STUDENT Finance funding for students in Germany

Studierendenwerk: 500 euros for students in need

Berlin students in an acute financial emergency can apply for a one-time aid of EUR 500 from the Studierendenwerk. Because of the Corona crisis, many students would have lost their part-time jobs, spokeswoman Jana Judisch said on March 30, 2020 in Berlin. The money is paid from the emergency fund. 120,000 euros are available. The students would have to prove that they are in an acute emergency but have the prerequisites for a further successful course of study. The applications are processed chronologically after receipt. The application form can be downloaded from

According to Judisch, around 71 percent of Berlin students work on the side to finance their studies. The Studierendenwerk grants funds for students in need every year from this emergency fund. In 2018, 54 of them applied, in 2019 there were 64 students

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BAföG – state funding for students in Germany

BAföG stands for more equal opportunities in the German higher education system. This need-based state student finance has been in existence since 1971, and it has proven itself millions of times over. More than four million people have been able to study since 1971 thanks to BAföG. Today, almost one-fifth of students benefit from the Federal Education and Training Assistance Act.

BAföG (= “Bundesausbildungsförderungsgesetz” or Federal Education and Training Assistance Act) enables young people to choose a study programme that best suits their skills and interests. BAföG funding is need-based and granted if the student’s own financial means or those of his or her parents or spouse or partner are insufficient for this purpose.

BAföG offers equal opportunities | (c) David Heerde

Half of the BAföG financial support is usually a grant, the remaining half an interest-free loan. A ceiling guarantees that students only need to repay a maximum of EUR 10,000 of the total loan amount.According to the 21th Social Survey carried out by Deutsches Studentenwerk, 18 per cent of all students enrolled at an officially registered and state-recognised university in Germany received BAföG in the summer semester 2016.

Knowing how to finance one’s education strongly influences the decision of whether to take up an acadamic training or not. In recent years, BAföG has ensured that students especially from low-income families did indeed enrol in a programme at a higher education institution.

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