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International Exchange Students

Drei Studierende Personen vor dem Gebäude in Soest.

Further Information for your stay at the Fachhochschule Südwestfalen

German Language Course

We recommend our international exchange students to take part in our German course. One course is held in Soest and another one is held either in Iserlohn or in Hagen depending on the number of ERASMUS students applying for the individual campus. Somtimes courses are offered for the summer semester but this depends on the number of students interested.

You should register for the German course when you send in your application form. If you have any questions as to the exact dates of the course, please contact the International Office.

The German courses at the Fachhochschule Südwestfalen are free of charge.

ERASMUS students are urgently recommended to make use of the OSL language courses offered by the ERASMUS programme. Students receiving a grant from the DAAD should do the online German course with Deutsch-Uni Online. Theses courses are recommended by the DAAD and students can acquire ECTS credits for them.

Cost of living

It is rather difficult to give general information about the cost of living in Germany. But you will find some helpful ideas on the webpages of the DAAD.This page is available in German as well as in English.


Usually foreign students can get a room in the students residence halls. Since the number of international students at the Fachhochschule Südwestfalen is increasing, these halls are often fully booked. In these cases the International Office will help you to find accommodation elsewhere. Please do not forget to indicate on your application form if you need such help.

Prices for accommodation vary a lot. Rooms in Hagen can be obtained for 180 Euros per months, but prices on the private sector are a lot higher.

Visa, Residence, Insurance

Foreign students wishing to enter the Federal Republic of Germany require a residence permit visa for study purposes / student visa (Aufenthaltserlaubnis in der Form des Sichtvermerks) issued by a diplomatic representation of the Federal Republic of Germany (embassy or consulate) in the student's country of origin and entered into the passport.

This regulation does not apply to study applicants and students from EU countries and from countries with which Germany has agreed on different regulations (e.g. Australia, Iceland, Israel, Canada, Switzerland, United States).

You are urgently warned against entering the country as a tourist. A tourist visa cannot be retrospectively converted into a visa or residence permit for educational purposes.

On the web site of The Federal Foreign Office you find all essential information on German entry regulations.

Your visa application has to be directed to the German embassy or consulate in your country.

Find German missions abroad

Residence Regulations

After having entered Germany you will need a residence permit. Within a week of your arrival you have to report to the residents’ registration office (Einwohnermeldeamt) in the town in which you are living, where you will apply for a residence permit. To do so, you will need your passport, your health insurance certificate, your lease, a confirmation of enrolment and proof that your stay in Germany is financially covered. The International Office will help you with this.

Approximately two weeks after registration at the Residents´Registration Office your data will be provided to the Aliens' Registrations Authority (Ausländerbehörde), so then you can apply for the residence permit. The International Office will tell you where you will find the local Residents' Registration Office. Your residence permit allows you to work for a certain amount of time. You will find the number of days in your residence permit, usually these are 120 full days per year.

Health Insurance

Some countries health insurance schemes are recognised in Germany, so you may continue being insured in your own country. This will be cleared with the International Office when you arrive.

Accident Insurance

All students are insured against accidents at, on their way to and from their university by the statutory accident insurance scheme.

Liability Insurance

We recommend that you insure yourself with a private liability insurance company.

DAAD Insurance: Destination Germany

The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) offers you very comprehensive insurance package. Please check the following link for further information and application: