How to Apply for Scholarships to Study in Germany as an International Student

Germany is a top destination for international students due to its high-quality education system, diverse culture, and numerous scholarship opportunities. Applying for scholarships can significantly ease the financial burden of studying abroad. This guide provides a step-by-step process on how to apply for scholarships to study in Germany.

Step 1: Research Available Scholarships

Key Scholarship Providers:

  1. DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service): DAAD offers a wide range of scholarships for undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral students.
  1. Heinrich Böll Foundation Scholarships: These scholarships are available for undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral students.
  1. Erasmus+ Program: Provides opportunities for students to study in Germany as part of their degree program.
  1. Friedrich Ebert Stiftung Scholarships: For students committed to social democracy.
  1. Deutschlandstipendium (Germany Scholarship): A merit-based scholarship for both international and German students.


Step 2: Prepare Your Application Documents

Commonly Required Documents:

  • Application Form: Fill out the specific form for each scholarship.
  • Motivation Letter: Explain your reasons for choosing Germany, your academic goals, and how the scholarship will help you.
  • Academic Transcripts: Certified copies of your previous academic records.
  • Certificates of Previous Degrees: Certified copies of your diplomas.
  • Curriculum Vitae (CV): A detailed resume.
  • Letters of Recommendation: Usually from professors or employers.
  • Proof of Language Proficiency: Depending on the program, you may need to provide proof of proficiency in German (TestDaF or DSH) or English (IELTS or TOEFL).
  • Research Proposal or Study Plan: For graduate and doctoral scholarships.


  • Tailor your motivation letter to each scholarship.
  • Ensure all documents are translated into English or German and certified.

Step 3: Apply to German Universities

University Application:

  • Apply for admission to the universities you are interested in. Many scholarships require you to have an admission offer before applying.


  • Many universities use Uni-Assist to manage international applications. Check if your chosen universities do and follow their specific application procedures.
  • Uni-Assist


  • Apply to multiple universities to increase your chances.
  • Ensure you meet all deadlines for both university applications and scholarship applications.

Step 4: Apply for Scholarships

Application Process:

  • Follow the specific instructions provided by each scholarship organization.
  • Submit your application before the deadline. Late applications are typically not considered.

Common Steps:

  1. Create an Account: For online applications, create an account on the scholarship provider’s website.
  2. Complete the Application Form: Provide all necessary information and upload required documents.
  3. Submit Your Application: Double-check all details before submitting.


  • Keep track of deadlines and set reminders.
  • Some scholarships may require an interview. Prepare by researching common questions and practicing your responses.

Step 5: Follow Up

After Submission:

  • Monitor your email and the scholarship portal for updates or additional requests for information.
  • Be prepared for possible interviews or additional documentation requests.


  • Be patient. Scholarship review processes can take several months.
  • Contact the scholarship provider if you have not heard back by the expected date.

Step 6: Prepare for Departure

Once Accepted:

  • Confirm your scholarship and acceptance to the university.
  • Apply for a student visa.
  • Arrange accommodation and travel.


  • Attend pre-departure orientations if offered by your scholarship provider or university.
  • Connect with other scholarship recipients or students at your university to build a support network.


Applying for scholarships to study in Germany as an international student involves thorough research, careful preparation of documents, and timely submission of applications. By following these steps, you can enhance your chances of securing financial support to achieve your academic goals in Germany. Good luck!

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