Funding Options

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Although tuition fees are no longer charged in Lower Saxony, it goes without saying that costs are incurred at university, such as the semester fee, accommodation and living costs, and costs for learning materials. Here you will find a variety of possibilities to help you finance your studies:

Financial support at the beginning of your studies

Studentenwerk Hannover pays the initial semester fee, which has to be paid to enrol at the university, once. Studentenwerk Hannover provides these semester-fee scholarships, which are not dependent on grades, to first-year students who are enrolling at a university for the first time and who, alone or as part of a shared household, receive social benefits such as

  •     citizen's income (Bürgergeld),
  •     social assistance (Sozialhilfe),
  •     basic income (Grundsicherung),
  •     the child supplement under section 6a of the BKGG or
  •     asylum seeker benefits.

The condition for this payment is that the semester fee has not yet been transferred.

How to obtain funding

  • BAföG (the state student loans and grants programme)

    Students with insufficient funds to pay for their living costs whilst at university may apply to the state student loans and grants programme BAföG (Federal Law on Support for Education and Training) for a grant/loan. Decisions about whether a student is eligible for BAföG and the grant amount are dependent on the income of the student’s parents and spouse, as well as on their own personal income and assets. Students who no longer live at home may receive up to €812 per month. BAföG is paid throughout the standard period of study of an undergraduate degree programme. Half of the amount is paid out as an interest-free loan; the other half is a non-repayable subsidy.

    Studentenwerk Hannover (student services organisation) provides extensive information about BAföG and student funding. Please contact the Studentenwerk’s Social Advising Centre. The Students’ Union (AStA) also offers BAföG and social counselling.

    International students are only entitled in exceptional cases to a student grant under the state student loans and grants programme BAföG whilst at university. Students are strongly advised to obtain one-on-one counselling at the Social Advising Centre of the Studentenwerk Hannover.

  • Scholarships

    A scholarship may also be a way of financing your studies. You will find information about various scholarships here (in German):

    • Aufstiegsstipendium – scholarships for people with job experience
    • Stipendiumplus – website from the 13 largest organisations for the promotion of young talent
    • Stiftungssuche – search for foundations with the terms 'Stipendium' or 'Bildung'
    • DAAD – scholarship database from the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD)


    Germany Scholarships and Lower Saxony State Scholarships

    Leibniz University Hannover gives its students the opportunity to apply for Germany Scholarships (Deutschlandstipendium) and Lower Saxony State Scholarships (Landesstipendium Niedersachsen).

    Leibniz Universitätsgesellschaft e.V. scholarships

    Leibniz Universitätsgesellschaft Hannover e.V. (previously the Freundeskreis) and the foundations it manages have been awarding scholarships to students in at least their third semester since winter semester 2007/08.

    Scholarships are awarded on the basis of academic achievement or social engagement, following recommendation by a professor. For more details, please contact the Universitätsgesellschaft.

  • Study abroad scholarships

    A list of different scholarships for the promotion of study abroad is provided on the Financing study abroad page.

  • Scholarships for international students

    Scholarships from the DAAD and other organisations

    The links below provide access to scholarship programmes and the database of the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), as well as to addresses of individual foundations with websites where you can search specifically for scholarships. Please note that applications for such a scholarship must be submitted before coming to Germany.

    Leibniz University Hannover's International Office will be happy to advise you.

  • Working part-time while at university

    Many students finance their time at university, either in part or completely, by working part-time. Examples include bar work, trade fair jobs, jobs with various institutions or student assistant jobs at Leibniz University Hannover.

    Information about student employment

    The Deutsches Studentenwerk (German National Association for Student Affairs) has compiled key information about student employment:

    • Secondary employment – information for students from the Deutsches Studentenwerk (in German only)

    Information about secondary employment, mini-jobs and social insurance, provided by the Studentenwerk Hannover:

    Advice on labour and social law issues relating to jobs and internships during studies:

    Looking for a job

    Are you looking for a student job?

  • Working part-time – information for international students

    Legal requirements

    For international students, the framework within which they can work is already regulated by their residence permit or visa. 
    Here is an overview of the most important regulations:

    • Students from the EU, the EEA or Switzerland are subject to the same regulations as German students.
    • All other international students (third-country nationals) can work up to 140 full or 280 half working days per year. Alternatively, student employees are allowed to work of up to 20 hours per week.
    • Prospective students who are attending preparatory programmes such as a language course or the Preparatory Foundation Course (Studienkolleg) may work within the same framework.
    • If you are looking for a place to study, you can work 20 hours a week on the side.
    • If you are employed as a tutor or assistant at a university or university of applied sciences or at the Studentenwerk: This activity is not counted.

    You can also read the regulations again on the "Make it in Germany" website or at the website of "Deutsches Studierendenwerk".

    Please also note the general regulations on mini-jobs, secondary employment and social insurance in Germany. Information can be found at the website of the Minijobzentrale (German Language only).


  • Student loans and education funds

    When all funding avenues (BAföG, scholarship, part-time work) have been exhausted, another option is to take out a student loan.

    Please note that the KfW student loan cannot be recommended at present due to the high interest rates!

    Various loan schemes exist. Students may opt for partial financing or full financing, for the coverage of the semester fee, or for help paying for their living expenses. In some cases, several options can be combined; repayment terms vary. Education funds are a new type of funding that ensure highly variable repayment terms.

    General information about student loans

    The Centre for Higher Education Development regularly publishes information on student loans.

    Education funds

    Education funds are another way for students to finance their time at university. In this case, the student is the investor’s “financial investment”, as it were. The student receives financial support while at university. The support is repaid over a specified period of time in the form of a certain percentage of the graduate’s income. To ensure that the “financial investment” is profitable, students who are expected to become high earners are more likely to receive support.

  • AStA loans

    If short-term funds are needed to bridge a cash flow shortage, students can apply for a loan from AStA.

Questions about study costs?

Ask the social advising service at Studentenwerk Hannover

The social advising service at Studentenwerk Hannover offers support and advice on questions concerning student financing.