About Us
Why Germany?
Types of Universities
Degree Programmes
Tuition Fees
Life in Germany
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DAAD-Information Centre Singapore


Thank you for visiting DAAD IC Singapore's webpage.

You can find our latest brochure "Study and Research in Germany" with relevant information for Singaporeans here.

  Please also check out some first hand testimonials in the new DAAD video "Germany - Ways to Success"  

GerMANY Opportunities
© Foto: BBS, CD "Deutschland im Bild"
There are a number of compelling reasons why Germany should become the country of your choice for both studying and research:
  • The academic excellence and reputation of Germany’s more than 300 universities.

    Did you know that one hundred years ago half of all students studying abroad were studying in Germany? The country can indeed look back on a long tradition in education, science and research. The oldest university for instance is the Ruprecht-Karls-University in Heidelberg that was founded in 1386.

  • There is hardly another country in the world that boasts such a density of higher education institutions.
    More than 440 higher education institutions with a tradition of academic excellence make it hard to decide where and what to study: over 18'000 different degree programmes are on offer, there is virtually nothing imaginable under the sun that you cannot study somewhere in Germany.
    The capital Berlin alone – with roughly the population of Singapore – is currently home to no less than sixteen universities and colleges.

    There are over 300,000 young people from around the world studying and researching at German universities, making it the third most popular host country for international students after the USA and UK. At present, they comprise 12 percent of all students in Germany.
  • The moderate cost of living and studying in Germany.
    Tuition fees at public German universities have been abolished since 2015. All university students are required to pay a semester contribution, which on average costs around 250 euros (~ S$ 400). This often includes a 'semester ticket' for the local public transport.
    In some states students are charged a small administrative fee of 50 to 75 euros per semester (between S$ 75 and S$ 150).
    Living expenses amount to around EUR 750 to 1'000 (~ S $ 1100 to 1500) per month, depending on the region.
  • An increasing number of international degree courses with English as medium of instruction.
    German higher education institutions offer over 1'700 courses that are taught in English and lead to an international degree, such as Bachelor, Master or PhD. You can find them easily through the database on www.daad.de/idp.
  • Germany’s geographical location in the heart of Europe and its political and economical weight as the EU’s largest member state.
    Germany is home to some of the world's leading companies in many areas, such as information technology, health care, biotechnology and the automobile industry, making it the world' s leading export nation.
    To date, Germany is Singapore's most important European trading partner.
    More than 1'400 German companies are located in Singapore.
  • Many cultural highlights, historic towns and castles, beautiful scenery and moderate climate.
    The wide range of cultural activities in Germany offers something for everybody! And a trip across Germany is a journey through just about every cultural epoch.

  • The importance of the German language.
    With over 100 million native speakers, German is the most widely-spoken first language in Europe. The strength of German business and industry and the increasing global activity of German companies and corporations means that the German language is also gaining significance in the international market.

Did you know...

....that, to date, a total of 81 German researchers have received the Nobel Prize, thereof 28 in Chemistry, 24 in Physics and 15 in Medicine!


Types of Universities
© Foto: Ulrike E. Klopp / Universität Bonn

Germany’s universities combine scientific tradition with cutting-edge technology. They’ve been the scene of many groundbreaking discoveries, are internationally renowned and attract faculty and students from around the world. Over the course of time, distinct types of universities have evolved. Those interested in studying in Germany can thus choose between general and technical universities (Universitäten/Technische Hochschulen), which offer theoretical, research-oriented programmes, universities of applied sciences (Fachhochschulen), which offer shorter, practice-oriented programmes and other types of universities, eg the colleges of music, art and film.

Universitäten/Technische Hochschulen (General/Technical Universities)

Germany’s world-renowned general and technical universities specialize in methodic, theoretical education. The German ideal of a university as a place of learning shaped by the principle of the “indivisibility of research and teaching” – as proposed by higher education reformer Wilhelm von Humboldt (1767 – 1835) – still strongly characterizes the education and training offered today. Research is conducted independently of current societal interests. Students at universities are largely free to determine their course of study themselves in accordance with their interests and focuses. A university degree gives its graduates the scientific qualifications needed on the job market. The broad range of disciplines offered within the faculties and schools facilitates both interdisciplinary study and specialization, right up to the advanced theoretical fields of a particular science.

Universities award the academic degrees of Bachelor, Master and PhD, as well as the 'Staatsexamen' for medicine or law studies. They also have the privilege and right to confer the ‘Habilitation’, the professorial teaching qualification. Universities and technical universities continue to represent the mainstay of the German higher education system.

Fachhochschulen (Universities of Applied Sciences)

When the first universities of applied sciences were founded in the 1960s and 1970s, they were considered the "little sisters" of the classical universities, but they've become serious competition over the past 30 years, although they offer a comparatively limited range of subjects (mainly engineering, business, social studies, design, health and therapy studies). The need to help German industry maintain its competitiveness in the international field led to a growing demand for better-qualified personnel with an academic background who could solve practical tasks quickly and successfully. This demand marked the starting point for the approach taken by the Fachhochschulen (FHs).

What primarily attracts students to Fachhochschulen these days is the clear career focus of the degree courses and the possibility to obtain these degrees in a relatively short time. In contrast to the universities, research and teaching at Fachhochschulen are always pursued with a practical, application-oriented focus. Studies are tightly structured, and rather than being taught theory, the FH student will learn how knowledge is put into practice. A compulsory one or two semester long period of practical training (industrial attachment) constitutes part of any FH degree course, and the final thesis is produced in close collaboration with companies. Faculties at universities of applied sciences usually comprise experienced professionals and managers who know exactly what companies will expect of their graduates.

Fachhochschulen also offer internationally recognized Bachelor and Master degrees. In contrast to a degree awarded by a general or technical university, however, a FH degree will not automatically entitle its holder to study for a doctorate; only particularly qualified FH graduates may be admitted to doctoral programmes at general or technical universities.

Other types of universities

Other types of universities include comprehensive universities (‘Gesamthochschulen’ – a cross between a Universität and a Fachhochschule, in the states of Hesse and North Rhine Westphalia only), colleges for art, music and film (‘Kunst-, Musik- und Filmhochschulen’), colleges of education (‘Pädagogische Hochschulen’; in the states of Baden-Württemberg and Thuringia only), church-sponsored universities and theological colleges as well as vocational colleges in some German states (‘Berufsakademien’). Find out more on https://www.daad.de/deutschland/en/

The vast majority of German higher education institutions are public (state-maintained) universities; less than 2 % of Germany’s students are enrolled at private universities. The latter all have one thing in common: students must pay for at least part of their education. One major attraction of private universities is the small class size and the low student-teacher ratio. Some of the newer private universities teach exclusively in English. Good grades are important, but in order to get into the desired school, a high degree of competence and personal initiative is essential. Many private schools offer internships at partner schools abroad or work in close cooperation with companies in their particular fields.

Degree Programmes Offered by German Universities

Universities / Technical Unviersities
  • Bachelor, Master and Ph.D.
  • Staatsexamen
  • Promotion (Doctorate by research)
Universities of Applied Sciences (Fachhochschulen)
  • Bachelor, Master

Bologna Process

Since the end of the 90s, Germany has been part of the so called “Bologna Process”.
In this framework, forty-seven European States agreed on changing their traditional universities certificates into the internationally more known degrees of Bachelor, Master and PhD. In 1998, the Fourth Amendent of the Higher Education Act gave both public and private German universities the opportunity to award Bachelor (3-4 years) and Master (1-2 years) degrees.
Until then, students left German universities with a “Diplom”, “Magister” or ”Staatsexamen” degree – the German version of a Master degree.
Now, things have changed and students complete their Bachelor degree within three to four years, a Master degree within additional one to two years and a PhD within three to four years.

International Degree Programmes

General features of international degree programmes are:
  • high academic standards
  • international degrees (B.A./B.Sc.; M.A./M.Sc.; Ph.D.)
  • English as the exclusive or predominant medium of instruction
  • study-integrated German language courses
  • tightly-organized study programmes that allow students to complete their degree within a clearly-structured time frame
  • small class sizes
  • multinational composition of student body
  • special services: academic and personal counselling
  • optional study periods at overseas partner universities

While some of the international degree courses are taught entirely in English, others will provide a smooth transition from English to German as the language of instruction in the final semesters by offering students study-integrated German language courses.

Even if some of the international degree programmes do not require students to have any previous knowledge of German, a basic working knowledge of the German language will definitely be helpful and is highly recommended! You may want to consider joining a German language class at the Goethe-Institut Singapore, which offers excellent weekly language classes on all levels taught by qualified native speakers. http://www.goethe.de/singapore
The range of international degree programmes covers undergraduate, graduate as well as postgraduate courses in the fields of agriculture and forestry, computer science and mathematics, development cooperation, economics and law, engineering sciences, environmental sciences, medicine, music, art and design, natural sciences, psychology, social and cultural studies, to name but a few.

For a comprehensive list of international degree programmes currently offered at German universities sorted by subject area and detailed programme information, please check out the following website: http://www.daad.de/idp

Further information on admission conditions and requirements, application deadlines and formalities is directly available from the website of the university, as well as from the programme officer in charge of your particular degree course – you will find his or her contact details when you scroll down all the way to the bottom of the programme description.

For a comprehensive database of degree courses offered by German universities, please visit the following website: www.study-in.de


Doing a doctorate

In principle, degree holders in any discipline with above average grades can opt to take up a doctorate (‘Promotion’). In order to gain the aspired doctoral title, students must first find an academic doctoral supervisor (‘Doktorvater’ or ‘Doktormutter’), who will advise, counsel and guide them in their independent and innovative research work. Based on that, they must produce a doctoral thesis and take part in an oral examination, in which they must defend their research findings and offer proof of their comprehensive and extensive subject knowledge.

Academic Year

The German academic year is divided into two semesters.
The summer semester usually runs from April 1st to September 30th, while the winter semester lasts from October 1st to March 31st.
About a third of the academic year consists of lecture-free periods, during which students write research papers, study for exams, complete industrial attachments and of course relax!


Admission Requirements

Language of instruction
Admission Regulations
GCE-A-Levels / IB
direct admission to Uni/TU/FH on the condition of passing the DSH proficiency test
GCE-A-Levels / IB
unconditional direct admission to Uni/TU/FH
Polytechnic Diploma
admission to FH after one year of study college and subsequent passing of both the assessment and the DSH proficiency tests
Polytechnic Diploma
admission to FH after passing assessment test
Polytechnic Diploma
German or English
admission to Uni/TU on the condition of being accepted at either NUS or NTU

Selection of candidates based on grades (NC = ‘numerus clausus’; restricted admission) applies to very popular subjects such as medicine, biology, business administration etc.

Academic prerequisites

First degrees (Bachelor, Diplom, Magister, Staatsexamen)

All applicants have to meet certain requirements in order to qualify for admission into a German university. Applicants from Germany are required to hold specific school leaving certificates, either the so-called Abitur, which is the general higher education entrance qualification and qualifies holders for admission to all types of German universities, or else the Fachhochschulreife, which qualifies holders for admission to universities of applied sciences only.

International students essentially have to meet the same requirements, and thus their school leaving certificates will be compared to the above-mentioned German ones. Ultimately, it is up to the individual higher education institution to admit or reject an applicant, but of course there are standardized guidelines depending on the applicant’s country of origin.

Please note that for subjects such as music, theatre studies, sports, architecture, fine arts and design etc., auditions/aptitude tests resp. submission of portfolios are compulsory on top of the general admission requirements, since applicants need to demonstrate their particular artistic talent.

In some very popular subjects, such as medicine, biology or business administration, the number of available university places is not sufficient for the huge number of applicants. German and foreign applicants alike are thus subject to a selection process in which the grade point average of the school-leaving certificate plays a decisive role (‘NC’ or ‘numerus clausus’ = restricted admission). A specific percentage of places for restricted admisson-subjects is automatically reserved for international students.

Singapore-Cambridge GCE-‘A’-Level / International Baccalaureate
Both the Singapore-Cambridge GCE ‘A’-Level certificate and the International Baccalaureate (IB) are recognized as equivalent to the German Abitur, which means that ‘A’-Levels and IB-holders can be admitted directly to the German universities of their choice.
However, if they decide to enroll for a traditional German-taught degree course, they will first need to pass the DSH (German language proficiency) test.

At least four A-Level subjects (one of them may be at H1 level) are required, including English (on a case by case basis, the General Paper may be accepted), another language (i.e. in most cases mothertongue) as well as either mathematics or a science.
Students keen on taking up degree courses in engineering, medicine, pharmacy or a natural science must have at least a double-science combination (two sciences OR the combination of mathematics and a science).
Those interested in studying economics or business administration must have done advanced level economics.

Polytechnic Diploma
Neither polytechnic diplomas nor advanced diplomas are considered equivalent to the German Abitur, which is extremely broad-based and not focussed on one subject area only. Similar to holders of the German Fachhochschulreife, diploma holders can apply to universities of applied sciences (Fachhochschulen, FHs) only, for degree courses in the same subject they specialized in.
Before commencing their studies at the Fachhochschule, applicants holding a polytechnic diploma are normally required to sit an assessment test (‘Feststellungsprüfung’) set individually by the respective university of applied sciences.
However, should diploma holders decide to take up a Diplom degree course, the assessment test will be conducted in German after completion of a one-year preparatory foundation course at a so-called ‘study college’ (‘Studienkolleg’).
Please note that only applicants with a good command of German (minimum of 400 – 600 hours) can be considered for admission into these study colleges that teach both relevant subjects and German as a foreign language.
Students will also sit the DSH test after the preparatory year. More information about study colleges (in German) under http://www.studienkollegs.de

Other school leaving certificates
If you hold a school leaving certificate from a country other than Singapore and would like to apply for a first degree at a German university, please check the database on admission requirements to find out whether or not direct admission into a German university is possible. Depending on your country of origin, you may be required to attend a one-year preparatory course at a ‘study college’ (‘Studienkolleg’) or may even have to complete one or two years of university studies in your home country before you can be considered for admission into a German university.

Postgraduate Studies

In order to qualify for postgraduate studies at a German university, your first degree must qualify you for admission to such a course (eg. you will need to hold a Bachelor degree in order to apply for a Master progamme). In certain cases, additional periods of study in a respective field may be necessary in order to fulfil the admission requirements for the course. If in doubt, please contact the university of your choice directly.

If you wish to pursue doctoral studies in Germany, your chosen institution must recognize the degree you are holding as being equivalent to a Diplom, Magister or Staatsexamen or Master degree acquired at a German university.

Language Requirements

The medium of instruction for the majority of degree courses at German universities is German, and thus a sound knowledge of the language is indispensable.
Applicants for full degree courses conducted in German exclusively, whose mother tongue is not German or who do not hold a school leaving certificate from a school that uses German as its medium of instruction, must pass a language proficiency test known as the "Deutsche Sprachprüfung für den Hochschulzugang" (DSH).

The DSH exam is held twice annually at universities all over Germany, shortly before the start of the lecture period in October and April. It can only be retaken once. It will take someone with no previous knowledge of the language roughly 10 to 12 months of intensive courses to reach the required level of proficiency (approximately 1000 hours of German lessons).
Many universities offer special DSH-preparatory courses for advanced learners of German as a Foreign Language. Besides, the Goethe-Institut in Mannheim specializes in preparatory courses for university studies on all levels (for more information please go to http://www.goethe.de/ins/de/spr/pvk/dsh/enindex.htm), as do numerous commercial language schools.

Whereas the DSH can only be taken in Germany, it is also possible to gain proof of one’s language proficiency while still in Singapore. This involves taking a standardized test called "Test Deutsch als Fremdsprache", better known by its abbreviation TestDaF (for more information please go to http://www.testdaf.de), which is modelled on the widely-used “Test of English as a Foreign Language” (TOEFL).
TestDaF is offered in collaboration between the Goethe-Institut Singapore and the NUS Centre for Language Studies and is carried out twice a year, in April and November; the application deadline is roughly four weeks earlier.

International degree programmes taught either exclusively or partly in English, do not normally require applicants to pass the DSH before they can be matriculated (exceptions apply).
In fact, many programmes conducted fully in English do not require any previous knowledge of German at all, however, the respective universities will in most cases offer compulsory or optional German language classes to successful applicants.!
However, excellent English language skills are a must. Even though a small number of German universities insist that applicants from Singapore submit a TOEFL or IELTS result slip together with their application forms, the majority will readily exempt Singaporeans from this requirement due to the fact that English is the medium of instruction on all levels of the Singapore education system.

The level of German required for those international degree programmes that use a mixture of English and German as medium of instruction, depends on the individual degree course. In some cases, no previous knowledge of German is required, in other cases a basic foundation of about 240 hours of German language instruction may be called for, and in some instances, the minimum level required is the Zertifikat Deutsch (ZD) which requires about 400 to 600 hours of German.

While still in Singapore, you may want to consider joining a German language class at the Goethe-Institut, which offers excellent weekly language classes on all levels, taught by qualified native speakers.
Check out the local Goethe-Institut’s website (http://www.goethe.de/singapur) for detailed information on course dates, prices etc.


Preparing for your overseas studies takes time. You need to gather all sorts of information and make important decisions before you are ready to go. Give yourself about one year from your initial inquiries to the commencement of studies.

Once you have decided on what kind of degree course you would like to pursue and what type of higher education institution is right for you, you need find out which universities are offering your degree course of choice, eg by consulting databases such as http://www.study-in.de or www.daad.de/idp (international degree programmes only).

Once you have found a suitable course, download the application form from the university’s international relations office (‘Akademisches Auslandsamt’) website or apply online..

The international relations office staff will also help with questions regarding admission requirements, the recognition of overseas degrees etc. Get the relevant documents together (you can get authenticated copies of your originals at the German Embassy’s consular section) and apply either
a) directly to the university’s international relations office (‘Akademisches Auslandsamt’) or

b) through ASSIST (the application scheme for international students), if the university of your choice is one of the ASSIST membership universities.
To find out more about ASSIST, please refer to the following website: http://www.uni-assist.de

As a general rule, the application deadline for degree courses starting in the winter semester (October) is July 15th, for those starting in the summer semester (April) it is January 15th of the same year.

However, closing dates for international degree courses are often set earlier to enable students from non EU-countries to apply for a student visa in good time. Please check with your university of choice and make sure you send in the completed application form and accompanying documents on time.
Once you have received a letter of admission (‘Zulassungsbescheid’) from a German university, you can go ahead and apply for a student visa at the German Embassy.


Name: Keng Been Ang
Field of Study: Process Engineering and Power Plant Technology (IVD)
Degree: PhD
Language of instruction: English
University: University of Stuttgart

Determined to make the most straight after my bachelor degree, I decided to do something I had not done before. I began to look outside my personal comfort zone for something that would both challenge me and help further my growth and development. That is how I ended up in Stuttgart . In 2004, I was matriculated as a student at the Universitaet Stuttgart for the Master of Science program in air quality control, solid waste and waste water process engineering (WASTE). I had long admired my peers who had spent time actually living in another country and had proficiency in a third language. A stint abroad, I explained to family and friends would also offer me a different perspective on life.

The decision has proven to be a life-altering journey. I am glad that I took the gamble and decided to spend my last three years here in Stuttgart . Had I chosen instead to stay in Singapore for my Master’s, I probably would have missed out the opportunity to immerse myself in the immeasurably rich and varied cultures from the big community of international students who are living in Stuttgart . I have to emphasise here that the unique integration of multiracial and multicultural system in Singapore has prepared me well in the integration of life here. Once I made it through the first few months of culture adjustment, I found myself becoming not just a passive observer but also an integral part of the local scene.

My experiences so far revealed that the language barrier, either for academic or social purposes, is the biggest challenge while studying overseas. This happens particularly here because of the “Schwaebisch” dialect which is unique in this region and can prove to be a challenge and a pleasant surprise especially for new comers who are learning the german language.

Since my graduation in 2005, I have been employed as a research engineer in the department of Air Quality Control (RdL) at the Institute of Process Engineering and Power Plant Technology (IVD), and I am also pursuing a Ph.D. degree concurrently. My Ph.D. research under Prof. Dr.-Ing Guenter Baumbach involves the investigation of traffic related Particulate Matter (PM), and the effect of street cleaning measures on the PM 10 concentrations at Stuttgart Neckartor. These projects are supported by the Umweltministerium Baden- Wuerttemberg and Stadt Stuttgart respectively. In the months to come, I will use the results from these projects to investigate the deposition and resuspension behaviours of traffic-related PM.

There are always study and research opportunities for anyone who is willing to put in the extra effort and has a high level of commitment. The task is not always easy as there are many difficult challenges. A close friend once told me. “Fear not. If a million voices plead in the favour of staying at home and one voice courageously says go, then go.” These words and anecdotes describe very well what I have experienced so far in Germany .

To end off, I have been the grateful beneficiary of an abundance of support, advice and guidance, and have been exceedingly blessed by the friendship of so many extraordinary german friends here. Last but not least, I would like to express my special gratitude to the WASTE program director Prof. Dr.-Ing. Guenter Baumbach and course director Dr.-Ing. Michael Waldbauer for making things possible. And especially to DAAD for providing scholarship opportunities for the many Singaporean students in Germany .

Figure: “Kehrwoche” at Stuttgart Neckartor in 2006


Name: Xi Zhen Keung
Field of Study: Biology
Degree: Diplom (Bachelor + Master)
Language of instruction: German
Bayerische Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg

My decision to come to Germany to study was, honestly, purely coincidental. I wanted to go overseas for a different educational and cultural experience, and the scholarship organization that I applied to offered me a chance to go to Germany, as I had some prior knowledge of German. When I learnt of the news, however, I jumped at the opportunity, and I have not regretted my choice. Germany is a country that is sometimes misunderstood. Hidden behind its reputation of being technologically advanced, a leading manufacturer of luxury cars, and a nation of sausages and beer, Germany is actually a country deeply rooted in tradition and rich in history. This certainly extends to its numerous universities, many having hundreds of years of history, not just in the natural sciences and engineering, but also in the social sciences such as philosophy and languages.

My educational experience in Germany is full of surprise. I have had to delve deeply not just into biology, my major, but also the other natural sciences. This approach to education develops experts in their fields (who specialize somewhat later than their peers in Anglo-Saxon countries) who are, at the same time, all-rounders. Coming from Singapore and having done Triple Science in Junior College, the initial semesters were relatively relaxing, which freed up time for me to get to know the German culture and my German and international friends better, as well as to develop my other interest – languages. Living with other German students also helped me integrate into the German society easily, and I have even picked up many habits from them, such as recycling, separating trash and having potatoes for dinner, among others. I have also learnt to appreciate the differences between the many regions in Germany – culinary, dialect and approach to life. It never ceases to amaze me, how different people from the same country can be.

Coming to Germany has also taught me to cherish what I have at home, and opened me eyes as to what could be done differently in Singapore. Conversations with friends make me aware of how the health, education, welfare and political systems in Germany work, which encourages me to better understand and analyse the systems in Singapore. The fact that I am (almost) alone in my city, being just one of two Singaporeans here, also helped me wean myself from the dependence on my parents. Simple acts like going to the doctor, renting a room, opening a bank account and purchasing insurance require knowledge of the law, policies and local circumstances. I have had to ask my friends how certain things work, or simply go by the trial-and-error principle, through which I have emerged better informed and more independent. However, despite the sparsity of Singaporeans in Germany, the support network could not be stronger. More experienced and ever helpful Singaporeans are just a phone call away, and can always be counted on for good advice.

On a lighter note, studying in Germany also comes with perks such as being in the centre of Europe, hence a short flight or train ride away from all major cities; not having to wake up at unearthly hours to catch football on TV or even live in the stadium; being surrounded by beautiful historical buildings and nature, with the Alps in the south and many other nature parks all over the country. In short, studying in Germany offers new perspectives, a balanced life and understanding of another language and culture.

@Oktoberfest 2006

Name: Khoo Boon Liang
Field of Study: International Material Flow Management
Degree: Masters of Engineering (Dual Master’s Degree)
Language of instruction: English
Universities: Institute of Applied Material Flow Management (IfaS), University of Applied Sciences Trier, Germany and Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University (APU), Japan

As a Japanese Studies graduate from the National University of Singapore, I spent 5 years working as a researcher at the Singapore office of the Japan Council for Local Authorities for International Relations.

My experience and desire to pursue further studies lead me to enroll in a Masters of International Relations program in Tokyo, and subsequently spend one semester in Beijing on a MBA exchange program. While the learning experience in both countries and programs was intellectually stimulating, I realized that sustainable development which I learnt in my international relations program was not being taken up as a serious management strategy and business opportunity in conventional MBA programs, or vice versa.

Upon returning home to Singapore, I worked as an administrator for a dual MBA program, where I chanced upon the master’s program in International Material Flow Management (IMAT). The IMAT is offered by the University of Applied Sciences Trier, Germany, under the management of the German Institute of Applied Material Flow Management (IfaS).

IMAT is a new and innovative German-Japanese dual degree program where our f irst year of study is taught in Japan by an i nternational composition of a c a demia and pr acti tioner s at the Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University (APU) organized by the German University. APU is a new international university with student representation from over 82 nationalities . This interdisciplinary program, certified in full accordance with the Bologna process, facilitates holistic business and technology management strategies through a combination of engineering, economics and environmental sciences , with the aim to train and educate us as competent leaders capable of understanding and tackling global business development processes. As one of the students enrolled in the Fall 2007 class, our lessons have been thought-provoking for both professors and us alike in an interactive setting. Our class is small but diverse with 24 s tudents from 15 countries : this is a recipe for a strong network of student and future alumni relations.

In addition, internships and on-site study missions are integrated into the program to help us reconcile classroom knowledge with the current socioeconomic, geopolitical and technological dynamics in play in the real world.

While I have only begun my studies on this program, the learning experience has been highly stimulating and challenging over 30 hour-lesson weeks. In spite of the intensive course schedules, IMAT also believes in educating us to develop time management skills for life by providing short week-long breaks for us to catch up with homework, revision and play. I and fellow classmages were able to take a couple of short holidays within our current course schedule to date, after learning how to organize our time appropriately.

I am  enjoying my studies in Japan at APU and I am already looking forward to my second year in Germany to study at the Environmental Campus Birkenfeld , a unique zero-emissions university !

@APU, Japan

Name: Samantha Sue
Field of Study: German as a Foreign Language, English Studies
Degree: Magister (Bachelor + Master)
Language of instruction: German and English
University: Technical University of Dresden

After my ‘A’ Levels I was determined to study in Germany, so my mother asked me why I wanted to do so. I thought about it and the reasons were many and varied. The first reason that came to mind was that I wanted to go a little off the beaten track but not away from civilization. There aren’t as many Singaporeans studying in Germany as in the English-speaking world, but enough for me to run to when I feel homesick. Also, I was tempted by the challenge of living in a different culture and the prospect of learning German in its natural environment.

The practical reasons were that the cost of living and tuition fees are lower than in the other typical countries where Singaporeans go for further education, and that Germany is a modern, industrialized society not unlike Singapore . Finally, the beautiful landscape and architecture, as well as the World Cup 2006, were huge pull-factors for me.

Once in Germany , I found more reasons which made me happy that I had made the decision to study here. There is an interesting mix of foreign students from all over the world at the university, which means there are opportunities to meet people from diverse cultures. The university strives to ensure that students gain a good all-round education by including internships and overseas semesters as prerequisites for obtaining a degree.

In Germany , I experienced a different way of life, which taught me to appreciate not just the differences in mentality and priorities, but also the similarities. Living in a different society, I learned to reflect more on my own culture.
Looking at it from a more tangible perspective, studying in Germany is excellent because I am now confident about my command of the German language. Hearing, reading and getting the chance to speak and write the language all the time help tremendously when you are trying to learn German. Mastering a language is not only an advantage in the corporate world, but also personal enrichment.

I like to travel and Germany ’s position at the centre of Europe , as well as its excellent transport infrastructure, make it easy for me to travel all over Europe .

Furthermore, there is a network of Singaporean students here in Germany , the SSAG. They provide support for new students and are a platform for us to meet and make friends with other Singaporeans in Germany , which is extremely helpful when we feel the pangs of homesickness.

All in all, I’m glad I made the decision to study in Germany . Living in a different culture has its ups and downs but through all of this, I know I have learnt and grown a great deal.

@ 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany



Name: Shubei Wang
Field of Study: Medicine
Degree: Staatsexamen
Language of instruction: German
University: University of Heidelberg

The one thing that people often ask me is: Why Germany? Other than the obvious reasons – Germany being the home of the hottest football players in the world, the deepest thinkers, the weirdest musicians; of mind-boggling array of flavors of Ritter Sports, finest beers, endless types of sausages and ways to prepare potatoes; the most awe-inspiring cathedrals and churches to ever grace Christianity, cobbled streets filled with old musty bookshops alongside fashion houses – I also tell them that it's because Germany has very good medical schools.

The Medical Faculty of Heidelberg, where I'm currently studying, is one of the 4 medical schools in Germany recognized by the Singapore Medical Council. One of the things I like best about med-school here is the early contact with patients. Even in my first semester we had to spend days at a clinic where we not only observed, but also actively participated in the diagnosis process, talking to patients and examining them, then sharing with the doctors our analyses. Each student has to complete 90 days of "Krankenpflegepraktikum" (Patient-Care internship) at a hospital ward before he is allowed to take his first "Staatsexam" (State-administrated exam) after the second academic year. During this internship, we experience the daily routine of hospital life and help to nurse patients back to health after they've had operations. We are also allowed to observe surgeries and on really special occasions, and even assist with simple procedures!

What I also enjoy is the very much hands-on approach towards learning. The application of knowledge to real-life situations is placed at equal value with theory. Parallel to our anatomy classes we had "Anatomy-am-Lebenden" seminars, where we practiced diagnostic skills on each other, (from basic things like drawing blood, listening to lungs & heart to performing special tests created to examine the cranial nerves). My class was, in addition, the first in Germany to have a sonograph course held at the end of the very first semester.

All these are part and parcel of my daily syllabus, and I find that it makes what I study doubly interesting. Medical school is so much more than just memorizing facts, and I appreciate how much the university invests in my medical training.

And to those who ask, "Why Germany?", I say, "Why not?"

@Alte Bruecke Heidelberg



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