What does it mean...?

Important terms at a glance


Auswahlverfahren (selection process)

In study programmes with admission restrictions, there is a limit to the number of new students and higher semesters. If there are more applicants than there are available places on the study programme, then a selection process will take place.

To find out more about the rules applying to the selection process, please consult the relevant admission regulations for your study programme.

Beglaubigte Fotokopien (certified copies)

A certified copy of a document has been checked for congruence with the original by an official authority. Any public office with an official seal can issue certified copies. These include, for instance, public authorities, notaries or churches organised under public law. We do not accept certified copies issued by lawyers, associations, auditors, chartered accountants or statutory health insurers.

A certified copy submitted to the University of Konstanz must comply with the following requirements.

  1. It must have these three features: First, it must have a “Beglaubigungsvermerk” (attestation clause) confirming that the copy is congruent with the original. Second, it must have the signature of the person responsible for certifying the copy. Third, it must also include an imprint of the issuing authority’s official stamp with emblem. A simple stamp consisting of letters only does not suffice.
  2. If the copy consists of several individual sheets, you must produce evidence that every page is from the same original document. If all sheets of the copy have been placed one above the other (e.g. scale-like), stapled together and stamped so that a part of the imprint appears on every page, it will suffice to include the required attestation clause and signature on one page only.
  3. If every page of the copy is certified individually, please make sure that your name appears on every page of the original. If it does not, it must be included in the attestation clause, together with a note on the type of document.
  4. If a copy occupies both the front and back of a page and if both sides of the page are relevant, the attestation clause must refer to both sides of the page (e.g. “I hereby certify that the copy printed above and overleaf is congruent with the original”). If this is not the case, you must have the front and back of the page certified individually.
  5. Embossed seals included on the original usually do not show on a copy. The attestation clause on the copy must refer to the fact that the original document includes an embossed seal.
  6. When submitting official certificates, please ensure that the originals contain the imprint of an official seal. Electronically generated certificates that have not been signed and/or stamped can be accepted if you submit the original; copies of such certificates must be officially certified according to the requirements set out above.



The bachelor’s degree is an academic degree that is conferred after you successfully complete an undergraduate study programme. A bachelor's programme typically takes six semesters to complete. Depending on your subject, you will be awarded a Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Education or Bachelor of Science. As a law student, you will not earn a bachelor's degree, but sit the first state examination in law instead.

Berufsbegleitendes Studium (university study for working professionals)

Enrolling in a study programme for working professionals allows you to earn a degree while working. For admission to one of these programmes, you will need to have professional experience and possibly also an undergraduate degree or professional training in this area.

The University of Konstanz currently offers three study programmes for working professionals.

  • Motor Neurorehabiliation (Bachelor of Science)
  • Advanced Safety Sciences for Medicines (Master of Science)
  • Psychology with a Specialisation in Forensic Psychology (Master of Science)


Einschreibung/Immatrikulation (enrolment)

Once you are enrolled, you are considered a University of Konstanz student. Information on how to enrol is included in your letter of admission.


Fachsemester (study programme semester)

“Fachsemester” is a term used to describe the total number of semesters you have been enrolled in a specific study programme. Example: If you studied law for two semesters and then transferred to biology, you are now in your third “Hochschulsemester” (total number of semesters enrolled at a German university) and in your first “Fachsemester” (study programme semester) in biology.

Fachwechsel (changing your study programme)

You are currently enrolled at the University of Konstanz and would like to change either your study programme or your combination of subjects.


Grundständiges Studium (undergraduate studies)

Undergraduate studies culminate in a first university degree (e.g. bachelor’s degree, first state examination in law). For the application process, it is important whether you already hold a degree.


Hochschulsemester (total number of semesters enrolled at a German university)

The term “Hochschulsemester” indicates the total number of semesters you have been/were enrolled at a German institution of higher education. This includes all “Fachsemester” (semesters enrolled in a particular study programme) plus any additional semesters spent studying in another programme, e.g. after changing your study programme. This also includes holiday semesters as well as semesters spent studying towards a second degree.

Hochschulwechsel (changing university)

You are studying at a another university and would like to transfer to the University of Konstanz.

Hochschulzugangsberechtigung (higher education entrance qualification)

Required for admission to undergraduate programmes. You are entitled to apply for admission if you possess the required higher education entrance qualification. One example is the German Abitur (German general higher education entrance qualification).

Some types of higher education entrance qualification will only qualify you for some of the university’s study programmes. Also, there is a difference as regards recognition between higher education entrance qualifications obtained in Germany and those obtained abroad. Our Hochschulkompass has more information on the various types of qualification.


Losverfahren (lottery / clearing procedure)

A lottery only takes place in connection with undergraduate study programmes (first or second degree studies) with restricted admission. It only takes place if places remain unfilled after the main and waiting list admission processes.

You can participate, if you meet the admission requirements for the study programme. Further information about this is included in the application guidelines. It does not matter whether you applied for admission to university before. During the lottery procedure, you can apply for admission to several study programmes.

All study programmes taking part in the clearing procedure will be announced on the News page starting in the middle of September and March respectively.



You have already earned a university degree and would like to begin a graduate programme. The University of Konstanz’s master's programmes are almost exclusively consecutive. This means that they build on an undergraduate programme and expand on it by including more research, interdisciplinary study or other subjects. There are three types of master's degrees: Master of Arts, Master of Education and Master of Science.


Parallelstudium (studying for two degrees simultaneously)

You are already enrolled at the University of Konstanz or at another university and would like to start an additional study programme.

Promotion (doctoral research)

Before starting a doctoral programme, you will typically have completed a graduate programme. At the end of your doctoral studies, you will earn your doctorate. You complete your doctoral research in one particular subject, write a doctoral thesis and sit an oral examination. A doctoral degree documents your advanced ability to work scientifically.



At the University of Konstanz, one study year is comprised of two semesters. The academic year starts in the winter semester which runs from 1 October through 31 March of the following year. The summer semester begins on 1 April and ends on 30 September. The periods during which you will attend your courses, i.e. lectures and seminars, may vary from these dates.

StudienanfängerInnen (first-semester students)

You are a first-semester student if you never completed or started a study programme before.

Studienplatzbörsen (study placement exchanges)

You can search study placement exchanges for study programmes with free places that you can apply to last minute.

You can search two exchanges for places at universities across Germany starting on 1 September:

Studienplatztausch (swapping university locations in restricted admission programmes)

If you have not been admitted to the university of your choice and are unable to transfer to another university later because there are no places available, you can try to swap your place with another student from another university.

The requirements are:

  • The study programme of the student you intend to swap places with must be identical to your own. The study programme does not have to bear the same name. What is important is that the contents are identical.
  • The student you wish to swap places with must have completed the same performance assessments and be in the same “Fachsemester” as you are.
  • Admission to the study programme must be restricted at both universities.
  • The universities involved must agree to the transfer.

The University of Konstanz does not accept transfers

  • between master’s students,
  • between Diplom/Magister and bachelor's students,
  • with students who were rejected by the University of Konstanz during the selection process for the same semester (e.g. for the first “Fachsemester” or change of university),
  • swapping university locations among more than two students

Examples for study placement exchanges

You can put up a note indicating your wish to swap places at the university of your choice, e.g. using a publicly accessible notice board. The University of Konstanz does not broker swaps.


Weiterführendes Studium (graduate study programme)

A graduate programme builds on an undergraduate programme. Graduate programmes are typically master's programmes.


Zeitstudium (visiting students)

You are studying at another university and would like to spend part of your studies at the University of Konstanz without seeking a degree.


ZEuS is the University of Konstanz’s application portal.

Zweitstudium (second degree studies)

You have already earned a university degree and would like to begin a second undergraduate programme.

Zulassungsbeschränkung (admission restrictions)

You will be admitted to study programmes without admission restrictions if you meet the admission requirements for your applicant group.

Study programmes with admission restrictions have a limited number of places. Please view our study programmes page to find out if the study programme of your choice has admission restrictions. For study programmes with admission restrictions, usually a selection process takes place. Please note that you will need to apply to study programmes with restricted admission earlier.