The waiting period is the time between your Abitur and the commencement of university studies, during which you were not enrolled at a German or European university or a university in Iceland, Lichtenstein, or Norway.
The waiting period is calculated according to the number of semesters which have elapsed since you acquired your university entrance qualification (Abitur) until the start of the semester for which you are applying. This is independent of whether or not you have already applied during this period.
A semester is counted from 01.04 to 30.09. and 01.10. to 31.03., excluding the semester in which you obtained your university entrance qualification.
The duration of the waiting period is restricted to 10 semesters (5 years) pursuant to the Act on Admission to Higher Education Institutions in the State of Berlin to Degree Programs with Restricted Admission (Berliner Hochschzulassungsgesetz).
Improving your waiting period
You may be able to submit an application to improve your waiting period (special request due to delayed university entrance qualification), thus moving you up in the ranking based on waiting period.
However, you must provide proof that you could have earned your university entrance qualification certificate earlier and the reasons that prevented you from doing so, e.g. that the acquisition of your university entrance qualification was delayed by certain circumstances (illness etc.) for which you were not responsible. Proof can be submitted in the form of, for example, a medical certificate and transcripts or an evaluation from your school explaining the reason and the period of the delay.
Before submitting the application, you should closely consider whether your request for compensation for disadvantages would be granted.
The waiting period is the time between the completion of your undergraduate university degree (e.g. bachelor’s) and your commencement of a master’s program. It is calculated according to the number of semesters which have elapsed since you earned your undergraduate degree until the start of the semester you are applying for. One semester (= waiting semester) is counted from 01.04. to 30.09. and 01.10 to 31.03.
If, however, you were enrolled in the meantime at another university (worldwide), this time is subtracted from the total number of waiting semesters. Any period you were not enrolled at a university counts as waiting time.
The duration of the waiting period is restricted to 12 semesters (6 years) pursuant to the Act on Admission to Higher Education Institutions in the State of Berlin to Degree Programs with Restricted Admission (Berliner Hochschzulassungsgesetz).
Waiting periods can increase your chance of admission to restricted admission degree programs.
Waiting period and exmatriculation
Your membership at a university ends with your exmatriculation or, in the case of temporary enrollment, with the expiry of this period. If you exmatriculate within 6 weeks after the start of the lecture period, the semester in question is not counted as a study period but as a waiting semester. However, you must have completed your final exam in the previous semester and thus have concluded your bachelor’s degree.
Example: Application to winter semester 2014/2015, exmatriculation on 03.11.2014 (within 6 weeks after the start of lectures), date of last examination and date of degree must be in summer semester 2014, e.g. 26.09.2014.