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Natural Sciences and Mathematics: Excellent career prospects for technology experts

German universities offer a broad range of Mathematics and Natural Science degree programmes. And more and more interdisciplinary subjects are being added every day. The ability to collaborate in teams is an important character trait for natural scientists. The career prospects are very good because Germany is determined to safeguard its economic success.

by the Editors

Measurement of a tree bark - environmental research at TU Kaiserslautern © Wenzel/DAAD
Measurement of a tree bark - environmental research at TU Kaiserslautern . © Wenzel/DAAD

Degree programmes

The majority of Natural Science and Mathematics degree programmes are offered at universities. Bachelor's programmes in Mathematics, the Natural Sciences and Computer Science are generally designated as “mono-bachelors”, in other words, programmes which provide qualification in only one subject.

Some universities allow you to diversify your academic profile with several subjects. For example, you can combine a natural scientific subject with a humanities or social scientific subject. If you wish to become a teacher of Biology, Physics, Maths, Chemistry, Computer Science or Geography, you'll have to major in at least two teaching subjects at the same time.

There is often a smooth transition between the Natural Sciences and Engineering. New multidisciplinary research fields have become prevalent in recent years. This has resulted in a new generation of corresponding degree programmes such as Biochemistry, Molecular Life Sciences, Bioinformatics and Genome Research, Biomathematics, Environmental Chemistry, Nanosciences and Geoinformatics.

There are more than 2,500 degree programmes in the areas of Natural Science and Mathematics at German universities, of which 200 are English-language master's degree programmes. You can find a list of degree programmes in the Natural Sciences and Mathematics in our database.

Requirements

“Today there's a demand for researchers who are specialised in more than one subject. Natural scientists have to collaborate in interdisciplinary teams and generally have to think in complex structures”, explains Kolja Briedis from the HIS Institute for Higher Education Research (HIS-HF). You should have the following qualifications if you would like to enrol in a natural-scientific degree programme:

  • Analytical skills
  • Logical thinking, curiosity, determination and ability to handle pressure
  • Mathematical comprehension
  • Strong background in Mathematics
  • Ability to collaborate in teams

STEM campaign (MINT-Initiative)

The future success of Germany's economy is dependent on a sufficient pool of young talent in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). The absence of qualified experts is a structural problem which negatively impacts growth and innovation at an immense cost to the German economy. The goal of the STEM campaign is to get young people excited in STEM subjects and maintain a pool of qualified young professionals.

Career prospects and salaries

“Natural scientists, mathematicians and computer scientists have good chances in the labour market”, says Kolja Briedis from the HIS Institute. Although the chances at finding jobs vary depending on the subjects the graduates studied, there is a growing demand in the entire technological field in Germany, the reason being that companies are struggling with an increasing lack of qualified experts in these disciplines. That's why German authorities have launched a new campaign (“MINT-Initiative”) to get young people interested in enrolling in “STEM” degree programmes: science, technology, engineering and mathematics.