Integration courses in Germany are a great way of getting settled for people who recently moved to the country. The courses will help you feel at home by learning about German customs, culture, and politics.
What You Learn During An Integration Course
Integration courses help persons learn about the language and orientation components of life in Germany. You learn common day-to-day things such as how to deal with German administration offices, writing letters and emails, job interviews, and more. The topics generally include the workplace, shopping television, and radio.
Furthermore, another big aspect of integration you will learn about its culture and politics. You will learn more about Germany as a country, where the integration course focuses on how people live, work, and interact, the values of the German society and how the political system works.
At the end of the German integration course, all participants need to take a final examination. This exam is free of charge.
Types of Integration Courses
There are various integration courses available depending on your needs and country of origin. Women, parents, young adults, and other groups can take up specially designed courses for them. These are the integration courses in Germany offered:
- General integration course (incl. refresher course)
- Integration course alphabetization (incl. refresher course)
- Integration course teaching the Latin alphabet (incl. refresher course)
- Integration course for youths (incl. refresher course)
- Integration course for parents (incl. refresher course)
- Integration course for women (incl. refresher course)
- Remedial course (incl. refresher course)
- Intensive course
- Integration course for deaf people (incl. refresher course)
- Integration course for blind people (incl. refresher course)
- Miscellaneous special course (incl. refresher course)
Who Can Attend An Integration Course In Germany
Generally, integration courses in Germany are intuited for those who have just arrived in the country, and/or who’s German language skills are not adequate for living or working in Germany. In certain instances, proficiency in the German language is a VISA requirement.
EU Citizens Are Not Required To Attend
Every citizen of the European Union is not required to attend an integration course. This is part of the freedom of movement and residence requirements for EU citizens in Germany. However, those who want to improve their German knowledge and language skills can attend an integration course.
Non-EU Citizens May Be Required To Attend
Under certain circumstances, non-EU citizens, or third-country nationals, are required to attend an integration or language course. This may be due to VISA Requirements. We suggest reviewing the requirements for the German VISA type applicable to you.
You may be excused from participating if you are employed and unable to take a full- or part-time course. The Foreigners Registration Office will determine if you are allowed an exemption or must attend an integration course in Germany.
If you received your residence title in Germany before 1 January 2005, the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees can admit you to attend an integration course if places are still available.
If you received your residence title after 1 January 2005, and you qualify for one of the below, you are entitled to attend an integration course.
- An employee;
- In Germany for the purpose of family reunification;
- For humanitarian reasons; or
- A Person who is a long-term resident (your residence permit is approved for a period of one (1) year or more or if you have held a residence permit of 18 months or more).
The obligation to attend an integration course is decided by the immigration authorities and based on if you can make yourself understood in German at a simple and adequate level.
Returning German Nationals And Citizens
Special rules apply to ethnic German resettlers who which to reintegrate. If you are a former German national or citizen retuning to Germany, you are legally you are entitled to a free integration course for both you, your spouse, and your children. You will have received a confirmation of entitlement to an integration course when you first arrived in Germany.
How To Find and Attend A German Integration Course
Non-EU citizens need to go to their local Foreigners Registration Office in order to receive a certificate (Berechtigungsschein) allowing you to attend an integration course. EU citizens must apply to attend a course with the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees.
Both the foreigners’ registration office and the migration advisory center can help you find a course provider (Kurstraeger). Alternatively, you can also use the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees online information system WebGIS.
You can contact the course provider in person or by telephone to apply. They will help you select the appropriate integration course for you and advise you on when it is scheduled to begin.
The Duration Of German Integration Courses
Generally, the integration courses consist of an orientation component of 100 hours and a language component of 600 hours.
The Cost Of Integration Courses
The course fee is EUR 1.95 for every lesson unit. If you registered for the course before 1 July 2016, the contribution is EUR 1.55 per lesson. The whole course will, therefore, cost you EUR 1,365, or EUR 1,085 if you registered for the course before 1 July 2016.
Payment Terms, Exemption Of Cost And Refund Claims
There are special payment terms available to help pay for the integration courses. In other not to pay everything at once, you can pay for each section of 100 lessons at a time.
You can also apply for exemption of cost ion you find it hard to pay because of your financial situation or if you receive unemployment benefit II or social assistance.
If you pass the final examination of the integration course within two (2) years of receiving your confirmation certificate of eligibility, you can be eligible to claim back half the contribution cost.