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Study Destination Comparison: US v/s Germany

 The objective of writing this post is to make a comparison between two very popular study destinations amongst students: US and Germany.

Choice of Your Study Course

The study destination that you choose for your higher studies must specialize in offering courses that you’re interested in studying.

Scroll down to find a list of courses that are offered in both the study destinations.


The top courses offered in the US are:

  • Computer Science
  • Engineering
  • Master of Business Administration (MBA)
  • Information Technology (IT) courses
  • Biotechnology
  • Sports
  • Hospitality


A list of popular courses offered in Germany is as given below:

  • Computer Science
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Chemical Engineering
  • Civil Engineering
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Life Sciences


For studying in the US:

It is vital to demonstrate your proficiency in the English language by writing any of the qualifying exams like TOEFL, IELTS, and PTE. Different universities may, however, demand scores of different exams. It is, therefore, important that you check the university requirements well in advance.

Undergraduate (UG) Courses:

  • 12 years of schooling
  • SAT scores

Postgraduate (PG) Courses:

  •  16 years of education
  • GMAT (For management courses)
  • GRE (For science courses)

Because the US universities require a minimum 16 years of education from all the applicants, you might have to undertake a one-year course in your home country. There are some exceptions to the rule. The information on this can be found by consulting with university admission officers.

For Studying in Germany:

Undergraduate (UG) Courses:

When seeking admission to undergraduate courses in Germany, you must be through at least one of the following:

  • One year of Bachelors degree from a recognized Indian university
  • Feststellungsprüfung: the entrance examination that you’re required for admissions to different German universities
  • JEE Advanced

There is a tough competition for admissions to most of the German universities. As a result, you’re required to demonstrate very high percentages that may easily scale up to 90%. There is, however, a flexibility in case you have made it through JEE Advanced. The cut-off for applicants who have cleared JEE Advanced is 50%.

Postgraduate (PG) Courses:

The pre-requisites for making a successful application to postgraduate courses in Germany include:

  • Bachelor’s degree in relevant subjects
  • Good score in GMAT/ GRE
  • IELTS/ TOEFL language proficiency test score
  • Working knowledge of local language that is German
  • In case you’re applying for a program that is taught in the German language, you need TestDAF or DSH score.

Costs Involved/ Expenses

For Undergraduate Courses

The tuition fee falls in the range of $10,000-$35,000 per year and the living expenses may vary from $10,000-$15,000 per year in the US.

German universities: The tuition fee is only €150 per year for public universities and €20,000 per year for private universities while the living expenses come out to be approximately €8,640 per year.

For Postgraduate Courses

The tuition fee is $15,000-$60,000 per year, while the living expenses are $10,000-$15,000 per year in the US.

In Germany, the tuition fee is €2,000 per year for a public university and €30,000 per year for a private university and the living expenses are around  €8,640 per year.



If you’re going to be a full-time student in the US, you would be needing an F1 visa.


  • Personal Interview
  • Biometrics
  • Visa Fee: $160

The law doesn’t permit you to work on campus for more than 20 hours a week when you’re studying. This may, however, extend up to 40 hours a week during your holidays.


  • Unless and until you don’t have a residence permit, you can’t stay in Germany for more than 3 months as a student.
  • A residence permit has a maximum validity of 2 years and needs a renewal if the duration of a course is any longer.
  • A student has to demonstrate proof of funds worth €8,640 per year as his/ her living expenses.
  • The international students in this country are permitted to work for 3 months full time and 6 months halftime in an academic year.

Read Also: Things You Must Carry For Your Study Abroad Journey

Permanent residency


The process of permanent residency is very slow and a complicated one. A person has to stay in the US for a minimum of 5 years on employment grounds before he is granted a Green card.


In order to apply for a permanent German visa, you must be living in the country for minimum 5 years on a residence permit.

Post-study work permit


It offers temporary employment permission through OPT to let the student gain practical knowledge in his subject of study. Nevertheless, the employment begins only when a document authorizing employment is procured.

On getting a full-time job, the students need to apply for a work visa.


After the completion of course/ degree from a German university, the students are required to apply for a Residence Permit in case they are interested in doing a job in Germany. The application for a work permit has to be made at the registration office for foreign nationals.

1 reply on “Study Destination Comparison: US v/s Germany”

If you plan to progress from undergraduate study in Germany straight to a related master’s program at a public university, fees are likely to remain low or non-existent. To find out more, read our article about the costs of studying in Germany .

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