Der Techniker Englisch

Requirements for Technical College admission

The requirement for admission to a „Techniker“ course in a Technical College is generally the successful completion of a 3 year initial vocational training.

This initial vocational training takes the form of an apprenticeship. This means that the 3 years consist of practical workplace training and a vocational college course.

               The apprenticeship system as vocational training in Germany consists of a cooperation        between vocational colleges, the training companies and the Chambers of Commerce, who are responsible for the examinations.

Completion involves the journeymans examinations for trade apprenticeships or the skilled workers examination for industrial apprenticeships, in the form of an external Chamber examination

•        1 – 2 years of experience in the respective profession or trade is an absolute necessity after completion of initial vocational training

•        Alternatively the proof of at least 5 years of appropriate job experience can be accepted.

In general the applicants have three to four years experience as skilled workers before commencing the two year Technical College course.

Due to the initial vocational training and the requirement for job experience the „Techniker“ has practically orientated professional competence – these can be on Level 4 or 5 of the German Qualification Framework – before commencing the Technical College course.

In contrast to, for example, a university course which directly follows school education, this path offers a much better technical basis, which is shown in the low dropout rate.


Advanced vocational training to „Techniker“ level

The Technical Colleges offer advancement vocational training and adult education as a follow-up to the initial vocational training. They offer the possibility of qualification in the fields of technology, trade and industry, design, nutrition, agriculture, domestic science, navigation or sociology.

The Technical Colleges are generally integrated as two year vocational courses within the state vocational schools, or in the form of state supervised private schools.

The curricula of the two year Technical College courses are competence-orientated. The competencies which the „Techniker“ should be taught require a didactic conception which is characterized by a comprehensive practice-based action focused approach.

The action focused learning processes and the educationally prepared procedures of the fields of activity are dictated by the fields of study and the priorities which have been established as objectives.

The fields of study are made more concrete by the objectives formulated locally by the Technical Colleges. Each individual college has the freedom to organise and structure the learning situations as appropriate. This is related to the industrial situation in the particular region.

Germany-wide there are some 30 thematic fields of study, whereby these can in turn be broken down into various objectives. The approx. 90 specialist schools in the different sectors offer courses leading to the “Staatlich geprüfter Techniker” depending upon the special requirements of the local industries.

The “Techniker” has to complete 2400 – 2800 hours of study within the two years:

•     Basic specialist studies (approx. 800 hours)

•     Applied specialist studies (approx. 800 hours)

•     Optional subjects (approx. 160 hours)

•     Language studies (approx. 160 - 240 hours English as an examination subject)

•     Corporate Communications (approx. 160 - 240 hours)

•     Theoretical and practical project (approx. 240 hours)

The course for „Techniker“ in Germany consists, according to the curriculum from the Ministry of Education, of four semesters of full-time study. There are also alternative forms in part-time or evening study, or correspondence courses, which however extend over three or even four years. Therefore these courses are referred to as professional adult education or advancement vocational training. 


The Technical Thesis / Project Work

Within the scope of the concluding assignment, the „Techniker“ has to produce the so-called Technical Thesis as a project. This final assignment is the application of theoretical and practical knowledge coupled with technical and economic expertise and a sophisticated presentation technique.

As a rule this work is done in groups – that is to say as teamwork. Here the competence which has been acquired in the subject “Corporate Communication” plays a significant role.

The students apply their acquired skills, knowledge and social competence in order to solve a specific problem especially in dialogue with the company involved. .

This Technical Thesis is fully comparable to a practically orientated Diploma Thesis. The project forms part of the final examination and can replace a written examination in one particular subject. Depending on the particular college timetable, between 160 and 240 hours are allocated for the project. The subject and grade for the Thesis are given in the final certificate.

The project is not just a business game, the results of which are filed away in someone’s desk drawer, because the students are told to choose a practically orientated project in conjuction with a particular company. In some departments of Technical Colleges, 100% of the projects are carried out together with industrial partners.

Many such projects far exceed the basic standards required. Students submit actual projects consisting of 100 to 200 pages, including calculations, 3D drawings to the relevant standards, sketches, evaluation matrices, plans and photos etc for marking. This reflects significantly the high level of identification with the task and the acquired skills..

In the first part of the examination, the Thesis is judged on its content. In most Technical Colleges, in the second part of the examination a presentation is required, not only to the partner firm, but also to the fellow students in the class, which is also awarded a grade.

For this presentation all the possibilities of modern presentation techniques can be utilised.


The “State-Certified Engineer”

The historical background of this qualification should not go unmentioned. With the coming of the Industrial Revolution, the shortage of skilled workers made itself noticeable for the first time in the German Empire around 1890. This brought about the creation of a three-tier vocational training system, which is today highly recognised in international education circles.

As a rough estimate, between 1970 and 2000 approx. 30.000 „Techniker“ annually were trained in Germany, so that we can assume a total of between 750.000 and

1 million „Techniker“ in Germany at present.

This further education course was originally introduced in 1890 by industry as the link between the master craftsman and the engineer. These days they are recognised as practically orientated executives at middle management level. In the                meantime, they are often employed at the same professional level in industry as Bachelor engineers. The „Techniker“ has an established place in German trade                 and industry and meets the demanding qualification requirements of all branches of crafts, industry and public service.

Over the years, the curricula of the vocational Technical College courses have changed so much in response to the requirements from industry that the „Techniker” cannot be considered merely as the assistant to Chartered or Bachelor engineers. Often they occupy responsible positions within projects or teams and work autonomously. In some areas, due to the amount of practical experience gained, they are more capable than some Chartered or Bachelor engineers.

The „Techniker“ of the 3rd Millenium are, due to their vocational education, highly qualified. They are today increasingly employed in the following areas at engineer level: development and construction in 3D, process and industrial equipment planning, project management, work preparation, sales and customer relations, training and leadership, quality control.

For this purpose, as well as the classic subjects, more emphasis has been placed in the Technical Colleges on new, interdisciplinary subjects such as: corporate communication and documentation, learning and working methods, presentation and moderation techniques, communication and rhetoric, project management and evaluation schemes.


Source of the term: State-certified engineer

In 2003 the Conference of Education Ministers issued in the European Information System EURIDYCE a description of the German education and vocational training system in English. In this document the term "Staatlich geprüfter Techniker" was translated as state-certified engineer. This translation has no legal standing and is thus not an official translation of the professional title. Thus in the following English text, the term Technikerwill be used.


Professional competence:

In the context of „lifelong learning“ the „Techniker“ acquires by means of training and further education versatile qualifications. These qualifications enable the „Techniker“ to tackle tasks and problems independently and to present solutions at an engineers level.

The possession of very flexible, team-orientated skills at the various levels in engineering, production and other professional fields of activity including quality management and controlling present the ideal conditions which enable the linking of theory and practice using up-to-date expertise based on experience.


I Knowledge        

Due to his wide-ranging, multi-facetted and practically orientated knowledge – including the necessary scientific fundamentals - , the „Techniker“ has the competence to independently carry out tasks, which include the application of new expertise within the scope of project management, product improvements and development .

II Skills

To bring the competence which makes it possible to carry out tasks which require the independent preparation of new solutions in technical and scientific fields such as construction, production, planning and process control.

To acquire the ability to carry out tasks requiring the solution of complex problems using a wide range of applicable methods. This can also be at a management level for example in production planning, site management, process control, process engineering etc.

III Social competence

Due to the ever flatter corporate management structures the „Techniker“ assumes responsibility for an increasing number of tasks as part of a team in the factory or the administration, the organisation or the company. The “Techniker” has the ability to solve specific problems and develop solutions, also in dialogue with other experts, due to his versatile qualifications and practical knowledge. The social competence abilities are attained within the scope of training and further education where projects must be solved in teamwork or simulation exercises.

IV Self-competence

The required evaluation and reflection of processes necessitates a high level of self-competence. Thanks to a high-level versatile qualification and regular actualisation in form of “lifelong learning”, coupled with a responsible professional task, the “Techniker” has the ability to rethink and reform learning and working processes.

V Language competence

In English courses language proficiency is attained in both spoken and written forms – building upon the basic school English abilities – with a technical and communicative background, in order to achieve the ability to communicate fluently at the level required in industry.

The tasks require that the „Techniker“ has the ability to take part in general and professional discussions, presentations and conferences and can answer questions. Therefore he must be in a position to understand discussions and texts and to analyse the factual content.

The objective ist hat the „Techniker“ is capable of carrying out a spoken or written dialogue with a partner in a clear and technically and factually correct manner, depending on the situation.

The „Techniker“ should be able to translate a document in a manner that the translation has the same meaning as the original document.


Professional certification / possibilities

•       Following amendment of the Crafts and Trades Regulation Code, the „Techniker“ can register according to § 7.2 and is thus entitled to manage firms of skilled craftsmen..

•       When they are registered with the Chamber of Commerce, the „Techniker“ can for example act as a “publicly accredited expert” (expert witness for legal proceedings)

•       The „Techniker“ is qualified to train apprentices either in industry or in crafts (qualification as trainer).

•       The “Techniker“ can be employed as a technical instructor in Vocational Schools or further education establishments.

•       Following amendment of the Motor Vehicle expert regulations the „Techniker“ is, similar to the master mechanic, recognised as a technical inspector.

•       The „Techniker“ is established in §21 of the Energy Conservation Regulations (EnEV) which is based on the implementation of the EU-Guidelines for total energy efficiency.

•       In 2007 the „Techniker“ was included in the Guideline 2005/EU in Appendix III, 2nd figure dash.

•          In Bavaria, Baden-Württemberg, Berlin, Bremen, Hesse, Lower Saxony and Schleswig-Holstein master craftsmen and „Techniker“ have a limited right to submit designs for approval, as established in the respective State Building regulations.


University entrance:

•       "Staatlich geprüfter Techniker" are qualified for university entry

•       credits are possible for subjects already covered, leading to a shorter study duration

•      recognition of competence gained in initial vocational education or further training is possible

•      " lifelong learning "


German Qualifications Framework

"State certified Engineer /Designer / Business Manager” are on Level 6  of the German Qualification Framework (DQR)

The decision was published on 31/01/2012, and came into force in May 2013.

The State Certified Engineers / Designers / Business Managers have been classified at Level 6 of the German Qualifications Framework similar to the Bachelor so that the equivalence of Vocational Educa-tion with university degrees was established.


In summary it can be said that:

The German Qualifications Framework (DQR) is based on the 8-level European Qualifications Frame-work (EQF in 8 steps). This is a meta-framework, the basis of all other qualifications frameworks within the European Union. The introduction of the Qualification Framework by the Commission has formed the basis for more transparency of education systems and the increased mobility of professionals in Eu-rope’s economy with 500 million people. For information see

The DQR is designed to be as congruent as possible with EQF, to ensure the maximum transparency of diplo-mas and qualifications. The focus is on life-long learning, the content and the skills acquired. With the divisions of the 8 levels of the DQR analogous to those of the EQR it is hoped that this will make the German education / training system more transparent in the European Economic Area.

This will ensure that the competences of professionals are better recognized on the European labour market. Thus, EQF / DQR are instruments to bring structure into the European vocational education and qualification Babylon.

State certified Engineers / Designers / Business Managers are employed at engineer level in trade and industry as practice-oriented managers.


Source of the term: State-certified engineer

In 2003 the Conference of Education Ministers issued in the European Information System EURIDYCE a description of the German education and vocational training system in English. In this document the term "Staatlich geprüfter Techniker" was translated as state-certified engineer. This translation has no legal standing and is thus not an official translation of the professional title. Thus in the following English text, the term Technikerwill be used.


The Standards

•       Levels 1 and 2 preparation for vocational training,

•       Level 3 the two year initial vocational training,

•       Level 4 the three and three-and-a-half year initial vocational training,

•       Level 5 advanced vocational training, e.g. IT-specialists,

•       Level 6 Bachelor, Master, Business Administrator, Technical College qualifications (State-Certified Engineer/Designer/Business Economist),

•       Level 7 Master and advanced training at the 3rd level,

•       Level 8 Doctorate.

The resolution and its implementation

•       It was agreed that the classification of a professional qualification  (which has a certain qualification level) in one of the 8 levels of the DQR establishes an equivalence but does not mean that all qualifications at this level are identical.

•       The DQR does not have an influence on wage agreements or on the right to practice a particular profession; " Staatlich geprüfter Techniker " is neither "Bachelor” nor  "Engineer”

•       This means that the Directive on Recognition of Professional Qualifications 2005/36/EG remains in force, this regulates the professional rights in the European Economic Community.

•       As regulatory authority, the Conference of Education Ministers is responsible for enforcing the resolution. This means that they now have the task of establishing the conditions under which the qualification level can be used in a reference letter or other official certificate.

•       The progressive implementation of the resolution should begin in 2013.

•       The State School or competent authority are then responsible for issuing the letters of reference or certificates containing the DQR level attained, with a reference to the European Qualifications Framework. . 

•       If you require further information then please ask at your school/college or the relevant Ministry of Education.