What is the procedure of getting into a master’s degree course (computer science) in Germany?

Prerequisite knowledge: Education in Germany is free. There is no tuition price save for a nominal semester fee of roughly 110 Euros per semester. You must only spend money on living expenses, which range between 600 and 800 Euros each month depending on your lifestyle. To ensure that a student has sufficient funds during his studies, an amount sufficient for one year has to be blocked in a German bank account. In Germany, computer science is referred to as Informatik or Informatics. International programmes do not require you to know German, therefore you can complete the entire programme in English. You requested the following information:

1. First of all you make sure that you have your Passport (valid up to 3 years).

2. Start preparation for IELTS. It takes around a month if you are preparing either yourself or from any institute. 6.0 (overall) is minimum score. But it’s good if u score 6.5 or 6.5+ (overall).

3. Start searching your desired field from website www.daad.de select English as language at top and goto Information for Foreigners and Study Programmes and International Programmes.

The universities I know of, for Computer Science here in Germany are:

  • University of Saarland MSc in Computer Science
  • TUM (Technical University of Munich) MSc in Computer Science
  • RWTH Aachen (Media Informatics program as well as SE)
  • University Of Stuttgart MSc in Computer Science
  • TU Kaiserslautern
  • University of Bon
  • University of Freiburg MSc in Computer Science
  • University of Paderborn
  • Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich MSC in Software Engineering
  • Heidelberg University MSc in Scientific Computing

among others..

4. Keep these things in your mind while searching your course.

  • 4.1 IELTS and GPA requirement.
  • 4.2 Fees of your course (mostly universities are free).
  • 4.3 Beginning (summer or winter).
  • 4.4 Duration (generally 2 years).
  • 4.5 DEADLINE (mostly: 15 jan for summer and 15 july for winter).
  • 4.6 Language of instruction (mostly are in English)

5. Get all your documents notarized (photocopy only) from your city’s notary republic office at least 5-7 sets. It depends on number of universities you apply. Documents include:

5.1 Matric/Olevels mark sheet and certificate

5.2 Intermediate mark sheet and certificate

5.3 Graduation transcript, Certificate, Degree and English language certificate (if available).

5.4 IELTS/TOFEL result.

6. Get attested your originals (i.e. your degree and bachelors transcript) from your country’s degree attestation authority. If this is a requirement of the university you’re applying to.

7. Now you can start applying for admission. Most of universities have their online portals and they all are very easy. If you feel any difficulty in any step you may ask me. LinkedIn is the best way to contact people who’ve already studied in the university you’re interested in. I’m sure seniors will definitely guide you.

8. Once you applied in universities you have around 2-4 months to get their response. It depends on your case and time.

9. Download Deutsch Bank (DB) form from their website to apply for a student account in Germany. You can apply from your own country remotely.

10. Around 4-8 working days you will get an email from DB that your account has been opened.

11. Deposit an amount of around 8040 Euros to your bank account by using the given IBAN and title for your account in the email sent to you by Deutsche bank. This amount is one years expense for your studies. They block this amount and only let you use (total amount/12) per month.

12. Transfer takes 24-48 hours. Again it depends on your bank. If you transfer your amount through money gram or western union then they transfer within 24 hours but they are expensive.

13. Go for Polio vaccination with your original Passport from any Govt. Hospital. If polio vaccination is needed in your country. I applied from Dubai and it didn’t apply to me. To some Pakistani’s it applies as a requirement to travel.

14. Next step is to apply for visa. The visa people usually require a letter of motivation, Visa form (filled), Passport, ID Card, all degrees, transcripts, Motivation Letter, Updated CV, Admission Letter, DB bank letter (etc) and 2 sets of photocopy of your ALL documents.

15. Usually you’ve to take appointment for your visa interview and you should schedule this once you’ve received the admission letter.

16. Visa interview starts from 8am. Questions are very simple and easy. Don’t get confused. They

ask :

16.1 Introduction about you and your education?

16.2 Why you selected (name of field)?

16.3 Why you selected only Germany?

16.4 What will you do after Masters?

16.5 Any relative in Germany or Europe?

16.6 Who sponsors you?

16.7 Your siblings?

16.8 Why you don’t you do this course in Pakistan?

17. Now you go for travel insurance starting from the date you expected to fly. The insurance you get here is for three months and then once you’re here in Germany you can then apply for a permanent monthly insurance for the two years here.

18. Book your ticket after you get your Visa. I prefer Emirates Airlines. The earlier you buy the ticket, the less is the ticket price.

The Answer to the above question ends here. Thanks

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Your Questions and Answers:

Question: How to write a good motivation letter?

Answer: Revise n revise the motivation letter for a few days before sending it. As it matters. Learn to make a good motivation letter. Don’t wait for deadlines to write this letter. Start slowly from now to have it perfect till applying date

Question: Do online MOOC courses count towards application chances at university?

Answer: Yes

Question: Is Saarland CS program tough to get into? (Vague)

Answer: Needs you to be above average yes. Its not easy to get into

Question: What else besides GPA matters?

Answer: Well.. Job experience definitely matters. Motivation letter and quality of essay (if required) matters.

Question: Do I need to give the GRE always when applying to Germany MSc programs? What kind of score is required in the GRE to apply?

Answer: At the time I applied. Only 1 out of 5 universities in Germany that I applied to required GRE. I took the GRE because I wanted to apply to Computer Science at the Technical University of Munich which requires a GRE (as mentioned on their website) . At this point in time most universities offering English based CS Masters in Germany DONOT require the GRE to apply to them. It is good to check by googling the specific admission requirements for the program you’re applying to.

The kind of GRE score required by the Computer Science (MSc Informatik) program Technical University of Munich for example (at this point in time Aug 2015) is:

Verbal reasoning: (will not be taken into account anymore)

Quantitative reasoning: 154

Analytical writing: 3,0

Question: I don’t have a high GPA in Bachelor’s. Can I still apply?

Answer: If you have 1-2 years of good job experience then definitely try. Also a good GRE score can cover it up. A good motivation letter can again convince a committee. If you had a specific reason which lowered your GPA (for example: disease) then do mention it. For low GPA candidates I’d say that you should apply to atleast 4-5 universities and then you’ll get into one of them. Keep both high ranked and low ranked (easier admission) universities when you apply.

Question: I want the university which will grant me admission very easily and without too high requirements for marks.

Answer: Disclaimer, this recommendation is for easier admission but not necessarily the top programs offered by universities in Computer Science around Germany. Recommendations are: DarmstadtBambergPaderbornFreiburg. I encourage you to read above and apply to TUM, Saarland, Heidelberg etc if you are a good student or if you’re daring enough to try for the best.

Question: I don’t want my degree to be too technical. Is the Computer Science program all about research?

Answer: Well depends on university. Here at TUM we have a program where we can choose Software Engineering as majors which means courses like Project Management, Software Testing and other not too research intensive courses can also be taken. Depends on how you choose the subjects. Yes you’re allowed to choose your subjects

Question: How much does living and everything cost for a two years program?

Answer: It costs 8040 Euros per year. For two years. This expense is only for living and food. Education is free at TUM except for small semester fee. You can check if there’s a fee for your chosen program from Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst – DAAD – Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst Usually universities don’t have a fee.

Question: Is it possible to get paid for internships/ra-ship during the duration of study etc?

Answer: Well I can only say for Munich not other cities. It is definitely possible to get paid student job here during studies. I work for ‘Intel’ myself during the course of my degree; as a work student. Lots of companies here are looking for students. They pay 12 uptil 15 Euros per hour for the work. Which means around 800 Euros per month (after tax cut) for 20 hours per week of working. Work is less intensive during exams. This is NOT an absolute value. These vary from company to company.

Question: How critical is it to know german before pursuing masters?

Answer: For most English-taught programs, knowing german before MS is not required but it is helpful to know it. I myself didnot know any German before coming to Germany and have done well. Most universities offer a German Language course that you can attend during the semesters of your studies.

Question: Is it easy to get a job after a CS degree from Germany?

Answer: I’ll not bother you with details. The short answer is yes. Atleast getting a job within Germany becomes a lot easier with the MS degree from Germany. Also opportunities open up abroad.

Question: What companies come to career fair at TUM?

Answer: Google, Microsoft, Intel, Amazon, Siemens and a dozen more companies.

Question: What is the post-masters visa situation like?

Answer: They allow you to stay for one year after your degree for job search

Question: Is it necessary to have the total amount for two years in your bank account before applying for visa?

Answer: No, you only need the 8040 Euros for first year. For the second year, if you can get a student job, then you can also show the student job’s contract as financial proof at the time of renewal of visa after first year visa expires.

Question: Can i get permanent residence in Germany after studying a Master’s in Germany?

Answer: After a masters degree is complete you get a job searching visa for 1 year. If you find a proper job which fulfills the blue card requirements then you can stay. The blue card grants a stay in the EU to highly qualified non-EU-state members. This should help to combat the shortage of skilled workers in Germany. For blue card you need a German degree/foreign degree equal to german degree, Secondly you need a work contract in a company which pays you around Euro 4000 per month for your job..

Question: When can the owner of a blue card qualify for a permanent right of residence?

Answer: Well, foreigners who own the EU blue card can apply for permanent residence after 33 months. If they have German language knowledge at level B1 then they can apply earlier after 21 months (19a, passage 6, law of residence).

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