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Glossary D

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DAAD
The DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service, www.daad.de) actively supports the international exchange of students, artists and academics. It awards scholarships, runs special programmes and provides information in a range of languages on all aspects of studying in Germany. DAAD information brochures are available in academic international offices. The DAAD has offices in various countries.

Department
With regard to content, universities organize the study courses that they offer by departments (Ger. "Fachbereich"), institutes or workshops. Several of these grouped together form a faculty.

Diplom degree qualification
Qualification/academic degree obtained at the end of a German 'Diplom' course (for more information, please refer to "Degrees" in the "Studying" section of the website)

Direct general entrance qualification
(Ger. "direkte allgemeine Hochschulzugangsberechtigung") This entitles a person to enter higher education in Germany with no restriction to particular subjects or groups of subjects.

Direct subject-specific entrance qualification
(Ger. "Direkte fachgebundene Hochschulzugangsberechtigung") This is a direct subject-specific entrance qualification allowing you to apply to all higher education institutions to study in the subject area you have previously studied and in related subjects.

Disputation
(Public) defence of one's thesis at the end of a doctorate programme.

Dissertation
Written doctoral thesis for the acquisition of a doctorate.

DSH
(Ger. abbr. for "Deutsche Sprachpruefung fuer den Hochschulzugang auslaendischer Studienbewerber") German language test for higher education admission: International applicants must demonstrate an adequate level of proficiency in German in addition to meeting subject requirements. This can be done by passing the DSH or an equivalent. There are three grade boundaries: DSH-1 (fulfilment of the exam requirements with a mark above 57%), DSH-2 (fulfilment of the exam requirements with a mark above 67%) and DSH-3 (fulfilment of the exam requirements with a mark above 82%). Institutes of higher education generally require the DSH-2 grade to grant the applicant entitlement to study, but in particular cases the institutes can, at their discretion, set the DSH grade boundaries required for certain study programmes themselves.

DSH-1 test (for admission to preparatory courses)
Prospective students who, prior to beginning their programme of higher study in Germany, have to attend a course of preparatory lectures and pass the subsequent entrance examination, also have to take the level one DSH-1 test (Ger. "Aufnahmepruefung zum Studienkolleg") first of all in order to gain admission to this course of preparatory lectures. The test is part academic and part linguistic.

DSW
(Ger. abbr. for "Deutsches Studentenwerk") In Germany, there are a total of 58 Studentenwerks headed by the parent organization, the Deutsche Studentenwerk (DSW). German universities focus on the academic elements of studying, while the Studentenwerks handle the economic, social, and cultural facets. Although the Studentenwerk is an organization independent from the universities and Fachhochschule, it works very closely with these institutions to ensure that the needs of students are met.

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