What is an "Ausbildung"?
For many professions, the German system of "Berufsausbildung" (or "Ausbildung," best traduced as "professional studies") is just the right thing.
Usually, any more practically-oriented profession is studied outside universities, in the so-called Ausbildung. After school, young people can choose to study an "Ausbildung," and such an Ausbildung usually lasts 2 to 3 years. During the Ausbildung, the student goes to a special school and, most importantly, works at a company.
If you decide to become a carpenter or an electrician, for instance, you will have to apply to carpenter or electrician companies as an apprentice ("Auszubildender"). Once you are accepted, you are employed at this company in a special apprentice status. And you will have to go to a special school, learning the theoretical background of your profession. On the other days, you go and work "normally" as an apprentice. At the end of your Ausbildung, you have to pass written and oral exams, and afterward, you get your professional title.
One great plus of choosing Ausbildung over university studies is the fact that an Ausbildung is much quicker, gives you a lot of practical experience from the very beginning, and that you will start working and earning money way faster. Of course, studying at a university will give you a bigger theoretical background. However, once you successfully absolve an Ausbildung, you will have the opportunity to gain more practical experience than a university student.
It depends, of course, on the type of profession you choose. And all scientifically demanding careers, people have, of course, to go to university. However, for practical (but required on the labor mark) domains, such as a bank administrator, a saleswoman, office management, office assistance, carpenter, nurse, electrician, or something similar, the Ausbildung will be ideal.
Can I study an "Ausbildung" as a foreigner?
Do I have to speak German?
Take a look at this links:
Annerkante Ausbildungen in Germany:
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