Educational institutions and study programmes
German educational institutions and study programmes
Below, we explain what types of German educational institutions and study programmes there are, and how we check whether they are recognised and/or accredited. We check the and to make sure that the quality is sufficient. We give the necessary information for each type of education:
- Secondary education| diplomas
- Higher education| educational institutions
- Higher education| study programmes
The government of a country grants an official status to an educational institution and/or study programme. Usually, if the government recognises an educational institution, all its study programmes are also recognised. However recognition may also be arranged at the programme level. This means that the government must recognise not only the educational institution, but also its study programmes. We only evaluate diplomas from recognised institutions and recognised study programmes. Read more about recognition in the EAR manual.
An organisation checks and assesses the quality of education. Usually the accreditation is valid for a certain period. In some countries, accreditation is compulsory, in others it is voluntary. The government of a country often appoints one or more organisations responsible for accrediting institutions and/or study programmes. In addition, there are also private accreditation organisations. We only mention and (in the case of diploma evaluations) consult accreditation organisations appointed by the government of that country. Read more about accreditation in the EAR manual.
Secondary education | diplomas
With regard to secondary education programmes, you have to pay special attention to the fact that a student has a recognised diploma. These are the recognised upper secondary education diplomas:
- Schulischen Teil der Fachhochschulreife
- Zeugnis der Allgemeinen Hochschulreife
- Zeugnis der Fachgebundenen Hochschulreife
See Secondary education documents for a short explanation of the documents that students receive.
Higher education | educational institutions
In Germany, there are separate educational institutions for research-oriented higher education and higher professional education.
Institutions for research-oriented higher education
Students can follow research-oriented higher education at various Universitäten and specialised Hochschulen:
- Technische Universitäten
- Technische Hochschulen
- Wissenschaftliche Hochschulen, zoals:
- Pädagogische Hochschulen
- Erziehungswissenschaftliche Hochschulen
- Medizinische Hochschulen
- Philosophisch-Theologische Hochschulen
- Kunst- en Musikhochschulen
Kunst- en Musikhochschulen
In German higher education, Kunst- en Musikhochschulen form a separate category. The admission requirements and diplomas of these institutions are often the same as those of the research-oriented Universitäten en Hochschulen. However, the goal of the programme is often more similar to that of Dutch universities of applied sciences ( ). Per study programme, we determine if we can compare the diploma to a Dutch HBO or diploma.
Institutions for higher professional education
Fachhochschulen offer higher professional education. In English, these institutions are called: university of applied sciences.
Higher professional education (hoger beroepsonderwijs, HBO). Dutch higher education distinguishes between research-oriented higher education (wetenschappelijk onderwijs, WO) and higher professional education (hoger beroepsonderwijs, HBO). HBO is more oriented towards professions in specific areas than WO, and has traditionally been offered at universities of applied sciences (hogescholen).
Research-oriented higher education (wetenschappelijk onderwijs, WO). Dutch higher education distinguishes between research-oriented higher education (wetenschappelijk onderwijs, WO) and higher professional education (hoger beroepsonderwijs, HBO). WO is oriented more towards theory and research than HBO, and has traditionally been offered at research universities (universiteiten).
Checking the recognition of higher education institutions
You can find a search tool for all recognised German higher education institutions on the Hochschulkompass website (in German only).
- Open the Hochschulkompass search tool.
- At the section ‘Suchen Sie hier nach Hochschulen’, enter the name of the German higher education institution and click on ‘Treffer anzeigen’.
- No result? The higher education institution is probably not recognised.
Higher education | study programmes
In Germany, study programmes need to be accredited. You can find accredited study programmes via the Hochschulkompass website (in German only).
- First, look up the educational institution via the Hochschulkompass search tool. We explain how this can be done above, under the section ‘Checking the recognition of higher education institutions’.
- You will now see 1 or more search results. Under the name of the educational institution, click on ‘Mehr erfahren’.
- Then click on ‘Studiengänge’.
- Click on ‘grundständige Studienangebote’ if you are searching for accredited bachelor’s programme or other undergraduate study programmes.
- Click on ‘weiterführende Studienangebote’ if you are searching for accredited master’s programme or other postgraduate study programmes.
- Click on ‘komplettes Studienangebot’ if you want an overview of all the accredited study programmes.
- Is the study programme not listed? It is probably not accredited.