Are you interested in coming to Germany to study but are nervous about the application process? We’re here to help! uni-assist is a national service provider which many universities in Germany use to process all of their international student applications, this includes top-ranked universities as well.
Do you want to know which universities handle their application through uni-assist? Our StudyFinder can help you with this! By simply using the filters on the left hand column, you can see all of the universities which use uni-assist and among them, you will find many top-ranked universities.
Further Readinguni-assist Universities in Germany (2021/2022)
A benefit about uni-assist is that you only have to submit an application to uni-assist once, even if you are applying to several study programs; as long as they process their applications through uni-assist, you don’t have to submit documentation again! uni-assist processes your documents and submits the remaining applications you would like to the universities of your choice. Should different programs require different documents, uni-assist will ensure that you simply upload all required documents for all study programs you are applying to. Unfortunately, their online platform can sometimes be confusing for international students and create confusion as to what the university is in charge of and what uni-assist is in charge of. This article will break down everything you need to know about uni-assist. From who they are, to what they do, to what you need to do for your application, all of your questions are answered below!
What is uni-assist - and when is it relevant for my study program application?
uni-assist is a national service provider based in Berlin which is used by approx. 170 universities (June 2020) to help them process international student applications. They also support international students who are interested in applying to German universities. uni-assist does this by providing general information about the application process online and processing relevant application documents required by universities for the admissions process. They are there to facilitate the application process and ensure that all students have required documents, even though they come from different countries and certificates and grading systems vary.
uni-assist does not make the decision on whether a student is admitted to a study program. They are only in charge of ensuring that a student has all required application materials and that all official documents are verified. Once this is complete, they transfer the documents to the university that the student is applying to. So while it may seem at times that you’re applying to uni-assist to which all of your documents and certificates you will be required to submit, just remember that they are only a service provider and have no influence on your admission to any study program.
Something to keep in mind: some universities use uni-assist to process international student applications only for certain degree programs, but not all degree programs. Therefore, you should check if your preferred degree program uses uni-assist rather than searching for the University on the list of member universities. Even if your preferred university is listed, it can be the case that your particular program has direct applications through the university or vice versa.
What does uni-assist do exactly?
If uni-assist is taking all of your documents and information but isn’t in charge of your admission into a study program, you may be wondering what they actually do. Though universities evaluate student applications and ultimately decide on which students are admitted, uni-assist processes the application materials and facilitates the admissions process. uni-assist does this by:
- Evaluating official certificates to determine whether they fulfill the criteria for studying in Germany.
- Converting grades to the German grading system.
- Checking all admission requirements of your universities of choice.
- Registering all data and documents required for the university of your choice’s admissions procedure.
- Informing students about evaluation results.
Again, just to be clear, uni-assist does not make the decision on whether a student is admitted to a study program. They are only in charge of ensuring that a student has all required application materials and that all official documents are verified. In special cases, some universities will have uni-assist verify documents even though the application procedure is directly through the university. Confused? Don’t be! We’ve got you covered and will explain it all in the next section.
Special Case: Vorprüfungsdokumentation (VPD)
Some universities have their application process directly with the university and just use services from uni-assist to verify the documents required to apply. Through this process, once students have documents verified by uni-assist, they receive Vorprüfungsdokumentation (VPD) (don’t let big German words scare you, in English this translates to ‘Pre-Review Documentation’) which they then must send, along with the application and required documents, directly to the university. Easily put, the VPD is like a certification given to students by uni-assist after the verification of official documents. Afterward, students must submit the VPD certification directly to the university when they apply. Students must submit the VPD to the university before the application deadline expires. The VPD contains information on which educational certificates students presented to uni-assist, which kind of university entrance is possible with these certificates, and how uni-assist rates their grades within the German grading system. To clarify, even though students must have their documents verified by uni-assist in this case, the application is still done directly through the university.
How to apply through uni-assist - in 6 Easy Steps
While the uni-assist can be a bit overwhelming, we’re going to break it down for you in 6 easy steps!
Use our StudyFinder to find your top study programs and see if they handle international student applications through uni-assist. You can also select programs without uni-assist by using our helpful filter options which will customize your search results to your dream study program.
Keep track of the deadlines for your preferred study program, keeping in mind how long the processing of your application will take (weeks or months). Study the details of the application procedure.
- Gather all documents required by your study program.
- Make sure that you check documents required depending on your country.
- Have all documents translated by an official certified translator.
- Obtain certified copies of each certificate translation.
- Make digital copies of all required documents.
After registering with the uni-assist online portal, create an online application for each study program that you wish to apply to and upload all required documents.
Submit uni-assist fees for all study program applications.
Take all certified hard copies required by the application and submit them to uni-assist in the mail.
Fees: how much does it cost to apply via uni-assist (and are there waivers)?
We know what you’re thinking… ”Sounds great, but will this whole process cost me money?” In short, yes, uni-assist charges fees for their services. Because processing documents from all over the globe, verifying their authenticity, and converting grades to the German grading system takes a great deal of time and resources, they do charge a marginal fee per application. The good news is that once you submit an application to a university, the rest of the applications are charged less. The prices are below:
EUR 75.00 for your first desired course of study in an application semester.
Each additional desired course of study in the same semester costs EUR 30.00. There is no limit for the number of applications you can send through uni-assist, but keep in mind that universities can limit the number of applications per semester. You should enquire at your chosen university about how many courses of study you can apply to at the same time.
But wait, we have some good news! Some universities that process their international student applications through uni-assist cover the uni-assist application fees. This keeps the application fee free for you! Want to know which universities and programs cover the uni-assist fee for their students? Check out the Cost Transfer site from uni-assist to see if your preferred program is listed.
Currently, there are no fee waivers or exemptions regarding the application fees for uni-assist. However, students with special circumstances or refugees are encouraged to contact their university program directly regarding the application process. You can read more about special programs for refugees from uni-assist here.
Pros & Cons of applying via uni-assist
If you are narrowing down your top study program choices and aren’t sure whether you should let the application process play a role in your decision, make yourself a pros and cons list about each of the programs. Below, we’ve created one ourselves to weigh out the pros and cons about the uni-assist application procedure:
In our view, it is important for students to select the study program best suited for them, regardless of processes. We, therefore, encourage international students to apply to any program they are interested in.
Geeky Stuff Box
- If you are still searching for your dream study program, rather than simply looking up to see if a university is a uni-assist member, make sure to pay attention to the application procedure for your specific program since not all programs from a university will use uni-assist.
- Make sure to check deadlines and processing times as soon as you find a program you’d like to apply to. Processing times can take several weeks and you want to ensure that you don’t miss out on your dream study program by missing a silly deadline!
- If the original language of your certificates is not English or German, you must submit both the original certificate and the certified translation of the certificate to uni-assist.
- Don’t forget to check and see if your university covers the uni-assist fees for your study program application procedure! For more details, click here.
List of German Universities that process their English-taught Degree Applications through uni-assist 2021/2022
Program Fees: 5,700 € - 9,150 €
M.A. (Master of Arts)
MBA (Master of Business Administration)
Program Fees: 2,640 €
M.A. (Master of Arts)
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uni-assist provides a list with all member universities on their website which gives you a first orientation if uni-assist might be relevant for you or not. But since member universities may also offer direct applications for some master’s programs, be sure to look for the specific study program of your choice for their application procedures.