Procedure descriptions

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Residence permit for educational purposes - application

Foreign nationals from non-EU and non-EEA states require a residence permit for educational purposes to pursue a course of education in Germany. You can obtain a residence permit for the following types of education:

  • Participation in language courses unrelated to study preparation (intensive course in German)
  • School attendance in exceptional cases
  • Corporate training and education with the approval of the Bundesagentur für Arbeit (Federal Employment Agency)

To study at a state or state-recognized higher education institute or comparable educational establishment in Germany, you require a "residence permit for students".

Note: Nationals of the EU states can pursue a course of education in Germany due to their rights to freedom of movement. They must present proof of adequate health insurance and proof of sufficient resources to cover the cost of living if they are not employed or self-employed. This also applies to nationals of the European Economic Area (EEA) and of Switzerland.

The residence permit for educational purposes is valid for a limited period and is only valid for this specific purpose. If the purpose of the stay changes, you must notify the competent authority immediately. You must apply for an extension of residence permit in good time before it expires.

Caution: If you reside in Germany for educational purposes, you cannot obtain a settlement permit.

Responsible authority

  • For issuing a national visa prior to entry into the territory of the Federal Republic of Germany: The German diplomatic mission abroad (embassy, consulate)
  • After entry: The immigration authorities in whose district you have your usual residence. The immigration authority is, depending on where you live, either the municipal administration or the district administration.

Tip: You can find a Directory of Diplomatic Missions of the Federal Republic of Germany Abroad on the internet pages of the Federal Foreign Office.

Prerequisite

Prerequisites for issuing of a residence permit are:

  • You satisfy the passport and visa obligation.
    With respect to the passport obligation, it is sufficient if you possess an alternative identity document.
  • Your subsistence is assured.
    The assessment ceiling is the maximum funding rate in accordance with the Federal Education Assistance Act (BAföG).
  • There are no grounds for your expulsion.
  • Your stay does not endanger or prejudice the interests of the Federal Republic of Germany.
  • You fulfill the entry requirements for the relevant course of education.

Procedure

Before entering Germany, you may have to apply for a national visa in your own country.

After entry, you must apply for the residence title in writing to the immigration authorities before your visa expires. The immigration authority is, depending on where you live, either the municipal administration or the district administration.

As of September 1st, 2011 the residence title is the size of a credit card and it incorporates additional electronic functions. For more information, see "Electronic residence title (eAT) - application".

Note: If the approval of the Federal Employment Agency is required (for example, for corporate training and education), the immigration authority seeks this approval in an internal administrative procedure.

Required documents

  • Proof that you satisfy the passport and visa obligation
  • Proof that your subsistence is assured
  • Proof that there are no grounds for your expulsion
  • Proof that you do not endanger or prejudice the interests of the Federal Republic of Germany
  • Proof that you fulfill the entry requirements for the relevant course of education (original documents)

Miscellaneous

You wish to pursue part of the education here and have already obtained a residence permit for educational purposes in a different EU member state: In most cases you will also be granted a residence permit for Germany.

You possess a residence permit for other purposes (for example, for family reasons) or a settlement permit: In this case, you can begin a course of education in Germany without any additional residence permit.

Costs/Benefits

  • Validity of up to one year: 100 Euro
  • Validity of more than one year: 110 Euro

Note: You may only be exempted from the fees in exceptional cases.

Release note

The German original version of this text was drafted in close cooperation with the relevant departments. The Innenministerium released it on 29.10.2015. Only the German text is legally binding. The Federal State does not assume any liability for the translated texts.
In cases of doubt or if you have any questions or problems, please contact the relevant authorities directly.
Die hier dargestellten Informationen werden von service-bw übernommen und regelmäßig aktualisiert.