Private Universities in Germany

Private universities are a minority compared to public universities in Germany. Statistically, private universities share less than 10% of all higher education institutions in Germany.

According to the official records of accredited higher education providers in Germany, as of Winter Semester 2017/18, there were 19 private universities in Germany and 93 private Universities of Applied Sciences.

The number of private universities in Germany has increased in recent years as more students are choosing it as a route to get higher education qualifications. Although public universities still remain the top choice for home and international students, private universities are also becoming a popular landing area for prospective home and international students.

They offer various study programs, valuable practice sessions, employable market-oriented skills and overall a unique studying experience.

That said, reasons to attend a private university in Germany are many and obvious. But, before deciding which private university you’re willing to enroll, we recommend you to check if the university is accredited by relevant German institutions.

This information is very important for your decision because an accredited university is an assurance that the quality of education provided there is equivalent to the national education standards set by the government.

The full list of accredited private universities in Germany

  • Berlin School of Business and Innovation
  • GISMA Business School
  • Bard College Berlin
  • CODE University of Applied Sciences
  • Deutsche Journalistenschule
  • EBC Hochschule
  • FOM University of Applied Sciences, Economics and Management
  • Friedensau Adventist University
  • Hertie School of Governance
  • International Psychoanalytic University Berlin
  • Munich Business School
  • Munich University of Applied Languages
  • Natural Science and Academy Isny
  • SRH Hochschule Berlin
  • Steinbeis-Hochschule Berlin
  • Steinbeis Business Academy
  • University of Applied Sciences Europe
  • Gustav Siewerth Academy
  • WHU – Otto Beisheim School of Management
  • Witten/Herdecke University

State-accredited private Universities of Applied Sciences (Fachhochschule) in Germany

  • IUBH University of Applied Sciences
  • FOM College
  • Hamburger Fern-Hochschule
  • College Fresenius
  • German University for Prevention and Health Management
  • European Fernhochschule Hamburg
  • Rheinische Fachschule Koln
  • Wilhelm Buchner University
  • Diploma College
  • AKAD University
  • Fachholchschule des Mittelstands (FHM)
  • SRH Fernhochschule
  • SRH University of Applied Sciences Heidelberg
  • MSH Medical School Hamburg
  • International School of Management
  • PFH Private University of Gottingen
  • Macromedia College
  • University of Applied Management FH
  • University of Applied Sciences Europe
  • APOLLON College of Health Economics
  • Technical College Geroge Agricola
  • IST College of Management
  • North Academy – College of Economics
  • University of Applied Sciences FHDW
  • European University of Applied Sciences (EU | FH)
  • HMKW Hochschule fur Medien, Kommunikation und Wirtschaft
  • Cologne Business School
  • MSB Medical School Berlin – University of Health and Medicine
  • Fliedner University of Applied Sciences Dusseldorf
  • University of Applied Sciences Wedel
  • AMD Academy Fashion & Design – Design Department of the Hochschule Fresenius
  • German University of Health & Sports
  • EBZ Business School
  • Municipal School of Administration in Lower Saxony
  • Media Design College
  • BBW College
  • Provadis School of International Management and Technology
  • SRH College of Health
  • College 21
  • Hamburg School of Business Administration
  • BSO Business School of Berlin University of Management
  • SRH Hochschule Berlin
  • College of the Savings Banks Finance Group
  • EBC College
  • University of Diakonie
  • Northern Business School – College of Management and Security
  • SRH University of Applied Sciences Hamm
  • SRH College of Popular Arts
  • IB College
  • Leibniz University of Applied Sciences
  • Munich Business School
  • Karlshochschule International University
  • Private University of Economics and Technology phwt
  • University of Applied Sciences Dresden
  • Akkon University of Human Sciences
  • Accadis Hochschule Bad Homburg
  • College of Business, Technology and Culture
  • University of Weserbergland
  • College of Business Management (HdWM)
  • University of Applied Languages – University of Languages & Interpreters Insitute Munich eV
  • College Dopfer
  • BSP Business School Berlin – Campus Hamburg
  • University of Applied Sciences Hannover
  • VWA University for extra-occupational study
  • DEKRA University of Applied Sciences
  • YMCA University
  • College of Bavarian Business
  • Design Academy Berlin – SRH College of Communication and Design
  • College of German Social Accident Insurance
  • European Management School
  • University of Applied Sciences for Sport and Management Potsdam
  • Brand Academy – College of Design and Communication
  • German Graduate School of Management and Law Heilbronn
  • SRH University of Applied Sciences Heidelberg, Campus Calw
  • College of Communication and Design
  • Merz Academy – College of Design, Art and Media
  • Allensbach University of Konstanz
  • Vitruvius University of Leipzig
  • University of Applied Sciences Clara Hoffbauer Potsdam
  • Berlin International University of Applied Sciences
  • Media Academy – University of Stuttgart
  • Touro College Berlin
  • Wilhelm Lohe University of Applied Sciences
  • College of Applied Pedagogy
  • Quadriga University of Applied Sciences Berlin
  • NTA College Isny
  • Cusanus College
  • CODE University of Applied Sciences
  • University of Health-oriented Sciences Rhein-Neckar
  • oncampus GmbH
  • Hamburg Media School
  • Eufom business School  

Popular degrees in German private universities

Incoming students have the opportunity to choose a degree course from a wide rich scheme of study programs at all academic levels. However, in comparison with public universities, the number of degree courses in private universities is limited.

Referring to enrollment trends and study programs offered at most private universities in Germany, the following subject degrees are the most popular:

  • Business
  • Economics
  • Management
  • Psychology
  • Humanities
  • Arts
  • Political Sciences

Entry Requirements and Application deadlines

Private universities in Germany are not too competitive, therefore entry requirements are not that stringent. Plus, private universities in Germany are distinctive from public counterparts for the fact that most of the time they don’t apply the “numerus clausus” norm, which means that chances for you to get admitted are high regardless of competition.

Usually, admission committees expect you to have a recognized qualification in Germany, an officially certified transcript of your grades and a proof of language proficiency.

Application deadlines may vary from university to university. For that, you should check the applications deadline section on the university’s website well in time.

The cost of attending a private German university

Public higher education in Germany is offered for free, at least for the majority of universities. On the contrary, private German universities charge tuition fees, so there is a certain cost associated with it.

Despite this, the cost of attending a private German university is affordable compared to universities in some of the most popular study destinations, like for example universities in UK. In Germany, there’s no certain governmental regulative mechanism that sets and control tuition fee policies so Universities are free to independently set their own fees.

As such, there are various changes in terms of university fees in private universities in Germany. Overall the cost of an academic year in a German private university will cost you something between €2,000 and around €20,000.

Note that tuition fees change in accordance with the university’s reputation and the type of your course. Naturally, universities who are in-demand charge higher fees compared to less reputed universities. In addition, the type of your course plays a role in the total fee cost.

Given that, private universities charge lower tuition fees as compared to private universities of Applied Sciences because there are additional costs to be covered from the university’s budget dedicated to experimental facilities and equipment.

The most expensive private universities and private universities of applied sciences in Germany:

  • Bard College Berlin
  • GISMA Business School
  • CODE University of Applied Sciences
  • Munich Business School
  • Otto Beisheim School of Management
  • EBC Hochschule
  • Munich University of Applied Languages
  • Berlin International University of Applied Sciences

Other university fees

Note that students at German private universities are also charged with few additional fees including here application fee, enrollment fee and semester contribution (which is also charged at tuition-free public universities).

All these types of payments are small compared to course fees. Application fees are usually around €50, the enrollment fee ranges somewhere between €200 and 400€, whereas the semester contribution is similar to public universities and varies between €100 and around €300.

An important thing you should also pay extra attention too, are the payment deadlines. Usually, private universities have a fixed time frame within which you must pay the money required to enroll your course. At the maximum, the deadline to pay for your course is two weeks before it starts, but this changes from university to university so we recommend you check it by yourself.

Lastly, it is common for private universities in Germany to apply reduced tuition fees for German resident students who meet certain criteria mostly related to their incomes and assets. For example, German nationals at the Otto Beisheim School of Management who have an income below a threshold of €7,670 are eligible for reduced tuition fees.

Funding options

Although private universities in Germany charge fees, they are still a suitable option because of numerous funding options available to you. However, home students are most of the time a primary subject of scholarship programs, but there are still available opportunities for you as an international student.

Every private university in German has incorporated a specific international office which deals with issues of the current or incoming foreign students. This office must be the first-port-to-call about available scholarships to international students.


Typically, private universities don’t have private rooms, but fortunately, the majority of them provide excellent guidance for international students. Moreover, some of them reserve a certain contingent of rooms in local apartments and flats for their income international students. Additionally, they provide you with a list of contacts and addresses for other suitable local accommodation places.

Should I choose a public or a private university in Germany?

Whether you decide to study at a public or a private university, it doesn’t represent any major difference since the quality of higher education in Germany is of global standards. Traditionally, public universities have a longer and richer tradition in the academic world than private establishments, enjoy a stronger reputation, absorb more governmental funds and as a result are clearly better than private universities.

However, there are several features that make private universities very attractive for prospective students. Some of these features may include, less competitive admission, modern facilities, real-life experiences and exchange programs.

In the end, your decision is all upon your personal choice, your career and budgetary plans.  The table below gives a head to head comparison between public and private universities in Germany, which helps you identify the differences and consequently decide what suits you.

Public universities Private universities
Tuition fees NO YES
Entry requirements High standards Medium standards
Available places Limited Not-limited
Degree courses Many Limited
Modern facilties YES YES
Scholarships YES YES
Employability High High
Dropouts rate High Low


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