Five training profiles at a glance

Vocational training in Germany will give you a head start into your career. We’d like to introduce you to five types of vocational training in jobs for which German companies are currently trying to find staff.

Five training profiles at a glance

Mechatronics Engineer for Air-Conditioning/Refrigeration

Mechatronics Engineer for Air-Conditioning/Refrigeration

Mechatronics engineers for air-conditioning and refrigeration work in companies that build and fix air-conditioning/refrigeration systems in supermarkets, offices, hospitals or other buildings.

Course contents:

What are the different methods of joining components? How do you read assembly drawings and circuit diagrams? These are some of the fundamental questions trainees will deal with at the beginning of their training. In the next stage, they will learn how to make complex air-conditioning and refrigeration machinery and systems ready for operation and how to maintain and repair them. Additionally, they will become specialists on cost-efficient and eco-friendly operation of air-conditioning and refrigeration systems.

Does this description sound good to you? Then you might be interested in a vocational training course in mechatronics engineering. Click here (German), to find out more about this profession.

Special requirements:

Working with (flammable) cooling agents demands great care and attention. Mechatronics engineers needs to be highly flexible as they will be working on site in different places and environments. However, this also means that you will have a lot of variety in your job. If on top of that you have some mechanical skills and are technically-minded, this will definitely help you master the challenges of this occupation.

Places of study:

This is a dual vocational training course. The theory is taught at a vocational school (Berufsschule), while practical training takes place at a craftsman’s workshop or an industrial company.

Duration: 3.5 years

Pay:

Year of training

1. Year

2. Year

3. Year

4. Year

Pay in Euros (craft business)

375 to 744

415 to 785

454 to 853

493 to 905

Year of training

1. Year

2. Year

3. Year

4. Year

Pay in Euros (industry)

860 to 957

918 to 1.007

977 to 1.096

1.008 to 1.155

Pay: gross salary before tax and deductions for social contributions; source: Federal Employment Agency; last update: August 2016

Industries

  • Mechanical engineering and tool manufacture
  • Supply and installation
  • Food and beverage industry

Further information on Germany’s leading industries is available here.

Your perspectives after completion:

  • Employment in a company offering assembly, operation and maintenance/repair of air-conditioning, refrigeration and heat pump systems
  • Specialisation as cold storage warehouse operator, assembly technician, service technician, quality inspector or supervisor
  • Acquiring additional qualifications such as IT or foreign language skills
  • Continuing vocational training to become a master craftsman or fully qualified engineer

Further information on this profession:

Geriatric nurse

Geriatric nurse

As a geriatric nurse you will care for and support elderly people who need help with their daily routines and in everyday life. In addition, you will ensure basic medical care.

Course contents:

At a school for nursing care trainees acquire comprehensive knowledge in order to prepare them for their job of caring for the elderly. This includes knowledge about healthcare and living in old age, the ability to reliably assess a patient’s health status and first aid. At a later stage, trainees also learn the fundamentals of mental care and providing patients with their medication. In addition, they get to apply this knowledge in practice; this involves caring for elderly patients but also giving advice to relatives.

Does this description sound good to you? Then you might be interested in a vocational training course in nursing. Click here (German) to find out more about this profession.

Special requirements:

As a geriatric nurse you will have to take care of quite a number of elderly people. Therefore, you should have a good memory and be flexible. Nursing requires empathy so that you can understand and respond to the needs and concerns of the people you look after. As you will be dealing with people most of the time, your German language skills need to be particularly good for this job.

Places of study:

Geriatric nursing trainees attend theory classes at a school for nursing, while practical training takes place at a home for the elderly or a hospital, for example.

Duration: full-time programmes 3 years; 3.5 years when aiming for an additional qualification; up to 5 years part-time

Pay:

Year of training

1. Year

2. Year

3. Year

Pay in Euros

1,011

1,072

1,173

Pay: gross salary before tax and deductions for social contributions; pay corresponds to the collective bargaining agreement for trainees in public service (TVAöD) – special provisions for nursing care; source: Federal Employment Agency; last update: August 2016

Note: Private education institutions in particular may charge fees for vocational training courses. How high these costs are depends on the individual institution. Here (German) you can find institutions that offer your desired vocational training course in your region.

Industries

  • Home care nursing
  • Nursing homes or hospitals

Further information on Germany’s leading industries is available here.

Your perspectives after completion:

  • Employment in a hospital, home care nursing, or in nursing homes or hoes for the elderly
  • Specialisation as home care nurse, stoma nurse, geriatric care advisor, or nursing home manager
  • Acquiring additional qualifications such as IT or foreign language skills
  • University degree, e.g. in nursing

Further information on this profession:

Train operator

Train operator

Train operators operate passenger and freight trains.

Course contents:

At the beginning of your training, you will learn everything about trains, right down to the individual components they are made of. This ensures that you will have the necessary technical knowledge that enables you to operate trains safely. After all, as a train operator you will be responsible for the safety of your passengers or for the freight your train carries. You will also learn how to shunt trains. Upon completion of your training you will also be able to check railcars and make them ready for operation. In addition, you will acquire knowledge about signalling, operating IT systems and the railway system infrastructure.

Special requirements:

Operators of locomotives, railcars and other vehicles have a big responsibility. For this job you really need to be able to concentrate. You should also be technically-minded and have some mechanical skills in order to be able to carry out maintenance and inspection work on trains and machinery.

Places of study:

This is a dual vocational training course. The theory is taught at a vocational school (Berufsschule), while practical training takes place at a craftsman’s workshop or an industrial company.

Duration: 3 years

Pay:

Year of training

1. Year

2. Year

3. Year

Pay in Euros

784

847

911

Pay: gross salary before tax and deductions for social contributions; source: Federal Employment Agency; last update: August 2016

Industries

  • Road and rail traffic (freight and passenger railway companies)
  • Mining, metal production, foundry, railcars (industrial railways in coal mining, iron and steel production or rail car manufacturing)

Further information on Germany’s leading industries is available here.

Your perspectives after completion:

  • Employment at a railway company
  • Specialisation in staff allocation
  • Acquiring additional qualifications such as IT or foreign language skills
  • Continuing vocational training to obtain a higher vocational qualification in engineering, business administration or as a bachelor professional (Fachwirt)

Further information on this profession:

Industrial Electronics Engineer

Industrial Electronics Engineer

Industrial electronics engineers fit and repair electrical devices, machinery and plant equipment that are used for industrial purposes. They carry out repairs in offices and factory workshops and show operators how their equipment works.

Course contents:

To ensure that plant equipment in production halls operates smoothly and safely, the electrics have to be fitted correctly. Industrial electronics engineers learn how to assembly components, measure electrical parameters and check control systems. Upon completion of their training they will also be capable of programming machine controls and know how to design and run electronic installations.

Does this description sound good to you? Then you might be interested in a vocational training course in Industrial Electronics Engineering – Automation Technology. Click here to find out more about this profession.

Special requirements:

Designing circuit plans does not only require spatial sense, but also drawing skills. In addition, you should have adequate numeracy skills because you will also have to calculate electrical parameters. You should also be technically-minded and have some mechanical skills that enable you to handle electronic systems.

Places of study:

This is a dual vocational training course. The theory is taught at a vocational school (Berufsschule), while practical training takes place at a craftsman’s workshop or an industrial company.

Duration: 3.5 years

Pay:

Year of training

1. Year

2. Year

3. Year

4. Year

Pay in Euros (industry)

860 to 957

918 to 1,007

977 to 1,096

1,008 to 1,155

Year of training

1. Year

2. Year

3. Year

4. Year

Pay in Euros (craft business)

360 to 660

380 to 710

410 to 830

435 to 910

Pay: gross salary before tax and deductions for social contributions; source: Federal Employment Agency; last update: August 2016

Industries

  • Mechanical engineering and tool manufacture
  • Power supply
  • Automation technology

Further information on Germany’s leading industries is available here.

Your perspectives after completion:

  • Employment at a company that builds, operates and maintains/repairs complex machinery and equipment
  • Specialisation in e.g. quality assurance, customer service or production
  • Acquiring additional qualifications such as IT or foreign language skills
  • Continuing vocational training to become a master craftsman or fully qualified engineer

Further information on this profession:

Engineer for sanitary, heating and air-conditioning systems

Engineer for sanitary, heating and air-conditioning systems

Engineers for sanitary, heating and air-conditioning systems lay the basis for fitting heating and air-conditioning systems as well as water pipes, sinks and toilets. This involves planning, building and maintaining pipes and connections.

Course contents:

At the beginning, trainees choose one of the following specialisations: water, ventilation, heating, environmental engineering or renewable energies. All trainees learn how to work with metal and plastics, i.e. drilling, screwing and welding techniques. This will not only enable them to maintain and repair systems, but also to give confident advice to customers. Upon completion of their training, they will also be able to operate control systems and deal with system disruptions.

Special requirements:

This training programme requires good numeracy skills because you will have to calculate material requirements and technical parameters. Drawing skills are also required because you will have to draw design plans. Additionally, you should also be able to deal with customers and focus on service.

Places of study:

This is a dual vocational training course. The theory is taught at a vocational school (Berufsschule), while practical training takes place at a craftsman’s workshop or an industrial company.

Duration: 3.5 years

Pay:

Year of training

1. Year

2. Year

3. Year

4. Year

Pay in Euros

630

641

716

753

Pay: gross salary before tax and deductions for social contributions; source: Federal Employment Agency; last update: August 2016

Industries

  • Supply and installation
  • Electrical installations

Further information on Germany’s leading industries is available here.

Your perspectives after completion:

  • Employment at companies fitting sanitary, heating and air-conditioning systems
  • Specialisation in e.g. quality assurance, customer service, maintenance or production
  • Acquiring additional qualifications such as IT or foreign language skills
  • Continuing vocational training to become a master craftsman or fully qualified engineer

Further information on this profession:

Complete dossier "Vocational training in Germany"

Download (PDF 1755 KB)

Information on this portal

Find points of contact in your home country

Short introduction to dual vocational training in Germany

Finding a vocational training programme you will enjoy

Information on the World Wide Web

The initiative “Berufliche Bildung – Praktisch unschlagbar!”

„Best-of-Ausbildung” („Best-of-training”) videos about various occupations (German, English)

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH

Information material on the project training nurses from Viet Nam to become geriatric nurses in Germany (German, English)