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How to Apply for MBA in Germany

We all know Germany as the land of beer and sausages and home to some of the world’s greatest scientific and technological inventions like automobiles, jet engines, calculators, the lightbulb, and more. Yet there is more to this beautiful country than we can imagine. Germany does not only boast a solid and stable economy, ranking 4th in Europe based on the World Bank rankings with a $3.73 trillion GDP, but it is also the 5th most popular country for international students as rated by Times Higher Education, thanks to low or no tuition fees in publicly funded universities, and an easy to follow course application and admission process. For students intending to pursue their MBA courses online or in-classroom, Germany is definitely a destination to consider. 

Enrolling in German institutions of higher learning comes with a good return on investment. Among the factors that make Germany a destination of choice for international students are its thriving technology, research, and innovation; world-class facilities; employment opportunities with a meager unemployment rate of 5.8% as of 2021; and its strong economy. 

What does it take to study for your MBA in Germany? 

Let’s first have an overview of MBA programs. 


MBA Overview 

MBA or Masters of Business Administration was first introduced by Harvard University Graduate School of Administration in 1908 and has now been officially adopted as a graduate qualification by business schools across the globe. 

The MBA qualification equips students with a range of skills relevant to business management and operations required for all enterprises across different sectors. For students, an MBA qualification provides a competitive edge for managerial positions as it demonstrates their competency in leadership, decision-making, communications, and others required to drive growth and profitability in any business. 

An MBA qualification from a German university stands out among others. They are research-based and expose students to real-world experiences where they can apply the knowledge and skills gained during their studies. Here are a few facts about MBA studies in Germany. 


Types of MBA programs offered in Germany 

There are three main types of MBA study programs offered in Germany:

  • Full-time MBA studies: This program lasts between 12 and 24 months, depending on the course selected and what the university offers. Students will typically attend regular classes during the weekdays. 
  • Part-time MBA studies: Part-time MBA studies means that the students study and work simultaneously. Often, you will find that most students attend either evening or weekend classes and work during the day on weekdays. 
  • Executive MBA studies: Executive MBA (EMBA) programs are structured for executives who do not wish to quit their jobs to go into studies. Thus EMBAs are designed to accommodate their busy schedules.


English-taught and German-taught MBA programs

German is the official language spoken in Germany; hence most programs are taught in German. Students enrolling in German-taught MBA programs must demonstrate that they are proficient in German and can speak, write, and understand. A German language proficiency certificate, TestDaf, or DSH is required to enroll. 

Students (non-native English speakers) wishing to enroll in an English-taught German university should demonstrate their proficiency in the English language by producing English language proficiency certificates like TOEFL or IELTS, among others. This will depend on the specific requirements for the institution one is enrolling in.  


Why is Germany a top destination for international MBA students? 

Germany hosts some of the most prestigious learning institutions based on top universities. Rankings. 8 of Germany’s business schools rank in the top 100 World QS rankings for their full-time MBA programs. In addition to the high quality of education, there are many reasons why international students prefer to pursue their MBA studies in Germany. These include: 

  • A wide range of MBA specializations allows students to pursue their specific interests. These include leadership management, entrepreneurship and innovation, sustainability management, and global management.  
  • Low tuition fees. MBA studies are known to be some of the most expensive. Germany is known across the world as the 2nd cheapest destination for studies. Most degree programs in state-funded universities are offered at no cost. You only need to pay administration fees every year, which is quite affordable. On the other hand, MBA programs are more affordable compared to other countries. This ranges between $4,000 and $10,000 per academic year, yet these universities still hold a high academic reputation. 
  • Faculty expertise. The academic staff, including professors and lecturers, play an essential role in the ranking of German universities. As mentioned earlier, the German higher education system prioritizes teaching and research, which are more beneficial to students than learning deliveries focusing on theory. German universities host world-class academic staff committed to walking with the students throughout their studies. 
  • Employment prospects. As the fourth most robust economy in Europe with a meager unemployment rate, there is no doubt that Germany has much to offer to international students transitioning into the job market. Secondly, because of the high reputation of German universities, MBA students can seek opportunities in the country or other countries. Also, while still studying, international students have the chance to work up to 20 hours a week and full-time during the holiday to fund their studies. 


MBA Eligibility requirements in Germany 

The general entry requirements for an MBA program in Germany are:  

  • A relevant undergraduate degree (equivalent to a German Bachelor’s degree) with certified transcripts of one’s grades (If your degree is not recognized, some universities require you to take preparatory courses before enrolling in an MBA program). Ideally, you should have a four-year bachelor’s degree or three years-degree + work experience to enroll in an MBA program.  
  • An excellent academic record equivalent to 60% or above aggregate score. 
  • Proof of English with good TOEFL, IELTS, GRE, or GMAT grades.
  • German language proficiency for German-taught universities. TestDAF or DSH certificates will be required.  
  • Two to three years of work experience (this depends on the institution that one is enrolling in. In some universities, work experience is not a requirement. However, for Executive MBA programs, two years of work experience is a requirement). 
  • Two letters of recommendation 
  • A motivational letter or statement of purpose
  • CV/resume
  • Copy of passport 
  • Course application form 


How to apply for an MBA program in Germany

Here is a rundown on applying for an MBA program in Germany. 

  1. Admission deadlines 

First and foremost, it is essential to take note of the application deadlines. Most colleges and universities conduct admissions twice a year in Winter and Summer. This means that application deadlines will fall somewhere in mid-July for winter admissions and mid-January for summer admissions. Consider checking the exact deadlines for the specific university you intend to enroll in on their website. 

  1. Eligibility 

Once you know the admission deadlines, check the eligibility requirements for the institution and course you are applying for. The list provided in the eligibility requirements adobe should help you prepare the documents required for admission. 

  1. Course fees

After selecting your course of choice, check the course fees for that specific course. Also, check accommodation arrangements and costs, application fees, and fee payment arrangements. This will help you to plan your finances well in advance. You could also enquire and apply for scholarships if available. However, most scholarships will require that you first use your desired learning institution. 

  1. Application process 

Applications are typically made online. You will be required to fill in the application form, scan and upload your documents in PDF or JPG format, and pay the application fees. Once your application is successfully submitted, await an email confirmation and further instructions from the university. 


MBA courses you can apply for in German Universities 

  • Business Administration MBA 
  • Engineering management MBA 
  • Business and IT MBA
  • Executive MBA 
  • Business and Innovation MBA 
  • Entrepreneurship MBA 
  • Leadership MBA
  • Supply chain MBA 
  • Finance MBA 
  • Human resource MBA 
  • Marketing MBA 

Some universities in Germany offer flexible MBA programs that allow students to pursue more than one course simultaneously. 

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