Tip: Start planning your stay abroad about a year in advance. First collect information at your university about possible programmes and partner universities.
How can a year abroad be financed?
German Federal Law on Support in Education abroad ("Auslands-BAföG")
Under certain circumstances, also a training abroad can be promoted by means of a funding for studies abroad based on the German Federal Law on Support in Education. This also applies to an internship in the context of studies. Anyone who already receives financial support based on the German Federal Law on Support in Education in Germany is definitely supposed to file an application. If no right has been determined for this funding for studies in Germany, it is nevertheless possible that there could be a right on this funding because of higher costs for studies abroad. If possible, an application should be filed six months prior to the stay abroad. Further information can be found at: https://www.stwno.de/de/finanzierung/auslandsfoerderung
Anyone participating in the scholarship programme for European countries outside of Germany is exempt of paying study fees and is additionally eligible to receive a scholarship. Further information can be found at: https://www.stwno.de/en/international-en/international-offices-at-the-universities
By means of the PROMOS scholarship, worldwide (mostly for countries outside of Europe) stays abroad, internships abroad and study trips can be funded. Further information can be found at: https://www.stwno.de/en/international-en/international-offices-at-the-universities
DAAD, the German organizations for the promotion of young talent and home university
Both the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), the German organizations for the promotion of young talents as well as the home universities themselves award scholarships for stays abroad. The scholarship data base “Stipendienlotse” of the Federal Ministry for Education and Research provides an overview.
Credits and loans for stays abroad
For financing extraordinary expenses during your studies, e.g. a stay abroad, it is possible to apply for a one-time amount of money in the form of a loan:
Student loan provided by the KfW: https://www.bva.bund.de/DE/Services/Buerger/Schule-Ausbildung-Studium/Bildungskredit/bildungskredit_node.html
Tip: Further information and advice about financing your studies by means of student loans can be obtained in the social counseling of the Studentenwerk.
Doing casual jobs abroad
If you have the possibility to do casual jobs abroad, collect information at the representative bodies of the country of destination whether and how you will obtain a working permit. If applicable, it also should be ascertained whether a side job may be taken up in addition to the scholarship.
Financing a complete study course abroad
For a complete study course in the EU and in Switzerland, a funding for studies abroad based on the German Federal Law on Support in Education can be applied for – in some circumstances also if the prerequisites for a funding for studies in Germany based on the German Federal Law on Support in Education are not fulfilled.
For absolving a Master degree abroad, you can also apply for a scholarship with the DAAD.