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Change of Perspective. Show image information

Change of Perspective.

Photo: Paderborn University

The way to study

In Germany, there are more than 10,000 bachelor's degree programs at universities, universities of applied sciences, art and music colleges, and distance-learning universities. In order to find the right course of study from this wide range, it is important to approach the process of study orientation in a structured manner. The following steps can be a guide on the way to the right degree program.

In 4 steps to choose a course

Step 1: Orientation

The first step is to consciously shape the decision-making process. To do this, it is important on the one hand to gain clarity about one's own interests, abilities and goals and to collect criteria about what is important and should be fulfilled later in one's studies or job.

What do I enjoy doing at school?
What do I like to do?
Would I leave my home town to study?
Am I more interested in theory or practice?

- Become aware of interests, abilities and goals
- Collect criteria for choosing a course of study
- Research study programmes (
- Formulate questions about individual degree programmes and universities

Databases and interest tests on degree programmes (self-exploration tool, university compass), workshops, self-assessments

Step 2: Informing

Once an initial narrowing down of fields of study and degree programmes has taken place, the next step is to take a closer look at individual degree programmes. For this purpose, detailed information on individual study programmes should be researched and collected on the websites of the universities, at lectures or information stands.

What are the entry requirements for my desired degree programme?
What is the content and focus of the degree programme?
Which occupational fields does the degree programme open up?

- List interesting degree programmes
- Note down questions about individual degree programmes
- Obtain detailed information on degree programmes

Open days/info days at the universities, education fairs, lectures, online self-assessment

Since the admission requirements at the different universities can vary, it is worth comparing the requirements with each other.

Step 3: Trying it out

To make a decision, it is important to get a personal impression of the university and to experience the atmosphere in a lecture or seminar. Therefore, the next step is to get a taste of university life and learn about the contents of selected degree programmes live. There is always the opportunity to talk to students and professors.

Do I feel comfortable at the university?
Can I imagine studying this degree programme?
What is the course of a lecture like?
How does the daily routine differ from school?

- get a personal impression
- Compare expectations and ideas with real-life conditions
- Get to know the contents of degree programmes live
- Weigh up alternatives

Attend lectures, accompany students, complete university internship

Step 4: Deciding

The decision for or against a degree programme or a specific field of study is not always easy. It can happen that ideas and expectations do not match the preferred study programme and thus the individual steps of the study and career choice process are gone through again. In the whole orientation process, the following should not be forgotten: There is no perfect or single right choice. Every single person fits several study programmes and professions.

Does the degree programme suit me, my interests and career aspirations?
Do I meet all the necessary requirements?

- Gather missing information
- Compare degree programmes with each other
- Reflect on the decision-making process

Personal discussions with study advisors, subject representatives, students, professional representatives

The University for the Information Society