University tuition fees are set to be implemented for international students enrolling in the German state of Baden-Württemberg, becoming the first province to move away from the current country-wide tuition-free model for all students. The proposal, led by the state’s Minister for Science, Research and the Arts, Theresia Bauer, is expected to be introduced from the 2017-18 winter semester.
Speaking to StudyTravel Magazine, spokesperson for Baden-Württemberg’s Ministry of Science, Research and the Arts, Jochen Schönmann, said, “We expect the final tuition fee would be announced within the first quarter of 2017. EU1,500 is a guideline figure.”
Jochen added the state government was looking into different fees for different disciplines, explaining that Medicine and Music studies are among some of the most expensive subjects for universities to provide. “Medicine can cost up to EU200,000 while music is very costly as it requires one-on-one tuition,” he said.
Recognizing the global appeal of Germany’s fee-free higher education, Jochen continued to say that while Baden-Württemberg had received high numbers of international students in the past, the numbers of those completing their studies paled in comparison. He attributed this to poor language skills, unfamiliarity with German culture and a lack of support.
Speaking to ST Magazine, Jochen explained that the term “general fees” was never set out to include non-EU students who weren’t residents and confirmed that in the future EU students would definitely not be required to pay fees thanks to that agreement.
He said he expects other state governments in Germany would be closely watching Baden-Württemberg and may follow suit and referenced the east-central German state of Thuringia which has previously tried to implement fees and is currently working towards doing so.
When implemented, the tuition fees will be applicable at over 50 of Baden-Württemberg’s higher education institutions including universities of applied sciences, research universities, universities of education, and universities of arts and music.
Tuition fees were removed in Baden-Württemberg in 2011 under the Green-Social Democrats and the then higher education minister Bauer. All German state governments abolished fees by 2014.
Source: StudyTravel Magazine