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Scholarships for Development-Related Postgraduate Courses, Germany

Scholarships for Development-Related Postgraduate Courses, Germany

Development-Related Postgraduate Courses

  • Postgraduate courses for professionals from developing countries at German institutions of Higher education
  • Duration: 12-24 months, depending on the particular institution
  • Internationally recognised Master’s degree
  • Includes German Universities and “Fachhochschulen” (Universities of Applied Science)
  • Support of selected programmes with a variety of full or partial scholarships
  • Funded by the BMZ (Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development) but admission is also open to self-financed participants or students financed through government or other sources
  • Academic year 2016/2017

Dates and Deadlines

Scholarship applicants from developing countries (on the DAC List of the OECD) can apply directly to the postgraduate course. For further information about the application deadlines please contact the respective postgraduate course, because the deadlines may vary from university to university. Please also check our current brochure.

The selection process generally takes place at the universities in the period from November to February.

Scholarships are usually awarded for the following winter semester.

Prerequisites and Requirements

1. Prerequisites and Requirements
Selection criteria and procedures for DAAD scholarship recipients ensure that
  • priority target candidates have proven, development-related motivation and can be expected to make full use of their scholarship and education by taking on social responsibility later in their careers, acting as agents of change who stimulate and support development in their personal and professional surroundings (motivation, commitment to development),
  • the candidates have the professional and academic qualifications necessary to ensure successful completion of the degree programme in Germany (final scores on previous academic examinations, language skills),
  • women and candidates from disadvantaged groups who meet the required academic and professional standards and show proven commitment to development-related issues are especially targeted for programme admission.
a) The typical scholarship holder:
  • works either for a public authority or a state or private company in a developing country (according to the DAC list of the OECD) and, as such, is engaged in the planning and execution of directives and projects with emphasis on development policies having a bearing on technological, economic or social areas.
  • holds a Bachelor’s degree (4 years) in a related subject.
  • has completed an academic degree with far above average results and at least two years of related professional experience.
  • his/her academic degrees should normally not be more than 6 years old.
b) Language skills:
  • For courses in German: DSH 2 or TestDaF 4; at time of application German skills at completed level A2 are required. In addition, German language courses at level A2 or B1 are highly recommended.
  • Exception: Candidates for some German-speaking or bilingual courses need a very good command of German at time of application. For detailed information see the relevant course introduction on the following pages.
  • Note: It is not possible to pass the required German language courses (DSH or TestDaF) without any previous basic knowledge in the German language (at least A.2.1 Level), even with the preceding six-month, intensive course in Germany. Passing the language test is a formal prerequisite for graduating from the German university
  • For courses in English: IELTS (Band 6) certificate or TOEFL (minimum score: 550 paper based, 213 computer based, 80 internet based)
Note: Some courses may expect different level. For detailed information see the relevant course introduction on the following pages.
c) Proof of current work situation:
All applicants should state their current work situation at the time of application and submit the following proof: Certificate(s) of employment that include the exact position and period of employment; a letter of reference from the employer(s), ideally guaranteeing re-employment after completion of the postgraduate course in Germany.
d) Statement of motivation:
Applicants must submit a statement of motivation explaining why they are interested in attending a particular postgraduate course with reference to their current employment.
e) Application formalities:
If you have no private financial resources or cannot obtain a scholarship from your government, company or an international organisation, you may apply for a DAAD scholarship – either full or partial. DAAD application forms are available from the German Embassies, the DAAD offices abroad, directly from the University or on the DAAD website.
Important: Applications from Cameroon and Nigeria must be submitted via the German Embassy (please contact the German Embassy in time regarding information about the deadlines). All submitted applications forms, including all required documents, copies, etc. become property of the DAAD. The applicant has no right to payment or reimbursement. No documents will be returned. Applicants from the People’s Republic of China are asked to submit an APS Certificate, as well as 2 address labels written in Chinese characters with their application documents.
Please be sure to address applications to the postgraduate course directly! Applications sent via e-mail to the DAAD cannot be considered during the selection process.
Applicants are asked to state whether they are able to pay for cost of living expenses and their studies in Germany themselves or whether they can only complete the postgraduate course with financial support from a DAAD scholarship. Qualified applicants for whom self-financing is possible, have a good chance of being accepted by a postgraduate course.
Please note: Scholarships cannot be awarded without the official DAAD application form. Many courses, however, have their own forms, which must be submitted in addition to the DAAD application form (see details under course description).
f) Application deadlines for DAAD-scholarships:
Please contact the respective postgraduate course regarding the application deadline, because the application deadlines may vary from university to university. Please also check the relevant deadlines in our brochure. One application per postgraduate course is sufficient. Late applications cannot be considered!
g) Admission:The postgraduate course and/or the university decide on admission after consideration of the application documents. Admission to the university is a prerequisite for receiving a DAAD scholarship. However, applicants do not need to request early or pre-admission to the university.
Please Note that the selection process for all postgraduate courses listed in this booklet lasts from the end of October until February.
2. Required documents (in the following order):
  • DAAD application form (
  • hand-signed CV (please use the europass specimen form at
  • hand-signed letter of motivation (with reference to current occupation)
  • research exposé (if required by university)
  • academic letter/s of recommendation from your university; the letter must have a signature and office stamp and must be of recent date (not in a sealed envelope)
  • professional letter/s of recommendation from your employer; the letter must have a signature and office stamp and must be of recent date (not in a sealed envelope)
  • confirmation of employment from the employer in your home country and if possible, a guarantee of re-employment upon your return home
  • Proof of language abilities:
          – English – IELTS or TOEFL (Note: Institutional TOEFL will not be accepted)
          – German – necessary for the courses taught in German; for the courses taught in English, if available
  • copies of awarded academic degrees
  • copies of academic transcripts
  • copy of School Leaving Certificate
Note: Some courses may require additional documents. For detailed information, please see the relevant course description on the following pages. All documents must be submitted as identical duplicates. Applications that do not clearly state the desired degree course or are not completed in full, cannot be processed and will not be considered. If applying to more than one course, please list courses in order of priority. You must send one full set of application documents for each course applied to.
For economic and environmental reasons, please avoid using sheet holders and plastic folders in your application
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