The language of instruction at the University of Duisburg-Essen is German (except in the English-language degree programmes). You must therefore have a good knowledge of German if you want to study successfully. The majority of foreign applicants are required to provide evidence of German proficiency to DSH 2 level (with just a few exceptions for certain programmes) before they begin full academic study. You may present one of the following as evidence of your proficiency in German:
- German language test for entrance to higher education with an overall level of at least DSH 2 (taken at a German university),
- German language diploma (level II) of the KMK Standing Conference (DSD II) (Kultusministerkonferenz),
- telc C1 Hochschule certificate with an overall of ausreichend or higher,
- TestDaF certificate in ALL subsections to level TDN 4 or higher,
- Zentrale Oberstufenprüfung (ZOP) certificate from the Goethe Institute,
- Kleines Deutsches Sprachdiplom and/or Großes Deutsches Sprachdiplom,
- Successful completion of the Studienkolleg assessment test,
- Completed degree programme in German Studies within the EU or the CIS countries (further countries may be specified by the DSH commission).
Please note the current DSH3 requirements for the following study programmes:
Medicine (state examination)
Business Administration Duisburg (M. Sc.)
German as a foreign and second language
(double degree M.A.)
Are there any other language requirements?
For many degree programmes, proof of other language skills is essential. You can find out the language requirements of the various programmes from the descriptions on the study courses pages.
Please note: you cannot apply for admission to ISE degree programmes at the University of Duisburg-Essen without basic knowledge of the English language. Candidates are expected to have acquired English language skills equivalent to the levels of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages specified below in their home countries:
- B1 (for bachelor’s programmes)
- B2 (for master’s programmes)
Please provide proof of your language skills in the form of a certificate (TOEFL, IELTS, Medium of Instruction).
Can I apply without adequate knowledge of German?
If you do not have a certificate proving the required German language proficiency for direct admission for a degree programme without admission restrictions (F), you can apply for a German language course.
Please note: you CANNOT apply for German language courses in preparation of a degree programme with admission restrictions (NC/Orts-NC)!
An application is possible within the application periods in the application portals. Once your eligibility for university admission – and, in the case of master’s courses, your subject-specific aptitude has been established, you will receive a letter of admission for a language course.
You are then able to enrol at the University of Duisburg-Essen as a German language student for the time you are learning German. You will then be issued your semester documents, including your student identity card, semester ticket and access to the University facilities (canteens, library, IT services, university sport, etc.).
Attending the language programme is by no means part of the full degree programme. During the German course you concentrate entirely on learning the language and on the German language examination. When you have successfully completed the German course, it is essential that you make a renewed application for your chosen degree programme by the applicable deadlines.
Unfortunately, the University of Duisburg-Essen does not offer any preparatory German courses. Please find a list of accepted language course providers here.
With effect from March 2015, the minimum language requirement for registration for the DSH-examination has been raised to C1 on the CEFR. Applications for an examination place must be accompanied by proof that level C1 has already been successfully completed. This may come in the form of a certificate or explicit confirmation from a language school that the level C1 has been successfully completed. This proof must be submitted at the time of application for the DSH-examination. Confirmations which only state the number and/or hours of German classes taken will no longer be accepted.
Downloads and links
Information on DSH exams at UDE
DSH-regulations at UDE
Language course providers
Information on TestDaF