Everything you want to know

We understand that deciding on a study program is a big deal for you. That’s why we want to give you the answer to every possible question.

If you cannot find the answer to your question on this page, please reach out to us at admissions@code.berlin. Looking forward to talking with you!


Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.Anaïs Nin, Writer

What do you look for in students when applying?

Curiosity and a growth-mindset are most important to us and should be for our students as well. It doesn’t matter if you have been programming since you were 10 years old or just found your passion for the digital world – let us find out what you can do with technology and let’s make it the best years of your life. You can get a better idea of who we are looking for here.

How important are my school grades when applying?

Your grades don’t have to have been perfect when you were in high school, but there are some Higher Education Entrance Qualifications requirements you’ll need to qualify for concerning your eligibility to study in Germany. What matters to us at CODE is your dedication to becoming a Digital Pioneer.

I still have a few years left in high school. Does it make sense to apply now anyway?

If you still have a few years until you graduate from high school, there is no need for you to hurry. We will take applications one year in advance for the upcoming class. At CODE, every class starts in the fall – so if you want to start in 2024, you can apply from Winter 2023 onward. But aside from your official application, please get in touch with us early and let us know that you are interested in studying at CODE. We have plans for a lot of events taking place online and throughout Germany, so it would be great to get to know you on one of these occasions.

Where does the Higher Education Entrance Qualification check fit in?

There are four stages on your journey to CODE, all described in detail on our Admissions page. As you can see, there is a short stop-over after the written application: the Higher Education Entrance Qualification check. The admissions team will ask you to provide some information and documents, based on which we will be able to confirm if you are eligible to undertake undergraduate studies in Germany. If you haven’t completed your current studies yet, you can submit your preliminary results. Should we need any additional information from you, we will let you know. Once you successfully pass this check, you will be able to start working on your admission project.

What kind of preparation do you recommend to pass the admission process?

There’s no special preparation necessary for your application to CODE! The best advice we can give is to be yourself and give your best effort. We have designed a unique admission process that is not based on rigid scores, but rather on all the unique and individual qualities our applicants have to offer. Finding out if you are a good fit for CODE based on our admission criteria is more than assessing your project, but learning about you as a potential member of our community. Applying to CODE is a two way street, which gives you an opportunity to find out if CODE is the right place for you.

Does CODE require proof of English language proficiency?

Yes, you need to give us some kind of proof that your English language skills are at least at a B2 level. We accept multiple certificates to prove this: check out this list for more details. If you are unsure about your level, we recommend just taking a chance and applying anyway. Your English doesn’t need to be perfect – we believe that you can improve your spoken and written language skills while you study at CODE. Bear in mind that the entire admissions process is in English and all communication with the CODE team will be in English from the moment you apply to the moment to graduate.

Does everyone have to go through the admission process?

Life is more fun with shortcuts, isn’t it? Well, this time there isn’t one. The admission process is the same for everyone, regardless of whether you are an international applicant or applying from Germany, a beginner or have extensive knowledge in digital product development. We strongly believe that everyone should get a fair chance. Besides, how else would you know if you and CODE are a great fit? We are doing our best to create an excellent learning experience for you and we expect your commitment in return.

Is there an application fee?

There is never a fee for applying to study at CODE, no matter how many times you do it. We believe that higher education should be available to every person eager to learn, regardless of their financial situation. We also think that you’ll learn something when you apply, since we put a great deal of thought into the admission process.

I have no experience in software development at all. Can I still study at CODE?

Yes, you can! Not every Digital Pioneer is a coder. That said, if you’ve never designed or worked on something digital in your life before, you will need all your dedication and creativity. Like everyone else, you will need to pass all four steps of our application process. If you have the drive and the passion for digital technologies, you can do it!

How can I find out more about CODE?

If you are unsure if CODE is the right place for you or you would like to have a chat with the students and faculty, we offer a number of opportunities/events during which you can learn more about CODE. You can attend one of our remote Open House Days, Q&A sessions with our students or team or tune in for our insideCODE series.

What does an Admission Day look like?

We invite applicants to an Admission Day when they have passed the first three steps of the admission process.


Whatever you do, be different – that was the advice my mother gave me, and I can’t think of better advice for an entrepreneur. If you’re different, you will stand out.”Anita Roddick, Businesswoman and human rights activist

What are my chances of getting in when applying?

It totally depends on you and your admission process! At CODE, we are looking for the right people, not the right number of people. We recommend that you take the entire admission process seriously and that you give your very best.

I didn’t graduate from high school. Can I still study at CODE?

German regulations for higher education require you to have a higher education entrance qualification to enroll in a Bachelor’s degree program. If you are not sure whether your degree matches the admission requirements for Germany, please check the DAAD database and our admission requirements. For students from Germany who do not have an “Abitur”, please look into your options for “berufliche Qualifizierung”.

Do you also accept international students?

Absolutely! CODE is a very international community, and English is the language we use everywhere on campus. We believe that everyone has something to offer and learn from one another. This is why CODE sees diversity and inclusion as an opportunity to grow and empower each other. We cultivate a culture of participation for everyone and their specific skills and characteristics. To find out more about admission requirements for studying in Germany we recommend you read through our requirements and the pages of Study-in.de.

Can I also begin my studies in the summer semester?

No, study programs at CODE only start once a year in a fall with an onboarding week taking place at the end of August.

Is there a deadline for submitting my application?

The deadline to submit your written application if you require a visa to study in Germany is the beginning of June, and for everybody else it is mid-July. We will close the admission process once our maximum capacity of students is reached. Please keep in mind that you might need some extra time for your application, arranging the move to Berlin or your visa application process. That’s why we recommend starting the application process as early as possible to begin studying in the fall.

Financial Considerations

It’s not about money. It’s about the people you have.Steve Jobs, Entrepreneur and founder of Apple Inc.

Are there tuition fees?

Yes. As a private university we need our students’ help with a financial contribution in order to stay independent. We have covered all the relevant information under our tuition page, including information about possibly financing your studies with an income-based delayed tuition model provided by our friends from CHANCEN eG.

Is the pay-later option only available to Germans?

No. Both payment options are generally available for international students as well. We are constantly working on developing opportunities for our students to cover the tuition fees, which are available to both EU and non-EU students. Reach out to the Admissions team for more information.

What payment options do you offer?

We offer you the opportunity to pay the tuition fees directly (monthly, per year, or all up front). Besides that, we offer an Income Share Agreement (pay-later or 50/50 monthly and pay-later) with no upfront payment, so you only start paying after you finish your studies and start to earn money. You can find out more about these payment modalities from here.

Do you offer any scholarships?

No, we don’t offer any scholarships specifically to cover the tuition fees. We want our students to stay independent and are confident that our income-based delayed tuition model is a fair option for everyone.

Are there any additional fees?

No. We are fully transparent about this. No application fee, no admission fee, no examination fee. We know that starting your studies at CODE involves necessary costs such as the semester ticket, moving to Berlin, visa application fees and so on, depending on your situation. That’s why we don’t want to burden you with any additional fees outside of these.

Can I get “BAföG” while studying at CODE?

Yes. “BAföG” (German system for governmental loans to students) is designed to help you with your living costs while studying. Because we are a state-recognized university of applied sciences, you are able to file for “BAföG” just like any other student. More information can be found at the website of studierendenWERK BERLIN. Keep in mind though, that BAföG is available only to German students and some EU students in special cases.

Are CODE students eligible for a student ticket for public transport?

Yes. All CODE students pay approximately 200€ per semester (6 months) for public transportation tickets. The ticket is in fact printed on our Student ID.

What other costs should I expect (housing, books, hardware, software etc.)?

That will depend on your personal needs, but one of the reasons we chose Berlin for our campus is that you will enjoy a relatively low cost of living without having to compromise on your quality of life. You’ll find some useful information on this topic at the website studierendenWERK BERLIN, with whom we have a membership.

Your most important tool will be your notebook computer. It should be less than three years old and reasonably equipped for the tasks that await you. If you won’t be able to afford a suitable computer, please get in touch with us. We will be able to offer a limited number of affordable lease-purchase arrangements. When it comes to study materials, CODE’s modules usually use open source or open access materials, so these kinds of costs are typically not a worry for our students.

Are the courses offered by CODE available as a part of distant-learning programs?

All of our study programs are in-person learning, which requires all of the students to attend the lectures on campus in Berlin, so completing undergraduate studies at CODE is not possible in a distance learning format. We had to make an exception since the start of the pandemic but we will be back to on-site teaching and learning when the situation allows it.

Studying at CODE

The question isn’t who’s going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.Ayn Rand, Writer

Do I have to speak English at CODE?

Yes. We are an English-speaking community. In order to include our diverse student body, we ask that everyone at CODE (including faculty and staff) speak only English on campus. If you are unsure about your level, we recommend just taking a chance and applying anyways. Our entire admission process is in English, so please be aware of this fact.

How large are your groups/seminars?

We assume you are wary of overcrowded lecture halls and therefore think “the smaller the better.” We would say: it depends. Small groups of people are excellent for discussions, brainstorming, or project work. But sometimes you want to face a crowd, address them with your ideas and convince them to follow your lead. Or just listen to an inspiring talk together with 200 other CODE members.
The project teams you will be working with most of the time will be between six and 15 members in size (depending on the project needs). Your STS workshops and seminars will have a group size between 10 and maybe 30 (again depending on the topic and the format). So, apart from the aforementioned lectures and talks, we will make sure that the group size always allows for the most intense and dynamic interaction and learning experience.
But in the end there is really no way for us to figure out how many of you want to join that special seminar with Mark Zuckerberg on building the next Facebook …

What kind of software are we going to use during the study program?

We won’t tell you what the right tool is for the projects you are going to work on. Find out for yourself. You probably already have your favorite, don’t you? Then continue to use it.

Can I work on my own projects?

Be honest: Would we be able to stop you? This is one of the great advantages of CODE: It is possible to make your own ideas a part of your study program and even get credit for the results. As great as that sounds, we take our academic responsibility for the program(s) we offer you and your fellow students very seriously. Every idea, whether it is from one of our company partners, students or professors, will be processed with identical criteria for selection and categorization, meaning that they will be defined by project goals, timeline, fitting size of team members, requirements for competencies and learning outcomes. After that, the idea will be published and everyone interested will be able to apply.

Does CODE protect the intellectual property (IP) of students and applicants?

Your IP is always yours, never CODE’s. You might hear of other universities where, when you show an idea to a member of faculty, the IP “becomes” the university’s in some ways. Not here! We want to support you while you come up with, expand and send your idea into the world, and one of our biggest goals (and values) is giving you the space and resources you need to make your ideas real. Your ideas stay yours in every interaction with us. **From your admissions process until you’re an alum,** whether it stays “just” a part of your academic journey or grows into a multi-million dollar company, CODE doesn’t own the idea: you do!!

Is CODE for nerds only?

Wait, what?! Aren’t we all humans? Part of the same group, called mankind? Sure, we think that students at CODE are special. They are on a mission: to explore strange new worlds, to seek out new life and new civilizations, to boldly go where no one has gone before … Wait, maybe there is a tiny little nerd in all of us?

Do you offer any soft-skills courses?

We do have two tracks for you on that topic: First and foremost, you will have the guidance of your academic mentor and the constant exchange with your fellow students, lecturers and staff. We will go so far as saying that there is no place to hide and therefore ample opportunity to sharpen your soft skills (or should soft skills better be more softened?). Second, and this is also something very special at CODE, throughout your entire studies you will have a program that we call “Science, Technology and Society”. This – and our Interpersonal Skills Program – will help you foster a broad understanding of personal and social skills and structures.

What kind of assessments will I have to take during my study program?

We are not big fans of written tests that ask you to reproduce knowledge you extracted from a book or a script in order to pass. That is why you will not find them at CODE. We believe in assessments that let you demonstrate the competence we wanted you to acquire. If your challenge was to solve a problem and provide a solution for a project you were working on, we want you to explain how you did it and what you learned from it. If you attended an STS workshop we expect you to formulate your own critical thoughts on the topic discussed and present an informed opinion.
Additionally – and this may come as a surprise – we want you to learn how to assess the solutions and opinions of others. Therefore, we expect you to assess your fellow students’ performance on a regular basis and assess the quality of your assessment.
(Oh, and there will be a Bachelor thesis. Yes, there has to be.)

Are there any semester holidays?

Of course! No one can work 365 days a year, even if you love what you do. We take a break over Christmas. There is also a long phase from May to August where there are no fixed dates that require your presence at the CODE campus, though it will be open (and populated with professors, lecturers and staff) and you are most welcome there. CODE never sleeps, so if you like you can come to the campus every day (and stay all day and night).

Are internships part of the curriculum?

Mandatory internships are not part of the CODE curriculum. As our study programs are mostly projects that you work on with our partner companies, we believe that you will already have a good idea about what working in those companies would look like. If you choose to complete your individual study program with an internship, go ahead! Your academic mentor will even help you with your choice if you ask them.

Is attendance mandatory at CODE?

Yes and no. The curriculum of CODE will not tell you where to work and when to be in what classroom (we don’t have classrooms for a start), but you have to make sure you can contribute to the projects you are part of and there will be the occasional seminar and workshop where we recommend you be present on campus – our lecture series and the subsequent get-togethers especially should be interesting enough to bring you to the campus. Apart from that, you can study from wherever you want. Becoming part of CODE also means that you are an active member of our community and it would be nice to see you often on campus – even if only for a relaxed get-together. In addition, you will have to meet with your team members regularly – and our campus is the perfect place for that!

Can I study part-time while working full-time?

Our study programs are designed to be a challenge for you. Your projects and fellow students will need your full attention and focus. We believe that studying at CODE will take nearly a full working day of your time and sometimes your presence during the day is required, so we don’t think that working full-time and studying part-time at CODE will be possible.

How do I find a project at the beginning of the semester?

There are three different origins for CODE projects: Project ideas presented by our students, professors or ideas from partner companies.
At the beginning of the semester everyone (students, professors and partners) meets for a BarCamp. There all ideas are pitched, then all students who are interested in the same idea meet and discuss about a potential project. This takes place over a two week period during which students are able to find the project that will allow them to learn in the most effective way.

Can you guarantee that I will get a good job offer after I graduate from CODE?

There are no guarantees in life, you know that. But we are super confident about your prospects. Some of the biggest tech companies in Germany support us, and are eagerly waiting for you to finish so they can make you an offer that you cannot refuse … we are certain that some of them will not even wait that long. And the reason for that is not only that they are looking for tech talent wherever they can find it. They have been involved in designing our study programs from the very beginning to make sure that you will graduate with the skill set and the competence profile all modern tech companies will look for in the future.

Can I build my own startup company after studying at CODE?

We would not be surprised if you started a little early and presented your academic mentor something you would like to work on during your second year. And we would be so proud if you did and will help you as much as possible.

What kind of extra-curricular activities does CODE offer?

CODE (and CODE students) are developing activities apart from the study program that help create bonds between fellow students, lecturers and staff. For us, the community aspect is very important. Also, the fact that the CODE campus – is part of one of the largest community spaces in Europe – offers a few highly attractive assets: you will be surprised.

Does CODE offer student housing?

There is no residence facility on campus. However, CODE is a part of the studierendenWERK Berlin, a service providing support for student housing around Berlin.

Do you help students find housing in Berlin?

Currently, we do not offer assistance with housing at the moment. However, CODE is a part of the studierendenWERK Berlin, a service providing support for student housing around Berlin. CODE students are also very active in updating each other with any housing options.


Cooperation is a higher moral principle than competition.Bryant McGill, Social entrepreneur

How do you compare to other universities?

On the surface, CODE is a regular state-recognized university of applied sciences in Germany and you can expect the same formal status as a student, as well as official, state-accredited degrees that are identical to the degrees from every other university or university of applied sciences in Germany and the entire European Higher Education Area (as defined by the Bologna process).
Under the hood however, you will discover a new approach to higher education. You will learn by doing what you love (so we hope), you will learn by facing challenges and mastering them, and you will learn from and with your fellow students. At CODE you are always creating something new and gaining experience with every challenge you face. We are convinced that in order to become a better software developer, designer or product manager you have to learn how to solve problems by yourself and in collaboration with others as well as how to acquire the knowledge and skills you need. Find out more on our educational approach at our page about the learning experience at CODE.

What is an academic mentor and why would I need one?

Unlike high school (and, unfortunately, more and more Bachelor programs) the study programs we designed let you create your own learning experience by choosing projects and seminars according to your individual goals. But that doesn’t mean that we want to leave you alone with those important decisions. That is why you will have an academic mentor. Your mentor will be a member of our academic staff or team. You will meet with them on a regular basis, discuss your existing and envisioned competence profile, and together select projects, roles, seminars and internships that bring you closer to your individual goals. Think of your mentor as your personal learning coach.

Who are my professors going to be?

Our academic council provides us with the latest insights in our field’s research, a strong tie to the scientific community and decades of experience in creating meaningful learning experiences. They help us identify those professors, researchers and lecturers who share our drive for excellence, our common mission and support our educational approach. You can see all our professors here!
Do you know someone who matches the requirements and would be perfect for CODE? Reach out to us!

What career services do you offer?

You will find that at CODE you get every support you need, but first you have to take action and try. We believe we have some very solid options for you, just by being the university we are. Our partner companies cannot wait to introduce themselves to you. You will have sessions with your academic mentor – who will also advise you on your career choices if you like. Additionally, we have an International Office that will help you (as a student from another country) to manage your life in Germany or (as a student from Germany) to find options abroad.

I want to become a high-level manager after my studies. Is CODE the right place for me?

Let’s talk about what you mean by “manager” first. We are deeply convinced that our students will get great job offers after (or even before) their graduation, that they will be able to build their own businesses, and that they will change the world if they want to. Does that mean that our students can become managers? Sure! But being a Digital Pioneer means way more. It means being curious about the world of digital products all the time, aiming for the next big breakthrough in your area of expertise, and never losing the passion for creating things with your own hands. If that sounds good, CODE will definitely be the right place for you.

I’ve worked for some years but want to study (again). Is CODE the right place for me?

Why not? If you feel that you still have a lot to learn in digital product development, give it a try. We believe in talent and in passion and if you are willing to bring that to our learning environment, we could not be happier. Please note that studying at CODE will be challenging and that you will need to invest most of your energy and time in it.

I’m already an expert software developer. Is CODE the right place for me?

Well, I guess we should first talk a little more before we can answer your question. What do you want to achieve by studying at CODE? Did you feel something was lacking in your previous education? Do you “just” want to get a Bachelor’s degree? We are up for anything, as long as we feel that CODE can honestly help you learn something. Let’s have a cup of coffee or tea and talk it out.

How will potential employers view a degree from CODE?

A Bachelor’s degree from CODE will not be just as good as a Bachelor’s degree from another university or university of applied sciences. In fact, we are aiming for much more. As a CODE student you will have two things to distinguish yourself from many other students: a track record of impressive software projects and products you have been working on, extensive collaboration and teamwork experience with those project teams, and your personal competence profile. Based on this, a future employer will get an exact idea of your actual skills and work experience. Sounds good? You’re welcome.

What is the academic calendar? When are our breaks?

Study programs at CODE start once a year in September. Lectures, workshops, mentoring sessions and projects take place from September to April, with a break for Christmas. This way we make sure that everyone puts a strong focus on their studies and their individual goals for the year. From May to August there are no fixed dates that require your presence at the CODE campus, though it will be open (and populated with professors, lecturers and staff) and you will be most welcome there.
We decided on this academic calendar for several reasons: First, we know that hard work needs focus, but also time for reflection and for planning the next steps. You will have time for that, also for a deep look at your individual competence profile and another meeting with your mentor to prepare your next challenges. Also, we know that you love to create things, so we thought you would like some time for your own projects (and business ideas, we hope) or – if you like – an internship in one of the cool startups and companies in Berlin (or elsewhere). And last, but not least, you might be an international student from a different country and appreciate having time to see all your friends when you visit home.

About CODE

Always go with the choice that scares you the most, because that’s the one that is going to require the most from you.Caroline Myss, Author

Are you funded by the state?

As a private University of Applied Sciences, CODE is not funded by the state. That is why you pay tuition fees if you want to study at CODE. This helps us to stay independent and to focus on offering the best possible education for you. We put a great deal of thought into how we can make our way of learning available to everyone – and we came up with two tuition-fee models that make sure that everybody can study with us. Read more about it in our section about tuition fees and contact us at hello@code.berlin any time if you have questions on this.

Why isn’t CODE in any higher education rankings?

Because CODE is brand new. Our first class started in Fall 2017 and we’ll make sure that our brave first-year students share their experiences with you. In the meantime, please have a look at our press section where you can find articles about our ideas, interviews with our founders, etc. We are also on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram – and you will find us at a lot of events throughout Germany in the coming months.