To study abroad and gain not only knowledge in the chosen subject, but also an insight into a new country and its way of life? German students can enjoy free university education in the following countries.
The countries, four of them from the Scandinavian region, are located two hours or less by plane from many German cities. There are plenty of low-cost flyer offers and cheap train connections. Anyone who wants to can spend the semester break comfortably at home with family and friends.
The low cost factor paired with high-quality academic standards make Austria, Denmark, Sweden, Finland and Norway an attractive alternative to higher education at home.
1. Study in Denmark
Denmark has eight state universities. The greater Copenhagen area has the largest selection of study opportunities. The most prestigious include Københavns Universitet, Copenhagen Business School and the Technical University. The quality of the facilities is high.
University buildings are usually new and modern and have very good computer equipment. The relationship between students and professors is loose. The student groups are smaller than in Germany, which enables efficient study. The university year is divided into two semesters, the spring semester (January-May) and the autumn semester (August-December).
The general higher education entrance qualification is a basic requirement for admission to study at a Danish university. Anyone wishing to study in Denmark must also apply for a residence permit for the duration of their studies.
Housing and living Expenses in Denmark:
The cost of living in Denmark is higher than in Germany. A student needs around 700 to 1000 euros per month. The rent for a room is around 300 euros. Internet access, energy and water costs are often included. State student residences are the cheapest option.
Extra Advantages of Studying in Denmark:
- Even those who do not (yet) speak Danish well can study in Denmark. Many lectures are held in English, and in some courses the lecturers even teach entirely in English.
- Students with a residence permit are automatically part of the Danish health insurance system after a stay of six weeks.
- Since there are no tuition fees or health insurance costs, only travel and living expenses have to be financed.
- The study country Denmark is also popular as a holiday destination. Why not explore the beautiful stretches of coast or the Danish islands during your free time?
2. Study in Sweden
Sweden attracts many foreign students with its well-equipped universities and individual academic support. There are no tuition fees. Usually, however, you become a member of the Studentenwerk and pay an amount between 5-40 euros per semester.
At universities and colleges you either take individual courses or a training line. There are around 36 state teaching institutions at university level. The fall semester begins in mid or late August and ends in mid-January, the spring semester begins in mid-January and ends in early June.
The Swedes have a central online application process. Students must apply for a degree program via Website and submit a copy of their passport, their Abitur certificate and possibly other documents. Attention, if you want to study in Sweden, you have to be prepared for very early application deadlines compared to Germany .
Housing and living Expenses in Sweden:
Budget between 850 and 900 euros per month for a living in Sweden. A place in a dormitory in Stockholm or Uppsala can cost 300 to 500. A DSL connection is included in the room price.
Extra Advantages of Studying in Sweden:
- You can get through anywhere with English. English is often spoken even on the street, in shops, and in restaurants.
- All students in Sweden receive free health insurance.
3. Study in Finland
The Finnish education system is considered to be one of the best in the world. Nevertheless, the course is free of charge. Only an annual contribution of 80-100 euros has to be paid. A modern learning environment and a wide range of courses make a higher education in Finland attractive for students from all over the world.
Finland has 15 universities, two technical universities, a business school and an art school. The University of Helsinki is the largest in the country and has top rankings in an international comparison.
The general higher education entrance qualification is an admission requirement for the course. Every university and college has an application form that is made available online. In addition to the Abitur, a language certificate and a letter of motivation must be submitted. All documents must be in either Finnish or English.
Housing and living Expenses in Finland:
For a room, 200 to 400 euros per month should be calculated. As a rule, dormitories offer the cheapest housing options. The cost of food and toiletries in Finland is similar to that in Germany. However, drinks and dining out are much more expensive than at home.
Extra Advantages of Studying in Finland:
- Studying in Finland is a glossy business card for any resume.
- Degrees from Finnish colleges and universities often open doors in the international job market due to their good reputation.
- The student health insurance is included in the fee for the student union at the University of Helsinki (around 100 euros for one year).
- Studying and enjoying the beauty of the country, where better than in Finland?
4. Study in Norway
Norway has eight state universities in the cities of Oslo, Bergen, Stavanger and Tromsø that offer innovative, modern courses. The University of Oslo is the largest in the country. Studying in Norway is not completely free of charge. The semester fee is very low, however, between 40 and 80 euros.
The same application procedures apply to EU citizens as to locals. The Abitur is a basic requirement. Depending on the subject, there are further selection criteria and tests. Foreign applicants must have a command of English.
A basic knowledge of the Norwegian language and its regional studies is also required. There is no general numerus clausus, but there are admission restrictions for courses such as medicine.
Housing and living Expenses in Norway:
The cost of living in Norway is high, in some areas even twice as high as in Germany. For example, a coffee costs around 4 euros. Student dormitories are the cheapest option. Places in these cost between 190 and 400 euros per month.
Extra advantages of studying in Norway:
- Foreign students have a wide range of courses and study programs in English.
- In Norway, students are allowed to work alongside their studies without a work permit.
- Norway is a country for adventurers and nature lovers. In winter there is an opportunity to see the northern lights.
5. Studied in Austria
Austria is by far the most popular country for German students abroad. This is mainly due to the lack of a language barrier, charming study cities, the previously free study access and the lack of a numerus clausus.
Particularly in popular subjects such as communication sciences, for which admission to study in Germany is often only possible with top grades, it is attractive to be able to start the desired direction without a dream certificate. In Austria there are 22 state universities, twelve universities of applied sciences, nine smaller providers of university of applied sciences courses and 13 private universities. The University of Vienna is the largest university in the country.
In principle, anyone can enroll in any course. There are only admission restrictions for a few subjects such as medicine. In the case of a limitation, however, it is often not the Abitur grade that decides on access, but the result of a test.
If you are staying in Austria for more than three months, you must report to the local and registration office in the respective district.
Housing and living Costs in Austria:
The cost of living in Austria is a little more expensive than in Germany. The same applies to the rental prices, which are a bit higher compared to German housing costs. Living in shared apartments or student dormitories is a cheap alternative.
Studying in Austria – Outlook:
Studying in Austria could soon be associated with fees. The current right-wing conservative government plans to reintroduce paid studies. However, it has not yet been decided whether this will actually take effect soon.