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Hardship Application

What is a Hardship Application?

At the University of Bremen, university places with restricted admission are generally allocated according to the grade of the university entrance certificate (such as Abitur) and the waiting period. In the State of Bremen, 5% of university places in both bachelor’s and master’s programs are reserved for cases of exceptional hardship (notwithstanding this rule, only 3% of places in the Master of Business Administration (BWL) are available for cases of hardship). Prospective students with a physical or psychological impairment for whom non-admission would mean exceptional hardship may, under certain circumstances, submit a hardship application. If the application is approved, prospective students will be offered a place at the University of Bremen regardless of their grade point average or waiting period.


Grounds for a Hardship Application

Exceptional hardship may be due to serious health-related, family-related, or social circumstances. Here you can learn how to apply for hardship on the grounds of health-related problems.


Immediate Admission

The following special health-related reasons entitle students to immediate admission:

The applicant

  • suffers from an illness with a tendency to get worse, making it unlikely that they would be able to endure the workload of the chosen degree program in the future
  • is disabled through an illness. Professional (re)integration may be ensured only by immediate admission to the university course, because the disability makes it impossible to bridge the waiting period with a meaningful activity.
  • is limited to a narrow vocational field due to the impairment. The desired university course would promote successful professional (re)integration.
  • has to give up previous studies or their previous profession for health-related reasons. For this reason it is impossible to bridge the waiting period pursuing a meaningful activity.

Local Ties

Applicants with special needs who have their main place of residence in the State of Bremen or a neighboring district can submit a hardship application for special admission to the University of Bremen. The primary place of residence must be documented by a current registration certificate.

The following exceptional health-related reasons justify special admission to studies due to a strong local tie:

The applicant

  • is severely handicapped and has a degree of disability of at least 50.
  • has other serious special medical conditions which require that the applicant studies in Bremen. This could include attending appointments with doctors, clinics, or psychotherapists, but also the social environment, such as relatives providing care or support.


How to Submit a Hardship Application

A hardship application must only be submitted when applying for a degree course with restricted admission; for degree courses without restricted admissions, the allocation of a university place is possible regardless. The hardship application needs to be submitted together with the usual university application and only comes into effect if a place cannot be allocated in the regular process because of the grade point average grade or the waiting period. The applicant will not be informed on which grounds they have eventually been allocated a university place. This will also not be announced in the degree program.

Please note: Even when submitting a hardship application, the general admission requirements of a degree program must still be met. For undergraduate programs, these are holding a university entrance qualification and any additional admission criteria (for example, foreign language skills, internships, music entrance examination); for graduate programs, the admission criteria defined in the respective admission regulations must be met.

The hardship application needs to be submitted to the Student Office via the online portal together with the university application. The corresponding form is included with the university application documents in the online portal. In addition, a written statement, which clearly explains why it is necessary to study at this university, is required. In any case, a medical certificate must be enclosed and, if applicable, a copy of the official disability ID card.


What Are the Chances of Success for a Hardship Application?

Given that the hardship quota is limited to 5% (3% in the Master of Business Administration (BWL)) of the university places, not every application is guaranteed to be successful. It also depends on how many hardship applications are submitted in total and how serious the asserted hardships of the other applicants are.