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Free Online Courses From Top German Universities


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Do you want to study but can’t afford the high tuition costs of German universities? If so, I might have just what you need. I’ve scoured the web and found free online courses from top German universities. These courses are taught in English, so even if your German isn’t the best, you can still take advantage of the free lectures and classes. These courses are designed for international students and are excellent ways to brush up on your German skills and get ready for studying in Germany.

There are several free online courses from top German universities and colleges. Some are even fully accredited with English subtitles. These are my favorites to learn from the various subject matter

German universities offer a wide range of free online courses.

German universities and academic institutions have an excellent reputation around the world. Not only are they located in one of the most economically stable countries, but also offer a wide range of programs and courses to suit both German and international students.

The question is, how do you take advantage of these free online courses?
There are free online courses offered by top German universities that you can attend right now and improve your German. Once you have taken a look at what courses are available, go ahead and enroll in one or more of the courses below. You can even register for no cost at all!

Top universities in Germany

German universities are among the most prestigious in Europe. Many of them offer free or low-cost online courses.

The list below contains a selection of top universities in Germany. Their e-learning courses and programs are open to anyone with an internet connection and a desire to learn.

Germany’s universities have a long and rich history, with some of the most prestigious institutions of higher learning in the world. That would include the University of Heidelberg, which has been in operation since 1386 and is now one of Germany’s premier research institutions.

Germany’s education system is also free for students from within the European Union (EU), which makes it a popular destination for students from across Europe.

In fact, over 20 percent of German university students are international students, so you can expect to study alongside people from many different countries.

The good news is that international students who can’t study in Germany don’t need to miss out on their education. The best German universities offer a variety of online courses that you can take remotely — often completely free of charge.

University of Applied Science

The University of Applied Science offers over a hundred free online courses in a variety of fields, many with professional certificates. The school utilizes the Open edX Learning Management System and offers courses from

  • the Business & Economics,
  • Engineering & Computer Sciences,
  • Fine Arts,
  • Health & Medicine,
  • Humanities and Social Sciences departments.

Courses are self-paced, and there is no cost to take them. However, if you want to receive a certificate of completion (which can be verified by a future employer or academic institution), there is a fee.

The University of Applied Science has been offering free online courses since 2013. Some of their courses have won awards for their content and presentation.

The University of Applied Sciences Europe offers an eight-week course on information and communication technology, or ICT, designed for those who want to update their knowledge on the topic. Students can take this course for free, but a paid option is also available if you want to receive a certificate of completion.

The Basics of Mathematics and Physics

A solid understanding of mathematics and physics is essential for anyone working in computer science. This 11-week basic course from the University of Paderborn covers all the essentials, including algebra, trigonometry, and analytic geometry.

Physics for Nonscientists I: Mechanics

If you aren’t comfortable with the basics of physics, this free online course from the Technical University of Munich can help. It covers topics like mechanics, thermodynamics, and electricity. You’ll learn through video lectures and online textbooks. The course includes a final exam that students can take to earn credit and a certificate of completion.

University of Munich

University of Munich (LMU), a leading research university with a more than 500-year-old tradition, offers you the opportunity to get in touch with outstanding scientists and academics from various fields.

Most recently, Germany’s University of Munich announced that it would be offering a series of free online courses through the edX platform. The university will offer two courses starting in October:

Introduction to Philosophy

Mathematical Methods for Physicists

In addition to the usual features (like video lectures, assessments, and a discussion forum), the courses will include interactive exercises. These let students work on (and check) their own solutions to math and physics problems.

The University of Munich is one of 12 members of the edX consortium. Many other universities from Germany and around the world also offer courses through edX. In all, edX offers over 200 courses from 50 institutions. Some are available now, but many more start in early September.

A few other German institutions have also made news recently for offering free online courses:

The Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich began offering several free online courses this past spring through the Coursera platform. The university currently offers 11 classes with topics ranging from financial engineering to English literature.

In June, Berlin Open Online University announced that it would be offering a wide variety of free online classes in fields like history and computer science starting in winter 2014/15. As opposed to Coursera or edX, Berlin Open

Technical University of Munich

The Technical University of Munich has announced the launch of several new free online courses. The courses are provided through IDX and are part of a larger initiative by several German universities to boost their online education offerings.

There are currently twelve classes available from TUM:

  • Analysis I: Convergence Structures and Differentiable Functions
  • Analysis II: Integration Theory, Banach & Hilbert Spaces
  • Combinatorial Optimization: Algorithms and Complexity
  • Compilers – Principles, Techniques, and Tools (Dragon Book)
  • Introduction to Computational Thinking and Data Science
  • Introduction to Logic Circuits & Boolean Algebra
  • Introduction to Microprocessors
  • Introduction to Numerical Methods for Differential Equations
  • Languages and Machines – An Introduction to the Theory of Computer Science (1st Edition)
  • Machine Learning – Unsupervised Learning
  • Machine Learning – Supervised Learning

Goethe University Frankfurt

Goethe University Frankfurt has created a number of free online courses, which are being offered through the university’s OpenHPI online learning platform. Goethe University is a university located in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. It was founded in 1914 as a citizens’ university, which means it was founded and funded by the wealthy and active liberal citizenry of Frankfurt. The original name was Universität Frankfurt am Main. In 1932, the university’s name was extended in honor of one of the most famous native sons of Frankfurt, the poet, and writer Johann Wolfgang von Goethe.

Some highlights of Goethe University’s open coursework include:
  • Systems Engineering
  • Transformation Design – Theories, Methods, and Practices
  • Open Government Data (OGD) Platform India: Policies, Principles, and Practices
  • Digital Technologies in Education: Innovation for 21st Century Learners
  • Agile Business Development
  • Contemporary Approaches to Social Work Practice with Older People

The University of Mannheim

The University of Mannheim’s free online courses (MOOCs) in English are offered through the Coursera platform.

The University of Mannheim offers a wide range of courses in Business Administration, Economics, and Social Sciences.

The courses cover a variety of disciplines within these fields,

including marketing,

  • Finance,
  • Strategic management,
  • Accounting and auditing,
  • Political science,
  • Business
  • Ethics, and
  • Management information systems.
The University of Mannheim has a strong focus on economics, business administration, political and social sciences.

The MOOCs are provided by the university’s “MOOC Alliance.” The platform offers a variety of subjects such as Literature, Economics, and Social Sciences.

Most of the courses include video lectures, homework assignments, and quizzes; some also provide exams, as well as discussion forums.

Saarland University

Saarland University offers free online courses in a variety of subject areas. The school does not offer any credit for the coursework, but it does offer a certificate of completion for a fee.

Saarland University is a public research university in Saarbrücken, the capital of the German state of Saarland.

Established in 1948, the university was built on the site of a former French fortress, which was constructed by Vauban in 1680 to defend Louis XIV’s borders against Germany. The original fort and its surroundings were later incorporated into Saarbrücken’s urban fabric.

The university has a total enrollment of about 15,000 students and about 2,800 academic staff. It offers over 100-degree programs. The most popular degrees are

  • economics,
  • computer science, and law (it is one of the few universities that offer law programs).

How to Be Successful in Online Course

Online courses are quite different from the traditional classroom setting. They are self-paced and require more independence than regular classes. This can be a great benefit to many people who need flexibility or prefer to work at their own pace, but it can also present a challenge.

Here are some tips on how to be successful in an online course:

  • Review the syllabus
  • Read the course website
  • Complete weekly assignments on time
  • Post comments and replies in Discussion Forums
  • Communicate with your instructor and classmates
  • Start early, participate often, stay on track

A successful online course requires students to have self-discipline. Online courses have no set time to complete and can be completed at the student’s own pace. However, some courses do have a deadline for completion, but that can also be manipulated…

Online courses also require students to have good time management skills. The student cannot rely on anyone else for their work to get done and must be able to manage their school work with other responsibilities like jobs, family, etc.

Other than having self-discipline and good time management skills, online courses are less stressful than traditional classes because they allow you to learn at your own pace and in the place of your choosing. They are also more convenient and flexible.


With a growing number of educational resources available online, top German universities are getting in on the trend by offering free courses through their websites. With content ranging from psychology to law to personal development, these courses are helping more people than ever before stay informed and up-to-date without paying an outlandishly expensive price tag. Plus, learning a new skill or improving upon existing ones is an exciting part of growing both personally and professionally. So if you’re ready to take your education to the next level, then online courses from German universities are worth a second look.


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