study nursing in germany

study nursing in germany

Study nursing in Germany: a guide for international students

In this article, we will discuss the following topics:

  • The German healthcare system
  • What is a nurse?
  • What are the tasks of a nurse?
  • How does one become a nurse in Germany?
  • Nursing degree requirements in Germany
  • Types of nursing degrees in Germany

What is nursing about?

Nursing is a profession within the health care sector focused on the care of individuals, families, and communities so they may attain, maintain, or recover optimal health and quality of life. Nurses may be differentiated from other health care providers by their approach to patient care, training, and scope of practice. Nurses practice in many specialties with differing levels of prescription authority. Many nurses provide care within the ordering scope of physicians, and this traditional role has come to shape the public image of nurses as care providers. However, nurse practitioners are permitted by most jurisdictions to practice independently in a variety of settings. Since the postwar period, nurse education has undergone a process of diversification towards advanced and specialized credentials , and many of the traditional regulations and provider roles are changing.

Why study nursing in Germany?

Nursing is a highly respected profession in Germany, with a long and prestigious history. There is also a high demand for nurses in the country, making studying nursing in Germany very attractive to international students.

Germany has many well-respected universities that offer low tuition fees compared to the UK and US. The German language is not required to study nursing in Germany at undergraduate level, but it will be helpful during your studies and when finding employment after you graduate.


Studying nursing in Germany gives you access to an excellent education system. The universities are world-renowned for their quality of teaching and employ highly talented tutors who have been educated at top institutions around the globe. The curriculum offered by universities if flexible and allow students to focus on the area of nursing they are most interested in upon graduation.

This degree will open doors all over the world, as employers recognise German degrees as being of high quality standard.

How do I become a nurse in Germany?

To become a nurse in Germany, you have to complete a three-year training course which includes the following study components:

  • Nursing care for the elderly and persons with disabilities
  • Midwifery
  • Pediatric nursing
  • General nursing and general care of patients

The training is based on the dual system of education. This means that it combines theory and practice. In other words, you will spend time at school and also gain practical experience. There are different types of nursing professions in Germany:

Nursing specialties in Germany

Nursing specialties in Germany

Nursing is a field as diverse and exciting as it is challenging. If you are interested in entering the nursing profession, there are many different career paths you can take that will challenge you, offer excellent pay and benefits, and provide a level of job satisfaction that can’t be found elsewhere.

The first step to choosing the nursing specialty that’s right for you is to become familiar with the different types of jobs available within the field. Consider your interests, personality type, skill set, academic strengths, and any preferred work environments to help narrow down your options.

Next, let’s discuss some of the most popular areas of nursing and what makes them so great!

Entry requirements for German nursing degree programmes

In order to be eligible for admission to a German university, you will need a high school diploma or equivalent.

If you are not studying in your native language, you will also need to show proficiency in the German language. An easy way to do this is by taking an official university language test such as DSH or TestDaF, which are recognised by all German universities and many employers.

You can also apply for a preparatory German course before enrolling on your nursing degree. This allows you time to improve your German skills and prepare you for life in Germany.

Funding a German nursing degree

If you are interested in studying nursing in Germany, there are several funding opportunities available to you.

  • Scholarships: if you reside outside of the EU/EEA or Switzerland, you may be eligible for a monthly scholarship from the German Academic Exchange Service (Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst – DAAD). This scholarship includes a monthly stipend and money for study materials, health insurance and travel expenses.
  • Tuition fees: some universities charge tuition fees for undergraduate degrees. These vary depending on the university and degree program, but typically range between €500–800 (~US$560–890) per semester. However, nursing degrees are often exempt from tuition fees.
  • Cost of living: while studying abroad often comes with additional costs such as accommodation and travel expenses, these costs can be minimized by applying for student housing at your university. Accommodation costs will also depend on where in Germany you choose to study—cities such as Munich or Berlin tend to be more expensive than smaller towns or rural areas.

Studying nursing in Germany for free

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Admissions requirements for nursing degrees in English

In order to study nursing in Germany, you will be required to prove your proficiency in the German language. Note that all the medical degrees available at German universities are taught entirely in German, so to qualify for these programs you must be able to prove that your German is good enough.

If you don’t speak German, it’s not too late; there’s still a chance that you can get into nursing school by taking an intensive test prep course for the TestDaF exam. If you take such a course and earn high enough scores on it, many universities will consider admitting you into their degree programs.

This article covers the most important questions of how to study nursing in Germany

  • Where to study nursing in Germany

Germany is divided into 16 states, 11 of which have their own separate health care systems. The other five states share a uniform health care system. This means that the admission requirements for studying nursing may differ from state to state and you must find out which conditions apply where you are interested in studying nursing, as well as where you want to practice later on. However, there are some general aspects that apply everywhere and that we would like to summarize here: For example, it is no longer possible to study nursing anywhere in Germany without previous professional experience or an internship certificate. In addition, most universities require applicants’ English language skills to be at least B2 level (on the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages). In very rare cases this can also be replaced by a TOEFL or IELTS certificate with at least 80 points/6 points respectively.

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