Are you interested in obtaining a nursing degree, do you want to study nursing in Europe and looking for a school that can match your interests and provide an exciting educational experience? This article will guide you through the process of deciding

which country in Europe and which institution would best suit your needs.

The countries of the European Union have many world class universities that offer a nursing program. However, we shall discuss one of the most prestigious and the best for international students who are looking to pursue a career in Nursing.

One of these country is Germany. Germany is a country known because of its excellent educational programs, including nursing, and is home to some of the most prestigious universities on the planet. It is also a spot brimming with heritage and culture, with a multitude of sightseeing opportunities which afford students an opportunity to meet new people while finding out the customs and traditions that make this land therefore special and unique. In the following article we’ve provided a brief overview with regard to studying nursing in Germany, including some practical information on the country itself, a synopsis of the country’s nursing programs plus a discussion as to why Germany is a real great place to reside in and study.


Study Nursing in Germany: Overview

About Germany:

Germany, a country known in official circles as the Federal Republic of Germany, is a federal parliamentary republic in west-central Europe.  The country consists of 16 states, and its capital and largest city is Berlin. With over 137, 800 square miles of total land area, Germany is the third largest country in Western Europe, after France and Spain, and its population of roughly 82 million ranks it first among countries in the European Union.  For centuries, Germany has been one of the chief political and economic powers of the European continent and a consistent leader in many technical and theoretical discipline, including medicine.

Nursing in Germany

Nursing education in Germany is usually an important component of the majority of the country’s major universities and colleges, and its importance cannot be overstated. Like most major countries around the world, Germany is presently experiencing a lack of qualified healthcare professionals. To meet the rising demand, many institutions have implemented incentives in order to steer potential nursing candidates to the field, including, in some instances, financial aid, work placement assistance along with lower program costs.

One of the numerous major universities having an excellent reputation for its nursing program is Ulm University, a public university of higher learning in the city of Ulm, situated in the South German state of Baden-Württemberg. Established in 1967, the college focuses on the natural and applied sciences, including biology, chemistry, engineering, medicine along with nursing, among others. A recent poll released by Times Higher education ranked Ulm University number 22 on its listing of top 100 universities under the age of 50.

At Ulm University, and other schools that offer nursing in their curriculum, candidates must spend six months performing practical training in a hospital environment, before beginning the academic part of their studies. All undergraduate nursing courses are outlined according to EU regulations, with programs that span three years in duration and will include roughly 3300 several hours of theoretical study and yet another 2500 hours of practical training in several hospital settings. Once students meet these requirements they become qualified to sit for the national nursing exam, on which a passing score will earn them their certificate in nursing.

Right after nurses complete their undergraduate training they become eligible to study towards a specific specialty, or as it is called in Germany, a Fachweiterbildung. Normally, salaries tend to increase for nurses who have earned a Fachweiterbildung—a two year, 800 hour program in which nurses can earn a specialty certificate in areas such as: ICU, anesthesia, oncology, home care, psychiatry, palliative treatment, hygiene, or ward management. Shorter specialty courses are also available, typically in areas including wound care and quality control administration.

General entry requirements for nursing

Every university have their specific requirement for students who want to study nursing and these requirements also differ from country to country. You may need to consult with the university of your choice to know what their requirements are. However we have put together the basic requirements that most school would require. These are:

You must have some experience of delivering care in a professional or voluntary capacity, and a reference from a current or recent employer or educational institution.

Normally five GCSEs at grade C or above, including English language or literature, mathematics and a science (single or double) or equivalent*, plus one of the following

  • 280 points with at least 120 points from 2 GCE/VCE full A levels or BTEC National qualifications and other qualifications in the UCAS tariff. AS levels and general studies A level can count towards the points total.
  • Access – Access to HE Diploma for a QAA recognised Access to HE course in health studies, health science, social sciences or nursing. Normally we require 15 credits at level 2 and 45 at level 3 of which at least 15 level 3 credits should be graded at distinction level.
  • other equivalent qualifications, including degrees in other subjects

This course is only open to home or EU assessed students.


Alternatives to GCSEs and A levels

The NHS and education sector encourages applications from people with a wide range of academic and vocational qualifications.

Examples of qualifications that may be accepted for entry for degree programmes include:

   GNVQ advanced level or NVQ level 3

   SVQ level 3; GSVQ level 3 (Scotland)

   EDEXCEL Foundation (BTEC) National

   higher national diploma

   OCR Cambridge Technicals – level 3 Health and Social Care.

Note that some universities may require an A’ level as well as one of the above qualifications, so it’s essential to check directly with each university about their specific entry requirements.

Applicants who left full-time education some time ago may be required to give evidence of successful recent academic study, such as a QAA accredited access to higher education course or equivalent.


If English is not your first language you must have an IELTS score of 7.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in all skills or equivalent. If your English language skill is currently below IELTS 7.0 we recommend you consider a Sheffield Hallam University Pre-sessional English course which will enable you to achieve an equivalent English score.

Care experience

Before you apply for health courses, we require you to have gained some practical experience relating to your subject area. Download our applicant experience guidelines for information about the kinds of experience we expect you to have and the best places to gain it. Evidence of the experience gained, understanding of the profession and a genuine, reasoned commitment to studying a professional course must be explicit in your personal statement to be selected for interview.

Personal qualities

You must be able to demonstrate your potential to be caring and compassionate and the ability develop meaningful relationships with service users and carer.

Skill requirements

You need to demonstrate an ability to

  • study academic subjects at degree level
  • debate topics and issues
  • draw on conclusions from written material
  • study independently as well as a member of a group
  • use computers and technology associated with contemporary teaching, learning and assessment methods
  • successfully complete a range of assignments including researched essays and practical examinations

This is normally achieved by completing academic study at level three or above within the last four years.