usually the best places to start your quest for seeking a scholarship but if you do not qualify or you want to focus on a particular area of study, the non-governmental initiatives are best for you.

Whatever way you choose, just remember that most will require some form of German language proficiency. Support is provided for international students, yes, but it is generally much easier to find funding if you are already a resident in Germany.

Hence, those seeking entry-level courses can focus on finding grants to cover the living costs and for higher-level scholars, there are bodies like the Heinrich Böll Foundation or a DAAD scholarship. There is always an option for you and there are ways to make education more affordable and less throat-cutting.


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