As a national of a third country, you must apply for a visa before travelling to Germany at a German diplomatic representation abroad (visa offices at the embassies and consulates general) in your home country. You can find information about the visa conditions and application forms in the portal of the German Department for Foreign Affairs.
You can find the addresses of the diplomatic representations abroad on the interactive world map "Make it in Germany".
Please find out from your diplomatic representation abroad what documentation you require.
Special regulations for nationals of Australia, Israel, Japan, Canada, the Republic of Korea, New Zealand and the United States of America:
You may travel to Germany and stay here for a longer period of time without a visa. You can also obtain the required residence title for specific purposes and a work permit from the responsible Aliens Department in Germany after you have entered the country.
For academics from third countries:
You have a qualification from a German or foreign university, which is recognised in Germany or is comparable to a German qualification. Then since August 2012 you have the option of receiving an “EU Blue Card”.
Overview of visa requirements