This depends on many factors. The first and most important one is:
Factor number 1: Where did you study medicine?
Based on this answer, you can find through the table below and the linked article under category 2, if you need to do a medical knowledge exam (🇩🇪 die Kenttnisprüfung) or not. After finding this, proceed to factor number 2 in this article.
Please notice that a medical language exam (🇩🇪 Fachsprachenprüfung – FSP) must be done by all foreign medical graduates. The question is only, if they additionally need to take a medical knowledge exam.
|Category 1:||Category 2:|
|A country of the 🇪🇺 European Union (EU) or of the European Economic Area (EEA)*||Other countries in the world|
|Medical Knowledge Exam (🇩🇪 Kenntnisprüfung – KP)||No 🥳🥳|
You only need to take a medical langauge exam (🇩🇪Fachsprachenprüfung) (FSP)
|A medical knowledge exam is often a must 😪, but there are exceptions. To know if you could avoid a knoweldge exam, see the full details here .|
|Duration until getting the permanent medical license (🇩🇪 Approbation)||About 2-6 months. Please skip the next section (for non-EU/EEA graduates) and start reading from the section: “unexpected factors“||Please read the article mentioned above and then continue reading in the next section (For non-EU/EEA graduates)|
• For non-EU/EEA graduates
If you read the article (mentioned under category 2 in the above table) about how to avoid doing the medical knowledge exam, then you know that you will be faced with two options: Either they recognize your medical studies to be “equivalent” (🇩🇪 gleich) or NOT.
Factor 2: So, how do you expect your medical studies to be judged?
|equal (🇩🇪 gleich)||not equal (🇩🇪 nicht gleich)|
|Which exams you need to take?||You only need to do a medical language exam (🇩🇪 eine Fachsprachenprüfung) then you will get the German permanent medical license (🇩🇪 die Approbation). Congrats 🥳🎉||You have to take in addition to the medical language exam (🇩🇪 Fachsprachenprüfung – FSP) a medical knowledge exam (🇩🇪 die Kenttnisprüfung – KP). |
After passing the medical langauge exam, you can work in some German states with a temporary medical license (🇩🇪 eine Berufserlaubnis) until you do the medical knowledge exam. But this is complicated and put you in a disadvantage. Details in the following article: Approbation v.s. Berufserlaubnis.
|Duration||5-12 months||• Until passing the medical langauge exam: 5-12 months (you will then get a temporary medical license)|
• Until passing the medical knowledge exam: 1-3 years from the beginning your journy.
There are other unexpected factors that could increase the durations mentioned above:
Unexpected factor number (1): missing documents
If your application was missing certain documents, this can effectively lengthen the waiting period for the exams. Therefore, please make sure that your documents are complete, well translated at the right place and when needed, authenticated too (please!!!). We explained the documents and all the details about this critical step in the following article:
We explained the importance of authentication and translation here:
Unexpected factor number (2): The visa
Sometimes, your visa gets rejected or you need months to be able to travel to Germany. This too can certailny affect the wainting period until you get your Approbation. We worte our tips for application for the visa in the following article:
• The required papers for the visa are here:
Want to learn more? Questions?
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