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After leaving school, a vocational training follows , followed by the final step into the professional world with the first post-training job. In Germany, fewer and fewer young people follow this classic path. Apprenticeships remain vacant , businesses complain that they can not find suitable candidates – on the other hand, degree programs are completely overcrowded and universities are bursting at the seams. For many, an apprenticeship seems to be out of the question, because only bachelor’s or master’s degrees are considered. The training continues to have an important status, a great benefit and can lay the foundation for a successful careerhis. What you need to know about training, how to find an apprenticeship and why training should not be underestimated …

Definition: What exactly is a vocational training?
Education Definition Types Dual Full-timeOf course, everyone knows what education is all about and has an idea of ​​what vocational education is all about, but there are always uncertainties and lack of knowledge when it comes to the subtleties, the process and the different types of education . First of all, let’s first discuss what exactly is meant by education, what goals it pursues and what training can look like.

The training is regulated by the Vocational Training Act (BBiG) , which also clearly defines what the training is about and what its goals are. So it says in § 1 BBiG :

Vocational training prepares students for the purpose of acquiring vocational training in a recognized occupation by providing the basics for acquiring professional capacity to act.

Vocational training has to impart the professional skills, knowledge and abilities (professional capacity) necessary for the exercise of a qualified professional activity in a changing work environment in an orderly training course. It also has to enable the acquisition of the necessary professional experience.

The training is regulated by the vocational training contract – often referred to as a training contract – which a trainee completes with the employer or the institution that takes over the training. As in an employment contract , it must contain and record some important and fundamental aspects. In addition to information about apprentices and training centers, these include:

The goal of the training as well as an outline of the training process
The exact beginning and expected duration of the training
Duration of the training period (at least one month, maximum four months)
The place where the training takes place
The training allowance in the individual years of training
The working time of the trainee
The holiday (indicated as annual leave)
The termination options
The different types of education
An apprenticeship is not automatically like any other – not only in terms of content, but also structure and process vary in different types of vocational training. The predominant model in Germany is the dual education , which lasts between two and three years and consists of two central aspects:

On the one hand there is the practical training in one company, on the other the school education at a vocational school. The big advantage of the dual education is the combination of theory and practice, where the contents are well coordinated at best.

In addition, apprentices in the dual training program can look forward to a corresponding remuneration for their work, as they are involved in the company and paid for it. The educational content varies greatly depending on the respective occupation. So it may initially be 300 or 400 euros, but in some areas also up to 1,000 euros a month. The salary in education increases with age – the further you progress in education, the more you earn.

In addition to the dual form, there is also the school education . As the name implies, the focus here is on VET training through full-time education, but practical training is not left out entirely, as every trainee should be able to train his skills in practice and use. Unlike in dual education, there are regular internships in school education.

In the case of a purely school-based training, the apprentice also receives no training allowance , but must even pay private school fees themselves. To cover these costs and livelihoods, many rely on family support. In addition, there may be a claim for student loans .

In addition, there is the possibility of doing part-time training if there is a legitimate interest in doing so. Such an interest is given, for example, when the trainee takes care of his own child or relatives in need of care. This shortens the weekly working hours (not the time spent at the vocational school) spent on training, but the overall length of training is usually unaffected.

Find an apprenticeship: what suits me?
Only a few have a really clear idea of what job they want to do after school and which training is the right one for them. A common criticism is that too little is prepared and received during the school and there is no orientation. With a degree in your pocket, an important decision has to be made in a short time: What training would I like to do?

The possibilities are huge, there are several hundred training occupations in Germany, which are located in the most diverse areas and industries. It’s not an easy task to pick the right grain of sand that will make a trainee happy not just for the next three years, but for the rest of his or her working life.

Decisive for choosing an apprenticeship are two factors: self-reflection and information . Meaning: First of all, you have to get the most accurate picture of your own position. What do you want? What are your passions? What are your strengths or weaknesses? How do you imagine your future? Are there any hobbies that may turn into a profession?

Then you need to research as much information as possible and bring it together with the results of this self-reflection. Which trainings are basically suitable for you? What are the tasks, fields of work and possibilities? What are the job opportunities, are you looking for a lot of workers or are you in a difficult job market? What prospects and opportunities for advancement exist?

So if you want to find a suitable education, the following questions that you should honestly answer for yourself can help:

Have you checked where your strengths were at school and which job description fits?
Have you extensively informed about the fields of work, expectations and possibilities of various training courses?
Have you thought about how to combine hobbies and things that you enjoy with work?
Have you included job opportunities, earnings and qualifications in your decision?
Have you wondered what is particularly important for your training and later career ?
Have you looked at the future prospects for different industries and training?
Have you asked your environment for their opinion in order to obtain more objective assessments?
Have you talked to someone who has already completed their intended education ?
Have you gained an overview of the various training occupations and have already received extensive information?
A comprehensive list with a total of 66 questions and selection criteria for the training place can be found in this free PDF .

The more you know – about yourself and the options available to you – the better you will be able to find an education for yourself. If you know what kind of training you want to do, you can look for job openings in job boards.

Tips for a successful training place search
Knowing which training you are looking for is the first big step. Now the next one follows: You have to find a training place. Unfortunately, this is often more difficult than expected. To help you find a training place, we have collected some basic tips :

So that there is no gap between the graduation and the beginning of your apprenticeship, it is best to start the job search one year before your graduation and start writing applications. At the same time, this also means that you have to start orienting yourself for a suitable training even earlier.

Define criteria for the evaluation of apprenticeships. For example, if you do not want to move away from home in your first year of training, or if you can not afford it, then it is important for you to have your future apprenticeship in the area. So one of your criteria would be good accessibility. If potential employers do not meet these criteria, you should not apply there.

You are not completely on your own when looking for a training place. Use information and counseling services that can help you find a suitable training place. The first point of contact here can be the employment agency.

Do not limit your search for education from the beginning, just by looking for apprenticeships. The likelihood of finding the right training place is greater if you conduct a broad search. Of course, this includes matching job boards, which we will introduce to you in the next section.

But you should also attend training and job fairs . This is where companies introduce themselves and inform about open training. In this day and age you should also use social media channels of companies, many employers offer corresponding portals. Anyone applying locally should also look for job advertisements in newspapers – especially smaller and resident companies advertise here.

It is frustrating if it does not work right away with a suitable training, but unfortunately it is part of it. So do not panic if you do not immediately get a commitment for your desired job. Perseverance and perseverance are important factors in finding a training place. Do not be discouraged if cancellations come or the search takes longer than you hoped. If the search for an apprenticeship does not work at all, leaving you with no training position, there are a few alternatives (PDF) that you can consider.

Job Boards: Here you will find a suitable training
Job boards not only provide positions for already trained employees, but also trainings. If you are looking for a training place, the different offers on the Internet are therefore your first point of contact . The big advantage: You can have all relevant job advertisements filtered and get an overview of all interesting training courses.

One possibility is our Jobbörse Career Jump , in which thousands of trainings are listed.

Find up-to-date training offers right in our job board
Now make the career jump and find dream jobs!
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Another popular option is the Federal Employment Agency . Here you can find an apprenticeship either at a personal appointment with your advisor or online in the Job Market of the Employment Agency .

Online there are also numerous alternatives , some of which are specifically focused on trainees and training.

AOK trainee exchange
The AOK Northwest Azubekörse focuses entirely on the regions of Schleswig-Holstein and Westfalen-Lippe. For these areas, the portal offers an excellent – perhaps even the best – selection of apprenticeships. Although other AOKs offer apprenticeships in their portals, they filter them out as well as the two mentioned portals.
The name is program. As a prospective trainee, you will find numerous apprenticeship positions from almost all sectors and sectors on this platform . The tenders are not regionally limited, there are offers from all over Germany. Since also training providers cooperate here, there are also references to training offers and trade fairs.

Aubi Plus
At Aubi Plus you will find training places as well as (dual) study places. The platform works according to its own statement closely together with different enterprises and fairs and offers therefore, also according to own statement, the largest selection of training and study places. Although the number of advertised training places varies regionally, there are generally offers from all over Germany. promotes with the enormous number of over 28,000 vacancies for graduates and interns who can be found on the portal. On closer inspection, this is not much more than on other portals, but the number sounds good. However, the search function in our test offers good results and is often more accurate than on other portals. The platform is therefore worth a look.

IHK apprenticeship exchange
Again, the name is program. On the portal of the IHK can – logically – primarily find training and apprenticeships from IHK related professions. If you are looking for something in this area, it is the place for you. Due to the thematic focus, the search time can be noticeably shortened.

Is education only the unpopular alternative to studying?
The numbers of students at universities and colleges has been rising for years, the lecture halls are bursting at the seams, and on the other hand there are fewer and fewer apprentices in Germany . The training attracts fewer and fewer young people, instead everyone wants to study at any price.

Of course, there are good reasons for studying. It is the highest school education that is possible in Germany, the job opportunities for academics are particularly high, on average, the later earnings with a degree is higher. Following their own insecurity and the reputation of the seemingly best way, many are drawn to the university. At the latest there, however, many must realize that university education is not suitable for everyone – and the other way around, not everyone is made for the university.

The quota for dropping out of university is about 30 percent , depending on the program even more. Every third student leaves university without a degree. The demands on universities are high and the workload is sometimes enormous. In addition, even courses of study that are described as practically oriented run almost exclusively theoretically. Some people need more practice than a short internship during the semester break.

Even a training is not always terminated, who states that he has decided wrong, breaks the education as early as a study. However, those who have the choice between studying or training often opt for study – without much thought, but mainly because the value of training is less recognized by young people.

At this point, a rethink would be necessary , because who can only be guided by the idea that a study is the higher education, may make the wrong decision. The choice should rather be made individually based on personal characteristics, preferences, goals and strengths. Simply studying just because everyone is studying is very likely to go in the wrong direction – or even if you go through college, you end up with a degree that may not bring you anything, because you’d rather be in another area want to work.

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