Completing part of your degree studies in another country can be a very valuable experience. Doing so allows you to learn a lot about the other country and even about your degree subject, but most of all, studying abroad will boost your personal development: you will get to know people from a different cultural background and you will learn to get about in a foreign country, training your adaptability and self-reliance skills in the process, among other things.
The University of Passau is keen to help you organise and plan your stay abroad. Your first port of call should be the International Office. The initial guidance sessions offered by the International Office are highly recommended, as they will give you a rough overview of the available opportunities for study abroad and how to go about securing one.
In addition, our faculty has contact persons for any programme-related questions you may have about studying abroad. The Board of Examiners is responsible for recognising coursework and assessments completed abroad. Moreover, all partner universities co-operating with the faculty have designated a professor as a contact person for us.
The simplest way to go abroad is to study at one of our many partner universities for a semester or two. The International Office has up-to-date lists of our partners all over the world. Keep in mind that, if you wish to study in English, you are not limited to English-speaking countries. Scandinavian countries in particular offer many of their courses in English, so that you don't have to speak the official language of the country to study there.
If you do not wish to study at one of our partner universities, you may also organise your study abroad by yourself, going as a so-called 'free mover'. Nor are you limited to studying: you could instead do an internship abroad.
You should leave plenty of time for planning your stay abroad, including writing applications. It would be best to start with gaining an overview of potential destinations and universities at least one year before you intend to go abroad. The International Office's application deadlines for stays starting the following winter semester at many partner universities are in January and February.
Most study-abroad programmes commence in the winter semester. If you complete one semester abroad, you will return to Passau for the summer semester; two semesters abroad will bring you back to Passau in time for the next winter semester.
Planning your finances is an indispensable step when arranging a stay abroad. You should anticipate higher costs than when studying here. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to finance your stay, for example with a scholarship from the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) or the European Union's ERASMUS programme.
To ensure that your assessments completed abroad count towards your degree in Passau, you should conclude individual learning agreements for your various courses with the relevant chairs and professorships before you leave Passau. These individual learning agreements prove that the coursework and assessments you have completed at the foreign partner university are equivalent to those required for your degree programme in Passau.
Difficulties may arise in the conversion of marks for the Bachelor's programmes. You should, therefore, always ask the course adviser (i.e. the lecturer who will recognise your course certificate) what documents you need to provide for the mark conversion.