External leave

Table of contents


You can apply for external leave from your study programme at HTW Berlin for a number of important reasons, e.g.:

  • illness
  • service pursuant to Section 12 of the University Regulations, e.g. BFD (military service), FSJ (voluntary social year), FÖJ (voluntary ecological year), JFD (alternative civilian service)
  • pregnancy and maternity leave and parental leave
  • parental leave or obligation to care for family member
  • stay abroad or internship (not part of your study)
  • imprisonment

Point in time and duration

You can apply for external leave from your second semester at HTW Berlin. In the first semester you are required to actually start your study programme. You can only apply for a full semester of external leave from your study programme and for a maximum of two consecutive semesters. External leave for more than two consecutive semesters is only possible in exceptional cases. External leave of more than four consecutive semesters is not permitted.

Exceptions: In accordance with the German Parental Benefit Act (Bundeselterngeldgesetz) and the Part-time Parental Leave Act (Elternteilzeitgesetz) up to 6 consecutive semesters may be permitted.

Important notices

With a leave of absence, you temporarily suspend your studies. Before you apply for an external leave semester, please be advised of the following:

  • You are not permitted to register or complete any course, modules or examinations/final thesis. Exception: This does not apply if a reason for leave of absence according to §12 (6) sentence 2 HO (pregnancy or maternity protection or parental leave) exists.
  • Accreditation of any mandatory internships or modules and examinations during a semester abroad is also not possible for this semester.
  • dependent on reason of your application, the semester fee for the semester can be reduced.
  • Your external leave may have an effect on your child benefit, German state student grant and loan (BAföG) or other contributions. Make sure you obtain information in advance from the relevant authorities (family allowance/child benefit office, Studentenwerk etc.).
  • You may need your student status for your part-time job in order to be exempt from social insurance contributions. Check this with your employer in advance.
  • External leave semesters are counted as university semesters but not as subject semesters.
  • You can be exempted from the semester ticket for the duration of your external leave semester.

Application for external leave

Please submit the following documents by e-mail from your HTW account to the Student Service Centre by the stipulated deadline:

  • Application for external leave available on the LSF,
  • Proof (e.g. medical certificate) or reasons explained in writing.

Do not forget to re-register!

Remember to re-register for the semester after your external leave semester. To re-register, pay the semester fee by the re-registration deadline.