Leave of Absence

In special cases, students may request leave of absence (§ 61 LHG).

  1. want to enroll in a higher education institution or language school abroad;
  2. want to work as a foreign language assistant or school assistant abroad;
  3. are doing an internship that contributes to the objective of their studies. In this case please complete and submit the Extra-Curricular Internship Confirmation as well.
  4. are not able to attend lectures or fulfill the course or exam prerequisites due to illness;
  5. are called up for military or civil service;
  6. have to care or provide for their spouse/life partner, or a direct line relative, or first grade relative by marriage who is in need of assistance under the Federal Social Assistance Act;
  7. are about to give birth and/or have to provide post birth child care;
  8. are the main caregiver and custodian of a child under 5 years of age who is a part of their household;
  9. have to serve a prison sentence;
  10. provide other important reasons for leave of absence.
  • preparation for exams or writing of the thesis
  • internships or stays abroad envisaged by the examination regulations and included in the standard duration of the course of study, for example school internships in the teaching degree programs
  • working for the purpose of financing living expenses

The leave of absence can only be approved provided the study objectives for the semester cannot be obtained due to objective reasons. The reason for the leave of absence must be of temporary nature and the duration of the leave of absence for one and the same reason should generally not exceed two semesters.


A request in free text should be submitted to the Admissions Office; the request should be submitted promptly, latest until the end of the leave of absence semester and be supported by the appropriate documents. If you are doing an internship that contributes to the objective of your studies please submit the Extra-Curricular Internship Confirmation as well.

A request for leave of absence in cases 1 through 3 should be submitted during the re-registration deadline for the next semester. In the rest of the cases, a leave of absence can be requested during the semester immediately after the reason for leave comes into effect. Allowing a leave of absence for an already past semester is generally not possible.

Courses and exams during the leave of absence

You remain enrolled at the University of Stuttgart during your leave of absence, which is why you must pay the semester fees. However, you are not allowed to attend courses or use university facilities (except the library and the computer centers).

Exception: Students on leave of absence under maternity protection or on parental leave can attend courses, fulfill course and exam prerequisites and use all facilities freely. The same applies to students who take care of a relative, who is in need of care, as defined in §§ 14, 15 SGB XI, as defined in §7 Section 3 of the Personal Leave for Caregivers Act.

Exams which are not part of a course can be taken. There is no obligation to repeat previously failed exams during a leave of absence.

Provided the relevant Exam Regulations envisages “free attempts” rules or other incentive schemes to promote early completion of exams, generally up to two leave of absence semesters do not influence the deadlines as per the Exam Regulations.

Number of semesters

Leave of absence semesters count as university semesters but not as study semester. The deadlines for completing exams as per the relevant Exam Regulations only take into account study semesters. 

Possible consequences

Please note that a leave of absence might lead to consequences in relation to other parties. For example with BAföG, child benefits, or residence permits. Please contact the appropriate authorities (e.g. Office for Educational Support, Social Welfare Office, Child Benefit Office, Foreigners Registration Office).

Legal foundations

  • Admissions and Enrollment Regulations of the University of Stuttgart
  • State Law for Fees at Higher Education Institutions in Baden-Württemberg (LHG)
  • Contribution rules of Studierendenwerk Stuttgart


This image shows Admissions Office for Germans and Foreigners with German Education

Admissions Office for Germans and Foreigners with German Education

This image shows Admissions Office for Foreign Nationals and EU Citizens

Admissions Office for Foreign Nationals and EU Citizens

This image shows Admissions Office: Semester/Tuition Fees

Admissions Office: Semester/Tuition Fees

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