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Studying Without a University Entrance Qualification

If you don’t have a university entrance qualification such as the German Abitur but a vocational degree and a few years of work experience, you may still be admitted to university if certain requirements are met. Depending on the group of applicants to which you belong, you may be awarded a subject-specific or even a general university entrance qualification.

Application to assess your university entrance qualification

As a first step, we determine whether your educational credentials are equivalent to a university entrance qualification. For this purpose, you need to submit an application to have your university entrance qualification assessed by the Student Registry. Before submitting your application, you must assign yourself to one of the following applicant groups:

Applicant groups

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a) Applicants with a basic vocational degree and an advanced vocational degree

  • Completion of a basic vocational training program (min. two years)
  • Advanced vocational training (e.g. master craftsperson certificate)

Applicants in this group have the possibility of receiving a general university entrance qualification for admission to all degree programs.

Application deadlines: July 1 (winter semester) / January 1 (summer semester)

Eine Wissenschaftlerin und ein Wissenschaftler arbeiten hinter einer Glasfassade und mischen Chemikalien mit Großgeräten.
© Andrea Piacquadio von Pexels

b) Applicants with a basic vocational degree and related work experience

  • Completion of a basic vocational training program (min. two years)
  • At least three years of work experience in the occupation for which you were trained

Applicants in this group have the possibility of receiving a subject-specific university entrance qualification.

In degree programs without admission restrictions, you may also be enrolled on a probationary basis.

Application deadlines: April 1 (winter semester) / October 1 (summer semester)

Eine Wissenschaftlerin und ein Wissenschaftler arbeiten hinter einer Glasfassade und mischen Chemikalien mit Großgeräten.
© Burst von Pexels

c) Applicants with a basic vocational degree without related work experience

  • Completion of a basic vocational training program (min. two years)
  • At least three years of work experience but not necessarily in the occupation for which you were trained

Applicants in this group have the possibility of admission to a degree program without admission restrictions on a probationary basis and of taking an entrance examination for admission to degree programs with admission restrictions.

Application deadline: April 1 (winter semester) / October 1 (summer semester)

Application procedure by degree program and type of applicant group

a) Advanced further training:

Candidates can enroll after assessment.

b) Related discipline:

Candidates can enroll after assessment.

c) Unrelated discipline:

Candidates can enroll on a probationary basis after assessment.

a) Advanced further training:

Candidates must apply for admission after assessment.

b) Related discipline:

Candidates must apply for admission after assessment.

c) Unrelated discipline:

Candidates must apply for admission after passing the entrance examination.

The following applies for all applicant groups:

The Human Medicine, Pharmacy and Dentistry degree programs are subject to a nationwide selection procedure. In the state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW), a dedicated quota for candidates with a vocational qualification does not exist for these degree programs. We urgently recommend taking an entrance examination to receive a grade with which you can apply for admission at hochschulstart.de2. Candidates who have not taken an entrance examination will be treated as having received the grade of 4.0, substantially diminishing their chance of being selected for admission.

Entrance examination

Applicants without related work experience who wish to enroll in a degree program with admission restrictions, or applicants for degree programs with national admission restrictions (Medicine, Dentistry, Pharmacy), apply for admission to an entrance examination and will be invited to that examination by the relevant University faculty.

The entrance examination is designed to assess whether applicants meet the academic and methodological requirements for pursuing their desired degree at the University of Bonn. The examination tests general and subject-specific knowledge. It usually consists of a written and an oral part.

Probationary enrollment

In degree programs without restricted admission, you may be enrolled on a probationary basis.

Once you successfully completed your probationary period (successful completion of two semesters), you are entitled to full admission to degree programs without admission restrictions, including degrees not related to your previous education.

Eine Wissenschaftlerin und ein Wissenschaftler arbeiten hinter einer Glasfassade und mischen Chemikalien mit Großgeräten.
© Artem Podrez von Pexels

Which documents are required?

  • Copy of a valid personal ID or passport
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Certificates documenting your prior education (must be officially certified)
  • Description of the key contents and duration of your previous training and work experience

Important notes

If you are enrolled at a different university and you were admitted to that university based on your vocational qualification, you may apply to the University of Bonn as a transfer student when submitting your application to assess your university entrance qualification.

If you want to learn more about your desired field of study before applying, you are welcome to take advantage of our Central Study Advisory and Counseling Service. Our advisors will tell you what to expect in your program of choice and what qualities you will need to be successful in that program.

When applying for admission to an entrance examination or probationary enrollment, the following policy applies: Primary responsibility and independent management of a family household and raising a minor or caring for a relative is considered equivalent to professional activity.



Contact information

Avatar Team Vocational Degrees

Team Vocational Degrees

+49 228 73 4464 o. 4491

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