Being abroad is certainly one of the most memorable experiences you can gain throughout your studies. You have the possibility of studying at Macromedia University of Applied Sciences in Berlin, Cologne, Hamburg or Munich for one or two semesters or for a full-degree B.A. or M.A. programme to develop your academic skills, while getting to know people from varying backgrounds and cultures.
Macromedia University will, as most German universities, in various ways run differently from institutions in your home country. Not only German culture, social life as well as professional life will vary, also the way academic life inside and outside class works could be very different to what you know from your home institutions-this can affect time schedules, the way to communicate with faculty and fellow students, your workload or the form of assessments and examinations.
Non-EU students need a student visa for entering and studying in Germany. All regulations and details concerning the visa application are listed on the German Missions Abroad website of your home country. You can apply for a visa at the German embassy or consulate of your home country. The Federal Foreign Office of Germany has listed all German missions abroad on its website.
Macromedia University will organise orientation days at the start of the semester. Orientation days will include a varied programme of activities to familiarise yourself with Macromedia University and the city you are going to live for the next few months. You will get information on living and studying in Germany, meet other students and enjoy a fun and stress-free start at Macromedia University. You will be provided with essential information, which is why attendance is mandatory.
Within the first two weeks after your arrival, you are obliged to report to the Residents Registration Office (Einwohnermeldeamt or Bürgeramt) to register your place of residence. If you have not yet found a place to stay for your entire stay abroad, you must change your registered address at the Residents Registration Office at a later time. You must schedule an appointment to register; if no appointments are available online, please call or have a local call since sometimes their staff speaks German only.
Opening a bank account
Once registered, you need to open a cheque account (Girokonto). You may choose freely between numerous different banking institutions. Most banks offer accounts free of charge for students. You will need a bank account in order to be able to pay rent, health insurance and tuition/semester fees. Please note that credit cards are not as widely accepted in Germany as in other countries. Instead, your bank will issue a debit card (Electronic Cash or EC card), which can be used for payments in most of Germany. For further information, please visit Deutsche Bank.
Taking Out Health Insurance
To register and study at Macromedia University, you are obliged to take out health insurance. You should make sure to take out a health insurance policy that provides sufficient cover for your needs. Hiffs and Krankenkassen can provide you with further information.
Application for Residence Permit
Citizens of the European Union (EU) and European Economic Area countries do not need a residence permit-nor does the Freedom of Movement Certificate for EU citizens formerly issued by the local Foreigners Registration Office (Ausländerbehörde) exist any longer. Citizens of all other countries do need a residence permit (Aufenthaltserlaubnis) if they intend to stay in Germany longer than three months.
Residence Permit Extension
Residence permit extension must also be applied for at the Foreigners Registration Office (Ausländerbehörde) before the expiration of your residence permit. It is important that you make an appointment with the Foreigners Registration Office as early as three months in advance.
Working While Studying in Germany
Students from countries of the European Union (EU) or European Economic Area (EEA) have free access to the German labour market. International students from non-EU/EEA countries who hold a student visa are eligible to work a total of 120 full days or 240 half days in one calendar year.
Internships that are voluntary and not compulsory count as normal work and will be deducted from the maximum of 120 days that international students from non-EU/EEA countries are eligible to work. Special regulations apply to internships that are a compulsory part of your studies.
Staying in Germany after the End of Your Studies
In general, graduates from the European Union (EU) or European Economic Area countries (EEA) have free access to the German labour market and do not need approval from the Federal Employment Agency to take up a job in Germany. By contrast, graduates from the new EU member states and all other international graduates who have successfully completed their studies at a German university are eligible to extend their residence permit for an additional 18 months to work and look for a job that corresponds to their qualifications. Graduates must apply for this extension at the local Foreigners Registration Office (Ausländerbehörde) and prove that they have sufficient financial resources to support themselves while staying in Germany. While looking for a fitting job during these 18 months, graduates are usually allowed to take up any kind of employment and to work without restrictions to support themselves and fund their job search.