• Germany's news in English

Foreign students in Germany at all-time high

The Local · 16 Jul 2014, 08:17

Published: 16 Jul 2014 08:17 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Only the USA and United Kingdom can boast more foreign students, the study from the Education Ministry and German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) found. 

In the winter semester of 2013/14 more than 300,000 international students were at German universities – one in every ten of those enrolled. That number was up from 282,000 in 2013 and an increase from 246,000 a decade ago.

Engineering degrees and master’s programmes were the most popular courses, the report said.

Education Minister Johanna Wanka hailed German universities for becoming "international places". 

"Excellent education needs international exchange and the basis for that are universities which are open to the world and in which everyone from professors to administrators to students provides a welcoming environment," she said.

DAAD President Margret Wintermantel said: "The international attractiveness of higher education and research locations is measured by how many foreign students are attracted to a country. The fact that so many of them remain shows that Germany is attractive for talent from around the world."

In 2013, around 30 percent of Germany's foreign students were from Asia and more than 55 percent were from Europe.

Around six percent hailed from the North America, like California-born Omar Sadik, 27, who is currently doing a master's degree in Global Studies at Humboldt University in Berlin.

"I disagree with the idea of commodifying knowledge and education," said Sadik, who cited high costs of university education in the USA for choosing Germany. 

He also considered attending university in Sweden, but decided against it after universities began charging higher tuition for foreign students.

"For me, the only country at the moment with a respectable education system that is also affordable for non-EU students is Germany," he said.

While students may not be paying high tuition fees - semester fees at Berlin's Humboldt University total €287 and include unlimited access to public transportation - they are still pumping money into Germany's economy.

According to the study, foreign students spent €1.5 billion in 2011, producing tax revenues of €400 million.

Some cities, like Berlin, recognize the financial contributions made by incoming students and thank them in advance. The city provides €50 in “welcome money” to students registering a local address for the first time.  

Although Sadik has just begun his two-year degree, he is already considering remaining in Germany to carry out a PhD or find a job. "Of course it's not only about money, it's about opportunity," he said. "Germany could definitely offer organized research and work options for me after I graduate."

SEE ALSO: The student dream? Make me a bureaucrat

For more news from Germany, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Student fined for spying on women via their webcams
Photo: DPA

Student from Munich fined €1,000 for spying on 32 different computers, using their webcams to take photographs, or record their keyboard history.

This is how much startup geeks earn in Germany
Photo: DPA

A comprehensive new survey of 143 startup founders shows how much you are likely to be earning at a German startup, from entry level all the way up to sitting on the board.

Man dies after beating for peeing near Freiburg church
The Johannes Church in Freiburg. Photo Jörgens Mi/Wikipedia

A middle-aged man from southern Germany has died after being attacked by a group of men who took umbrage with the fact he was urinating in the vicinity of a church.

The Local List
Seven German celebrities with uncanny doppelgängers
Former Berlin mayor Klaus Wowereit and actor Alec Baldwin. Photo: DPA; Gage Skidmore, Wikimedia Commons

Check out these seven look-a-likes of well known German figures - we admit that some are more tenuous than others...

Israel seeks to buy three new German submarines: report
A Dolphin class submarine. Photo: DPA

Israel is seeking to buy three more advanced submarines from Germany at a combined price of €1.2 billion, an Israeli newspaper reported Friday.

Here’s where people live the longest in Germany
Photo: DPA

Germans down south seem to know the secret to a long life.

More Germans identify as LGBT than in rest of Europe
Photo: DPA

The percentage of the German population which identifies as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender is higher than anywhere else in Europe, according to a new study.

'Reichsbürger' pair attack police in Saxony-Anhalt
File photo: DPA.

A "Reichsbürger" and his wife attacked police officers on Thursday, just a day after another Reichsbürger fatally shot an officer in Bavaria.

Five things not to miss at the Frankfurt Book Fair
Photo: DPA

From consulting a book doctor to immersing yourself in an author's world with the help of virtual reality, here are five things not to miss at this week's Frankfurt Book Fair, the world's largest publishing event.

Parents who don't get nursery spot for kid entitled to pay
Photo: DPA

The Federal Court of Justice (BGH) ruled on Thursday that parents whose children don't receive placements in nursery care are entitled to compensation.

Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
10 things you never knew about socialist East Germany
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
How Germans fell in love with America's favourite squash
How I ditched London for Berlin and became a published author
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
12 clever German idioms that'll make you sound like a pro
23 fascinating facts you never knew about Berlin
9 unmissable events to check out in Germany this October
10 things you never knew about German reunification
10 things you're sure to notice after an Oktoberfest visit
Germany's 10 most Instagram-able places
15 pics that prove Germany is absolutely enchanting in autumn
10 German films you have to watch before you die
6 things about Munich that’ll stay with you forever
10 pieces of German slang you'll never learn in class
Ouch! Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
Six reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
15 tell-tale signs you’ll never quite master German
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
Eleven famous Germans with surnames that'll make your sides split
The best ways to get a visa as an American in Germany
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd