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Planning for your Master’s programme

Planning for your Master’s programme

© Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash

Many undergraduates consider the question of whether to progress to a Master’s programme as difficult as the original decision regarding their choice of degree programme. Once again, questions arise such as: What am I actually good at? What do I want? Where do I want to go? Yet another important decision that appears to be a big challenge, giving you the opportunity to set a new course in life (if you wish). How can you approach this challenge? A personal discussion (e.g. at a student guidance centre) is bound to help you become clearer about your aspirations, goals and opportunities. Below, you will find a number of factors for and against doing a Master’s degree:


Possible reasons for doing a Master’s degree 

  • Enjoyment of study
  • The wish to expand on certain topics
  • An interest in the subject
  • A Master’s is necessary to achieve certain career goals, e.g. teaching
  • The wish to progress onto a PhD
  • Ambitions for a career in research
  • Good grades
  • Affordability
  • Supposed better employment prospects with a Master’s degree

Possible reasons against doing a Master’s degree 

  • A lack of interest in the subject
  • Little enjoyment of study
  • Difficulties at university
  • Desire for hands-on experience
  • A lack of alternatives
  • “Everyone does a Master’s”


When choosing which Master’s degree to take, it is important to develop criteria that are important to you.

These questions may help you to develop your personal strategy:

  • What is important to me?
  • What are the key factors for me at university and in my private life?
  • What am I keen to change, and what should stay the same?
  • Do I want to (continue) specialising on my Master’s programme or would I prefer to acquire a wealth of global knowledge as a generalist?
  • Do I feel very strongly about certain key areas?
  • What role does my place of residence play (for the next 2 years)?
  • Is internationalisation relevant to me?
  • Should my Master’s degree open up specific career prospects for me?
  • Are integrated practical stages at university important to me?
  • How much do various Master’s programmes cost?

If you want to explore the different options available at Master’s level, go to, where you can find information about every single Master’s programme offered in Germany.


Once you know which Master’s programme you are looking for, you will probably find a number of higher education institutions (HEI) that offer such a programme, or at least a similar one. When choosing an HEI, you should focus on a number of different quality criteria: 

  • Formal criterion: accreditation is important

    Accreditation: state-organised quality control of Bachelor’s and Master’s degree programmes. Various quality standards are examined, e.g.:

      • Assessment of the development of the degree programme and of the educational objectives
      • of the examination system
      • of the feasibility of the programme

    The Accreditation Council (the Foundation for the Accreditation of Study Programmes in Germany) authorises accreditation agencies (e.g. ACQUIN; ASIIN; FIBAA; ZeVA); for more information, go to

  • Individual quality criteria: What is important to me with regard to my new degree programme?
    • Course content and programme structure
    • Information and advisory services
    • Study abroad options
    • Establishment of the Master’s programme
    • Composition of the teaching staff and student body
    • Examination regulations / course regulations
    • Course catalogues
    • Number of applicants and selection criteria
    • Fees
    • The university’s (technical) facilities
    • Library resources
    • Practical stages
    • ….
    • Go and visit the university!
    • Tip: consider several different regions

There may not be a perfect Master’s programme to suit all your needs. But you may have found a suitable Master’s if you can say that you are satisfied with the course content, with your career prospects and with the study location (and any other individual criteria that may be of importance to you), and that you can finance your degree. 


When it comes to applying, read up about the application process in good time. That way, you will have enough time to organise and obtain any documentary evidence required without getting stressed. These may include evidence of language skills, a letter of motivation, letters of recommendation, an aptitude test, etc. To find out what exactly your chosen Master’s programme requires of its applicants, take a look at the admission regulations for the programme. Information about the procedure for applying for a Master’s programme at Leibniz Universität Hannover is available at Applications.


It is best to contact the Specialist Advisor for your chosen Master’s programme directly if you have any technical questions regarding course content. For any other questions concerning the Master’s programme, or if you are uncertain about which programme to take, feel free to contact Student Advisory Services

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Student Advisory Services
Student Advisory Services
Student Advisory Services
Student Advisory Services
Our Student Advisory Services will be pleased to assist you! Contact us via phone, e-mail or in person!
Welfengarten 1
30167 Hannover
Student Advisory Services
Our Student Advisory Services will be pleased to assist you! Contact us via phone, e-mail or in person!
Welfengarten 1
30167 Hannover