Sponsorship Program for Foreign International Master Students and Graduates, Germany

Publish Date: Jul 04, 2016

Deadline: Jul 15, 2016

Sponsorship Program for Foreign Students

The Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung awards scholarships to international master students and graduates in order to enable study and research at universities in Germany. This way, we actively promote intercultural dialogues, the formation of international networks as well as the internationalization of universities and science.

Please note the differences between the international and the domestic selection procedure: In 2016, there will be held selection conferences in Ukraine, Russia, Argentina, Serbia, Latvia/Belarus. Only students living in one of the listed countries or in the region can apply via the international selection procedure. Please address your written application to the appropriate regional KAS office.

Students living in Germany, regardless of their nationalities, can apply via the domestic selection program using our new online procedure (is still being prepared and intended to go online in June). Please do not send in any written application. The application period for 2016 will be open from June to July 15 (12:00/noon).

Who are we looking for?

Our Sponsorship Program for Foreign Students (Ausländerförderung) is aimed at international students and graduates who have acquired a university degree in their home country and who intend to complete postgraduate or master studies, doctoral studies or a research stay at a university in Germany. Applicants should

  • be able to provide evidence of above average academic performance
  • bring broad general education and distinct interest in political issues
  • have a positive attitude towards democracy and human rights
  • have been actively engaged in voluntary work for the benefit of the people and the society in their home countries
  • be open to develop their personal points of view and practice tolerance towards those with different beliefs
  • be highly motivated and be able to convince us with their own plans and potential.
  • Our scholarships consist not only of financial assistance but also include a program of ideational support. We expect our scholars to participate actively in this program throughout the eligibility period, including
  • the participation in at least four multi-day seminars of our annual agenda, regular attendance and active participation in the meetings of the regional scholar group at their university.

The activities of these regional scholar groups offer a unique opportunity to enter into an interdisciplinary, political and personal exchange with other scholars, alumni and representatives of our foundation at the universities, the so called “Vertrauensdozenten”.

After finishing their studies in Germany, the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung expects its former scholars to contribute actively to the development of their home country’s relations with the Federal Republic of Germany.

Important information regarding the formal application requirements

  • The minimum period in our scholarship program is one year and the remaining length of your studies or research in
  • Germany has to be at least two semesters. We do not provide support for bachelor studies. Only students in master, postgraduate or doctoral studies are eligible for our scholarship program.
  • Students in Medicine or Pharmacy can only apply after having completed their intermediate exam in Germany or when having achieved a comparable stage of their studies in another country. Human or dental medicine specialist training or post graduate research stays in Germany cannot be supported.
  • Persons having already achieved a doctorate are not eligible for a scholarship.
  • There is an age limit of 30 years for all applicants.
  • Our program of ideational support and the activities of the regional scholar groups are held in German. For this reason, a sufficient knowledge of the German language (level B2 of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages) is obligatory for all scholars even if the courses of their planned studies are taught in English. In general, our scholars take and pass the DSH exam (Deutsche Sprachprüfung für den Hochschulzugang – German Exam for College Admission) or the
  • DaF-test (Deutsch als Fremdsprache – Test of German as a foreign language) with a high rating before the beginning of their university studies in Germany. In exceptional cases and for highly qualified applicants only, we financially support
  • German language courses as preparation for studies in Germany.

How to apply

There are two ways to apply for our scholarship program:

International selection procedure

Every year, our foundation organizes several international selection conferences in different countries all over the world. In 2016, there will be held selection conferences in Ukraine, Russia, Argentina, Mexico, Serbia, Latvia/Belarus. If you are living in one of these countries or regions, you may send your written application directly to the responsible regional KAS Office. Students living in countries that are not listed cannot apply for the international selection procedure in 2016.

Domestic selection procedure

In case you are already living or studying in Germany, you are welcome to apply for a scholarship via the domestic selection program using our new online procedure (is still being prepared and intended to go online in June). You will be able to fill out the application form online and to upload all required application documents. Please do not send in any written application. The application period for 2016 will be open from June to July 15 (12:00/noon).

Application documents

Please download and fill out the application form and attach the following documents:

  • A meaningful CV in tabular form including details about your previous voluntary work or social commitment
  • Copies of your examination certificates in German translation if the originals are not in English
  • Copies of your studies performance records if you have been studying at a University in Germany
  • Proof of German language skills
  • An informal academic letter of recommendation: This opinion should provide information about your academic qualifications and potential; it should not be older than two month. The author has to be a university professor or teacher holding a doctoral degree.
  • An informal letter of recommendation concerning the applicant’s personality: This opinion should focus on your personality and interests as well as on your understanding of values and your social commitment. The author cannot be the same as that providing the academic letter of recommendation.
  • Certificate of admission or matriculation from your university in Germany
  • Two passport photographs: If applying for a doctoral scholarship, please attach additionally
  • A detailed description of your doctoral thesis: This exposé, written in German or English (4-5 pages), should outline the central research question of your proposed project, its scientific relevance, your theoretical approach and the motives behind your choice of the research subject. It should also contain a work and time schedule and a bibliography.
  • A second academic letter of recommendation: This second opinion should be written by the supervisor of your doctoral thesis, providing you already have one. It replaces the letter of recommendation concerning the applicant’s personality.

You can find the online application form by clicking "Further official information" below.


There will be a preliminary selection among all completed applications received on time. Based on the above mentioned requirements of our scholarship program, we will take a decision whether to invite you to a selection conference or to reject your application. In specific cases, an application may be deferred if the candidate does not yet meet all requirements but has given the impression that he/she might be able to do so in the foreseeable future.

The selection conference

The final decision awarding a scholarship is taken by a committee at a selection conference. During a 30 to 40 minute interview, you have the opportunity to introduce yourself personally to the selection committee. The discussion involves questions about your personal and academic career, your planned studies or research in Germany as well as about your motivation and personal values. In general, the committee consists of one representative of our Sponsorship Program for Foreign Students (Ausländerförderung) and of two auditors with academic expertise in the applicant’s area of study or research. On the international selection conferences held outside of Germany, the head of the regional KAS Office will be a member of the committee.

Benefits of our scholarship program

Our scholarship program consists of financial assistance as well as ideational support. Even after the successful completion of studies, we remain in contact with our former scholars and offer them the unique opportunity to become a part of our international network.

Financial assistance

Duration and level of funding vary for different types of studies. Graduates (master or postgraduate students) receive a monthly scholarship of € 750. The standard funding period is two years. After having obtained unconditional admission to doctoral studies at a German university, PhD-students receive a monthly scholarship of € 920. The standard funding period for PhD scholars is three years. We also fund research stays in Germany with duration of at least 6 months by the same amount (€ 920) under the condition that the applicant holds a university degree comparable to the German Master’s degree and provides evidence of at least two years of work experience in the academic field.

Beside the monthly scholarship payments, we offer multiple subsidies for our scholars. On request, we subsidise health care insurance of up to the amount of € 120 per month. Also, we pay a family supplement provided that you and your spouse live together in one place in Germany for at least three months and that his/her income does not exceed the amount of € 450 per month. We grant a supplement of € 184 per month for children living with you in Germany. Prerequisites are the submission of an official German translation of the child’s birth certificate and the official rejection of your demand for public child allowance. PhD-scholars can apply for financial assistance for foreign research stays, although we do not fund participation in congresses or symposia.

Fees resulting from courses at the university in Germany that are directly related to your studies can be refunded up to the amount of € 500 per semester. In contrast, we do not refund regular semester fees resulting from matriculation or annual re-registration.

Ideational support

Being a scholar of the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung means much more than just receiving financial assistance. Our scholars benefit from a broad program of ideational support. They become part of an active and living network. The program of ideational support consists of three elements: 1. Personal contact to and mentoring by the referees of our Sponsorship Program for Foreign Students and by the KAS representatives at the universities. 2. An internal seminar program for all our scholars. 3. The diverse activities of the regional scholar groups at the universities.

1. Mentoring by our referees and representatives at the universities
Our program referees and representatives at the universities supervise and consult our scholars personally. They follow the progress of your studies as well as your participation in the seminar program and the activities of your regional scholar group. Our foundation attaches great importance to continued development of your social commitment. The overall objective is to support you in identifying and in improving your individual strengths.

2. A varied and sophisticated seminar program
The seminars, which are held exclusively for our scholars, are to expand the general education of our scholars and to qualify them in their areas of studies. The seminars give opportunity for an interdisciplinary exchange of ideas and information with other scholars and acknowledged experts. The range of topics includes historical, political, economic and social issues. Vocational preparation seminars help our scholars to strengthen their soft skills and to facilitate the transition from studying to professional life.

3. Being part of a regional scholar group and of our Buddy-Program
The regional scholar groups at the universities are being managed independently by our scholars. Each semester, they create for themselves a program of diverse activities. Your scholar partners in your regional group will help you to settle in and to get used to your new surroundings. In this context, we invite our foreign scholars to take part in our Buddy-Program. On request, we identify an experienced German scholar to support you during the settling in period at your university in Germany and to facilitate your connection with the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung and your regional scholar group.

Our network of former scholars

It is a matter of particular interest to the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung to encourage networking between our current and former scholars. Over 13.000 alumni form a living and global network of former KAS scholars who play active roles in politics, economics, science and society all over the world, who remain at the same time committed to our foundation and its current scholars. More than 50 regional alumni groups worldwide and several specialized sub-networks give great opportunities to our former scholars and allow them to remain connected to our foundation. This alumni network also provides practical assistance: its members finance a Social Fund which provides help to current and former scholars in cases of need. Moreover, the network promotes scientific and social projects.

For more information click "Further official information" below.

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