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(Ger. "Akademisches Auslandsamt") International office in a higher education institution. See "Akademisches Auslandsamt (AAA)".

Final examination at grammar schools in Germany, main entrance qualification for all subjects in higher education institutions.

Academic quarter hour (c.t.)
(c.t. = Latin: cum tempore) A course, lecture or seminar beginning 15 minutes after the stated time. Example: If a timetable states that a lecture begins at 9:00 c.t., it will officially start at 9:15.

Achievement points
see: Credit Points

Administration college
University of applied sciences providing training in public administration.

Admission application
Application for admission to a particular institution for a particular course. Many institutions accept the four-page "Application for admission to higher education in Germany" form produced by the DAAD, while others insist on using the institution's own application process. In addition to the completed and signed admission application, you must submit all of the other required application documents.

Admission confirmation
Letter from an institution notifying an applicant that they have been admitted to a particular course. The admission confirmation also provides information about when and where to enrol.

Admission requirements
All conditions that an applicant must meet to enter the institution's admissions process. These admission requirements are normally particular qualifications, language proficiency, possibly work placements and compliance with formal stipulations (authentication, translation, application deadlines). Meeting these admission requirements qualifies an applicant to enter the selection process but does not automatically result in admission.

Admission restriction
For courses with restricted admission, the number of applicants exceeds the number of places available. Therefore, only applicants with the best qualifications (and a small proportion based on particular quotas) are admitted. Some courses have restricted admission throughout Germany, others only at particular institutions.

Admissions office
Department in a higher education institution responsible for the application process, allocation of places and enrolment.

Adult education college
Adult education colleges are community educational institutions for all sections of the population in Germany. They can be found in almost every area and offer relatively low-cost courses in a variety of subjects: Politics - Social Studies - Environment, work and professions / IT, languages (literacy, German for immigrants, foreign languages), health education, culture and design, school leaving qualifications (e.g. secondary school certificate, technical school certificate, Abitur), study trips.

Advanced seminar
Course for students in the main study stage, which generally ends with a written seminar assignment.

Major international student organisation providing events, placements and exchange programmes, primarily for students on business courses (see also

Akademisches Auslandsamt (AAA)
(Eng. "International Office") An office within almost every higher education institution that deals primarily with matters relating to periods of study abroad. Information on international student exchanges, foreign study, foreign work placements etc. is available in the Akademisches Auslandsamt and on its website. At many higher education institutions, it is the Student Registry that is responsible for foreign students, not the Akademisches Auslandsamt.

Alma mater
(Latin: nourishing mother): Old term for 'university', especially the university that one attended.

Alumnus/alumna (pl.: alumni)
Graduate of an institution or academic (exchange) programme. Numerous (German) institutions and scholarship awarding bodies have special associations or continuing programmes for their alumni.

Like legalisation, an Apostille confirms the authenticity of a certificate. It is provided by the authority that actually issued the certificate, as long as this authority is officially authorised to issue the Apostille. It is not necessary to involve consular staff from the country in which the certificate will be used.

Application documents
The following certificates are to be submitted when applying for a programme of study: a secondary school leaving certificate, records of study, language test verification certificates. The following may also be required: curriculum vitae, photocopy of passport, work placement report, and an application for entitlement to follow a programme of study in Germany, fully filled-in and signed. When making an application, please do not submit any original documents, only authenticated copies.

Application form
See: Application for admission

(Ger. "Akademische Pruefestelle") Qualifications office of the cultural department at the German embassy in Beijing, which verifies the authenticity of certificates and establishes whether an applicant has a basic entitlement to study in Germany. If the result is positive, the applicant receives the APS certificate which can then be used to apply for a student visa.

APS certificate
The APS certificate contains information about courses of study in China, the type of entrance qualification, grades under the German grading system and German proficiency. When applying, the original certificate must always be submitted.

Art college
Higher education institution offering courses in visual, creative and performing arts. Entrance requirements are a general or subject-specific entrance qualification and evidence of artistic aptitude.

Assessment test (FSP)
Final examination that must be passed by international students on a preparatory course to qualify for entrance to higher education. On some preparatory courses, this assessment test can be taken without completing the actual programme of study for the course. To do this, you need to register for an "external assessment test" with the relevant preparatory course.

(Ger. "Allgemeiner Studierendenausschuss") Students' Union Executive Committee: Student organisation elected by students to represent their interests publicly and in various administration bodies within the institution.

Attendance requirement
Requirement to be met if a student wants to attend a particular course.

Auditorium maximum: Largest lecture theatre in a university.

Also called "Internationale Zulassung". In Germany, a department of the Student Registry (or Student Registration Office) responsible for accepting or rejecting foreign students.

Confirmation of the authenticity of a signature, or of the consistency of a document copy with the original document.

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