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Support Services for International Students

Study, research and teach at OWL Universtiy of Applied Sciences and Arts - close to nature and business, at one of the most research-intensive technical universities in Germany!

As a student, you will receive an excellent supervisory relationship and an insight into practice through real projects and local companies.

As a researcher, you benefit from our expertise, our location and our infrastructures!

As an intern, you will receive intensive support from the teaching, research and administrative staff and will gain an insight into everyday work at TH OWL.

The International Office supports international students and guests during their stay in Germany

  • looking for suitable accommodation,
  • planning your journey to Ostwestfalen-Lippe,
  • enrollment at TH OWL,
  • Orientation on campus and in the city (e.g. welcome meeting, city rally, campus tour),
  • Formalities (e.g. health insurance, registration with the city, formalities for the immigration office)
  • German courses

In the time of the Corona Pandemic you will find information in our FAQ's Corona and on the entry requirements for the state of North Rhine-Westphalia on the NRW state portal.

Residence permit or visa

International students from a country within the EU

Mobility within the EU

Students from EU countries do not need a visa to travel to Germany and study at a university in Germany.

REST-Policy (Policy 2016/801/EU)

For exchange students who come from a non-EU country but are already enrolled at a university in the EU (third-country nationals), the visa regulations were changed in May 2018. Host universities in Germany can now submit applications for exchange students.

Students who have already been granted a residence permit in the sense of the REST directive for an EU country can also study in Germany without a German residence permit. The prerequisite is that the studies do not last more than 360 days.

Bundesamt für Migration und Flüchtlinge: Documents and further information

International students from a country outside the EU

Visa obligation

Students from countries for which a visa is required must apply for a visa for study purposes before travelling to Germany. The visa application and all necessary documents should be submitted as early as possible to the German Embassy or Consulate in your home country.

For the visa application, a letter of admission and proof of financing is required. Students who wish to graduate from the Technische Hochschule OWL must usually submit proof of financing for one year, exchange and short-term students must submit proof of financing for the duration of their studies in Germany.

Often the visa is issued for three months. Within these three months, a residence permit must be applied for at the aliens' registration office of the place of residence in Germany.

Information from the Federal Foreign Office and the DAAD

Visa waiver

For some countries the European Community has abolished the visa requirement. Students from these countries can stay in Germany for up to 90 days without a visa.   

Within these 90 days, however, students must apply for a residence permit at the responsible immigration office in their place of residence in Germany in order to study at the TH OWL.

Confirmation of the necessity of presence in Germany for the purpose of study

For you as a first semester student, most seminars and lectures are offered as face-to-face events. For your visa application you will find a confirmation of this here.

Compulsory health insurance

Students under 30 years of age must present the insurance certificate of a German statutory health and nursing care insurance for enrollment at a university. Only with this certificate they can enroll for their studies.

Further information on student health insurance:
english version

Leaflet on purely virtual study programs (english Version)

Check List for your Study start at TH OWL

Here you can find your check list for a perfect start in your study at the TH OWL

Buddy Program at the TH OWL

In the Buddy Program, TH OWL students (national or international) are assigned to a new exchange student who spends only 1 to max. 2 semesters at the TH OWL or to a regular student who wants to obtain a Bachelor or Master degree at the TH OWL.

The aim of the program is to help your buddy-partner to get used to the German culture, the new city and the new university and to be a contact person "at eye level".

The Buddy Program also aims to promote contact between international and German students and intercultural exchange at the TH OWL. The Buddy Program relies heavily on the voluntary commitment of TH OWL students.

If you want to participate in the program, you are welcome to fill out this document and send it to the International Office and also visit us on our Facebook page.


Financial Support

Here you will find important information on how to finance your studies during the CORONA crisis provided by the German Student Union.

As of 8 May, students can apply for an up to 650 € monthly interest-free student loan provided by the state bank KfW.  More information can be found here.

For more information on grants and funding opportunities, please see our "Grant Programs" section and our "Scholarships and Funding for International Students" flyer.