List of Countries That Offer Free Degrees
University fees are exponentially rising across the globe and in this scenario the concept of free degrees seems like an impossible dream. It is indeed heartening to note that there are countries in this planet who value education and governments in such countries offer schemes and subsidies for an almost-free or at least an affordable education or degree. Some of the countries are listed below:
There is a lot of interest picked up among Indian students to study in Germany in recent times. This is because the German government does not levy any tuition fees in public universities both for German and foreign students.
Only a nominal amount of fees towards administrative costs are collected from students. If you succeed in finding a German university of your choice for free, then you will need to budget for living costs including food, clothing and accommodation.
Another critical point of importance is that most of these free courses are in the German language and requires a proficiency in German to get admission.
However, driven by demand, there are a number of English-based courses which are being designed in the country especially for international students.
Low-cost education, strong economy and an excellent higher education system is very appealing for pursing studies in Germany, both for students and parents.
Germany comes third after US and UK in terms of perceived quality of education. There are many German universities that are considered among the best in the world including Heidelberg University, Ludwig-Maximilians University in Munich, Technical University of Munich, University of Hamburg, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology and many more.
Also See: Study in Germany Scholarships
Also offers nearly-free education for both domestic and international students regardless of nationality. Although the tuition fees are not entirely waived as in Germany, it is only a small fraction of what is normally charged in other paid universities.
However, it is pertinent to note that specialized courses such as medicine and engineering charge a little more yet well below what US or UK fees. Some of these courses need students to appear for an entrance test.
Here too, a large percentage of low-cost degrees are taught in French, but just like in Germany, there are a lot more English-based programs that are being created for global students.
It is important to know that if you are keen on pursuing your studies in one of the grandes ecoles of France, then the tuition fees cost could vary quite a bit.
While course fees are nearly negligible, standard of living in France is quite high and cost of food, clothing and accommodation can be substantial high especially in Paris.
Yet, since it is cheaper than London laying across the Channel, many French universities are among the top universities of the world including University of Paris-Sorbonne, University of Paris-Sud, the Paris Descartes University, University of Strasbourg and many more.
Also See: Study in France Scholarships
Belgium offers complete waiver of tuition fees for EU students, however, the fees for international students are also in the affordable range. Some of the universities here include University of Leuven – KU Leuven and University of Antwerp.
Also See: Study in Belgium Scholarships
4. Czech Republic:
Students both domestic and international who are fluent in Czech can study here for free. Those who wish to pursue education in English can also do so at affordable rates. Living costs are more economical in this country than most other European country. Some of universities in this country are Charles University in Prague and Masaryk University.
Also See: Study in Czech Scholarships
5. Nordic Countries:
The Northern European countries, dubbed commonly as Nordic countries, famous for their natural beauty, high quality of life and stunning locales and liberal political policies also offer students free education regardless of nationality.
Four of the five Nordic countries including Sweden, Norway, Finland and Denmark completely waive tuition fees while Iceland does charge tuition fees. These 4 countries have certain prerequisites to fulfill for the free seats.
Norway offers free courses at the undergraduate programs only in Norwegian and a proficiency in the language is a must for admissions. However, masters and PhD courses (which are also free) are available in English. Some of the universities in Sweden include University of Oslo and Norwegian University of Science and Technology.
Sweden and Denmark extend free education only to students from the European Union, Switzerland and European Economic Area. Others will have to pay the requisite tuition fees for all courses in the undergraduate and master’s levels.
However, PhD programs are completely funded in both these countries. Candidates pursuing PhD programs not only get free education but also get paid a salary or a stipend.
Tuition Free Universities in Germany and How To Apply
A lot of international students want to study in Europe, US and Canada but cannot afford the school fees. In Germany, due to Government’s full financial commitment and it’s quest in ensuring premium standard in education, tuition fees are not charged in most German universities to both local and foreign students. This means that international students in Germany can study tuition-free too.
The best destinations for international students, in Europe, continues to be Germany. With the majority of state-funded universities not charging tuition fees to students, and those that have implemented new laws allowing fees to be charged asking for less than €1,500 a year, the fees charged are very low and affordable in these schools.
Since the winter Semester 2006/07, German universities are now allowed to charge tuition fees for undergraduate study programmes. Currently, only a few federal states charge tuition fees of up to 500 Euros per semester. These states are Baden-Württemberg, Bavaria, Hamburg, and Lower Saxony (some few more schools have started to charge tuition as at 2017, this include schools like University of Hohenheim). However, the fees charged in these schools are still relatively affordable.
All other federal states only request a certain amount of money as semester dues, Student Union dues and your transportation fares for the semester (largely depend on schools). Detailed information on tuition fees in different federal states in Germany can be found on the following page.
Below is the list of the schools that do not charge fees for Undergraduate, Masters and Ph.D programs. Feel free to browse through these schools and check for more information about courses, admission requirements and scholarship/funding opportunities.
- Frankfurt University
- Free University of Berlin
- Medical University of Luebeck
- Friedrich-Alexander University, Erlangen-Nurnberg.
- International University, Bremen
- Friedrich Schiller University, Jena
- University of Bremen
- International School of Management ISM, Dortmund
- Johannes Gutenberg University
- Hamburg Media School
- International University in Germany
- University of Bayreuth
- Ludwig Maximilians University, Munich (University of Munich)
- University of Augsburg
- Otto-Fredrick University, Bamberg
- Philipps-University, Marburg
- University of Dortmund
- University of Bamberg
- Humboldt-University, Berlin
- University of Bielefeld
- University of Bonn
- University of Flensburg
- University of Gottingen
- University of Erlangen-Nurnberg
- University of Hamburg
- University of Oldenburg
- University of Kassel
- University of Konstanz
- University of Koln
- University of Erfurt
- University of Hannover
- University of Essen
- University of Stuttgart
- University of Hohenheim
- University of Leipzig
- University of Rostock
- University of Marburg
How to Apply for Admission in Germany
If you want to apply for admission into these free tuition Universities in Germany, it is recommended that you make use of DAAD search portal. With DAAD, you can search for any undergraduate or postgraduate (Masters or PhD) courses in these Universities.
On the left side of the page, you can filter your search result by entering a keyword like “Business”, “Engineering” or any filed you are interested in so that the search returns only business or engineering-related courses.
Whatever the keyword you choose, you can further filter (under Degree/level) by choosing whether you are searching for a Bachelor, Master, PhD / Doctorate, Prep Course, Language Course or a Short Course. If you chose entered Engineering above and choose Master here, you will see Master’s courses in Engineering.
You can broadly choose the field of study by choosing one of the options under “Field of Study”. There are many options available but the most important here is the last one “More”. There you have “Tuition fee”, choose “none” so that you only courses in schools where tuition fees are not paid.
When you click on a particular course, you will see all the details there; course overview, admission requirements, language requirements, course curriculum and how to apply. Some require that you apply directly to the school while other ask you to apply through Uni-Assist.
The course page link is always included, click on it to read more details, especially the documents you need to submit. Since requirements and procedure vary slightly for every institution, read more details on the website of the institution you want to apply to.
These tuition-free Universities in Germany are standard and world class Universities. They operate just like any other good university, therefore you have to meet the same sets of requirements for admission.
You will usually be required to fill application form online, then print it and send to the admission office, together with other documents required. Note that you have to authenticate the documents you are sending for admission purpose before they are deemed legit and acceptable. See German admission requirements. After you have been offered admission, you will need to process a student visa. You can find out about this at the German embassy.