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Leave of Absence (exemption from the obligation of a proper course of study)

1. Legal Basis

According to Article 48 para 2 of  the  Bavarian Higher Education Act (BayRS 2210-1-1-WFK, as amended) in conjunction with § 13 of the Enrolment, Re-enrolment and  De-registration Regulations of the University of Bayreuth of 10 August 2010, as amended the enrollee has the possibility of being exempted from the obligation of a proper course of study (to take leave of absence) if there is an important reason for doing so.

2. Reasons for Leave of Absence

  • Medically-certified illness, if it prevents a proper course of study;
  • A leave of absence due to an internship of at least three months in duration; if the programme of study allows for a mandatory internship or an advanced course of at least three months in duration during the standard period of study, the internship must comprise at least four months; it is inconsequential whether the internship can be completed in Germany or abroad.
  • Course of studies at a university abroad, or stay abroad as a foreign language assistant;
  • Caring for a close relative if care cannot be performed by someone else;
  • Establishing a company;
  • Maternity leave and parenting leave: Maternity leave and/or parenting leave is provided in the form of  absence of leave within the scope of the statutory provisions. Here you find general informations about Maternity Protection and Family-Friendly Studying.

Other reasons can be recognized only upon stringent examination, however, as a rule, economic reasons are not recognized. The reasons for absence of leave should apply for the greater part of the lecture period of the respective semester.

3. Submitting a Proposal

Please submit the application for leave of absence (german version) with the required documentation to the Student Administration Office:

  • Illness: medical certificate
  • Internship: internship certificate (indicating the duration of the internship)
  • Course of studies abroad: confirmation from the foreign university, or confirmation entered directly on the application form by the International Office of the University of Bayreuth.
  • Maternity leave and parenting leave: Pregnancy record (“Mutterpass”) or birth certificate
  • Caring for a close relative if care cannot be performed by someone else: written rationale and medical certificate
  • Establishing a company: Draft of a business plan and favourable opinion from the Office of Entrepreneurship & Innovation
  • Other reasons: comprehensive written rationale.

4. Deadline

The deadline period for application starts from the Re-enrolment:

For establishing a company:

  • For the winter semester until: 01 October
  • For the summer semester: 01 April.

For further reasons:

  • For the winter semester until: 10 November
  • For the summer semester: 10 May.

An application submitted late is only admissible if the principal reasons for leave of absence were not foreseeable. Leave of absence cannot be granted for semesters already concluded.

5. Number of semesters of leave

Leaves of absence are applied for and granted for one semester each, and as a rule should not exceed two semesters. Periods of maternity leave or parenting leave, as well as periods of caring for a close relative are not deducted from the maximum entitlement to leave. At the latest, leave of absence due to periods of maternity leave or parenting leave can only be granted until the end of the semester in which the child in question turns 3 years of age. Leave of absence for periods of caring for a close relative is possible for 1 semester. 

The limit of two semesters is enforced only in relation to the respective concrete programme of study, and leave of absence taken from other programmes of study are not considered in reaching a decision. That means, inter alia, that in changing to a Master’s programme, two semesters of leave again become available However, in the case of simply changing university (without commencement of a different programme of study) periods of leave of absence at the other university are counted.

6. Consequences of leave of absence

6.1 Semester fees

The Association of Student Services fee and the cost of the semester ticket must still be paid. It is recommended that leave of absence is applied for at the time of re-enrolment, insofar as the reasons for leave of absence already exist. The University of Bayreuth can then approve leave of absence subject to successful Re-enrolment – i.e. payment of the necessary fees. Upon successful re-enrolment, the leave of absence is effective and noted on the confirmation of enrolment and record of study.

6.2 Coursework and examinations

Leave of absence results in the situation that coursework and examinations at the University of Bayreuth cannot be completed. This does not apply in cases of maternity leave or parenting leave, nor for cases of caring for a close relative. It is possible to repeat examinations that are not passed. Since the winter semester 2018/19, it is no longer possible to take examinations to improve grades during a leave of absence

6.3 Number of semesters

Semesters of leave does not count as semesters of study, only as university semesters

6.4 BAföG recipients and other scholarship holders

BAföG- recipients and other scholarship holders are advised to contact Upper Franconia's Association for Student Affairs or the scholarship provider in advance. With the payment of interns, the granting of family benefits, and, for public service employees, the local bonus, both depend on the amount paid. Please be informed in advance. Insofar as the family benefits are still granted to the person to be placed on leave, the Family Benefits Fund should be consulted before application.

6.5 Foreign students

Foreign students who are not citizens of member states of the European Union, must discuss the legal consequences of leave of absence in terms of immigration law with the local Foreigners Authority. 

7. Other notes

Leave of absence during first semester is only possible when the reasons for leave of absence have arisen after enrolment (Exception: Master's programme).

The consequences of leave of absence for course assessment are to be taken from the respective examination procedures and clarified at the Examinations Offices.

Students of Law graduating by state examination must inquire about the consequences of leave of absence during ongoing examination proceedings at the Examinations Office, especially where the requirement to repeat an examination exists.

Information for students of law on the first examination attempt here. As a student of law, please get in touch with the particular Examinations Office responsible in your case, to clarify any consequences for assessment.

Otherwise, student rights and responsibilities, especially the requirement of re-enrolment for the following semester, remain unaffected.

For any further queries we’re at your service.


Webmaster: Lena Uhlig

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