How to write a German Motivation Letter (LOM/SOP)

The German motivation letter (LOM), also called Statement of Purpose (SOP), is one of the most important documents for your university and visa application. It gives you the chance to introduce yourself and explain why you are the right person for the program that you are applying. That is why it’s very important to take your time writing your motivation letter. We will share with you the steps to take, which topics to address, the biggest mistakes as well as some great tools and resources from German universities and the DAAD.

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We recommend to follow these steps:

  1. Read articles and tips (end of the page) about the motivation letter from the DAAD and German universities, take notes if you have any ideas already.
  2. Write down some topics you definitely want to mention in your motivation letter.
  3. Research about the university and course you are going to apply. Find connections to your previous education.
  4. Write some bullet points, talk about them with friends and family and get their feedback.
  5. Now merge your bullet points and tips you received together to sentences.
  6. Then read it again after 2-3 days to see if it still makes sense to you.
  7. Last check for spelling and consistency and you have a great motivation letter!




Who are you?

1-2 Lines State who you are; Name, nationality, educational background.

Why would you like to study in Germany?

1-2 Lines Inform on different websites Try to find something that you can connect to your study goal.

What does Germany offer you what other countries don’t?

1-2 Lines Germany has some of the best universities in the world, many Nobel prize winners, fortune 500 companies, combined theoretical and practical education. Germany has the world’s fourth-largest economy by nominal GDP, it is the world’s third-largest exporter and importer of goods

Main Part

Why do you want to study this course?

2-3 Lines You have to do your research before you can write this part. Please take a detailed look at the course you are applying to, the modules, the professors, all the opportunities the course has to offer. If you are applying for a masters, find a connection between your bachelors course and the masters course you are going to apply.

Discuss unique aspects of the program that have particular meaning to you. For example, many universities combine theoretical and practical education or they are focusing on high quality research. How would you take advantage of this opportunity?

Why do you want to study at this university?

2-3 Lines Take a look at the university, what is the university known for? Do they have a great network? Are they known to participate at any big projects? Do they have any famous alumni? Are they having an international focus?

Avoid telling too much about their own institution. They already know how great they are. If you want to mention specific facilities that interest you, point out how they will be of particular use or interest for you rather than simply praising them.

Do you have any work experience/internship?

2-3 Lines Here you should write about your related work experience. Find a connection to the course you are applying. Back the information up with data and facts about the company.  

Why do you think you are the right person for this course?

3-4 Lines Think about what you have to offer in connection to this course. Such as knowledge and skills you gathered, experience as a member of any organization, volunteer service, your personality and soft skills. Highlight important and relevant achievements which will help you stand out from other applicants.


What is your professional goal?

1-2 Lines State your long-term goals and aspirations after completing your studies, write about where you would like to work after graduation.  What your career goals are.

Do you have inconsistencies in your background?

1-2 Lines Here you can clear up any inconsistencies that you might have in your resume. For example if you have already started studying in your home country. If you are applying again for a Bachelors degree even if you have already graduated form one. If you have worked for some years and now want to study again. 

Avoid the Biggest Mistakes


  • An unprofessional E-mail address

  • Spelling Mistakes

  • Not enough explanation

  • Unprofessionalism

  • Lack of Structure

  • Copied text from somewhere else

  • None or bad formatting

  • Writing too much

  • Giving wrong information

  • No contact details

  • Information from your CV

  • Writing last Minute

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