Reasons for Rejection of German Student Visa
Getting your student visa rejected can be a very devastating experience. Students really invest a lot of time and energy before they finally appear for their visa interviews. It first starts with finding the right schools and also the right study programmes. You then go ahead to send numerous applications to various schools because of the fact that admission is very competitive in Germany due to the lack of tuition fees, and hence you wouldn't want to risk putting all your eggs in one basket.
If the schools you intend applying to have dealings with UNI-ASSIST, that means you will have to pay an application fee for every school you apply to, which can be quite costly. Then comes the long wait for admission which in some cases takes several months.
If you are lucky to get admission, you may be required to open a blocked account in Germany and transfer 8640 Euros into it. You then have to gather all the documents for your visa interview, pay your visa fee and finally battle to book an early slot for your visa interview, which is really tough because there are few slots available at any given time. Having gone through all these processes and challenges, it can be quite a hard pill to swallow if your visa ends up being rejected.
This is why you should leave no stone unturned when you are preparing for your interview. Based on research and personal experiences from students, I would try and outline some of the major reasons why the German embassy refuses to hand out visas to students. I must emphasize that these are not the definitive reasons for the rejection of student visas since the final decision lies with the Immigration Office where you will be studying.
It is also very important to point out that unlike most embassies, the final decision to issue or deny a visa is not dependent on the visa officer. It is mainly dependent on the Immigration Office where you will be studying. All the visa officer does is to give a positive or negative recommendation based on your performance at the interview. Therefore you might do exceptionally well at the visa interview and still have your visa refused. You might also do poorly at the interview and be surprised to learn that you have been issued a visa.
The State Didn't see Your Profile Fitting for Their Future Needs
Germany like most countries is in high need of skilled workers. They also need bright young minds because of their aging population. The free tuition has been extended to international students in an effort to attract bright minds from around the world. They hope these young minds would learn their language and get acclimatized to their systems. They can then go ahead to fill skilled positions that cannot be filled by their citizens for one reason or the other.
Currently, Germany is in high need of scientists and engineers. However, this does not mean they are not in need of other professionals as well. When you apply to study in Germany, the state where your university is located plays a huge factor in determining if your visa will be granted or not. If the state needs people in the field you applied to, there is a high chance your visa will be granted with all other things being equal. If the state already has a large number of professionals in the field you applied to, then they might use other factors like the availability of accommodation and transport facilities in making their decisions which really doesn't put the odds in your favor.
Poor Financial Status
This is the number one reason most students have their visas refused. Despite the fact that most institutions in Germany do not charge tuition fees, you still need to be financially sound to survive in Germany. The German Embassy wants students to concentrate on their studies and does not want them to get distracted as a result of financial difficulties. Lack of sufficient funds can force students into crime. They may also neglect their studies altogether and take up jobs.
The German Embassy therefore places a huge emphasis on the financial capability of students. Students require around 720 Euros per month to cover the cost of living in Germany. It may be higher or lower depending on the city. Students are expected to show a minimum of 8640 Euros every year in order to renew their visa. As such, if the German Embassy has any reason to believe that you might have trouble financing your studies, it can easily lead to your visa being rejected.
Poor Academic Profile
The visa officer assesses your capability to study in Germany using your previous academic results. Don't be fooled, the German educational system is one of the toughest in the world. The huge dropout rate in their universities is a testament to this. As many as 60 percent of students in the engineering and the sciences drop out during their first year.
German universities do not depend on tuition fees from students and hence they are under no pressure to pass them. They also do not grade on a curve. If an entire class fails a particular examination and there is nothing wrong with the questions, then so be it. Therefore, if the visa officer feels you are not academically fit to survive the rigorous academic standards in Germany, it might lead to your visa being rejected. The visa officer does not want you to enter Germany and end up getting frustrated because you are unable to pass your papers.
Lack of Preparation for Your Interview
Some students go into the interview totally unprepared which makes the visa officer doubt their seriousness to study in Germany. The visa officer expects you to know some basic facts about Germany. He or she expects you to know some facts about the state and city where your school is located. More importantly, you are required to know some facts about your school and your study programme. If you go into the interview lacking knowledge in any of these facts, the visa officer concludes that you are not really serious about studying in Germany and this can lead to your visa being refused.
There is no way any student should fail his or her interview at the German Embassy after going through this.
Insufficient Language Level (Either German or English)
It is very common for students to apply to study a programme in Germany that requires let's say C1 German language level when they only have an A2 qualification. This makes the visa officer doubt whether they can be able to comprehend lectures and pass examinations successfully.
As a student your ability to succeed academically is of high importance to the embassy and hence anything that would hinder your academic progress can be a reason for rejection. The same applies for English-taught programmes in Germany. If you have a very low score in your IELTS or TOEFL, the visa officer would doubt if you can be able to understand and pass lectures in English and this can contribute to your visa being rejected.
Inconsistency With Your Choice of Study Programme
This usually comes in two forms. The first form is when students apply for master's programmes in Germany that are totally unrelated to what they did in their bachelor's degrees. It is advisable to show solid proof of why you want to study in a new field, which can be in the form of work experience in the new field.
The second form is when a student applies for a second bachelor's degree or a second master's degree programme in Germany. The bachelor's degree is not that well regarded in Germany and having 2 bachelor's degrees is like starting 2 educational paths and finishing neither of them. Also if you already have a master's degree, the visa officer might wonder why you aren't applying for a Ph.D. This can make you appear desperate and the visa officer would doubt if your true intention is to study.
I remember the first time I made up my mind to study in Germany. There were a lot of questions running through my mind. Unluckily for me, I had no one to answer these questions and had to find out the answers myself. I was surprised at how much false information was on the web when I finally went through the entire process and made it to Germany as a student. So I decided to take it upon myself to provide correct and detailed information so students can make a smooth transition from their home countries to Germany. You can find in-depth answers to the frequently most asked questions about studying in Germany by clicking here.
Also, most students do not really think much of their motivation letter. However, it is one of the most important, if not the most important component of your visa application. You can learn how to write a perfect motivation letter by clicking here.