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It is also possible to study abroad at a university of your choice outside an official exchange program. This might require more independent research. However, it does have the advantage that you will learn more about a country and its education system.


There is no officially recommended time period during your academic career for a study abroad semester. In general, however, it is completed during a Master’s program as the selection of courses within some study programs are more flexible. You should anticipate a 1 to 1.5-year preparatory period when planning your studies abroad. This time is needed for comprehensive research and to ensure you meet scholarship and application deadlines. It may also be the case that a study plan at a particular university is not feasible and that you have to reconsider your options. It is therefore advisible to start with colecting information on the academic year and application deadlines in your desired host country, as well as the deadline for the scholarship provider.

General information about studying abroad can be found on the website of the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), the largest German scholarship provider. A DAAD brochure on all funding opportunities is available in the International Office.

Application and deadlines

You often have to apply for scholarships or programs a long time before applying for a study place. In particular, you have to apply for the year-long DAAD study scholarships up to 1.5 years in advance. Additionally, application documents for scholarships generally demand a recommendation letter from a professor and a language certificate; obtaining these can take some time. Applications for scholarships are usually made to the scholarship provider directly.

Recognition of academic performance

Recognition takes place through the examination board. You must apply to the examination office for this on returning to the TUHH.
The TUHH examination office is your first point of contact.

Dissertations, term papers and project work abroad

In principle, it is possible to complete research during your time studying abroad. It is important that a TUHH professor has already agreed to be your supervisor. A supervisor must also be found at the host university. If the research work is to be completed at a partner university of the TUHH, an application via the usual exchange program is sometimes necessary. Otherwise, research stays are not mandatorily tied to certain time periods or deadlines.