Frequently asked questions

 

1. How can I enroll for a course at IfS?


Online: use our enrolment template on the Homepage. > Enrolment

  • After completing the enrolment form or online template,transfer the fees payable to:

Holder of bank account: Institut für Sprachen, Dr. H. Quehl
Name of bank: Kreissparkasse Schwalm-Eder
Bank code: 520 521 54
Bank account number: 31 000 896
IBAN: DE04 5205 2154 0031 0008 96
SWIFT: HELADEF1MEG

  • Please be aware that the bank will deduct a transaction fee. Please inform yourself about this and make sure that you transfer the complete amount including all possible bank transfer fees.

After payment of the course fee, your enrolment has been completed and you will be sent confirmation of your payment (admission letter) as well as further course information.

2. How can I obtain a visa (for non-EU countries such as China, Russia, etc.)?

Before you register for a language course with us and apply for a visa, you are advised to make enquiries at the German embassy in your home country regarding specific visa formalities.

After completion of your enrolment, the Institut für Sprachen will send you an admission letter for the purpose of visa application at the German Embassy of your country.

You can apply for two different kinds of visa for Germany:

  • Visa solely for learning German:
    This visa is suitable for anyone who only wants to come to Germany to participate in language courses to learn German or improve their German skills. Visa extension up to a maximum of 12 months is possible.

  • Visa for academic purposes:
    This visa is suitable for those wishing to learn German in Germany first and then stay on to study at a German university or University of Applied Science (UAS). Embassies often require documentary proof of enrolment at a German university in order for you to obtain this visa. Once you have passed the DSH or TestDaF exam and completed matriculation formalities, the visa can be extended until the end of your studies.

Under no circumstances should you apply for a tourist visa!!! This is critical since once a visa has been issued, it cannot subsequently be altered in Germany. A tourist visa cannot be converted into a visa including permission to study in Germany which means you would have to return to your home country after expiration of the visa and submit a new application for a visa to study in Germany.

 

3. What kind of Health Insurance should I take out?

To apply for a visa at the German Embassy in your country you will need, among other documents, an insurance certificate for the duration of your stay in Germany. Actually, this requirement is quite useful because you never know if you might need medical treatment by specialists (e.g., orthopaedists, gynaecologists) or even in-patient treatment during your stay abroad.

We recommend you the special Health insurance for language pupils and students of Care Concept. The Care Concept - insurance covers a great deal of the expenses that might incur in the case of illness or an accident, - at a favorable price. Note: Make sure that you chose at least "Care College Comfort" since the Ausländerbehörde in Kassel does not accept lower tariffs.

You can take out an international policy directly online and, after your application has been checked and approved, you will receive your insurance documents by e-mail within a few minutes.

For more information as well as for the Online - Application Form see > Care Concept.

4. I´d like to study at a German University. What do I have to do?

Students who have decided to study in Germany are usually daunted at first by the many tasks they are faced with and hurdles they have to overcome. Not least among these are achieving the necessary language skills and preparing to live in Germany. We help our language students along every step of the way – starting from admission requirements for university study, travel to Germany and visa applications to arranging accommodation and much more.

Prospective students are advised to do their best to obtain an enrolment document from a German university before coming to Germany. This document of confirmation can then be used to apply for a visa to attend a language school and subsequently stay on to study at university (visa for academic purposes). In addition to the normal documentation required for a visa, you will also need documentary proof of enrolment from our institute.

Our staff at the Institut für Sprachen can also help you with the university admission process. For further information, please see the “IfS Compact Offer” page on our website. > IfS compact offer

5. Are there any opportunities to obtain a scholarship for a summer or winter course?

Our Instiute does not provide scholarships, but you can ask your home university whether they will grant you a stipend, or you might address yourself to the German Academic Exchange Service (> DAAD) and apply for a scholarship for your selected course: Online Application for DAAD-scholarship.

6. Why do the IfS courses have different prices?

Our regular language courses only include language instruction and no theme-specific project units, no consultation and advisory services and no accompanying programme. These courses therefore have lower fees than our other courses.

Our summer and winter courses include, alongside the intensive German course, theme-specific project units, a wide variety of free recreation activities and excursions as well as many consultation and advisory services such as providing assistance with immigration formalities and visa or residence conditions or organising accommodation . Textbooks are also provided at no extra charge to our summer and winter course participants.

 

7. What kind of certificates will be issued at the end of a Course?

Each course will conclude with a final exam according to the respective level. The test results and regular and active participation in the lessons will be attested in a certificate which you can use as a proof of your language ability, e.g. attached to your CV for job applications.
In addition, you can enrol – depending on your level of language ability – for different internationally recognised test formates at our IfS - Test Centre (test fees will be charged extra). More Information and test dates are listed on our website. > IfS - Test Centre

8. Do I have to sit a placement test?

Once you have arrived here at IfS in Kassel, you will write a detailed grading test on the first day of your course. If required we may also conduct an oral test. According to the results you will be assigned to an A1, A2, B1, B1+, B2 or C1 / TestDaF course.

 

9. Which course books and / or learning materials are used?

  • In our German Courses, basic level A1 bis B1+, we use "Menschen" (Hueber Verlag).
  • In our German Courses, upper level B2 und C1, we use either a reader composed by our teachers or "Mittelpunktneu" (Klett Verlag).

In all courses, authentic materials will be used as additional teaching materials (copies free of charge).

Please wait for your first class to find out about the course book that will be used, don´t buy a course book before the start of your chosen course!

 

10. Can I obtain ECTS credit points?

Please consult your home university whether they grant ECTS credit points fort the above described services, tests and certificates.

 

11. Who can participate in the language courses?

Everybody who wants to refresh or upgrade his language abilities can participate in the IfS language courses. Even students without any previous knowledge can participate in our A1 courses.

 

12. How many participants are in class?

The average number of participants per course on A1, A2 and B1 level normally is 20 students. On higher levels (B2 and C1), the number of participants is about 15 students.

 

13. What kind of accommodation can be provided?

There are different ways for you to find accommodation in Kassel:

a) You can search for an accommodation for temporary rent on your own, the best way will be via internet, see for example one of these websites: www.zwischenmiete.de or www.wg-gesucht.de.

b) If you like, we will help you to find an accommodation for temporary rent. The rent will be 400,00€ per month. The costs for negotiating and obtaining a room as for bed linen are included in the accommodation rates. We offer different types of accommodation in Kassel: rooms in shared apartments, privat lodging and host families. We will arrange for you accommodation according to availability. > Accommodation

c) We also can arrange accommodation in the small, attractive town of Felsberg (25 km from Kassel). Rooms in Felsberg are more affordable than in Kassel. The prices per room range between 190,00€ (double room) and 275,00€ (single room) per month. Please notice, that there will be additional costs for local public transport. A four-weekly ("monthly") ticket for getting from Kassel to Felsberg costs 107,50 ( January 2017). > Accommodation

 

14. Is it possible to book a course without accomodation?

Yes, it is possible to book only the course, and find an accomodation on your own; the best way will be via internet, see for example one of these websites: www.zwischenmiete.de or www.wg-gesucht.de.

 

15. Is it possible to stay longer than the duration of the language course in a room which is rented temporarily?

Unfortunately, this is not possible.

 

16. How much does it cost to use local public transport?

Since our institute is ideally situated in the city centre, all central places as well as the pedestrian precinct with all its stores are within easy walking distance. However, depending on where your rented room is located, you might need to get to our institute in downtown Kassl by either bike, bus or tram. Generally, a four-weekly ("monthly") ticket is a big money-saver (compared to buying daily tickets). Especially participants of our summer courses we recommend to buy a four-weekly ticket, since they take part on various trips and excursions into the region. A four-weekly ticket you can use as often as you like during one month.

A monthly ticket valid for KasselPlus ( Kassel and surroundings) costs 53,50€ (January 2017).
A monthly ticket valid from Kassel to Felsberg  costs between 107,50€ ( January 2017).

 

17. Can I rent a bicycle?

The IfS does not offer such a service. But you can rent bicycles via Konrad. If you plan on staying for a longer period, it might be cheaper to buy a second hand bicycle.

 

18. Where exactly in Kassel is the IfS located?

The Institut für Sprachen is located in the center of Kassel. You can reach the pedestrian zone within five minutes walking distance, and the urban park and lake areas within 10 minutes on the bike. A public transport stop (tram and bus) is in front of the IfS office. > Getting to the IfS

19. What kind of leisure activities does IfS offer?

Our recreational programme includes a diverse offering of museum, cinema and theatre visits, not to mention brewery tours, communal sporting activities, various excursions and further more.

Most parts of the recreation programme are included in the fee for the summer language courses. Other Parts of the recreation programme may be booked individually after you have arrived.

Please check also our website > Recreational programme

 

20. How else can I spend my free time in Kassel?

Kassel is one of the most prominent museum centers in Germany with a whole range of leasure activity and cultural offers, such as: cinemas, theatre, various museums, art galleries, dance floor activities and discos, sport facilities and more. > Location Kassel

 

21. What shall I take with me?

Besides clothing and important documents you should bring some towels. Normally, you don´t have to bring bed sheets with you. However, if your landlord does not provide bed sheets, we will get in touch with you.

Depending on your personal interest you should bring suitable clothing for your prefered leasure activities with you, such as bathing clothes, sport shoes, hiking shoes etc.

You can buy books in the local bookstores.

In case you have booked a course with an art focus pleae bring your favorite equipment with you.

 

22. How can I get a discount in the university cafeteria?

Please bring your international student ID (ISICI) with you in order to be accepted as a student in the cafeteria of the university of Kassel.

 

23. I have booked accomodation through IfS. What is the earliest date when I can move into the room?

You can move into the room or appartment one day prior to the start of the course. In case you want to arrive earlier, feel free to ask us, but unfortunately in most cases we won´t be able to have you move into your room earlier. Normally, you will have to find an accomodation on your own until your room or appartment is free.

 

24. When will I have to move out of my room or appartment?

You will have to hand over your room / apartement the day after the course ends, which usually is a Saturday till 10 am. Please keep in mind that you will have to clean it before handing over! If you intend to stay in Kassel for a longer time, you will have to find an accomodation on your own.

 

25. Do I have to pay a deposit for the room?

Before you can move into your room a key deposit of 400 € is required. These 400 € will be rewarded on departure, provided that the apartement / the room is in a clean and tidy condition.

 

26. Where can I buy snacks and sanitary articles on sundays?

In general, stores in Germany are closed on sundays ( except restaurants, cafés etc), but  you can buy snacks and sanitary articles at "Rossmann Express" at the station Wilhelmshöhe ( Monday - Sunday from 6:00 am to 22 pm and on Sunday from 8:00 am to 22 pm).

 
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