Get to Know IU

Where is IU based?

IU is based in Germany; we have one campus in Berlin and another in Bad Honnef. Check out the Our University page for more information. 

Are IU study programmes accredited?

All our current study programmes are state-accredited and approved by the German Science Council and the state of Thuringia, and are in line with the European ECTS accreditation framework (the Bologna process).  

IU is also able to independently accredit new programmes in accordance with the legally defined quality standards of the German government, as we have been given the status of system accreditation.  

IU International is certified by FIBAA, assuring the quality of teaching and material. We are also listed on the European Quality Assurance Register (EQAR). 

You can find more detailed information on the IU Accreditations & Rankings page. 

How can I ensure that my diploma is accepted in my country? Is it really accredited and recognised everywhere?

All of the degree programmes we offer are planned and monitored under strict conditions and adhere to both German academic standards and international ones, in line with the principles of the Bologna Process. This ensures that our degrees and the ECTS points are graduates earn are internationally recognised. 

Some countries and professions might require additional accreditation processes. To assist you in such a case, we will be happy to issue a copy of the Europass Diploma Supplement, in English. 

Does IU have any company partnerships?

IU has an extensive network of corporate partners and collaborations, enabling an exchange of knowledge and contacts which benefit our students. Check out Our Network of Partners page for more.

Is IU partnered with any other universities?

IU has a large university network of partner institutions across the world. One of these university partners is London South Bank University (LSBU). Students at IU have coordinated dual degree programmes with LSBU, meaning you have the opportunity to acquire a British degree in addition to your German degree from IU. Find out more here. 

Getting started

What admission requirements apply?

IU’s admission requirements depend on the study programme you are interested in. You can find the exact requirements for each programme listed on the page of each respective study programme, but if you’re looking for a general outline of our admission requirements, you can find it under the question “What documents do I need to prepare for my admission?” In this FAQ.  

How does the application process work?

Once you’ve chosen the study programme you want to take, and checked that you meet the application requirements, the next step is submitting your online application

It’s quick and easy to do: here’s a video that takes you through the process. At the end of your online application, a study contract will be made available for you to download. At this point, just sign and upload your study contract via your uploads page. You’ll get a link to it along with your contract. 

Once your signed contract is uploaded, you’ll need to upload your admission documents. Our admissions team will then check them to determine whether you are indeed eligible to start your desired study programme.  

If some documents are still required, admissions will let you know by email. If all documents are complete and you are eligible for the desired study programme, you will be registered and will receive an email with the next steps.  

Once your starting date arrives, you will receive credentials to log in to your virtual campus and can begin your studies. Good luck! 

What documents do I need to prepare for my application?

Relevant documents that are needed for admission to a Bachelor's or Master’s programme can be found on our website in the respective page of your desired study programme. 

In general, you will need to provide the following before you start your studies

  • Study contract signed (this will be made available for download at the end of your Online Application Form) 
  • University entrance qualification (this can be an upper secondary school certificate or a Bachelor’s degree, depending on the programme)* 
  • Upper secondary school transcript of records (with courses and grades) 
  • Proof of English proficiency (for detailed information, see next question of this section) 
  • For certain Master or MBA programs: proof of work experience 

And the following needs to be provided within the first three months of your studies

  • CV (in tabluar form) 
  • National ID (with your photo) 
  • Certified copies of your application documents – the originals and the translations*  

*The admissions documents must be provided in English or German, if they were not issued in one of these two languages, a translation is required. If you need to translate your documents, we can help refer you to our trusted translation partners M21 Global. You can find more details here

If you translate your documents via M21 Global, there’s no need to provide a certified copy of the translation, as this is done by them. You’ll only need to certify the original language version of your documents.

How can I provide proof of my English skills?

Depending on your personal circumstances, you might be required to provide proof of your English language proficiency. Your skills would need to match the B2 level of the Common European Framework (CEF). 

We accept the following English language skills certificates*: 

  • TOEFL (minimum 80 points)* or 
  • IELTS (minimum Level 6)* or 
  • Duolingo English Test (minimum 95 points)* or 
  • Cambridge Certificate (minimum Grade B)* 

Is English your native language, or have you graduated from an English-speaking school or university? Then you do not need to prove your English language proficiency. 

Get in touch with our study advisors for more details. 

What is the deadline to submit my documents?

Your application is complete as soon as your study contract and admission documents are uploaded and approved. The sooner our admissions team receives your application documents, the quicker your admission is reviewed.  

IU offers you the flexibility to submit your documents whenever you’re ready, but we strongly encourage you to finish this step as early as possible.   

Is my pre-degree work experience valid?

Some of our Master and MBA programmes require work experience in a relevant field under certain circumstances. This must have been achieved after completion of your bachelor. Admission requirements for each course are available on course pages.  

When can I start studying?

We guarantee IU online students maximum flexibility, so you can choose your own starting date in your application. On that day, we will send you the access data you need to begin.   

On Campus:  
We offer 2 to 4 intake dates per year, depending on the programme, but you can apply at any time. However, our on-campus programmes have fixed starting times. See the course pages for more.  

What alternatives do I have if I don’t meet the admission requirements?

IU International University of Applied Sciences is a German accredited university, which means we as an institution are bound by state regulations. To find out more about our accreditations, rankings, and degree recognitions, please visit our Accreditations & Rankings page. 

In case you don’t meet admission requirements, our study advisory team will provide you with the relevant requirements you will ultimately need to meet in order to be admitted. This may include, for example, completing free admission courses before starting your study programme – or choosing a different programme. 

How many of my previous semesters or classes can you recognise?

In total, we can recognise up to 50% of the ECTS points for your course of study. 

For more details about our recognition process, read our guide to recognition

The admission requirements for the programme I want to study mention having to take bridging courses for admission. How long will it take me to do them?

Some of our Master’s level study programmes require specific academic experience in a certain field, in order for you to start the programme.  

However, if you do not have that experience, but you meet all the other admission requirements, we offer you the possibility to take admission courses that cover that required knowledge. You’ll have one year to complete them successfully, and they are free of charge

Once you’ve successfully completed the courses, you’ll need to inform us, and we will then register you for your desired Master’s programme. 

Why do I need to sign a contract?

By signing the contract, you formally acknowledge and accept our terms of service. For us to successfully enrol you to study at IU, the first step is for us to be sure that you know and understand what you’re signing up for. 

How can I apply to IU?

Simply click here and fill out the online application form. 

For a detailed breakdown of the application process, see the question How does the application process work? on this page. 

Do I need to send my ID and CV before the start of my studies, or after?

You can send both documents after the start of your studies, within the first 3 months. However, we recommend uploading them together with the rest of your application documents. 

How long will it take to get an answer about my application?

Once you’ve submitted your signed contract and your application documents, our admissions team will check your application and get back to you within 5 business days.  

Do I have to go to my local German embassy to get my documents certified?

No, you don’t have to go to your local German embassy. Any official with a notarized seal can certify your documents – it can be a notary or a local government office- 

Will I have to take an entrance exam?

Depending on the admission requirements, you might have to take an entrance exam or an admission course to start your programme. 

If you start your studies through the Online Degree Saver Programme, the entrance exam is included in the first half of your studies. Once you finish the first half successfully, you’ll also pass the entrance exam. 

Our admissions team will let you know if you need to take an entrance exam; you can send your documents for a pre-check (it’s free of charge) or simply start the application process, upload your documents and wait for a reply. 

What is the proof of eligibility to study at a university in Germany?

Depending on the country you come from, you might need to meet an additional entry requirement, like completing an admission course. These requirements are determined by the German ministry of education, and as a state accredited university, we are committed to its demands. 

We’re happy to perform a pre-check for your application documents, and let you know if you need to provide anything beyond what’s stated in the admission requirements of your desired study programme. 

For more details, get in touch with our study advisors

Will I need to have an interview as part of my application process?

No, you will not need to have an interview. If you meet the admission requirements, you’ll be admitted to your desired programme. 

But, if you have any questions and would like to speak to someone, you’re more than welcome to talk to one of our study advisors

What do I need to provide as a transcript of records?

In order to prove that your grades meet the required level for starting a Master’s degree. A transcript of records is a detailed list of all of the modules or classes you have taken at a university at an undergraduate level (BA degree). 

Studying at IU

General questions

Can I combine my studies with a full-time job? Do you offer the option to study part-time?

Yes, we have taken various life obligations into account when designing our online study programmes. Therefore, you can switch between three time models and set your own learning pace, according to your personal needs. 
The regular study period for a Bachelor’s degree is 36 months, but you have the option of choosing between the extended study periods of 48 or 72 months. You can also extend your regular study period – even during your studies - by 12 months, free of charge. 
The regular study period for the Master is usually 12 or 24 months, depending on the ECTS points of your study programme. Here, too, we offer part-time variants that run for 36 or 48 months. You can also extend your regular study period – even during your studies - by 12 months, free of charge. 
For more details, please visit our Study Models page

What if I won’t be able to complete my degree within my chosen duration of studies?

IU students can exceed the standard period of study for their chosen time model by 12 months. 

Do I have the option of taking a break from my online study programme or taking a semester off?

Yes, we offer you the option of taking a semester off to allow yourself a break from studying. During this time, your study programme will be suspended, and you will not have access to the online learning platform or your learning materials. We therefore do not charge any fees during your semester off.   

A leave of absence is possible from the second semester onwards. In total, a leave of absence may not exceed half of the regular study period for your online study programme (e.g., for a six-semester Bachelor, this equates to a maximum of three semesters of leave).  

Is there a graduation ceremony?

Twice a year, we hold graduation ceremonies on our campuses in Germany. Online students are welcome to participate at their own expense. If you do not wish to attend, we will send you your degree certificate by post, free of charge.  

I’m not a typical student. Are there people like me at IU?

Since 1998, we have supported thousands of students of various backgrounds and age groups in developing themselves both personally and professionally. Our campuses and our online environment are home to a community of over 85,000 students from all kinds of backgrounds, career levels, nationalities, and experiences.  

When will I receive my certificate and what does it look like?

Your degree certificate should be with you up to 10 weeks after getting your final grade. You can find samples of the degree certificate and transcript of records for Bachelor, Master and MBA here. 

Who should I contact for assitance once I have enrolled?

Once you have enrolled, you can get in touch with our Student Office for help with any queries you might have, and they will point you in the right direction. Their contact details are on the myCampus platform, you will receive login details for this once you have completed your enrolment.  

What is the Online Degree Saver Programme?

The Online Degree Saver Programme is designed to make your studies more affordable, with the condition that you meet our study criteria. To get the discount the Programme offers, you’ll start your studies as a registered participant, not a student.  

Once you've enrolled and started on your studies, you'll have access to a part of your courses, based on the time model you choose. You will be registered as a student only after 50% of the total ECTS have been successfully completed. Then you will gain access to the rest of your courses, and will be able to finish your degree. 

With the Online Degree Saver Programme, I'll be registered as a participant. What does that mean?

It means that you will be registered as a participant, not a student. Once you’ve successfully completed 50% of your ECTS, you will be registered as a student. 

How many hours per week is required for completing a course? How long will it take me?

We can’t tell you exactly how many hours per week each course will take, because each student is different and that is entirely individual. 

What we can tell you is how many courses you can take each semester in each time model, so you can plan accordingly: 

  1. Full Time: up to 30 ECTS per semester meaning 6 exams in 6 months 
  2. Part Time I: up to 25 ECTS per semester meaning 5 exams in 6 months 
  3. Part Time II: up to 15 ECTS per semester meaning 3 exams in 6 months 

If I have any questions about the material, will someone answer them?

You can ask your teachers questions at any time through the Course Feed on Microsoft TEAMS. You can also have your questions answered by Syntea, our AI-powered learning tool, which is available through the IU Learn app. 

Are the professors available to help me?

Yes, you can reach out to your professors via e-mail or the Course Feed. 

What happens if I’m unable to study for a certain period of time during a semester?

Starting from the second semester, you can take a leave of absence. During that time, you will not be charged any fees, and you will not have any access to your study materials. 

Can I finish my studies faster than the full-time plan?

Yes, you can. It’s not easy – but definitely possible. It’s all up to you and how much time you have to spend on your studies. 

To do so, you’ll need to let our Student Office know when you’re planning to take more courses than your time model allows, and pay the remaining tuition fees in advance. 

How long are the semesters at IU?

Each semester is 6 months. 

Are IU’s degrees equivalent to degrees from other universities?

Yes, IU’s degrees are equivalent to degrees from any other university. They are state accredited by the German Ministry of Education, and are recognised internationally. 

Will I get support for planning my career?

Yes! Our career office experts will help you by offering training, special career events and other career-related services. 

Will I get support for my internship applications?

Yes! Our career office experts will help you navigate the internship application process – so you’ll have a better chance of finding the right internship. 

What can I do for work after I graduate?

That depends on what exactly you study at IU, but thanks to our job success focused programmes, you’ll be ready to succeed in your first job after graduation. 

To see the potential career paths for you as a graduate, visit the webpage of the programme you want to study, and look under the Careers section. 

High School Diploma Study Pathway

High School Diploma Study Pathway

How is IU offering this?

We are part of more than 10,000 Cambridge International schools that offer these qualifications. IU is registered as an online school that provides these courses digitally to prepare students for the Cambridge examinations.

How will IU help me get my high school diploma equivalent?

We will provide you with all the necessary materials needed to prepare for the Cambridge examination. We provide this through synchronous and asynchronous teaching, scripts, Q&A, Slides, Videos, Podcasts, etc.

Are there live or interactive classes?

We provide synchronous and asynchronous teaching.

Is this available for on-campus Bachelors?

No, we are registered as an online Cambridge School. We only provide these courses online.

Do I need to have any sort of diploma or certificate to do the High School Diploma Study Pathway?

Anyone without a high school diploma (or an equivalent secondary school leaving certificate, like A-Levels or an IB Diploma) can take High School Diploma Study Pathway. You do not need any kind of school certificate; the only requirement is to be over 16 years old

Do I have to be a certain age to enrol in the High School Diploma Study Pathway?

You must be above 16 years of age and have your parents or legal guardians sign a consent form in the study contract. If you are above 18 then you can sign the contract. 

Can I take the Cambridge exam again if I fail the first time? How often can I repeat it?

Yes, you can. You must register directly with Cambridge at an exam venue near you, which can be found here. In case you do not pass the exam the second time around, you can still re-register and wait for the next date to take the exam again (by your own means). You have unlimited chances to retake the exam. 

Can I repeat the exam right away or do I have to wait for the next examination date (June/November)?

You can only sit for the exam again in the following examination date (June/November).

Do I need to provide a proof of English skills for the High School Diploma Study Pathway?

We highly recommend taking the free of charge IU English course exam, but there is no need to provide proof for admissions. 

Do I need to send IU a certified hard copy of the Cambridge certificate?

You can send a copy of the certification or certified statement to our Admissions office so you can continue with your Bachelor studies. You can also send Admissions your Cambridge Candidate Number, the Cambridge Centre Number, and your date of birth so they can review your results for you. There are certain countries where Cambridge does not allow our team to verify the results online. In these cases, students should verify their results on their own and send them to us: Bahamas, Botswana, Brunei, Lesotho, Malaysia, Mauritius, Namibia, and Swaziland. 

How much time do I have to complete the High School Diploma Study Pathway?

You are obliged to submit proof of having passed the external examinations from Cambridge by mail to the IU Admissions Office within 12 months after starting the courses

Do I need to achieve specific grades in the final Cambridge exams?

To continue with your study programme, you will need to pass your Cambridge exams. According to Cambridge, the passing grade is any grade over E in the certificate.  

AS Level grade & PUM range 

A 80-100 

B 70-79 

C 60-69 

D 50-59 

E 40-49 

If I fail the Cambridge exams, will IU refund any already paid fees?

Since IU does not charge for the High School Diploma Study Pathway courses, we do not provide any refunds. Cambridge does not refund their examination fees either.  

What if I fail some of my Cambridge examinations?

If you do not pass any or all of your Cambridge exams, you can re-register and wait for the next date to take the exam again (by your own means). You have unlimited chances to retake the exams. 

Can I still change my study programme halfway?

Yes, but we do not recommend you to as you would have to pay a fee and you might lose contract time. If you want to change tracks completely, you will have to be ex-matriculated from your track and start the new one from the beginning. 

Can I study a degree programme that only starts in the future?

You can start both the High School Diploma Study Pathway and the study programme at the same time, you will just have to wait for that programme to start and have access to all courses. 

Study options

Studying online

How does distance learning work at IU?

Online courses consist of video lectures, interactive learning material, access to online materials via the library, as well as online examination. You can access the materials 24/7 on mobile or PC via our online learning platform MyCampus. That way you can fit learning around your own schedule. You will also be able to interact with other students and your lecturers in case you have any questions.  

Are there any in-person classes that I have to attend?

No. Your online studies are 100% flexible and are done whenever works for you. That includes the exams, too. 

What equipment do I need for my studies ?

You only need a reasonably up-to-date PC (desktop or laptop) with a stable internet connection. Other internet-capable devices such as a tablet or smartphone can also assist you in your studies. 

For detailed equipment recommendations, please visit our How to apply page

Does IU offer an online library?

Yes, once you're registered as a student, you will also receive access to our online library, where you can search for an unlimited amount of journal articles and literature that can be downloaded in an e-book format.

What digital study materials are available?

Interactivity is a top priority for us. This means that you will have numerous online learning materials at your disposal. The content of each course can vary to include video tutorials, podcasts, interactive PDFs, presentations, or e-books from our online library.  

We also stress the practical relevance of our teaching material by using case studies and reports from everyday work life. We also attach great importance to intensive exam preparation (e.g. through non-graded self-tests).  

Is there a platform to interact with fellow students?

Yes, you can exchange ideas with other students via our virtual campus.  

Are classes recorded and available to watch, or are they only live?

Each course you take has a recurring Intensive Live Session – a live session with your instructor, where they’ll cover some of the course material in more details, and answer any questions you might have. These take place usually once a month. 

These sessions are all recorded, and can be accessed whenever you want, via the digital campus. 

Is there a portal where the lectures are uploaded to?

Yes, the recordings of the Intensive Live Sessions are uploaded to myCampus, your digital campus. 

Will it be indicated somewhere that my degree is an online degree?

No, there will be no indication. Your diploma will look just like any other university diploma. 

You can see a sample here


Where do I take my exams?

If you study online, once you meet the exam requirements of a given course (e.g. passing non-graded self-tests), you can register for an exam at any time. Exam slots are available 24/7, 365 days a year. 

How are the exams carried out?

Our online exams are carried out and supervised by an external provider, with whom you’ll need to book a time slot in advance (at any time of day you would like). To take your exam, you will need to connect to the provider’s platform at the scheduled time, with either your laptop and an external webcam, or two digital devices (iPad and smartphone, for example) - one with which you’ll take the exam, and one which is set up so your keyboard, hands and face are visible from the side.  

This is required in order to ensure that you take the exam without using any external help, such as contact with other people or using notes. 

How long are the exams?

The duration is determined by the ECTS points earned through the course: 
- A 5 ECTS course means the exam is 90 minutes long. 
- A 10 ECTS course means the exam is 180 minutes long. 

How are the exams structured?

The structure of the final exam depends on the course type and reflects the content of the course. In standard courses, the exam usually consists of approx. 50% open/ semi-open questions and 50% closed questions (e.g. multiple-choice, yes-no, matching questions). Other courses may require a different exam type such as case study, project-specific presentation, written assignment etc. 

How and when will I receive my exams results?

The results will be published three to six weeks (max.) after the examination date.

How many attempts do I have for each exam?

You have three attempts; in other words, each exam you fail can be repeated twice.

When can I take my exams – do I need to pass some quizzes first?

You can take your exams whenever you feel ready. The quizzes are only a tool for you to test your knowledge, so you can find out how ready you are to take the final exam in your course. 

Why can’t I get a proof of enrolment/matriculation until I finish half of my courses?

If you start your studies through the Online Degree Saver Programme, you’ll be registered as a participant for the first half of your studies. Only after you’ve completed the first half, will you be enrolled as a student and receive your proof of matriculation. 

Fees & Payments

What are the online course fees?

Online course fees vary depending on your chosen time model and study programmes. Visit our Tuition Fees page to find a detailed breakdown. 

Can I pay the course fees in instalments?

Here at IU, we offer flexible payment options, please contact our student advisory team for more details.  

Which payment methods are available?

At IU we offer a wide variety of secure international payment methods that fit your needs. You can easily pay your fees in your local currency via bank transfer, or by using a wide range of local online payment options. The available payment options and currencies may differ per country. 

For more information on the different payment methods we offer, please visit our payment methods page. 

Are there any application fees or any other charges?

There are no application fees, or fees for consultations. Our tuition fees cover everything you need to study at IU, including access to our online study platform and app, your exams, access to our digital library and LinkedIn Learning courses, and career support services. 

For on-campus students, a one-time semester fee will be charged. For more details, visit our tuition fees page.  

Can I try out one of our programmes? Do you offer a trial period?

After you enrol, you can try out the online learning programme you’ve applied for, for four weeks free of charge and without any obligation. During this time, all IU offers and services will be available to you. If you are not happy with the online programme, you can leave it within these four weeks, no strings attached. 

If you like your studies, you can simply continue studying after the trial period has ended. In this case, your first month will count as a regular study period for which a fee will be charged. We’ll only charge you for the first month after the end of the trial phase.

Please note: The 1 month trial is only available for IU’s Online Studies programmes.

Can I change my payment method during my studies?

Yes, you can change your payment method after you begin your studies. Simply contact our student office (you’ll get their details once you’ve been successfuly enrolled) when you want to make the change. 

Are there any additional fees I should plan for, besides the tuition fees?

There are no hidden or additional fees – not for books, or special exams, or anything else. You’ll only pay the amount stated in your contract, unless you decide to extend your study period. 

Even then, you’ll only be paying your tuition fees, and nothing else. 

Post-application documents

What documents do I need to send via post? Whan do I need to send them?

You will need to send: 

  • A certified copy of your university entrance qualification documents via post to our postal address: 

IU International University of Applied Sciences 
Albert-Proeller-Str. 15-19 
86675 Buchdorf, Germany 

If your documents are not in English or German, you will need to provide a sworn/certified translation into English or German – we accept both. 

IU works together with a translation agency called M21 Global. If you want to use their translation service, please submit your Online Application and your diploma for a first Admission review. Make sure to upload/send to us your translation consent form – available here

If you already have sworn translations of your application documents, you should mail us a certified paper copy (s) of the sworn translation (s) via post.

I have other commitments. Do you offer suitable time models?

At IU we know that everyone has different circumstances. So, we have full time, part time, and extended models to allow you to study at a pace that suits you.

When is my deadline to send the certified hard copies of my admission documents by post?

Certified paper copies should reach IU within 3 months after starting your studies.  

Failure to provide certified paper copies on time may result in de-registration.  

Want to start today? Test 1 month for free!

Let your curiosity be your guide and test any Online Studies programme you like — no strings, no charges. Simply apply for your Online Study programme, unlock your access and get to your studies!

*The 1 month trial is only available for IU’s Online Studies programmes.
*If you decide not to study at IU, all you have to do is cancel your trial. Just make sure to do so within the first 30 days.

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