Studienkollegs are educational institutions where applicants with a foreign university entrance qualification that is not recognized as equivalent to the German Abitur are prepared for academic studies at a German university. Whether a Studienkolleg must be attended or whether the foreign student has direct university access is decided by the admissions' office of the chosen university. Attendance at the Studienkolleg is generally free of charge. Only the fee for the student services of the respective university must be paid.