As a general rule, all foreigners with non-EU/EEA citizenship staying in Germany for more than 90 days and wanting to work or study in Germany need a visa before entering the country.
Depending on the country you are applying from, issuing a German student visa may take up to 6 months. Though the process is often quicker, we advise all admitted students to book an appointment with the embassy in their countries as early as possible.
The APS Certificate is mandatory for Chinese and Indian students who are interested in studying in Germany. Before applying to a German university you have to hand in your academic certificates and documents to the APS office in your respective country. This procedure might take time. We would recommend booking an appointment as soon as possible.
You can read all about the APS for China and the APS for India on their respective websites or contact the German embassy.
After moving to Germany, students are required to register as a resident at the local authority (Bürgeramt) and provide their new address in Germany. After doing that foreign students are required to apply for a residence permit (Aufenthaltserlaubnis/Aufenthaltstitel) at the immigration authority according to the address where they are registered (LEA Berlin if they live in Berlin). This document is the permit that allows non-EU or non-EEA nationals to live and study in Berlin for the duration of the program.
Upon receiving a valid residence permit in Germany, students may travel to another country within the Schengen zone, visa-free, using a valid passport for up to 90 days per six-month period.
Can my residence permit be extended after graduation?
There is an option to apply for a job-seeker visa for the duration of up to 18 months. Having a German diploma brings multiple benefits compared to the regular job-seeker visa for international specialists.
During this time, you can search for suitable employment that complements your German university degree.