Studying at a public university in Germany is synonymous with learning at a tuition-free German university because the German government subsidizes most public universities in the country.
With this knowledge, it is no surprise that many students, especially from foreign countries, are looking to enroll in programs offered by German public universities.
In deciding to further your education in Germany, you probably have chosen to enroll at a public university there because there are tuition-free. You need to remember that there are a few exceptions for specialized programs.
In this article, Fastlagos breaks down the admission details of some of the best public universities in Germany that are ideal for both local and international students.
8 Recommended Public Universities in Germany
According to Germany’s most extensive database for English-language Bachelor’s and Master’s programs, MyGermanUniversity, public universities dominate German higher educational institutions with more than 240 universities.
If you are considering attending a public university in Germany today, here is our list of the best recommended, especially for international students:
- Technische Universität Dresden
- Technical University of Munich
- Humboldt University of Berlin
- Freie Universität Berlin
- Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)
- University of Hamburg
- RWTH Aachen University
- Technische Universität Berlin
Technische Universität Dresden
- Tuition Fee: Free
- Technische Universität Dresden Admission Requirement Page
- Technische Universität Dresden Tuition Details Page
Technische Universität Dresden is a german public university that is tuition-free, but students are expected to pay semestrial dues of as low as 207 EUR.
The university is based on the borderlines of Germany and the Czech Republic. It offers students the opportunity to study and live in one of the most affordable areas in Germany.
TU Dresden is the right place for students on a tight budget who want to study at a German university that engages in research in several fields, including Health Sciences, Biomedicine & Bioengineering, Information Technology & Microelectronics, etc.
The school offers a course in 120 different disciplines taught in English without charging any tuition fees.
Courses at Technische Universitate Dresden include General Engineering, Electrical, and Electronic Engineering, Geology, Environmental, Earth and Marine Sciences, Civil Engineering, Communication, and Media Studies.
Technical University of Munich
- Tuition Fee: Costs anywhere between 100 EUR and 200 EUR per semester
- Technical University of Munich Admission Requirement Page
- Technical University of Munich Tuition Details Page
The Technical University of Munich is one of Germany’s renowned public universities that offer a Bachelor in Civil Engineering, a Master of Science in Power Engineering, an MSc in Sustainable Resource Management, and an Executive MBA in Innovation and Business Creation.
It is the only state university solely dedicated to the field of Science and Technology and has been in operation since 1927.
The public institution started by offering courses in Engineering but has expanded over the years into multiple programs in Social Sciences, Agriculture, Medicine, Food Technology, and Sciences.
The Technical University of Munich is made up of 15 academic departments.
Humboldt University of Berlin
- Tuition Fee: None
- Humboldt University of Berlin Admission Requirement Page
- Humboldt University of Berlin Tuition Details Page
This is another public university in Germany that is particularly glorified for its research and teaching excellence. Humboldt University offers programs in Natural sciences and is recognized worldwide for its programs in Art and Humanities.
Bachelor of Science in Computer Science, Master’s in IT and Private Security, BSc in Agricultural Science, Master’s in Mathematics, and Bachelor’s in Psychology are examples of programs offered at Humboldt University.
With a total of 9 faculties, the university touches on disciplines of Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Arts and Humanities, Language, Literature and Language, Economics and Business Administration, Humanities and Social Sciences, Law, Life Sciences, and Theology.
The tuition fee is free at Humboldt university, but students must pay between 200 EUR and 325 EUR per semester, which will cover student welfare and similar expenses.
Freie Universität Berlin (FU)
- Tuition Fee: None
- Freie Universität Berlin Admission Requirement Page
- Freie Universität Berlin Tuition Details Page
Popularly known as the Free University of Berlin, Freie Universität Berlin is a fully state-funded university among the German Universities Excellence Initiative.
The university has been operating since 1948 and comprises 12 academic departments and four interdisciplinary primary institutions.
Some significant programs in Freie Universität Berlin include Bachelor in Physics, a Master in Economics, Bachelor in Information Management, and Master in Public Economics.
The Free University of Berlin is a prevailing choice for free international students studying in Germany, particularly in Berlin. If you fall under this category, your options are unlimited.
In a recent article, we have reviewed some of the best free universities in Berlin, like Freie Universität Berlin, that may pique your interest more.
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)
- Tuition Fee: 1500 EUR per semester
- Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) Admission Requirement Page
- Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) Tuition Details Page
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) is another public university in Germany. Still, it may not appeal to many international students because only a few courses are administered in English.
Nevertheless, the institution is among the eleven ‘Universities of Excellence’ as it provides innovative infrastructure, high-tech amenities, and attractive post-study opportunities.
If you pick KIT as the public university you want to attend in Germany, you will need to provide a German DH2-level certificate. It is an excellent place to be if your specialization is taught there.
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology offers courses like Master of Water Science and Engineering, Master of Remote Sensing, and Geoinformatics.
University of Hamburg
- Tuition Fee: Null
- University of Hamburg Admission Requirement Page
- University of Hamburg Tuition Details Page
The few significant programs provided by the university of Hamburg include a BSc in Computing in Science, Masters in IT Management and Consulting, an MSc in Intelligent Adaptive Systems, Master of Science in Business Mathematics.
The university is worth considering when looking for a reputable public institution in Germany. Based in the north of Germany, the University of Hamburg opened its doors in 1919 and has offered a wide range of degree programs in most fields of study since then.
A total of 8 faculties are established under this university, all with a particular focus on research due to its affiliations with research-oriented establishments like Max Planch institutions and the Confucius Institute.
RWTH Aachen University
- Tuition Fee: None
- RWTH Aachen University Admission Requirement Page
- RWTH Aachen University Tuition Details Page
Suppose the course you want to study includes Applied Geophysics, Electrical Power Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Information Technology, Micro and Nanoelectronics, or Civil Engineering. In that case, you can consider the RWTH Aachen University in Germany.
Apart from being the largest university of technology in Germany, RWTH Aachen University is a famous public institution with no tuition charge.
Despite this, the infrastructure and promising future for its students offered by this university has stayed the same.
The school offers various Masters degrees in English for international students. RWTH is undoubtedly one of the best options if you plan to study German for free.
Technische Universität Berlin
- Tuition Fee: None
- Technische Universität Berlin Admission Requirement Page
- Technische Universität Berlin Tuition Details Page
Technische Universität Berlin is a free, public german university that boasts one of Germany’s largest technical universities. It has a student body of over 30,000 studying more than 100 courses.
With 26 English courses offered free of charge, the university is one of the best options for prospective public universities.
Besides that, the university is known for its research and international networking. Courses offered in this school include Architecture Typology, Building Sustainability, Business Engineering Energy, and Computational Neuroscience.
Are All Public Universities Free in Germany?
Yes, public german universities are without tuition charges. The 16 states have long abolished all public institutions’ tuition fees for undergraduate students (both domestic and international undergraduates).
While these public universities are free, students must pay a small fee to cover administration and other costs per semester.
How Do I Apply For a Public University in Germany?
It may be easy to find an excellent, free university in Germany. But meeting the requirement to study in these universities seems rocket science for many prospective students.
Most German universities request a 90 percent academic score for UG programs for admission. Another significant hurdle is the acceptance rate of most public german universities, which is high, posing a challenge to international students, mostly.
In addition, international students need to appear for IELTS or TOEFL exam as an English Language Proficiency Exam.
In the above review, we have provided you with the official page of these public universities to help you navigate their website for further details on the application or enquires.
It is not only the beer, pretzels, old castles, fortresses, automobiles, or railway system that make Germany a famous destination.
The country is known for being home to some of the world’s best public, tuition-free universities and private ones, with some specialized programs at a reasonable tuition charge.
There are about 240 public universities in Germany’s higher education system. If you plan to enroll at any, I hope this review has helped you make a better-educated choice.
Feel free to share questions or opinions in the comments on the area you might need clarification regarding public universities in Germany.
Cheers to your academic success!