Who needs Foundation Year and why?

Every student needs a secondary school certificate that fulfills university entrance requirements in order to be able to study at a German University. In Germany, the General Certificate of Secondary Education is called "Abitur".

Some secondary education certificates acquired abroad are not equivalent to the German Abitur. That's why they are not directly accepted by German universities. If this applies to you, you will have to attend a special preparation school in Germany which is called "Studienkolleg" or Foundation College. After successfully passing the Foundation College, you will be allowed to study at a German University.

The foundation courses at the ISL Foundation College prepare future university students, whose secondary education certificate is not equivalent to the German Abitur, for their studies at a German University.

At the end of the Studienkolleg / Foundation Year, the students will sit an exam which is equivalent to the German Abitur. This exam is called Feststellungsprüfung (see also University Assessment Test: FSP).

We will advise you if your secondary education certificate is equivalent to the German Abitur or if you need to do the Foundation Year course.

Usually students who have already completed a University course or participated for a number of semesters in a University course in their home country will not need to attend the Foundation Year.