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How do I finance a study programme?

According to §7 paragraph 1 BAföG (German Federal Law on Support in Education), financial support in accordance with the BAföG is only granted for an education. Educated dancers who fulfill the requirements necessary to attend a university thus do not receive financial support in accordance with the BAföG if the first study programme was already supported in accordance with the BAföG.
An exception is when, in accordance with §7 paragraph 2 BAföG, a dancer had a first career education of at least three years at a career vocational school that did not require graduation from a career education programme for admission.

BAföG (German Federal Law on Support in Education)

State support for students is regulated in the German Federal Law on Support in Education, otherwise known as BAföG, which also is the term used for the support itself. BAföG is paid out to students in half as a grant and in half as an interest-free state loan that must be repaid to the Bundesverwaltungsamt (Federal Administration Office). Support granted in accordance with the BAföG is, with few exceptions, dependent on the parents’ income. The student’s income and assets are, over the amounts of exemption (single without child: 5200,- €), then calculated in the amount of support.
Students can generally only be supported when they begin the education programme for which they are applying for before turning 31. There are, however, certain exceptions, for example for graduates of the so-called “zweiten Bildungsweg” (receiving a high school diploma for university admission that is gained after leaving school), employees without official university access prerequisites who attend a university as a result of their career qualifications, or for people who were prevented from beginning a university education before the age of 30 for personal (e.g., illness) or family (e.g., children) reasons. An exception to the age limit is, however, only possible when the potential students immediately began studying in the field of their choice upon fulfilling the prerequisites or when preventive reasons ceased to exist. Since 2010 one is qualified for BAföG for an MA degree until the age of 35.

More information:

Aufstiegs-Bafög (former ‘Meister-BaföG’)

For everyone who isn’t familiar with the AFBG yet, here is a short basic explanation: The AFBG is intended to offer for all occupation groups “measures of career advancement, financial […] support and means to […] encourage setting up new businesses […] and therefore [presents] an extensive supporting instrument for career advancement in fundamentally all occupations, irrespective of the terms of the advancement (fulltime/ part time/ in school/outside of school/ media based/ long distance study) .” There is funding for further education regardless of personal income as well as support with living costs for full time education depending on income. The main changes starting from August are:

+ From August, the so-called basic maintenance rate increases from €645.00 to €708.00 for a full time course.

+ The subsidy contribution for living costs during a fulltime course rise to 50%; and the maximum grant for course fees is no longer subsidised by 40 % of € 10,000 but €15,000

+ The funds allocated for child support and spouses are augmented

+ Financial support is available for a personal capital up to €45,000

+ Support for career advancement is now available for applicants with a B.A. or similar higher education degrees (for example technical college diplomas) as a first proven qualification*

+ Financial support remains age-independent

+ Support remains split in one-part grant and one-part low interest loan from the Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau (credit institute for rehabilitation), who also improved their repayment conditions in August.

The website of the Federal Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF) offers all relevant information as well as a free info-brochure  “From Master- to Promotion-Bafög”, which you can also get from us at the foundation.

Quoted and adapted sources see above, retrieved on 22.7.2016.

* Telephone advice service for specific information on the occupational group of stage dancers is available on the 22.7.2016 under the Service-Hotline of the BMFB 0800 – 6223634

All further financial details here:

Advancement Scholarship 

The advancement scholarship supports those with career experience while they complete their first academic university degree. The scholarship is a program of the support for the gifted (Begabtenförderung) and supports people who have demonstrated their special talent and commitment. Support for the gifted in career education from the SBB-Stiftung selects the scholarship recipients on commission by and with the funds of the Bundesministeriums für Bildung und Forschung and they accompany the students during their education. Over 1000 scholarship recipients can be added every year. There is no age limit. According to information granted to the Stiftung TANZ, the advancement scholarship is open to dancers who have completed their education at a vocational school.

The prerequisites for an application are:
* a completed vocational degree or further education,
* at least two years of career experience (after completing a vocational degree and before university studies) at the time of application online,
* no previous university degree,
* certification of special performance in education and career.

The application leads to a three-part selection process. More information at:

More information:

Student loans

Students can finance their living costs with a student loan for up to 14 semesters. The monthly credit amount can lie between 100 EUR and 650 EUR, depending on the borrower’s wish. Interest rates are relatively low and one can begin to pay back the loan between six and 23 months after graduation. The loan application must be submitted three months before financing is to begin to a KfW partner; this can be a student union, a local bank or mutual savings bank. Further information on student loans can be found on the KfW bank group’s website.


BAföG bank loans

In the framework of the German Federal Law on Support in Education (BAföG), under certain conditions students can receive a low-interest loan from banks. Those who want to add a further course of study that augments an already completed course of study in a sensible way, have to finance an increased period of study due to a change in fields, or need financial support until graduation because the BAföG maximum support period was overdrawn can apply to the Amt für Ausbildungsförderung (Office for Educational Support). The responsible BAföG office determines the amount of the loan. It is paid out by the Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau (KfW).

Educational credit

Educational credit is especially designed for the final phase of a course of study, for internships and additional, supplemental or qualifying courses of study. It finances students for up to two years with up to 300 EUR per month, assuming that the course of study occurs at an institution recognized by the BAföG. In contrast to educational support after BAföG, educational loans are granted independent of your, or your parents’, income and assets. The educational credit is granted by the KfW private client bank and can be applied for in addition to BAföG. The credit interest rate is low and can be found on the KfW bank group’s website. Maximum age: 44.

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